Edmonton, AB - Sept 16, 2019 – In collaboration with national and regional partners, Alberta Women Entrepreneurs (AWE) is helping to organize an incoming trade mission of approximately 20 women business owners from the German Business Women’s Association (VdU). VdU will be visiting Edmonton from September 14 – 17th to explore business opportunities, including those offered by the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). VdU represents the interests of over 1800 women-owned businesses in Germany. These businesses employ over 500,000 people and represent a collective revenue of 85 billion Euros.
“The Association of German Women Entrepreneurs is very happy to strengthen our partnership with Women’s Enterprise Organizations of Canada (WEOC) and AWE through this trade mission,” says Dr. Marie-Claire Weinski, Board member of VdU International Commission. “This special cooperation allows us to give our members access to a strong female Canadian business network and to take advantage of the new international business opportunities under CETA. We look forward to an inspiring visit and to establishing valuable personal and business connections.”
While in Edmonton, the German delegation from VdU has a full itinerary including site tours of Startup Edmonton and the Advanced Technology Centre, and meetings with the Alberta Economic Development and Trade Office and the German Canadian Centre for Innovation and Research. On Monday, September 16th AWE is hosting a networking event at the ATB Entrepreneur Centre to facilitate connections and matchmaking opportunities between German and Albertan women entrepreneurs. The event has been sponsored by the Government of Canada Trade Commissioner Service, Export Development Canada, Women’s Enterprise Organizations of Canada, and AWE.
After spending four days in Edmonton, VdU will continue on to Vancouver, BC.
This trade mission builds on the momentum of a Canadian trade mission to Europe led by Business Women in International Trade that took place last fall. In November 2018, eleven women-owned Canadian companies and three representatives of Canada’s women’s enterprise organizations visited Germany and the UK, the first ever delegation of women entrepreneurs to Europe since CETA was ratified. On this trade mission an MOU was signed in Germany between the German and Canadian national women’s enterprise organizations to act as a collaborative tool for future trade missions and business relationships.
“We are honoured to have the delegation from VdU here in Edmonton and to have the opportunity to make connections between German and Albertan women entrepreneurs,” says Marcela Mandeville, CEO of AWE. “There is significant opportunity post-CETA for Alberta companies to explore international business opportunities. It is important to create these relationships across borders and I am looking forward to building on the partnership that was created when WEOC and AWE visited Germany last fall.”
Canada is a leader in women’s entrepreneurship, with the highest rate of early-stage activity among innovation-driven economies, including the US, Australia, and the UK. However, there is more that needs to be done to reduce barriers to business growth and export opportunities for women-owned businesses. The newly formed relationship between VdU and Canadian women’s enterprises organizations provides the opportunity to build innovative, viable solutions by connecting women entrepreneurs to each other and to potential supply chains across borders.
About Alberta Women Entrepreneurs
Alberta Women Entrepreneurs (AWE) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to enabling women to build successful businesses. AWE provides unique programs and services to women at all stages of business through advising, financing, mentoring, and network development.
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