(Strong Women)

The Cartier Women’s Initiative Celebrates 15 Years By Honoring These Groundbreaking Entrepreneurs

Here’s what happened at the Dubai event.

Courtesy of Cartier Women's Initiative

After kicking off on March 6, the 15-year anniversary event for the Cartier Women's Initiative concludes today, March 8, after three days of celebrating the program’s footprint and this year’s nine Impact Awardees. Founded in 2006, the CWI is an annual initiative that works to help women entrepreneurs from around the world by providing financial and social support.

The celebration, which took place in Dubai, was hosted by founder and CEO of The Cru, Tiffany Dufu, and began with a concert of the Italian-Brazilian conductor Simone Menezes to honor women impact entrepreneurs. Following that, President and CEO of Cartier International Cyrille Vigneron, actor and producer Yara Shahidi, and world diving champion Guo Jingjing gave speeches that highlighted the importance of the initiative’s goals and the changemakers’ respective visions of women’s empowerment and gender equality.

“I am thrilled to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Cartier Women’s Initiative,” said Vigneron. “During all these years this initiative has brought together a community of passionate social entrepreneurs, who have developed successful business models improving lives around them. This community is a constant source of awe and inspiration.”

The ceremony, of course, also honored the nine Impact Awardees, which are former Cartier Women’s Initiative fellows chosen for the impact their businesses have created. Vigneron and Sophie Doireau, CEO of Cartier Middle East, India, and Africa, subsequently announced the first-place awardees of the Impact Awards Categories, which are Improving Lives, Preserving the Planet, and Creating Opportunities. They included Temie Giwa-Tubosun (Nigeria) of LifeBank; Charlotte Wang (China) of EQuota Energy; and Fariel Salahuddin (Pakistan) of UpTrade.

Courtesy of Cartier Women's Initiative

In addition to recognizing the Impact Awardees, the event also honored the mentors, judges, and coaches that have acted as their allies — i.e. the 10 Cartier Women’s Initiative Community Champions. The celebration continued beyond the ceremony, as well; through March 8, the program hosted workshops, “Meet & Learn,” and networking sessions for the community in the spirit of its mission — to help attendees meet other changemakers, form collaborations, and discuss shared dilemmas.

To find out more about this year’s event, head to the Cartier Women’s Initiative site, where you can read about the program, view the ceremony, and learn about all of the Impact Awardees and the work they’re doing to improve lives, preserve the planet, and create opportunities.