December 1, 2023

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MCC and USADF Partner to Empower Women Entrepreneurs in Africa

Millennium Challenge Corporation
Press Release
November 1, 2023

WASHINGTON (Oct. 27, 2023) – The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) and the U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to drive the growth of successful women entrepreneurs and women-led small and medium enterprises (W-SMEs) in Africa. The collaboration empowers W-SMEs to access information and data, utilize digital tools, and perform business data analysis, which is pivotal to the sustainability, competitiveness, and resilience of their businesses.

In 2021, MCC, USAID, and Microsoft, in collaboration with local partners, launched the DigiFemmes program in Côte d’Ivoire. The program equips W-SMEs with digital and data skills necessary for business growth. Thousands of established and aspiring Ivorian women entrepreneurs have benefitted.

Through this new USADF-MCC partnership, USADF will provide grants to eligible DigiFemmes graduates, empowering them to grow and scale their businesses. This supports MCC and USADF’s inclusion strategies to enhance women entrepreneurs’ access to opportunities in the digital economy. Additionally, this collaboration aligns with the Biden Administration’s Digital Transformation with Africa (DTA) initiative, which seeks to expand digital access and literacy, and strengthen digital enabling environments across the continent.

“This partnership highlights MCC’s commitment to empowering women through data and digital skills so that they can be included in the growing digital economy,” said MCC Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alice Albright.  “USADF is an excellent partner and well poised to further the impact of the DigiFemmes program, which is helping women entrepreneurs access information, analyze business data and use digital tools to refine their products, access new markets and grow their businesses.”

Travis Adkins, President/CEO of USADF emphasized that “USADF’s commitment to empowering women entrepreneurs across the African continent is a vital component of our mission. As such, we are thrilled to launch this partnership and to provide the seed capital for Ivorian women entrepreneurs to scale and grow their enterprises in the digital space. We commend our partners at MCC for their outstanding achievements with this initiative and hope to amplify these results through our collaboration.”

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