A RECORD number of businesswomen make up the latest cohort of NatWest’s Entrepreneur Accelerator in Wales.
The accelerator supports and empowers entrepreneurs to scale their businesses to the next level.
Sixty-six percent of those who took up their places on the programme last month were women.
They include Caerphilly-based motivational speaker and life coach Zoila Garman, the founder and director of Zyger Fit.
Ms Garman, who was previously a software developer, joined the programme to help grow her business even further.
She said: “I believe in my business. I’m passionate about helping people and I’m seeing the benefit of getting to know like-minded people who will help me boost my business to the next level and give me ideas about what the next steps need to be.
“I can already see the difference the accelerator is making to my business. I can always come to the co-working hub and find somebody who knows something about a topic I’m interested in.”
NatWest’s Wales accelerator is also leading the way when it comes to supporting increasing numbers of black and minority ethnic entrepreneurs.
The bank has set a target for at least 20 per cent of places on its UK-wide accelerator programmes to be taken up by black or minority ethnic entrepreneurs.
In this year’s Wales cohort that figure has been surpassed, reaching nearly 24 per cent.
“Our latest cohort underlines the breadth of entrepreneurial talent that exists in Wales,” said Wales enterprise acceleration manager Nicholas Powell.
“These businesses are helping fuel the Welsh economy and inspiring new opportunities within our ecosystems.
“Our purpose as a bank is to help entrepreneurs thrive and achieve their potential.
“It’s therefore hugely encouraging to see so many women entrepreneurs leading the way in Wales as part of our programme.
“NatWest is working to empower more women and black and minority ethnic entrepreneurs and so it is exciting to be supporting so many pioneering businesses.”
The free accelerator programme specialises in wraparound support and provides one-to-one coaching with expert acceleration managers.
It also provides a programme of thought leadership and events and access to a network of like-minded peers, supported by NatWest’s ecosystem managers.
On top of that, there is focused support with access to experts from across each business’ specialism and use of modern co-working spaces in one of NatWest’s nationwide hubs, including Cardiff.
For those unable to access one of the hubs, a digital accelerator programme is available with all the same support provided.
Participants do not need to give up any equity in their businesses or bank with NatWest to take part in the accelerator.
For more information, including details on how to apply to be part of the next cohort, email [email protected] or search online for NatWest Accelerator.