Over 75 women from Torfaen and across the South East Wales region gathered at the Cwmbran Parkway Hotel & Spa, Cwmbran to attend the borough’s annual celebration of women in business and the contribution they make to the economy.
Attendees either established in their career or having started a new business represented a diverse range of sectors including finance, legal, retail, IT/digital and the food and drinks industry.
Organised by the Economy and Business Development team at Torfaen council and opened by Alison Ward, Chief Executive of Torfaen council, the event, now in its 6th year, featured networking, high tea plus shopping opportunities at trade stands.
Speakers included Rachel Jowitt, the new Chief Officer of Neighbourhoods, Planning and Public Protection at Torfaen council along with entrepreneur Jenny Evans, founder of Jenny Kate Ltd and winner of the Santander Universities Entrepreneurship award.
Speaking at the event Rachel Jowitt, said:
“I was honoured to be invited to talk at this local prestigious event. The topic really made me reflect and consider my own personal journey and the success and challenges I’ve experienced on my path to my current position. Gender equality is not a “nice” but an essential thing to do and has been proven to be fundamental, globally, for achieving wider societal and sustainable development goals.
“The business case though is compelling and should inspire businesses locally, nationally and internationally to put this on the top of the agenda. Those businesses which are more equal than others (as none are yet perfect) have higher dividends, better safety records and lower risks – they out perform their competitors.
“Equality in the UK world of work would see a further £150bn put into the economy by 2025. Therefore for our next generation and to inspire young girls Women in Business is an essential platform where we celebrate success and inspire those to have the confidence to dream big and achieve whatever it is they want to achieve.”
Keynote speaker Jenny Evans, said:
“It was an utter privilege and pleasure to talk at the 2018 Torfaen Women in Business event. As a young entrepreneur, I was honoured to be given a platform to share my experiences and was so pleased by how many women enjoyed what I had to say. Connecting with other female entrepreneurs in the Welsh community is vital. I would like to say a huge thank you to Torfaen Council for recognising and supporting this important event.”
This year the event supported Teenage Cancer Trust, with all delegate ticket and raffle proceeds donated to the charity. A total of £1550.00 was raised.
Gaynor Wakeling, Business Development Manager at Torfaen Economy & Business Development, said:
“This has been another highly successful evening and I’d like to thank everyone who has attended and supported our flagship annual event. Networking events like this are just one of a wide range of business support services that we offer and I would urge anyone doing business in the Gwent area to get in touch with us to discuss the support we can provide.”