In a bid to aid female-founded start-ups, US retailer Sephora has announced the first female entrepreneurs to be picked for its inaugural Accelerate Cohort programme.
The programme is part of the company’s ‘Sephora Stands’ initiative and is positioned to help female-founded start-ups push forward in a male-dominated industry.
The winners include: Candace Mitchell (Myavana), Carolina Grove (Stylerz), Danielle Cohen-Shohet (Glossgenius), Karissa Bodnar (Thrive Causemetics), Leila Janah (Laxmi), Lisa Mattam (Sahajan), Naa-Sakle Akuete (Eu’Genia Shea) and Suzanne LeRoux (One Love Organics).
Candidates had to tick numerous boxes to make in onto the coveted program, such as being a founder or co-founder of their business, being committed to building a social impact into the company’s DNA, and fitting into two broad categories: leading a company that creates a cosmetic product, or a company that creates technology or provides services related to beauty or that could be relevant to the beauty industry.
Corrie Conrad, Sephora’s Head of Social Impact, said, “Sephora is thrilled to announce the entrepreneurs selected for our Accelerate Cohort program. These female founders from the US, Mexico and Canada have impressed us with their vision and unique approach to beauty.”
The candidates will start a bootcamp in April, held in San Francisco, which will help them learn how to drive their businesses forward. Other parts of the program include access to an exclusive mentorship program comprised of Sephora’s network of beauty industry leaders and internal mentors, which includes Pamela Baxter, President and CEO LVMH Perfumes & Cosmetics for North America, and CEO of Christian Dior Inc.
The company designed the Sephora Accelerate program to build a community of innovative female founders in all areas of the beauty industry.