May 7, 2015
Vancouver, Canada

Overview

‘The Next Billion: Women & The Economy of the Future’ is the inaugural conference for an innovative new initiative, the Next Billion. This one-day conference will spark conversation, challenge assumptions and enable the sharing of practical solutions among senior corporate leaders. This dynamic topic will create a global, action-oriented community of private sector representatives focused on building their businesses by capitalizing on the potential of women as employees, executives, investors and consumers.

The evidence is clear, as is the message: when women do better, economies do better.
Christine Lagarde
Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund at the World Economic Forum 2013

Please join us on May 7, 2015 for a day-long series of moderated discussions with senior-level corporate leaders from throughout Canada, the United States, Latin America, Europe and Asia to discuss practical ways in which women as consumers and employees, entrepreneurs and executives are critical to the continuing success of companies in today’s competitive, international economy. After an exciting evening welcoming reception on May 6th followed by an inspiring and informative day on May 7th, the meeting will afford participants ample opportunity to network with their peers from across North America.

Why This Issue?

Societies and companies, in particular, can—and must—integrate women economically if they are to remain competitive in the longer term. Why? It pays dividends, and some of the most influential companies in the world are paying attention. Unilever has opened markets and increased sales in India through female sales forces. Walmart has understood the benefits of including women in their supply chains. Coca Cola will be engaging over 5 million women entrepreneurs by 2020 to increase market share. Over the next decade, the economic impact of women will be at least as significant as that of China and India’s respective 1 billion plus populations. Simply put investing in women—in the work force, supply chains, and as consumers—is good business, and those firms that learn how to operationalize this understanding will be poised to thrive in the coming years. Learn more

Why should you attend?

This unique gathering will bring together senior-level corporate leaders from throughout Canada, United States, Europe and Asia to discuss practical ways in which women-- as consumers and employees, entrepreneurs and executives--are critical to the continuing success of companies in today’s competitive, international economy. Learn more

Why is this conference unique?

There is no shortage of evidence to suggest that focusing on innovative ways to address the challenges faced by women and girls will lead to better health and education systems, and safer, stronger communities for all people living in the developing and developed world. This conference will devote its primary focus to the economic potential of the next billion women on the planet.

While most discussions of women and girls understandably focus on the social and health benefits of greater inclusiveness, relatively less time has been dedicated to the important question of the critical role that women—as customers and employees, executives and entrepreneurs—are currently playing in transforming the global economy. A number of the world’s largest companies are moving beyond rhetoric and recognizing the link between the economic engagement of women and the bottom line. We believe that this issue will only be taken seriously by the private sector when it informs day-to-day business operations and is grounded in the unsentimental realities of the balance sheet. Learn more