Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Cash for creative moms

May 3, 2010

At some point — usually in the middle of the night during the umpteenth feeding/diaper change of their child’s young life — most parents think they have come up with the greatest idea EVER that could revolutionize baby and child care.

HuggiesMomInspiredHuggies wants to give the most inventive moms a bit of a financial boost.  Just in time for Mother’s Day, the diaper brand and parent Kimberly-Clark have set up a grant program called MomInspired.  The goal is to give away up to $15,000 to each woman with a great idea for a baby product.

The seed capital could help entrepreneurs grow their ideas into businesses.

There are about 10.6 million women-owned businesses in the United States and women are starting businesses at nearly twice the rate of men, Kimberly-Clark Chief Marketing Officer Tony Palmer noted, citing data from the Center for Women’s Business Research.  However, it is still men who get the vast majority of the venture capital funding that is already out there.

“There’s this huge unmet need for seed capital for women,” Palmer told Reuters.

Moms — actually, any women 21 years or older (they don’t have to be mothers, but moms probably have a better shot) — can submit their ideas until June 11 for a chance to win the cash, plus access to Huggies resources.

Steve Paljieg, senior director of growth and innovation for Kimberly-Clark, sees it as a way to craft a business relationship with moms who have an entrepreneurial spirit.

If the mothers who get the grants ultimately decide to sell their businesses, Kimberly-Clark is asking them to talk to the company first.  Of course, if it sees something it likes, the Huggies maker could also try to buy the company outright.

North American mothers get the first crack at the cash and the program could expand.  For now, the company plans to give out about $250,000 in total grants, but that total could rise depending on the ideas that spring up.

There are already plenty of mom-made items out there for sale.  What’s next?

(Kimberly-Clark photo)

Comments

I would like to see huggies add wipes to every Diaper in their box attached to diaper or if not 2 wipes maybe add a sanitizer napkin to every diaper so parents can at least wipe their hands after each diaper change to cut down on germs.

Posted by BJEAN806 | Report as abusive
 

Post Your Comment

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
  •