Cartier is a fantastic luxury brand that shows us they are more than just pomp and circumstance: they have depth and compassion, an eye for the future, and a heart for women.
Cartier started the Cartier Women’s Initiative in 2006 as an annual international entrepreneurship programme that aims to drive change by empowering women entrepreneurs through supporting their ideas and business plans. The programme focuses on women-run and women-owned businesses that have a strong and sustainable social and/or environmental impact. Cartier partnered with INSEAD Business School for this endeavor.
INSEAD Business School spans the globe with locations in France, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, and San Francisco. INSEAD offers both degree programmes and Executive Education programmes and is staffed by a diverse collection of faculty members. Close to 13,000 people participate in the INSEAD school programmes. The Hoffmann Global Institute for Business and Society is working with INSEAD to align implementation of the programmes with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Institute delves into innovative business models, sustainable operations, and works to inspire diverse future leaders.
The Cartier Women’s Initiative’s vision is, “a world in which every woman impact entrepreneur driving social change can achieve her full potential.” To support this, their mission is, “to shine a light on women impact entrepreneurs and provide them with the necessary financial, social and human capital support to grow their business and build their leadership skills.”
As Cyrille Vigneron, CEO of Cartier, says, “In less than a decade, the Cartier Awards has grown from attracting 360 to 1200 applications per year. With a growth in both the quantity and the quality of the businesses applying, the initiative has become a transformative step in the lives of 240 women entrepreneurs in 56 countries.”
Among the guiding principles behind this inspiring Initiative are the firm belief that women can be the agents of change, that talent is universal but opportunities are not, and that everyone is, and should be, constantly learning. The Initiative seeks to support women who can make important changes in our lives by providing them with opportunities, education, and access to financial means to help bring their plans into reality.
The Initiative has been bestowing Regional Awards sine its inception. Three finalists per global region are chosen and one laureate per region emerges as the final awardee. Each laureate receives US$100,000 in a grant while the other two finalists in the each region receives US$30,000.
For the 2021 round of the Women’s Initiative, Cartier has added the Science & Technology Pioneer Award category. Women entrepreneurs from any country and sector can vie for this award that highlights innovative solutions built for technological or scientific advances.
Global Programme Director Wingee Sampaio cites a unity of thought, word, and action creating happiness and says, “Leading the Cartier Women’s Initiative gives me the opportunity to advocate for all the remarkable women leveraging business as a force for good.”