Looking forward to the upcoming AIB Masterclass, are l-r: Lorraine Greene, Market Engagement Manager AIB Business Banking; Edel McGuinness, EMG Property Consultants; Keelin O’Keeffe, Kiki Moon; Joanne Hession, Founder of The Entrepreneurs Academy; Melissa Curley, Social Bee (Cork) and Jennifer Slattery, Jennifer Slattery Textiles. (Conor Healy Photography)

Women in Enterprise, an accelerator education and mentoring programme for ambitious, female entrepreneurs, has been launched by AIB in partnership with The Entrepreneurs Academy. 

The programme aims to empower, educate, mentor and bring together ambitious, entrepreneurial businesswomen to create a network, where women can redefine what’s possible for themselves and their business.

It is directed at women who lead or own business and have growth ambitions for those businesses.

AIB undertook extensive research with women business owners and commissioned independent research by B&A, which showed that one of the biggest asks from women in business is help with accessing tools, skills and guidance to grow and scale their businesses.

Joanne Hession, Founder of The Entrepreneurs Academy said: “The Entrepreneurs Academy has an exceptional track record in creating high impact training and mentoring and we are delighted to partner with AIB on this extraordinary programme. I’ve wanted to run a programme like this for many years and I’m delighted to announce that at last we can.”

Speaking about the programme, Robert Mulhall, managing director Retail and Commercial Banking said: “AIB is fully committed to being the bank where existing and future female business owners feel they can and want to do business. We support and encourage female entrepreneurship and women inbusiness every step of the way, with access to educational expertise, mentoring, peer support and funding.

“We have put this programme in place to do that and to back our customers’ when it comes to starting and growing their own business.”

Four half-day masterclass events are taking place across Ireland, with the second one taking place in The Maryborough Hotel, Cork on Wednesday, 31st January and the third in Donegal on Thursday, 8th February. Both start at 2pm and run until 6pm and are followed by a networking reception from 6pm – 7pm.

Led by three expert facilitators from The Entrepreneurs Academy per location, these highly engaging and energetic masterclasses will set participants in the right direction to creating their own insightful roadmap to success. Places are limited to just 70 women per event.

In addition, two Growth Academy Workshop Programmes, which both include six full-day workshops, are open to 20 ambitious female entrepreneurs who are AIB business account holders. Each Academy consists of highly engaging full day workshops. Each group will be facilitated to become its own peer board and will be supported by ongoing peer support network the ‘Board you can’t afford’, an accountability system and online community development.

Further information on AIB Women in Enterprise is available at http://entrepreneursacademy.ie/aibwomeninenterprise/.