To celebrate International Women’s Day, a business invested in newborns to make a practical change towards gender equality.
German food service wholesalers Metro AG decided to run a different type of campaign in support of International Women’s Day. To mark the 2018 event, the company announced its Own Business Girls campaign. For every baby girl born in Düsseldorf on the 8th March 2018, the company set up a fund in her name of USD 2,500. Accessible when they turn 18, the purpose of the savings is to make it easier for women to start their own business.
The company created the campaign after its research found that although 45 percent of women would like to start their own business, only 12 percent believe they will do so. Participants in the survey cited a lack of financial support as the biggest obstacle in running their own business. The survey included interviews with more than 10,000 people across 10 different countries.
Metro AG sees the campaign as a practical step in fixing a major barrier to full economic development and participation. Each newborn registered with the campaign will also receive her own business card. The funds will earn a fixed interest rate of two percent per year. A rate significantly higher than that offered by most banks. The team behind the campaign hopes that other organizations, including businesses and government departments, will use the study’s findings as a spur for additional, practical action for change.
Gender inequality is an internationally recognized problem, with solutions ranging from board games that make it easier to discuss arranged marriage to a predictive text app that helps reverse gendered language. What else would help make it easier for businesses and individuals to support equality in everything they do?