ASEAN: “Great Women” Platform for Trade

In 2014, the women entrepreneurs from ten different countries in the region known as ASEAN, came together under the help of the USAID’s ASEAN Cooperation for Trade and Integration (ACTI) Project that initiated to replicate a best-case example of a gender platform from the Philippines.

The GREAT WOMEN Platform is an innovative public-private partnership that started in the Philippines. It supports development programs and is linked by the GREAT WOMEN BRAND for commercial market access. It gives micro and small women entrepreneurs a chance at the niche, specialty global market through an integrated platform that addresses gaps and gender issues through inclusive business. The goal is to help strengthen women impact enterprises into the supply and value chain towards sustainable markets.

The GREAT WOMEN Brand identifies products that meet people’s needs while making women’s lives better. It carries the passion and spirit of every woman who keeps traditions alive in her work and her heart, across similar but diverse cultures. The brand mark is owned by the ECHOSI Foundation.

GREAT WOMEN Products come from small producers and artisans who are supported by women entrepreneurs, designers and lifestyle experts who link them to global markets. The brand is the story of women committed to helping women and artisans to reach wider markets to better support their families and communities.


The GREAT WOMEN Collective supports an inclusive supply-value chain: the GREAT Women Brand. The GWB Collective is composed of women entrepreneurs, designers and artists who each have a community or group of women in their own value chain. They create exclusive collections specific for the brand’s advocacy while their communities are supported under the development program called GREAT WOMEN.

All members of the GWB Collective – be they designers, women enterprises and communities – are vetted under a criteria for inclusion to support both the development programs and the commercialization of the products.

Sponsorship included an ASEAN Trade Showcase in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia in 2014, and a Governance Structure Workshop in 2015. All the efforts and initiatives under the GREAT WOMEN in ASEAN are being orchestrated as part of on-going efforts to integrate the women economic empowerment agenda in the roadmap and priorities of the ASEAN Economic Community.

In 2016, private sector support to development programs started through a grant from the UPS Foundation given to the ECHOSI Foundation for two trainings: The GREAT WOMEN ASEAN Specialty Coffee Training Workshop and the ASEAN Textile Mapping Workshop.

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