Female entrepreneurs - Business growth through ownership transfers
Funding: European Social Funding
Time: 1.12.2018 – 31.12.2020
SeAMK encourages and supports female entrepreneurs to grow their businesses in South Ostrobothnia. This relates to the implementation of external growth strategy for SMEs. The external growth strategy includes both acquisitions and selling the business to a third party. In order to keep the business in a good condition until the selling point, internal development actions are needed. Therefore, SeAMK organises trainings and lectures about business strategy, marketing and finance. Thus, the aim is not only to support and encourage female entrepreneurs to grow their businesses through selling or buying a (part of) business but also to prepare aging female entrepreneurs to sell their companies. It is important to keep the company appealing to the potential buyer when the entrepreneur is approaching retirement age.
The primary objectives of the project are to:
- enhance the ability of female entrepreneurs to implement external growth strategies
- give guidelines for female entrepreneurs to maintain and develop their company’s performance for the potential sale
- help and support the preparedness of female entrepreneurs to sell the company, including well-being at work and psychological support for the business transfer
- connect aging female entrepreneurs and successors
During the project, female entrepreneurs are offered trainings and workshops in the following themes:
- Acquisitions and selling the business: what are the phases of the business transfer process, where to get outside support for selling/buying a business, how to evaluate the value of the company, where to get finance and what issues are relevant in forming the contract, psychological themes in giving up a business
- Development of business operations: what is a business strategy and how to formulate it; how to create appealing marketing strategy and usage of social media; how to make a budget, follow and report company’s finances and what are the key indicators to follow
- Well-being at work: what is resilience and how to enhance one’s own resilience and self-efficacy, how to get inspired and innovative, how to take care of one’s own well-being
The project provides at least three trainings of selling a business, three trainings of buying a business and four trainings about development of business operations (including well-being). Most of the trainings videos are provided in the project’s websites (in Finnish) afterwards. Additionally, female entrepreneurs are welcomed to workshops where the themes are discussed with a help of tools presented in the trainings. These occasions give entrepreneurs an opportunity to connect the learnings to their own business in practice. Finally, during the two years project time, 2018-2020, two events are arranged where potential sellers and buyers can meet each other.
The target for the project was to reach 50 micro and small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). By February 2020, 58 female entrepreneurs have participated in the project and its events. The database of female entrepreneurs exceeds over 100. The project’s facebook account has over 130 followers. Association of Female Entrepreneurs in Seinäjoki and Into Seinäjoki (city’s development organization) are close collaborators of SeAMK in implementing the project.
Training materials (in Finnish only) developed during the course of the project can be found here. These materials provide an opportunity for self-based learning for all interested parties.
Brochure in English: Tips for implementing change of ownership (pdf).