Industry Equals

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Applications are now closed.

Recent studies show that numbers of female-led companies are on the rise, yet women in business are still at a disadvantage to their male counterparts. The Rose Review, released earlier this year, found that only one in three UK entrepreneurs is female – a gender gap equivalent to 1.1 million missing businesses. The Annual ScreenSkills Assessment found that while approximately 211,000 professionals work in the screen industries, women are under-represented across the sector.

Creative England has launched Industry Equals: Women in Screen to celebrate and highlight female leaders delivering innovative work in the creative industries, create future opportunities for business growth and for the participants to build meaningful connections and a network of support during and beyond the programme.

Industry Equals: Women in Screen will provide intensive leadership coaching with high-profile voices from across the creative industries over a three-day retreat and receive three subsequent mentoring sessions with key industry figures over a period of three months.

The programme will bring together ten female leaders based in the English regions outside of London who are working in storytelling for moving image across Film, TV, Games and Digital who will soon be looking to scale their business.

Applications will close at midnight 12:00am on Sunday 3rd November.

The leadership retreat will take place over three days in November in Warwick. Food and accommodation costs are covered by the Creative Enterprise programme.


Day One: Friday 8th November

14:00 – Arrival

14:30 – Female Entrepreneurship in the UK, Welcome from Caroline Norbury MBE (CEO of Creative England)

Caroline will welcome all delegates and introduce the Industry Equals: Women in Screen initiative.

15:00 – Leading by Example – In Conversation with Kanya King CBE (Founder MOBOs)

Internationally renowned entrepreneur Kanya King CBE will be discussing her incredible journey in establishing the iconic MOBO platform.

17:00 – Free time

18:30 – Dinner & networking


Day Two: Saturday 9th November

09:00 – Establishing Your Company Culture – Chris Burns (Head of Audio and Digital at BBC England)

Chris will be giving her insight into what it takes to build and lead large, industry defining teams through her role at the BBC.

12:30 – Lunch

13:30 – Finding Your Voice and Making an Impact – Sandra Collins (Director at Hayes Collins Media)

Learn crucial skills on being the face of your company and practice your skills in presenting and handling media.

17:00 – Free time

18:30 – Dinner & networking


Day Three: Sunday 10th November

09:00 – Winning Investment – Caroline Percy (Senior Portfolio Manager at Channel 4 Indie Growth Fund)

Caroline will be sharing her insights into how to best package and pitch your screen business for investment.

11:00 –Back Her Business – Anna Gordon (Coach at Crowdfunder)

Back Her Business is a joint initiative supporting female entrepreneurs, launched by the Royal Bank of Scotland, in partnership with Crowdfunder. Learn how they’ll be looking to support 400,000 female lead businesses in the UK by 2025.

12:30 – Meet the Mentors, Lunch and networking

Following the bootcamp, each delegate will have access to their own personal mentor for three sessions over three months. This is an opportunity to meet some of the mentors and identify areas of support for your business.

14:00 – End


Creative Enterprise has been developed with National Lottery funding from the BFI, to make the moving image sector sustainable through creating new business opportunities through training and building of networks, whilst growing and scaling existing businesses.

Kath Shackleton

Kath Shackleton

CEO and Producer, Fettle Animation

Kath Shackleton is CEO and Producer of multi-award-winning animation studio Fettle Animation.  Kath has produced over 50 projects in the past seven years for the BBC, ITV, agencies, museums, businesses and charities and has produced an award-winning graphic novel.  The company have won a Japan Prize, Sandford St Martin’s Children’s Award, two BAFTA nominations, five Royal Television Society Awards, and two book awards and was part of a BAFTA-winning team for a Children’s ITV project.

Sue McHugh

Sue McHugh

Co-founder and Managing Director, Carbon Digital

Sue is co-founder and managing director at Carbon Digital. She is mum to two children; Eddie (14) and Holly (11). She is an avid runner and fundraiser and raised over £20,000 for Children With Cancer UK, running the London Marathon in a lime green ‘Mankini’! 

Sue graduated in 1996 with a BA Interactive Fine Art degree at Manchester University. She began her career working for several years within the computer games industry. Her hands-on 3D artist roles included Lead artist at Rage Software, 2002-2003, Art manager at Jester Interactive, 1998 – 2002, Lead artist at Sony Psygnosis, 1996 – 1998. 

