Sep 6, 2021  Düsseldorf

Xathon goes into third round

Henkel's Idea Hackathon supports 100 early-stage female founders

The Henkel Xathon, an ideation hackathon for female founders, is taking place for the third time. The aim is to promote female entrepreneurs and talents in the technology industry, strengthen their business innovation and support them in building a relevant business network. The Xathon will take place in Berlin from November 12 to 14, 2021 as a hybrid event* in English. It is hosted by Henkel dx Ventures, Henkel’s platform for open innovation and collaboration, together with Global Digital Women.

One focus this year is on the rapidly accelerating D2C sector, influenced by changing consumer behaviors towards hyper-personalization across all channels.

At the Xathon, participants can take part in live workshops at four different locations in Berlin and digitally, watch keynotes, collaborate with top female experts, and further develop their business ideas. A total of 100 female talents will get the opportunity to participate in this year's hackathon. Interested female founders can apply until October 10 at The main event partner of the Xathon 2021 is Global Digital Women. Further partners include SAP.iO and Microsoft.

Raising awareness for female empowerment

“Diversity and gender equity are of strategic importance to us at Henkel. With the Xathon, we want to empower female entrepreneurship and support talented women in realizing their ideas and unfolding their full potential,” says Sylvie Nicol, Chief Human Resources Officer at Henkel.

The Female Founder Monitor 2020 once again showed that targeted support for female founders is necessary: according to this, only 15.7 percent of all founders in Germany are female. Women entrepreneurs are particularly rare in the technology sector.

“The figures show that the road to equality in the tech industry is still long. But there is much more than just figures: every year at our Xathon we see impressive and great ideas from female founders. For us, it is a privilege to experience and support this female entrepreneurial power in tech,” says Michael Nilles, Chief Digital & Information Officer at Henkel. “I am truly convinced that innovation is built on diversity. That’s why we are very much looking forward to welcome 100 female founders and their early-stage business models.”

The Xathon event

At the Xathon, Henkel brings together female talents and gives them the opportunity to gain new experience, drive their ideas forward, and network with stakeholders in the industry, laying the foundation for further development. The participants will work on challenges to develop business ideas in different fields, such as D2C, Artificial Intelligence, FemTech or Sustainable Innovation. After a pitch presentation in front of a jury and the audience, the winner will be announced in an award ceremony and receive, among other things, prize money that will help shaping and realizing her idea.

How to participate

All female talents who are looking to make a difference and are in the early stage with their start-up are invited to apply at The participation is free. Applications can be handed in from now on until October 10. Participants will be selected based on the creativity, innovative power, feasibility and relevance of their idea, and on an explanation of why they have the skills and talent to be an entrepreneur. Participants will be informed no later than October 14.

* Depending on COVID-19, otherwise switch to full virtual event like Xathon 2020

With its third Xathon, a female ideation hackathon, Henkel aims to advocate female entrepreneurship and drive gender diversity in the start-up and tech scene.

Hanna Philipps Henkel Corporate Media Relations Headquarters, Düsseldorf/Germany +49-211-797-3626 Download Business Card Add to my collection

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