DALLAS, April 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- At a time when American entrepreneurs are credited with starting the most businesses – more than half a million per month – than at any other time in the past decade and a half,(i) the Huggies brand launches year two of its successful MomInspired grant program. Huggies MomInspired provides resources and seed capital to help fund women-owned business startups and new product innovations inspired by motherhood.
Based on the remarkable success and feedback in 2010, Huggies has already expanded a global adaptation of the program – MumInspired – to Australia, supporting the rise of the country's untapped "mumpreneurs."
In the program's first year, the Huggies brand commissioned a study to better understand the needs of these mom entrepreneurs when it came to turning their business ideas into a reality, and discovered that the most significant barriers are, and continue to be; access to financial resources (65%), risk of failure (43%), not knowing where to start (36%).(ii)
In 2010, the Huggies brand invested a total of a quarter million dollars to financially support the 12 inaugural grant recipients, who submitted inventions at every stage of development, ranging from a spill-proof training cup, to a device that relieves the stress and pain of child vaccinations. The program also pledges to further encourage their business success by allowing them access to educational and financial resources from within Kimberly-Clark, and third-party marketing experts.
"Our hope is to help these mom inventors jumpstart their journey, empowering them with the funds, confidence and resources to realize their dreams and share their unique perspective on parenting challenges," said Steve Paljieg, senior director, corporate innovation for Kimberly-Clark. "Who knows how to solve child-rearing problems better than the moms who live them every day?"
In addition to taking the Huggies brand relationship with moms to a new level of personal interaction and development, the program offers a unique research and development opportunity for the Huggies brand to potentially source new product innovation ideas directly from its most important consumer.
Founder of PicPocket Books and 2010 MomInspired grant recipient, Lynette Mattke, had this to say about her experience with the Huggies brand program, "For me, the financial contribution of the grant was not only impactful in helping me advance and sustain business growth with an expanded product offering, it also provided me with the opportunity to connect with a self-supportive, interactive community of mom entrepreneurs."
"And, Huggies' trust in my business helped me truly believe in my own capabilities as a successful businesswoman," continued Mattke.
How to Apply
MomInspired is currently accepting grant proposals through June 30 for ideas and existing small businesses at any stage of development that are original and designed to help make life easier for parents. Eligible grant applicants include:
- Individuals 21 years of age or older
- Current U.S. residents
- Original, innovative and viable business and product ideas that solve an important parenting issue for pre-natal care up to six years of age
Twelve $15,000 grants will be awarded in Fall 2011. To apply through a simple application process, see grant-winning ideas from round one and for business tips, visit HuggiesMomInspired.com.
About the Huggies Brand
The Huggies brand helps provide simple solutions for moms and dads to fully enjoy each and every day of parenthood. The Huggies brand is a part of the Kimberly-Clark Corporation portfolio of trusted brands and is essential to helping moms around the world have a better life.
Kimberly-Clark and its well-known global brands are an indispensable part of life for people in more than 150 countries. Every day, 1.3 billion people — nearly a quarter of the world's population — trust K-C brands and the solutions they provide to enhance their health, hygiene and well being. With brands such as Kleenex, Scott, Huggies, Pull-Ups, Kotex and Depend, Kimberly-Clark holds No. 1 or No. 2 share positions in more than 80 countries. To keep up with the latest K-C news and to learn more about the company's 139-year history of innovation, visit www.kimberlyclark.com
(i) "'Jobless Entrepreneurship' Tarnishes Steady Rate of U.S. Startup Activity, Kauffman Study Shows." Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity. March 7, 2011.
(ii) The study, commissioned by Huggies, surveyed a national sample of 698 mothers ages 18 and older. The margin of error for the total sample of 698 mothers is +3.7% at the 95% level of confidence (Fielded by TNS in April 2010).