HHL Female Founders Initiative

Coaching, mentoring and know-how from women for women on their way to their own business

You are a woman with a great business idea, but don’t trust yourself to implement it (yet)? You don’t have a concrete idea but you can imagine being an entrepreneur? Then you’ve come to the right place. In workshops and seminars with experts, you can (further) develop your business ideas, discuss entrepreneurial issues from a women’s perspective, define your female leadership personality and expand your entrepreneurial network. Together with the staff of the initiative, experts and a mentor, you will work on your business pitch and get to know other female founders and their exciting ideas.

Target group

  • women with interest in starting their own business

Program requirements

  • female student, female research associate, female doctoral student or alumna of a university
  • business has not been founded yet
  • intention to found the business in the Free State of Saxony
  • good to very good knowledge of German

Start of the program

  • each October and April


  • European Social Fund Plus (ESF Plus)
  • Free State of Saxony


  • free of charge


  • 6 months

Female mentors

  • For the duration of the program you will be accompanied by an experienced mentor.


We master challenges together

Know-how: The focus of our seminars is on “female” challenges during the startup process. Do women solve problems in a different way? How can women convince their audience during a company presentation or successfully negotiate with customers and suppliers? How is it possible to reconcile family, company and leisure?

Coaching: Together we analyze your current status in the start-up process as well as your personal strengths and weaknesses as an entrepreneur and develop your individual action plan on the path to your start-up. During the course of the program, you will receive continuous feedback on your business concept, which you will then present in a pitch at the final event.

Mentoring: Besides entrepreneurial competence and knowledge about business management, market know-how and closeness to your customers are important success factors. Therefore, each participant will be supported by a mentor from the practical side who can provide you with important tips and tricks when starting an own company.


There will be around 15 workshops each semester, ranging from awareness raising and personal development to exploring various marketing opportunities and developing your business model as well as your pitch deck.

Our events usually take place all day on weekdays in presence. Digital participation in individual dates is possible on request. Attendance of at least 80% of the events is required to become part of the next class and to receive a certificate of completion. Corresponding information will be sent to you after the application.

Apply now

Apply via e-mail and join the HHL Female Founders Initiative!

You have a business idea, but haven’t taken the risk to turn it into reality until now? You do not have an idea yet, but you can imagine starting your own business? Then don’t miss your chance to get one step closer to your own startup. Apply now for one of the maximum of 12 places. Please send an e-mail to gruenderinnen@hhl.de.

Please let us know some details about your professional and academic background and what kind of idea you have, if you already have one. We are looking forward to meeting you!

Matchmaking of the 12th Female Founders Class

Become a Mentor

Your experience and your know-how make the difference

You already established a company or you are a successful manager? You like to share your knowledge? You are always looking for new contacts and exciting ideas? Then we like to get to know you and to welcome you as a new voluntary mentor for our program. Please contact gruenderinnen@hhl.de for more information. We are looking forward to hearing from you!

Event Impressions


The funding is provided from the European Social Fund Plus (ESF Plus) and from tax revenue on the basis of the budget adopted by the Parliament of the Free State of Saxony.