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03/07/2023 Equipo South Summit


Nina Silva, founder of the Black Money Movement, took the stage at South Summit Brazil 2022 to discuss the lack of diversity in the business world and the need for “new possible futures.” Silva’s journey of over two decades in the corporate world has been plagued with a lack of references and autonomy to hire, both in terms of gender and race. She highlighted the hostile environment she experienced in the Brazilian and American multinationals where she worked, emphasizing the non-existent structure in Brazil that prevents meritocracy from becoming a reality and talents from being utilized in the best way.

Silva’s talk shed light on the stark reality of the pay gap in Brazil, where according to IPEA2013, white men earn $2721.99/month, white women earn $1826.06/month, black men earn $1512.27/month, and black women earn only $1054.46/month. The lack of references and autonomy to hire contributes to the inequality in pay, as well as the lack of representation of women and people of color in positions of power.

Silva emphasized the need to break the standards in spaces of power, where only 16% of women hold positions on the boards of directors of large companies. These positions are most often occupied by cisgender Caucasian men, perpetuating the cycle of inequality in the business world. In Brazil, men make up 88.80% of the composition of boards of directors by gender, while women hold only 12.20%. This lack of diversity is detrimental to the progress of companies, as demonstrated by a study by McKinsey consultancy, which found that greater diversity results in 25% more cash for shareholders and 35% more income in the case of the ethnicity.

Silva also highlighted the current theme of racism and misogyny, calling for a greater expansion of diversity in companies to help boost their profits. According to figures, gender discrimination costs around 500 million reais per year and racial discrimination costs 800 million reais per year. “We need to stop being dumb and start making real money for everyone’s pockets,” said Silva.

Only 1% of investments made globally are destined for companies founded by Blacks and Latinos, while among women, only 2% receive funding. It is necessary to include all people, without leaving any group. In a society that already assumes itself as 5.0, there is also a need for greater visibility of trans people in the business and innovation sectors. The lack of representation and visibility of trans people prevents them from reaching their full potential and making meaningful contributions to the business world.

In conclusion, Nina Silva’s talk at South Summit Brazil 2022 emphasized the need to inspire, mirror, and transform to build a new future. Breaking barriers for women in business is a necessary step towards creating a more diverse and inclusive society. It is time to act and promote real change in the business world to ensure that all voices are heard, and all talents are recognized.