By Conor White
A gender gap persists in most industries, but among the most glaring examples of the disparity can be found in beverage manufacturing ー a business in which men make up roughly 80 percent of executives.
In order to close that gap, Constellation Brands ($STZ) has announced it will invest in female-founded beverage companies, beginning with Austin Cocktails and Vivify Beverages.
"We're excited to invest $100 million over the next ten 10 years in disruptive and innovative business in our space," said Mallika Monteiro, Constellation's chief growth officer.
"Women are the fastest-growing set of entrepreneurs in the U.S. today," Monteiro told Cheddar in an interview Friday. "Yet 2 percent [in 2017] of investor funding went to female-led businesses."
Constellation is hoping to shift that number ー but Monteiro said the company's efforts will go beyond a simple infusion of capital.
"We're bringing them into our network of expertise," Monteiro said. "Whether that is the network of relationships we have with our distributor partners, with our supply chain partners, and logistical partners."
For Monteiro, the decision was ultimately an easy one.
"This is an opportunity for us to double down on our commitment of diversity and inclusion," she said.
For full interview click here.