March 2024

IWD 2024: Investing in women, inspiring inclusion

Nadia and Sophie Hanessian

Just as in other countries around the world, female founders in Switzerland continue to be underrepresented and typically receive less funding than their male counterparts – even when research suggests that companies founded or co-founded by women tend to outperform those started by men alone. This is not only a societal and systemic issue for gender equality – it’s also a missed opportunity for the economy.

So, in the run up to International Women’s Day, we wanted to explore what more could be done to inspire inclusion and unleash everyone’s potential to shape the future of food. We spoke to 4 Swiss female founders and innovation enablers to get their take. Here’s what they said.

Ingeborg Gasser-Kriss, Director at Founder Institute Switzerland

“Founder Institute supports female entrepreneurs globally through the Female Founders Initiative. Here in Switzerland, I regularly host a roundtable of women entrepreneurs who share their inspiring stories to encourage other women. I am thrilled that among the 9 graduates of our Fall 2023 cohort, 5 are women! Additionally, we would love to welcome more women entrepreneurs and investors as mentors or speakers in our program – please reach out!”.

Find out more about the Founder Institute Switzerland and apply to be part of their Spring 2024 cohort here.

Eliana Zamprogna, Founder of Yumame Foods AG

“As a female entrepreneur, I am delighted by the growing number of women embracing entrepreneurship with fresh ideas. The business triumphs and the supportive networks we create not only contribute to a prosperous economy but also pave the way for future generations of women to shatter glass ceilings and thrive. I wish for more financial support for businesses led by women today, and envision a future where their success is the norm.”

Follow Yumame Foods on Instagram here.

Carrol Plummer, Co-founder and CEO Vivent SA

“As a mechanical engineer and entrepreneur, I deeply believe in creating technology that helps solve major, global issues. I was supported in my early career by some great bosses and in turn I am keen to support and mentor women and minorities to establish exciting careers in technology and STEM. Switzerland is a great place to start a new business and I’m happy to discuss how to get started or what it is like to work as an entrepreneur.”

Find out more about how Vivent’s solutions let you listen in to what plants are saying here

Sharon Wulff, Co-founder of Agrinorm AG

“As a woman founder, trust your gut amidst entrepreneurship’s challenges. Value feedback as input, not directives. Listen, reflect, then decide what’s best for your business. Remember, your intuition and understanding of your venture are paramount. Trusting yourself empowers you to make decisions aligned with your vision, leveraging your unique insights as your startup’s greatest asset.”

Find out more about Agrinorm’s smart quality chain management solution here.

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