International Women’s Day was marked by a myriad different celebrations and events across the globe.
In Birmingham, the day marked the launch of a new initiative aimed at empowering women in business across the Commonwealth of Nations.
The Commonwealth Businesswomen’s Network (CBW) – a global network that spans Australia, Pakistan and Sri Lanka – officially opened its global headquarters in Birmingham.
The Network is supported by UK Trade and Investment and Birmingham’s Commonwealth Association.
Speaking at the launch, the organization’s Co-Chair Deb Leary said: “We are delighted to have Birmingham as the global headquarters for CBW.
“Our aim is simple – to provide the tools, opportunities and support necessary to ensure the growth and global reach of women. Whether as entrepreneurs, in corporate life, or in government our focus is three areas: trade, training and talent. We need to build companies that are sustainable, international and focused on growth and we need women to take up the challenge and take action. That’s why we are providing a BusinessXchange trading platform, along with an Academy to help shape and sustain that business growth.’
The platform is the result of CBW’s focus on leveraging technology to enable and encourage trade and capacity-building for women in business across the Commonwealth.
It also leverages the unique Commonwealth assets of common legal infrastructures, shared knowledge and relationships and a reduced cost of doing business between any two Commonwealth countries to create greater opportunities for business women – particularly in rural areas.
It is estimated that the Commonwealth is home to a billion women, sixty percent of whom are under the age of 30.
The group of nations accounts for 20% of all world trade and with costs of doing business in these countries significantly lower than in other parts of the world, the potential is immense.