The importance of recognising and celebrating female entrepreneurship in the City of London

Shalini Khemka CBE
Image credit E2E

On the 25th of April, E2E, a driving force behind entrepreneurship, whose community contributes £230bn in turnover to the UK economy and employs 1.15 million people, will announce the top 100 female-led businesses in the UK.

With a large amount of the top 100 female-led businesses in the UK being based out of the City of London, this upcoming list further shines a light on the importance of London being a thriving hub for entrepreneurs.

E2E’s highly anticipated list is a celebration of the very best examples of the sector and impact women have on the UK’s entrepreneurial landscape.

Commenting ahead of the release, Shalini Khemka CBE, CEO and founder of E2E, said: “The E2E Female 100 list is a testament to the remarkable achievements of women in business. It showcases their talent, dedication, and resilience in navigating the business world.”

Speaking about the inspiration behind the E2E Female 100 list, Khemka continued: “We’re still in a period of transition where women have to be recognised as much as possible to create parity in our economy, both in terms of general recognition, pay recognition, and equal opportunities.”

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Explaining how the selection process for the E2E Female 100 list works, Khemka said: “It’s not about how good your PR department is, or how good your marketing department is. It’s pure raw data gathered by Experian, the world’s largest data company. It’s the genuine facts and figures around the female-led companies that are actually making a difference.”

Inclusion on the E2E Female 100 list is considered a prestigious honour for female entrepreneurs, reflecting their calibre and success in a competitive landscape. Khemka emphasised, “It’s a very tough list to get on, with huge amounts of competition. Each year there are more and more female-led businesses scaling and growing, so to be on the list, you really need to be a certain calibre.”

“If you are on this list, you’ve done incredibly well. It’s a recognition of your hard work and dedication.”

2023’s list is a testament to this, with last year’s winner, Mary Bonsor from Flex Legal Ltd, going on to sell her business to a large and highly recognised legal firm based in the UK.

The E2E Female 100 list serves as a catalyst for collaboration and networking among female entrepreneurs. Khemka highlighted: “It gives them the opportunity to be part of this larger E2E community, to network, to raise investment, to find non-executives, and to sit on boards.”

Looking ahead, Khemka envisions the E2E Female 100 list evolving into a champion league table, setting higher criteria and spotlighting the growth of female-led businesses.

Offering advice to aspiring female entrepreneurs, Khemka encouraged authenticity, resilience, and strategic planning. She also highlighted the importance of managing cash flow, raising funds, and surrounding oneself with supportive advisors.

“Stay authentic and be yourself,” Khemka advised. “Remember the importance of showcasing your brand and having a strong business model. And remember, it’s an asset to be a female.”

The E2E Female 100 list not only celebrates the achievements of female entrepreneurs but also shapes the future of entrepreneurship by fostering collaboration, promoting diversity, and inspiring the next generation of leaders.

Shalini Khemka CBE is an entrepreneur and Founder & CEO of E2E

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