Last month, one of our founding members, Dell, through its Women’s Entrepreneurs Network held their first regional summit in Amsterdam. DWEN brings together inspiring female entrepreneurs, international media and Dell executives for two days of collaboration, thought leadership and networking. By spotlighting female entrepreneurial success and creating a supportive atmosphere, DWEN helps a group of like-minded women share best practices, build business opportunities, explore international expansion and access new resources and technologies that support business growth.
The summit kicked off on December 2 with Karen Quintos, Chief Customer Officer, Dell Technologies, Patrick van de Coolwijk General Manager Dell Technologies Netherlands and Ingrid Devin, DWEN Director, providing the opening remarks. Shortly after, Jess Butcher shared her incredible journey from co-Founder of Blippar (that went into administration), to her new venture Tick. Anja Monrad, SVP & GM of Central and Eastern Europe, Dell Technologies moderated the first panel session of the summit exploring the unique opportunities, cultural nuances and geographical barriers of growing your business across Europe. Session two provided insights from seasoned investors and entrepreneurs about the labyrinth of funding options available to entrepreneurs. Shortly after, Carine De Meyere, Director of TEDxAmsterdamWomen closed day one with a session on “How to tell your story”.
Day two, shifted venues by co-hosting with the Dell Technologies Forum in Utrecht. This provided the entrepreneurs with a chance to tour the exhibition including the Innovation Square & Sustainability Corner. Dr. Nicola Millard of BT Enterprise kicked off Day two with a session on the changing landscape of technology. A little while later Aisling Keegan, VP & General Manager CSB EMEA Dell Technologies, moderated a Technology workshop allowing participants to explore how the right technology platform can grow, enable and scale your business. Unconference, an alternative networking session allowed the entrepreneurs to suggest and discuss their own topics after break.
For the aspiring marketers within the audience Claire Vyvyan, SVP UKI Dell Technologies hosted a session titled “How small businesses play big on the marketing battlefield”, showing the key focus areas and strategies in how small businesses can increase sales and reach out to customers. DWEN member Camille Huyghues Despointes presented her business venture “World is a Village“, a corporate platform for youth exchange by connecting families who want to send their children abroad and improve their language skills.
Sukai Ceesay and Louise Koch, Director of Corporate Sustainability for EMEA discussed why it’s good business to be a good business by showcasing the many ways Dell is committed to running a responsible and inclusive business. Finally, Sally Eaves, CEO of Aspirational Futures closed out the day by delivering a session titled ” Grow, Scale and Lead – How to Harness People and Emergent Technologies to Optimise Your Business”
Overall, the two day event was full to the brim with engaging and insightful content providing the entrepreneurs a platform to share their stories, lessons learned and experiences of running their own businesses. However, the true magic of the summit was during the networking sessions. You could feel the connections and relationships being made over the two days from the energy in the rooms. It’s hard not to be inspired by these amazing women.