20 July 2021

Building credible industry networks - A showcase of industry associations.

On the 20 July 2021, we brought together 15 industry organisations in the power and energy sector including other related sectors to show case their value propositions.

Networking and the ability to build reliable value-exchange networks is a critical competence for entrepreneurs; more so for women entrepreneurs navigating typically male dominated sectors such as the energy and power sector. COVID-19 has decimated the traditional face-to-face, large-scale networking events, as many organisations transitioned to virtual/digital eventing platforms. This has exacerbated the networking challenge especially for marginalised demographics such as women and youth.

A recent study conducted by The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) across multiple markets including South Africa, found that women make up only 32% of the renewable energy workforce. Most studies and interventions in the energy sector on the continent have focused on employment equity or rural electrification. When it comes to women entrepreneur’s participation in electricity, there is limited information, especially in large infrastructure projects. Initiatives to better understand the links between gender and larger-scale projects focusing on the electric grid (i.e. utility-scale generation, transmission and distribution) are fewer in number and the data gaps are even larger.

We are committed to creating reliable platforms for industry experts to share insights into entrepreneurial opportunities available across the power sector value chain of:  generation, transmission and distribution. This is so women entrepreneurs interested to diversify their business interests across the value chain, can build networks with the ecosystem and be in a better position to gain access to market and credible information.

Africa’s female entrepreneurship is highest in the world with 27% of women on the continent engaged in early stage entrepreneurial activity. Women in Africa make up 58% of the continent’s self-employed population.

We hope to harness this entrepreneurial capacity and potential through sharing information on the sector, including where entrepreneurs can access support.

This webinar exposed entrepreneurs to a network of industry organisations through which they can explore and access meaningful opportunities across the power sector value chains on the continent.

The webinar pulled prolific industry organisations such as:

South African Energy Association (SANEA), Ms. Kiren Maharaj (South Africa) , Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition: (GWNET), Ms Christine Lins (Austria), South African Wind Energy Association – (SAWEA), Ms. Ntombi Ntuli , South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA), Ms. Chanda Nxumalo, The ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) Ms. Adeola Adebiyi (West Africa) and many more.

We encourage you to view the webinar again, download the presentations and get in touch with the various organisations.

Take charge of your entrepreneurial journey in the energy and power sector, and follow some of the tips we have listed below:

2021_AWEaP_webinar 3 Stage graphic

Speakers at the webinar were:




African Women in Energy and Power (AWEaP)

Ms. Bertha Dlamini

South Africa

Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition: (GWNET)

Ms Christine Lins


SADC Centre for Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency (SACREEE)

Mr. Kudakwashe (Kuda) Ndhlukula


South African Energy Association (SANEA)

Ms. Kiren Maharaj

South Africa

South African Wind Energy Association – (SAWEA)

Ms. Ntombi Ntuli

South Africa

The ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE)

Ms. Adeola Adebiyi


African Women Energy Entrepreneurs Framework (AWEEF)

Mr. Ryan Ndombi


Women in Energy Ghana

Ms. Eunice Biritwum


Questions and Answers



Africa Women Innovation & Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF)

Ms. Irene Ochem

South Africa

SHE in Energy Africa

Ms. Tlholohello Motsamai

South Africa


Ms. Nambula Kachumi


Women in Energy Mozambique

Ms. Taciana Peão Lopes


South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA)

Ms. Chanda Nxumalo

South Africa

SADC Women in Business

Ms. Shiphra Chisha

South Africa

Women in  Africa Power: (WiAP)

Ms. Denise Mortimer

United States of America

African Women in Energy and Power (AWEaP) – Closing Remarks

Ms. Bertha Dlamini

 South Africa

We encourage you to do the following:

  1. Visit our YouTube channel
  2. Watch previous webinars
  3. Take notes from the presentations given
  4. Note the tips shared on how you can gain entry into the energy and power sector as an entrepreneur
  5. Note programmes in place to address some of the barriers:
    1. Access to market
    2. Access to skills development
    3. Access to finance
    4. Access to technology
  6. Download presentations and listen to the recorded webinar again
  7. Follow through by: visiting websites and taking the initiative to build the network necessary to enable your participation.


Achieving gender equality is about disrupting the status quo - not negotiating" . it

Madame Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

“If you have a sense of purpose that drives you, then aim high and become a leader and make room as you go”.

Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

“Give yourself permission to excel, invest in your entrepreneurial journey, build and extend your networks, you can only achieve your goals by staying abreast with developments in your chosen sector. Research, study, learn and allow yourself to grow”.

Ms Bertha Dlamini

President AWEaP