The Nordics strengthen female entrepreneurship on International Women’s Day in New York

H.R.H. Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway will open Innovation Norway’s event on March 8 on why female founders and disruptive technology are key drivers towards gender equality and financial inclusion.

Bryant park in New York.

Bryant park in New York.

Foto: Thinkstock

Innovation Norway, the Norwegian government’s instrument for innovation and development of Norwegian enterprises and industry, UN Women and SAP will gather some of the world’s key leaders, innovators, entrepreneurs and influencers to change the structures that limit the financial inclusion of women. The goal of the event is to explore how cutting-edge technology can help ensure that more women gain access to financial services, and how we can increase the investments made in female founders.

A Nordic platform for change

2 billion people, most of them women, have limited or no access to financial services. New technology can give women easier access to save, lend and earn money, and help strengthen women’s financial independence, security and ability to start their own business.

- Entrepreneurship and innovation are crucial tools if we are going to reach the UN’s sustainability goals for gender equality. But to achieve structural changes we need start-ups, established companies, governments, investors and leaders to work together and across borders. We want to create a new global arena for change inspired by the Nordic model for entrepreneurship and equality, says CEO of Innovation Norway, Anita Krohn Traaseth.

From Soweto to Wall Street

The program will raise the voices of women and men from different sectors and from across the world. Speakers include CEO of Innovation Norway Anita Krohn Traaseth, Under-Secretary-General of the UN and Executive director of UN Women Phumzile Mlambo-Ngucka, Senior Vice President and Global Head of SAP Next-Gen Ann Rosenberg, female entrepreneurs from the global South, and Norway’s Female Entrepreneur of the Year.

- UN Women uses innovation and new technology to better target our support and to empower women to be active decisions makers. The world and our societies simply cannot afford leaving women and girls behind, we need to engage their potential. Innovators, investors, organizations and the women themselves need to work together to make this happen, says Caroline Rusten, Chief of the Humanitarian Unit at UN Women.

Gender lens investing and exponential technology

The program is divided into three main sessions and panel discussions:

· Leave no-one behind. How to enable financial inclusion
Karin Finkelston, Vice President of Partnerships, Communications, and Outreach at the International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group); Christina Shapiro from Goldman Sachs; Salah Moss, Vice President Global Product and Solutions at MasterCard, Anders Lier, Executive Chairman of Nordic Impact. Moderator: Hala Hanna, Director of Solve at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

· Disrupt the future - Exponential technology and start-ups towards 2030
Caroline Rusten, Chief of the Humanitarian Unit at UN Women; Thea Sommerseth, founder of the blockchain start-up Diwala; Ben Siegel, Impact Policy Manager at ConsenSys; Alex Gladstein, Chief Strategy Officer at the Human Rights Foundation. Moderator: Vanessa Yurkevich, Digital Correspondent at CNN.

· Invest in her – Gender lense investing, will it take us from talking and walking to running?
Fashion Designer and UN Ambassador Rachel Roy; Shadi Mehraein, co-founder of Rivet Ventures; Hedvig Alexander, founder of the Far and Wide Collective and investor; Shaloo Garg, Global Innovation at Oracle. Moderator Ghida Fakhry. International broadcast journalist at Al Jazeera.

Practical Information

The press is welcome to attend. For more information, interviews and press accreditation please contact Julie Ryland,, +47 48 11 19 75.

Read more about the event here, but please be aware that press registration also must be made through the contact info listed above.

When: March 8, 2018 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: SAP, Hudson Yards, 48th Floor, New York
Hosts: Innovation Norway, UN Women and SAP
Supporting partners: The Nordic Council of Ministers and DNB


Julie Ryland
+47 48 11 19 75

Innovation Norway - New York
655 Third Ave., Suite 1810
New York, NY 10017