Anne-Claire Delval, moderator, with panellists (L-R) Marlee Dos Reis, Anne Le Moigne, Solène Whiskin and Marie Delhaye; Credit: Jazmin Campbell /

The NETWORK, an established Luxembourg-based international professional women's association, teamed up with the FFCEL federation of women business leaders in Luxembourg for an event dedicated to "Entrepreneurship of All Kinds" on Wednesday evening.

The event, held in the Auditorium of BGL BNP Paribas in Luxembourg-Kirchberg, attracted about 200 people (mainly women but a few men too) for an evening of insights into different types of entrepreneurship and networking with fellow individuals with an entrepreneurial spirit. The respective presidents of The NETWORK and the FFCEL, Mariana Florea and Delphine de Clerck, each presented their organisations and the reason behind this joint event. Mariana Florea noted that The NETWORK estimated that about one-third of its members were either already entrepreneurs or had an interest in becoming one.

The first part of the event took the form of an interactive panel discussion, moderated by The NETWORK Events Director Anne-Claire Delval and featuring the following panellists: Marie Delhaye, CSR Strategic Analyst at BGL BNP Paribas; Solène Whiskin, co-founder of Dandy Craft Skincare; Anne Le Moigne, manager of Tartefine, BioScott and Cayotte bakeries; Marlee Dos Reis, founder of IMANI Organisation.

Each panellist shared their entrepreneurial journeys, with Marie Delhaye noting that employees can also make use of their entrepreneurial - or intrapreneurial - spirit within a company; drawing on personal experience, she advised budding entrepreneurs to never let anyone tell them they do not have what it takes. Solène Whiskin spoke of her experience of setting up a business with her husband around the same time they became parents for the first time, comparing the highlights, challenges, skills and values associated with both experiences; she stressed the importance of networks to avoid feeling alone as an entrepreneur (or mompreneur). Anne Le Moigne shared her career change success story, assuring budding entrepreneurs that it is never too late to start or make a change. Marlee Dos Reis opened up about her experience growing up as a black girl in Luxembourg and how she chanelled her anger at injustices around the world into fuelling change; she emphasised the importance of being one's most authentic self and, for budding entrepreneurs, to trust oneself and just start.

Engaging the audience throughout the evening, moderator Anne-Claire Delval asked those present to think about what entrepreneurship meant for them at the start of the event and whether that definition changed following the panel discussion. An interactive word cloud showed that attendees had many different ideas about entrepreneurship, although a few terms clearly stood out, namely: freedom, courage and creativity, as well as passion and authenticity. The panellists agreed and noted why such elements were important to their own entrepreneurial journeys.

In her closing speech, Béatrice Belorgey, Chair of the BGL BNP Paribas Executive Committee and Country Head of the Group in Luxembourg, emphasised the bank's commitment to supporting entrepreneurship. She described entrepreneurial spirit as "the appetite, the eagerness to do something", whether for own's own business or for the company in which one works. She thanked the organisers for their role in helping to empower women in Luxembourg.

The second part of the event took the form of a networking cocktail, during which attendees continued their entrepreneurial discussions over finger food and drinks.