In response to the shitty statistics regarding female entrepreneurs and their access to venture capital funding compared to their male counterparts, Sephora has announced a new annual program called Accelerate, which will aid beauty-related companies founded by women in the beginning stages of business. The program is part of Sephora Stands, the company’s social impact initiative.
“Currently, female entrepreneurs do not have the same access to funding, connections, or business instruction as male entrepreneurs do, a fact reflected by the statistic that 85% of venture capital funded start-ups are led exclusively by men,” Sephora stated in a press release. Women who run new businesses in the realm of cosmetic products—such as makeup, skincare, fragrance, haircare or beauty-related technology—were hand-picked by Sephora to apply for the program by the end of last month. In March, the cosmetics retailer will select ten participants to attend a bootcamp at its San Francisco headquarters in April.
The program’s participants will receive expert guidance and training, one-on-one mentorship from a network of beauty industry leaders, as well as monthly design support. They will also be given a $2,500 grant and be eligible for additional loans.
“Sephora is uniquely positioned to support and inspire women as they achieve their goals, and from the beginning, it’s been among the top requests from both our clients and our employees,” explained Calvin McDonald, the company’s president and CEO.
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