Visa Announces Grant Recipients of She’s Next Program, Grants $10,000 Each to Women-Led Businesses
Visa, the global leader in digital payments, today announced the grant recipients of the She’s Next Grant Program in India. She’s Next is a global advocacy program by Visa that aims to empower women-led small businesses across segments, with insights and tools such as networking, mentoring, and funding opportunities. Visa has awarded a grant of US$10,000 to each of the three winning businesses owned and led by women. It also partnered with Razorpay Rize, an exclusive community for founders, to provide all grant recipients with complimentary access to the invite-only Razorpay Rize incubator program, including a range of benefits like mentorship, assistance with incorporation and fundraising, and networking opportunities with fellow founders.
The program received over 700 applications spanning across sectors, including agriculture, specialised education for children, elderly care, homestays, law, literature, travel, handicrafts, and support for local artisans, reflecting the diversity of women-led entrepreneurship in India. The recipients of this year’s She’s Next grants program are:
- Suchita Bhandari, Urvara Krsi, Gurugram, Haryana
- Nidhi Chawla, Silver Talkies (Active Age India Pvt. Ltd.), Bangalore
- Elizabeth Thomas, Phonologix Health Solutions Pvt. Ltd, Kerala
Sandeep Ghosh, Group Country Manager, India and South Asia, Visa said, "Visa is committed to fostering financial and social inclusion by investing in small enterprises, which are pivotal to economic growth. Women-led businesses like Urvara Krsi, Silver Talkies and Phonologix, enthuse us with their profound community impact, and we are honored to extend this grant to these very inspiring women entrepreneurs. The She’s Next Grant Program in India is a key initiative for Visa in in its ongoing focus on galvanizing female entrepreneurship and promote inclusion across the country."
The recipients were chosen through a meticulous review process, including their background stories, societal challenges they aim to address and the potential for future growth in their respective business models. Each of the three grant recipients, chosen from a pool of 700+ applicants, presented a compelling vision for how Visa’s grant would contribute to the expansion and advancement of their businesses and to empower more women. They also outlined plans for supporting local communities and the broader Indian economy through their businesses.
Visa continues empowering small and medium businesses through opportunities like the She’s Next Grant Program providing women-led businesses with the vital tools, resources, and financial support that enable them to thrive. Concurrently, Razorpay Rize, an embodiment of entrepreneurial support, offers a comprehensive program that addresses the challenges faced by founders during the early stages of business growth. With a focus on mentorship, incorporation, and fundraising activities, Razorpay Rize seeks to build a community of like-minded founders in India's thriving startup ecosystem, demonstrating the company's dedication to empowering entrepreneurs and contributing to the growth of the startup community. Visa’s She’s Next Program aligns with Razorpay’s mission of investing in the country’s talent pool and fostering innovation.
In recent years, Visa has undertaken such initiatives for women-led businesses across India. In 2020, its grants program in partnership with global partner IFundWomen facilitated women entrepreneurs with access to funding and mentorship opportunities. In 2021, Visa collaborated with NASSCOM Foundation to enhance digital and financial literacy among over 650 women micro-entrepreneurs in rural areas. Most recently, Visa committed US$1 million to United Way Mumbai (UWM) to uplift women owned and women-focused businesses across more than 240 villages in four states. The program has already provided financial literacy education and financial linkages to over 8,500 women.
Globally, Visa has invested over US$3.83 million in over 380+ grants and coaching for women small and medium business owners through the She’s Next Grants Program since 2020. By equipping women micro-entrepreneurs with vital skills and facilitating access to relevant financial resources, Visa aims to empower both individual enterprises and the communities they serve.