The Coca-Cola Company today announced strong progress toward its goal to enable the economic empowerment of 5 million women entrepreneurs across the Coca-Cola value chain by 2020. The initiative, known as 5by20, is expanding beyond its pilot programs in four countries to launch and scale programs across a total of 12 countries: Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Egypt, Haiti, India, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, the Philippines, South Africa and Thailand. 5by20 is on track to reach 300,000 women by the end of 2012.
Malehlohonolo Moleko of Vander Bjilpark, South Africa is a bakery owner, a shop owner and a mother. She participated in a 5by20 business skills training course and learned how to balance budgets, stock inventory and ultimately how to increase her business' revenue. (Photo: Business Wire)By providing access to business skills, financial services, assets and support networks of peers and mentors, 5by20 is helping women succeed as entrepreneurs, while also creating thriving, sustainable communities. “Working with and investing in women is one of the most powerful ways to spur sustainable economic growth and development,” said Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company. “I’m excited by the progress we’re making toward our goal to empower 5 million women. We are transforming lives and communities, making a profound and lasting impact on global issues and also growing our business.” Initially focused on four pilot countries – Brazil, India, South Africa and the Philippines – the expansion of 5by20 into additional countries demonstrates The Coca-Cola Company’s continued commitment to testing, learning and scaling programs in order to reach its ambitious women’s economic empowerment goal. This expansion includes the launch of 5by20 in China in partnership with All China Women’s Federation to provide business skills to female retailers, with the initial pilot program underway in Guangxi Province. In Kenya, young women entrepreneurs are receiving business skills training and retail assets to establish new enterprises in partnership with TechnoServe. In Mexico, young women are receiving business skills training and being trained for their first job.