Soda is looking for ambitious female entrepreneurs globally from Aotearoa to apply for RISE UP and win $10,000.

“At Soda, we are passionate about supporting women in business, especially those who are tenacious enough to start their own business. We created RISE UP in 2021 to encourage more women to consider entrepreneurship as a viable career , to build the capacity of female founders and champion female entrepreneurship in Aotearoa,” said Erin Wansbrough, CEO of Soda.

“Only 20% of high-growth startups in Aotearoa have a female founder and we hope initiatives like RISE UP will help address and correct this gender imbalance.”

Applications for RISE UP are open now and close June 10, 2021. To be eligible, you must be a Founder (or have a Founder) and have a registered New Zealand business on or before less than three years old and account less than five employees. The business must be scalable or have unique intellectual property.

Soda will select five female entrepreneurs to participate in a series of founder-focused workshops on topics including storytelling, owning your brand, pitch coaching and raising capital as a woman.

The competition will conclude with a pitch night on August 17, 2022 where the five finalists will pitch their business idea to a panel of top judges at The Atrium, Wintec House, Hamilton. Finalists will receive one-on-one mentorship with Soda’s industry experts and the winner will receive $10,000 in cash to help take their business to the next level. The event will be open to the public and guests will be encouraged to vote for a People’s Choice winner.

“RISE UP allowed me to capitalize on the initial potential of my business by connecting me with the right people in the industry and helping me identify my strengths and weaknesses,” says Wendy Quach, founder of &Again and winner of RISEUP 2021.

To learn more and apply, visit

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