NEN-CBFW Mentor Development Program

NEN-CBFW Mentor Development Program

National Entrepreneurship Network (NEN) with support from the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women (CBFW) is implementing a one-year NEN-CBFW Mentor Development Program. The program’s objective is to increase the number of successful women entrepreneurs in India whose businesses create wealth and much-needed jobs. In the first year, the program’s goal is to train and support a pool of 60 highly qualified mentors across India, who in turn will support more than 1200 entrepreneurs over a three-year period post their training. The NEN-CBFW Mentor Development Program also aims to create a positive systemic change by developing a pool of mentors in India. It addresses the critical need for mentors in the entrepreneurial ecosystem thereby ensuring ongoing support for many more entrepreneurs.

NEN-CBFW Mentor Development Program 2011 

Into its third year, the program’s two modules continue to create a buzz among promising mentors and budding entrepreneurs. A quick recap of the modules impact on developing the skills of faculty mentors.

Module 1: Getting to Market 

Held from July 1 to 3, 2011 at Prin. L. N. Welingkar Institute of Management Development & Research, Bangalore, the ‘Getting to Market’ module brought together 36 NEN faculty mentors and eight entrepreneurs. The teaching faculty for the course were Somayajulu Garimella, Director and Professor, International Management Institute, Bhubaneswar; and Rajeev S, Adjunct Faculty, Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, Ahmedabad and Kozhikode

The main objective of the module is to enhance the participants’ knowledge of taking a product or service successfully to market. The faculty mentors are expected to both deepen their understanding of approaches, techniques and tools, and to apply that learning by mentoring entrepreneurs.

Click here for participant testimonials.


Module 2: Entrepreneurial Finance 

Prof. John Mullins of London Business School led the learning module on ‘Entrepreneurial Finance’, which held from September 19 to 21, 2011 at the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai. The program which was practice oriented engaged 35 NEN faculty mentors and eight women entrepreneurs and tackled critical concepts and tools for options of financing, valuations, structuring deals and exit strategies. The program was highly successful and received positive testimonials from participants. 

Click here to read the testimonials.


NEN-CBFW trained Faculty Mentors and their work with women mentees:

We have seen remarkable work from the NEN-CBWF trained Faculty Mentors who have leveraged their learnings from the CBFW-NEN program. Here are some outcome stories on the mentoring engagement with women entrepreneurs.

Prof. Joyeeta Mukherjee, Bengal College of Technology for Women, Durgapur is presently mentoring eight women student entrepreneurs, who have set up a campus company DIVAS which manufactures designer ladies tunics or kurtis using their skills of art, embroidery, tailoring, etc. Under Joyeeta’s guidance, the start-up was able to reach its first customers - girls’ hostel on campus and faculty members. Encouraged by the initial success, they are now planning to expand their market within and outside Durgapur town. Currently, Joyeeta is mentoring them for expansion of their business and to frame sales and marketing strategies. They are also looking at expansion in the Japanese market where traditional Indian kurtis are in great demand.

On the manufacturing front, they have plans to introduce vegetable dye instead of non-toxic acrylic fabric colours used in the designing process.  To improve production, quality and design, they have approached the premier organization CMERI (Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute) to train them in CAD-CAM Technology (Computer Aided Designing & Manufacturing). This will help them digitise the designing process and eventually merge creativity with technology.

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