NEWARK, N.J.— With women entrepreneurs 63% less likely to receive funding than men, Mars-owned DOVE Chocolate wants to empower and support women to pursue their dreams of starting and building their own businesses via the #DOVEInstaGrants program.
The program encourages women to pitch their business ideas or established businesses for a chance to receive one of three $10,000 grants and further business promotion in 2023.
From December 5-19, consumers can submit details about their innovative idea or business and how the investment would help in a short video of 30 seconds or less on dovechocolateinstagrants.com or on Instagram with the hashtag #DoveInstaGrantsEntry, tagging @DoveChocolate.
Last year’s program saw hundreds of entries and grant recipients included a sustainably-run farm, a subscription service to support math confidence and reduce math anxiety in girls, and a screening app to detect early signs of Alzheimer’s.
"With the great success of last year's program, we wanted to inspire moments of everyday happiness again by relaunching DOVE InstaGrants and offer even more women a chance to live out their business and entrepreneurial dreams," said Michelle Deignan, senior director at Mars Wrigley.
"According to researchers from Columbia Business School and London Business School, 63% of women entrepreneurs are less likely to receive funding than men, regardless of their background and ideas, so there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure women are given the financial confidence they need to excel," Deignan said.
The program builds on DOVE Chocolate's long-standing partnership with CARE, an international humanitarian agency. The partnership works to empower women in West African cocoa-growing communities by building their financial literacy, defining their voices in financial decisions and developing their small businesses. The DOVE InstaGrants program aims to bring this purpose work to the U.S., as it has seen the empowerment financial community and conversation can offer in its work in West Africa.