One of the biggest challenges for female founders? Being found. According to the Rise of the Female Founder survey conducted earlier this year by Stacy’s Pita Chips, 67 percent of consumers wish it were easier to find products and services from female-founded businesses and 79 percent think it is important to see more female-founded businesses in their communities. That’s why Stacy’s is launching its newest packaging innovation featuring a QR code that, once scanned with a mobile phone, will direct consumers to nearby female-founded businesses – making it easier than ever to support female entrepreneurs.
The “Female Founder Finder”
The Stacy’s “Female Founder Finder” bags debut in stores nationwide this week, featuring artwork by illustrator Libby VanderPloeg. While QR codes are experiencing a resurgence in popularity thanks to their contactless nature, the Female Founder Finder directory is also searchable online at www.femalefounderfinder.com, offering direct access to more than 13,000 women-owned businesses.
Stacy’s developed the concept and site in partnership with Hello Alice, the free, multichannel platform for women and New Majority small business owners. They were inspired by this year’s Rise Project theme of #ShareForHer and by the Rise of the Female Founder survey findings that the top two ways for consumers to find new products are via online search (50 percent) and word of mouth recommendations (45 percent).
“The Stacy’s Rise Project is a testament to harnessing resources and collaborating with like-minded allies for the benefit of female founders. By leveraging our Stacy’s national retail footprint and packaging with the digital expertise and community of Hello Alice, we built a resource for consumers and business owners alike,” said Ciara Dilley, vice president of marketing for Frito-Lay. “#ShareForHer is a reminder that we all have something to share that can help a female founder rise, whether it’s simply writing a positive review online or facilitating a business connection.”
Stacy’s Rise Project
Among the businesses featured in the directory are the 30 brands and companies founded by the women currently taking part in the 2020 Stacy’s Rise Project, the brand’s grant and mentorship program that this year includes mentorship sessions with international soccer stars, gender equality advocates and fellow entrepreneurs Tobin Heath and Christen Press. After receiving more than 1,600 applications, the Stacy’s Rise Project launched in July with 15 women being awarded a $10,000 grant, executive mentorship and professional advertising services to advance their businesses. It then expanded in September to include an additional 15 Black women, given that women of color annually receive only 0.2 percent of venture capital funding.
The 30 participants of the 2020 Stacy’s Rise Project span a number of different industries from across the country and, in addition to the $10,000 business grant, executive mentorship, and professional advertising services, their businesses are also spotlighted on the Stacy’s Amazon HerCommerce Hub at www.amazon.com/stacys. The program will culminate on Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, November 19.
“We’re excited to bring this partnership to life,” said Elizabeth Gore, co-founder and president of Hello Alice. “Small businesses are a valuable part of everyday life, and this is an incredible opportunity to bring more awareness to female founders, some of whom may be right in your neighborhood.”
The specially-marked Stacy’s Female Founder Finder bags will be available at retailers nationwide while supplies last. Fans everywhere are encouraged to join the conversation by following #StacysRiseProject and #ShareForHer across social media and by checking out Stacy’s Pita Chips on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. For more information on the Stacy’s Rise Project, visit https://www.stacyssnacks.com/riseproject.