Society

Brazilian tech companies offer training and acceleration programs focused on women

Female-only initiatives are launched by companies such as VTEX, Ambev, and Distrito to support women in tech careers

Brazilian unicorn VTEX office
VTEX headquarters in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: VTEX/Courtesy

E-commerce solutions provider and Brazilian unicorn VTEX announced that is partnering with a non-profit edtech, Stoa, to offer scholarships for women pursuing an e-commerce career.

Called Women in Digital, the program’s new edition seeks to train female workers in an effort to support economic resumption. According to IBGE, in the third quarter of 2020, Brazil recorded 8.5 million fewer women in the labor force, in comparison with the same period of the previous year.

Data disclosed by INEP, the National Institute of Educational Studies and Research in Brazil, shows that while women are the majority within the country’s universities, they represent only 17% of professionals in the digital area.

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All women, cis or transgender, over 18 years old that are in their last year of college or have graduated within 1 year from any course or institution are eligible.

It’s a program for women supporting other women.

Natalia Zuca, Digital Strategy Manager at VTEX

The students will have over 100 hours of content in an intensive six-week program with more than seventy VTEX’s female experts and will receive an e-commerce analyst certification. In addition, those selected by the program will automatically be in the selection process for VTEX vacancies.

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“We want to support university women who have potential talent to work in technology areas, but who had no incentive or access to opportunities. Our goal is to make them more employable and at the same time to reduce some of the systemic inequalities in the market,” said Nairana Leal, Stoa’s CEO.

In the last edition, 97% of the students got a job and many of them volunteered to support the current edition. The program will virtually select candidates through tests, videos and case applications. Free registration is open until April 17 and up to 50 scholarships will be offered.

“The students connect with other women who share their own journeys, showing that it is possible to work and prosper in digital. It’s a program for women supporting other women,” said Natalia Zuca, Digital Strategy Manager at VTEX.

READ ALSO: Female entrepreneurs lead less than 10% of startups in Brazil, says Distrito

50 female-founded startups are selected by Distrito’s acceleration program

Dani Junco, CEO and founder of B2Mamy Accelerator. Photo: Courtesy/B2Mamy

Co-led by the innovation platform Distrito and B2Mamy in partnership with Ambev and the clothing retailer Marisa, the acceleration program Female Scale selected this week 50 startups from a wide range of sectors and all regions in Brazil – all led by women.

We expect this program to help drive these businesses forward, in order to reduce the disparity between women and men in the leadership of Brazilian startups.

Lilian Natal, head of Distrito for Startups

The program’s first stage, set to last one month, will offer to the selected startups training and meetings with big names of the Brazilian innovation ecosystem, such as Lara Lemann, from the VC firm MAYA Capital, Raquel Corrêa de Souza, from Gympass, and Mariana Cunha, from Waze. The female entrepreneurs will also have mentoring and will be able to connect with Distrito’s partner network.

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At the end of this phase, they will present their businesses to an evaluation board, which will select ten companies for the following phase, traction. During the next three months, startups will receive closer monitoring to develop and scale their businesses.

The final stage takes place in August when the entrepreneurs will present their solutions. The three best performing startups will receive awards of BRL 25 thousand, BRL 15 thousand and BRL 10 thousand, in addition to two positions at Distrito’s or B2Mamy’s hubs.

As for sectors, the Female Scale program selected healthtechs (14%), adtechs (12%), legaltechs (10%), fintechs (8%), cleantechs (6%), and edtechs (6%). There are also companies focused on urban mobility, food sector, and sports, among others.

READ ALSO: Women in leadership roles: 6 high executives on what it is like to be a female leader in LatAm

“Our goal is to empower these women, with inspiring female role models and powerful networking, so they can overcome some of the challenges women face in the working world,” adds Dani Junco, CEO of B2Mamy, an accelerator connecting entrepreneurial mothers to the innovation ecosystem.

Hubkn, Única Entrega and VariFact are some of the startups selected by the program. Get to know all of them here.

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