on diversity, inequality and entrepreneurship 

Following the successful first conversation earlier this year, Veuve Clicquot is hosting the second inspiring conversation with women leaders on Dutch soil on 17 October. During the event, Yeliz Çiçek, Julia Veer, Sophie-Anne Onland, Stephanie Knoors, Elza Wandler and Simone Jansen, among others, will speak about diversity, inequality and prejudice in the workplace. The Champagne House is hosting this conversation to complement its well-known Bold Woman Award in March 2024. 

Yeliz Çiçek: Host and champion of inclusivity in the media 

Now the world-famous champagne house is celebrating the (business) talent, personalities and strength of women worldwide. Veuve Clicquot is doing so through a second talk on 17 October at Amsterdam’s Pillows Hotel. Led by Vogue’s editor-in-chief Yeliz Çiçek (former editor-in-chief at Linda Meiden), inspiring women speak about their careers and important career choices. The host is known not only for her creative spirit, but also for her views on the importance of inclusivity in the media. As the child of a mixed marriage between a Turkish father and a Dutch mother, she has always been committed to connecting women from diverse cultural backgrounds. “Research proves that diversity and inclusion makes a company more creative, more connected to the market and creates a safer working environment. It’s something that fits our times, where we value each other and listening to each other is important.” According to Yeliz, this is especially important in the media because together we define the image young people have of themselves. “How nice it is that we can influence that.” 

Julia Veer: Successful entrepreneur in the beauty industry 

Yeliz Çiçek talks with Julia Veer, founder and CEO of Dutch skincare brand Clay and Glow. In 2019, she and her partner decided to launch a pink clay mask that looked fun and allowed them to say goodbye to skin problems. The product turned out to be a bestseller and the brand now has 12 products. With Yeliz, she will discuss her entrepreneurial journey, lessons learnt and share tips & tricks for starting your own business. Her biggest tip? “Jump before you’re ready. I often see people wanting it to be perfect before they dare to take the plunge, but in the end you’re going to learn a lot and make mistakes along the way.” 

Stephanie Knoors: Face behind the business event for women 

Yeliz also interviews Stephanie Knoors, together with her business partner Emilie Sobels, she is the face behind The Self-Made Summit. During this Dutch business event for women professionals, more than 750 entrepreneurs, CEOs and women in business come together to network and be inspired. An event like The Self-Made Summit seems natural now, but about five years ago the lineup of business events often consisted of 90% men. “When we did a tour of organizers and speakers’ bureaus, we often heard that there were fewer women speakers and women less likely wanted to be on stage. Nonsense as far as I’m concerned, women should also have the opportunity to be on stage. The more female role models there are, the quicker another woman will think: hey, if she can do it, so can I!” The Self-Made Summit puts on a huge business event every year with the team. 

Sophie-Anne Onland: Public Speaker and Moderator 

Yeliz and Stephanie engage in conversation with Sophie-Anne Onland and Simone Jansen, two other ladies from this community. Sophie-Anne is a role model when it comes to self-acceptance and body positivity. Representation and visibility have become an important part of who Sophie-Anne is and what she stands for. She was born with a shorter left leg and therefore walks with a lower leg prosthesis. Accepting this was difficult for her, but after finding a female role model, Sophie-Anne began to become more and more confident. Now she uses her “difference” as a strength and hopes to be a role model for others in the same way. This takes courage and guts, but also vulnerability. According to Sophie-Anne, this is exactly what Dutch women need to be successful. “I think women should be allowed to express more who they are, what they stand for and what they want to achieve. Without being concerned with what people think. I’m not saying that I got this all right at once myself. I too struggled with that. But since I am showing more guts and courage, doors are opening for me. In addition, women often feel that they have to always be strong and powerful. We forget that vulnerability is also important. For me, strength and vulnerability go hand in hand. For example by admitting during a process that things are not going well or that you are going through a rough patch. Or by asking for help. After all, you don’t have to do it alone.” 

Simone Jansen: Director Entrepreneur & Enterprise ABN AMRO 

Simone Jansen started at ABN AMRO over 20 years ago as a management trainee and has since risen to the top of the bank. She brings guts and entrepreneurship to a corporate environment. She is also the founder of ART[s] Gallery Simone Jansen, board member at Leading Ladies and a guest speaker. She speaks with Yeliz on important topics such as equity in society, the wage or investment gap and combining multiple careers. About the latter, she says, “I get energy from working with my teams to make the impossible possible for our clients. Success is never achieved alone. I liken my career to elite sports because of its intensity and similar sacrifices. Combining multiple careers is physically demanding; working seven days a week with passion. I can look with admiration at people whose priority is a rich social life or family. My mission is to inspire other people on decisiveness. Taking an extra step, believing that you can become or be anything if you want to. When you hesitate, your fear grows. When you dare, your courage grows. Listen to your heart, choose a direction that is important to you and bite down.” 

Elza Wandler: fashion designer 

Many fashion lovers know the Dutch label Wandler. The brand successfully launched with the Hortensia bag, but meanwhile the Penelope bag and the Isa sandal have also become it-designs. In addition, founder Elza Wandler launched her first Spring/Summer 2023 collection and designed custom, sparkling silver boots for Beyoncé. The singer wore the boots at her exclusive birthday party during her Renaissance tour. Host Yeliz will talk with Elza about working in the fashion industry as a woman, among other things. 

About Veuve Clicquot and the Bold Woman Award 

Madame Clicquot has been called “La Grande Dame of Champagne.” That nickname is appropriate: this bold woman had big dreams. “I wish for my brand to be as highly regarded in New York as it is in St. Petersburg,” she said. (Madame Clicquot, 1831). She created the first registered vintage champagne, stood at the cradle of the first rosé champagne and made the champagne house world famous. 

Veuve Clicquot decided to pay tribute to this amazing, daring woman – on the occasion of her 200th birthday. The champagne house created the Veuve Clicquot Business Woman Award (Bold Woman Award), followed by the Clémentine Award (Bold Future Award) in 2014. 

For the past 50 years, the champagne house has been highlighting women entrepreneurs. To date, they include 350 women in 27 countries. Since 2019, the award has been part of the international Bold by Veuve Clicquot program, a series of initiatives to spark conversations around the world about greater impact and inclusiveness in entrepreneurship.