12/05/2022 08:42 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, May 12 (Bernama) -- HSBC is offering US$1 billion (US$1=RM4.39) in lending to female-owned businesses in 11 markets, including Malaysia, over the next 12 months, through its newly-launched Female Entrepreneur Fund.

In a statement today, it said this comes alongside the introduction of the HSBC Roar initiative, which enables female entrepreneurs as well as successful fund applicants to access a series of masterclasses and networking sessions, among others.

“The initiatives launched today aim to break down the barriers faced by female entrepreneurs and provide the infrastructure and support to help them scale and grow their businesses,” the financial services group said. 

According to HSBC, access to funding remains one of the biggest hurdles for female business leaders worldwide.

“Female-owned businesses received just three per cent of start-up funding in 2019, while venture capital for female-founded enterprises hit a five-year low of two per cent in 2021,” it said.

Meanwhile, HSBC Malaysia country head of commercial banking Andrew Sill said it launched the Female Entrepreneur Fund and the HSBC Roar programme in Malaysia today to help address the challenges and bias that female leaders face.

“As the Malaysian economy continues to rebuild from the impact of the pandemic, we need to ensure that those small and medium-sized businesses led by women are given the support to fulfil their full potential,” he added.

HSBC Roar was piloted last year in Hong Kong, the United Kingdom and United States. Through the programme, the women entrepreneurs can access a series of masterclasses hosted by experienced business leaders, tailored networking sessions with major companies, and insights from the investor community along with the opportunity to pitch to angel investors.


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