Karen Blackett

Karen Blackett

Country Manager, WPP

Karen is a proven business leader with a track record in creating vibrant cultures, energising teams and consistently delivering business growth and success. She is UK country manager for WPP, the world’s largest marketing services group, and Chairwoman of MediaCom, the largest media agency in the UK.

In June 2014, Karen received an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours and in November 2018 Karen won the Inspirational Leader category at the Ethnicity Awards.

Karen was appointed Race Equality Business Champion by the UK Prime Minister in 2018, and most recently as a director of the new Sussex Royal Foundation.

Belinda Budge

Belinda Budge

Chair, Creative England and Co-Founder, The MultiKids

Belinda Budge is a textile designer and maker. She is Chair of Creative England and Co-Founder of The MultiKids Foundation (a non-governmental organisation, based in Accra, Ghana which supports children with special needs to access high quality education and achieve their potential).

After becoming CEO of a start-up publishing company she joined HarperCollins, where she managed a large portfolio of global content, and provided strategic, commercial and operational leadership to the worldwide business. During the last few years her focus was on managing business transformation through the use of creative thinking, to maximize opportunities and reach a global audience by embracing the disruptive technologies in the digital space.



Helen Oldham

Helen Oldham

Founding Board Director, NorthInvest

Helen Oldham is a Founding Board Director of NorthInvest, a not for profit early stage investor connector for tech start ups. In just over twelve months Helen has led a team which has grown the NorthInvest Angel Investor network by 450, closed five deals in 2018 and secured a £1m coinvestment fund with Innovate UK. 

As the Chair of SmartWorks Leeds, which provides coaching and clothing to unemployed women, Helen is leading team of Trustees in the run up to the opening of the 7th SmartWorks in the UK. She is also on the Fund Raising Board of Maggies Yorkshire, a cancer support charity, and is a member of the Advisory Group for West Yorkshire Common Purpose.

Pardeep Duggal

Pardeep Duggal

Head of Digital Marketing, Lowell

Currently working in a VC backed founder- led global business, Pardeep has secured multi-million pound investment in marketing and digital transformation. Previous to this, Pardeep led E.ON’s customer transformation, joining in 2011 to build capability as part of the marketing leadership team and co-create a digitisation strategy with E.ON’s CEO.
Over five years Pardeep secured investment of more than £25m and drove savings of £36m. She transformed E.ON’s UK digital team from the smallest in marketing by size and budget, growing it to the largest with 60 colleagues.

Outside of work, Pardeep is passionate about diversity and coaches individuals to build confidence and achieve their potential.

Rachel Hannan

Rachel Hannan

Director, The Hannan Partnership

After an earlier career with one of the big 4, including time in tax, corporate finance and global HR consulting, Rachel has since successfully founded and grown businesses herself. The executive search and leadership consultancy she founded in 2002 went onto to become a £multi-million market leader in its sector, delivering over £4m profit before tax p.a. by 2010. She became an Angel Investor in 2011 with investments spanning companies in a range of sectors including technology, education, medical devices, robotics, food manufacturing and human capital, as well as social enterprises.

Rachel also works as an advisor for a range of companies across sectors around growth and leadership, and has gained experience as a Non-Executive Director or Chair across companies, charities and a University. 

Roberta Lucca

Roberta Lucca

Founder, Bossa Studios

Roberta is a founder of the BAFTA-winning Bossa Studios, a London-based games developer & publisher renowned for their most iconic, viral and category-defining games created with influencers, and played by millions of people worldwide.

Roberta and her team have grown Bossa from a blank canvas into a multi-million-dollar business with critically-acclaimed games hits such as Surgeon Simulator and I Am Bread. The company is now backed by Atomico, London Venture Partners and Makers Fund.

Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, the Brazilian-British creative spent 10 years spearheading innovation, technology and new product initiatives within corporations such as Nokia and Globo TV.

Bianca Best

Bianca Best

Founder, Energy-Scape™ 

Bianca is a best selling author, award-winning advertising executive, entrepreneur, Global MD and founder of the transformational Energy-Scape™ programme.

Bianca built The Bespoke Gift Company, a pioneering personalised gift platform, and joined Dentsu Aegis to lead global advertising accounts where she won the IPA & Campaign’s 2016 Woman of Tomorrow accolade.

Bianca energises, teaches and motivates ambitious individuals to maximise their impact without burnout through her 6-step model offering coaching/mentoring, delivering keynotes and hosting workshops for large corporates such as Amazon, Snapchat and NewsUK. Her book ‘Flourish:Redefine Success & Create More Time, Energy, Impact and Happiness’ hit the best-seller list in July 2019.