Monday, March 12, 2012

Ambitious Women Entrepreneurs Sought for 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneurial Winning Women(TM) Program

Ambitious women entrepreneurs sought for 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneurial Winning Women™ Program


Newly released impact study from Babson College based on the program reveals winners have created significant job and revenue growth during the worst years of the recession

NEW YORK, MARCH 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Ernst & Young LLP is calling for applications for its fifth annual Entrepreneurial Winning Women Program, a national competition and leadership program that identifies a select group of women entrepreneurs whose businesses show real potential to scale – and then helps them do it.


In conjunction with the call for applications, the firm also released a new independent impact study, “Thinking big: how to accelerate the growth of women-owned companies,” based on Babson College Center for Women’s Leadership research. The study revealed that four years into the Entrepreneurial Winning Women Program, it is a model that can spur dramatic growth. Program participants’ companies have grown almost 50 percent each year on average, with a corresponding average annual job growth rate of more than 25 percent.

The study also speaks to the importance of bridging the “missing middle” – or lack of resources and advice available to second-stage women business owners whose companies have emerged from the start-up phase but are not yet large enough for the public markets.


“Women employ 16 percent of the US workforce and climbing – starting businesses at twice the rate of men. Yet they start with less capital and don’t grow as large,” noted Herb Engert, Americas Strategic Growth Markets Leader for Ernst & Young. “Our program helps successful women entrepreneurs propel their company’s growth, which benefits their businesses, creates jobs, and helps to boost the economy.”

In becoming part of Entrepreneurial Winning Women, women entrepreneurs join a long-term leadership development program that coaches the five crucial actions needed to scale their companies and introduces them to accomplished entrepreneurs, investors and advisors who can help them prepare for significant growth by:

Thinking big and being bold
Building a public profile
Working on the business, rather than in it
Establishing key advisory networks
Evaluating financing for expansion

“The Entrepreneurial Winning Women Program has totally changed my definition of ‘big’ and opened my eyes to the growth potential for our company,” said Amy Buckner Chowdhry, CEO, AnswerLab and a 2011 Entrepreneurial Winning Woman. “I’m thinking entirely differently about how we measure being the market leader.”

Each winner will also receive an all-expense paid trip to the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum® 2012, which takes place November 14-18, 2012 in Palm Springs, California. The Strategic Growth Forum, dubbed by as one of the “Seven Get-Ahead Executive Retreats,” is an invitation-only gathering of high-growth, market-leading company CEOs. The Forum presents a one-of-a-kind platform for Entrepreneurial Winning Women to introduce their companies and share their corporate and personal brands with a community of Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® winners, top executives, prospective investors and business advisors. All Entrepreneurial Winning Women will be recognized at a special celebratory event during the Forum. For more information on the Forum, visit:

Competition Criteria and Selection:

To apply for the program, applicants must fit the following criteria:

Founding woman CEO of a privately held US company
Company must have reported at least $1 million in sales within each of the last 2 years
Venture must be less than 10 years old
Entrepreneur must be able to attend an orientation and coaching session at Ernst & Young LLP’s headquarters in New York City on October 10-11, 2012, and the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum, November 14-18, 2012, in Palm Springs, CA.

“Because of Entrepreneurial Winning Women, I have completely revised my business plan in order to reach my new goal of hundreds of millions in sales,” said Lisa Bair, CEO, Hobart Group Holdings, and a 2010 Entrepreneurial Winning Woman. “I am now focused on a three-to-five- year vision that includes building out our expertise, the possible acquisition of complementary companies and investment capital to allow us to scale.”

The 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneurial Winning Women panel of independent judges – representing successful entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders – will select 10 Entrepreneurial Winning Women. Applicants will be expected to demonstrate qualities needed to take full advantage of the program, including successes to date that exhibit the creativity, tenacity and plan necessary to realize their companies’ full potential and the confidence and conviction to drive toward market leadership. In addition, Entrepreneurial Winning Women should have the maturity and level of business sophistication needed to interact effectively with potential investors, high-level business advisors and top executives.

To obtain an application form, or to nominate a deserving woman entrepreneur, visit: The application deadline is April 30, 2012.

To learn more about, and get a copy of the Ernst & Young case study, Thinking big: how to accelerate the growth of women-owned companies, visit:

Collaborating organizations:

The program is conducted in collaboration with Babson College, Kauffman Foundation, National Association of Women Business Owners, the Committee of 200, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council and Women Presidents’ Organization.

About Ernst & Young’s Strategic Growth Markets Practice

Through our Strategic Growth Markets (SGM) practice, Ernst & Young guides high-growth companies to market leadership worldwide. Our multidisciplinary teams of dedicated professionals provide perspective, advice, and insights to help our clients accelerate their growth. Ernst & Young is the undisputed leader in guiding Russell 2000® companies, IPO-bound companies and Forbes’ largest private companies. We deliver assurance, advisory, tax and transaction advisory services to thousands of companies in numerous, selected industries.

About Ernst & Young

Ernst & Young is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 152,000 people are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our people, our clients and our wider communities achieve their potential.

For more information, please visit

Ernst & Young refers to the global organization of member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. This news release has been issued by Ernst & Young LLP, a client-serving member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited located in the US.

Media Contact:

Jennifer Compton
Ernst & Young LLP

No comments: