A Nokia Life+ service called ‘Usaha Wanita’ aimed at empowering women entrepreneurs in Indonesia has won the Best Consumer Service Innovation award at the Global Telecoms Business 2013 Awards.
The Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, in partnership with the ExxonMobil Foundation, Indosat and Nokia developed Usaha Wanita to provide women with free business advice and information through their mobile phones.
The Global Telecoms Business Innovation Awards were first presented in 2007 and are intended to celebrate cooperation between operators and their partners.
Wedding dressmaker Amisha Chalid, from Jakarta, is just one of the 8,000 women in Indonesia who have benefited from the service.
Amisha says that, along with marketing, one of the biggest challenges she faces is sourcing quality materials at affordable prices.
She has been using Usaha Wanita to help grow her business and compete with importers who also offer wedding dresses at competitive rates.
Through the Nokia Life+ web app on her mobile phone, Amisha can access Usaha Wanita for information on topics such as business management, banking and credit access, customer management and marketing for small businesses.
In Amisha case’s she could find specific advice about working with traders, improving distribution channels and how to tap into valuable existing networks.
Empowering Indonesia’s women
Usaha Wanita is intended to help Indonesian women running, or hoping to start, a small, medium or micro-enterprise. It is available on the Nokia Life+ web app and gives women access to information that can further their professional development.
“Usaha Wanita underscores our philosophy and commitment to inform, involve and empower people”, said Jawahar Kanjilal, vice president & global head of Nokia Life.
“Together with our partners Indosat, part of Ooredoo Group and the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, we are delighted to see mobile technology empowering millions at the grassroots.”
“I am delighted that this service has been recognised and we hope to continue to take it further,” said Cherie Blair, founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women.
“Supporting women entrepreneurs is one of the most important investments we can make and technology is one of the tools that can help us do that on a global scale.”