ATHENA PowerLink® (APL) is an advisory program designed to increase the growth and profitability of women-owned businesses. Since 1999, the program has helped women-owned businesses expand profitably through the use of professional advisory panels.
ATHENA PowerLink® helps a woman expand her business profitably by matching her with a team of volunteer advisors for a year of mentoring. The experts on her Advisory Panel analyze the factors necessary for the company to grow and recommend actions to get it there.
APL is a Athena International program. ATHENA is a worldwide organization supporting, developing and honoring women leaders; inspiring women to achieve their full potential; and creating balance in leadership worldwide.
APL has been helping women-owned businesses grow to the next level since 1999. The program has been presented in Nashville since 2007, serving six locally owned businesses so far.
Prior ATHENA PowerLink Participants:
- 5 Star Compliance
- A To Z Medical Equipment
- Imagine New
- U-Kno Catering
- G Squared Wireless
- The Porch Company
Applying is free. If you are selected to participate, you pay $250 of the $600 fee for a year of mentorship. The remainder of the $600 fee is provided thanks to the generous support of our new partner Civic Bank & Trust. Graduates are then asked to contribute $250 per year for the next three years following their graduation, if they feel the program has been successful in helping their business reach the next level.
Civic Bank & Trust was chartered in 2005 by a group of Middle Tennessee business owners and bankers who recognized the need and opportunity to look at banking differently. From the beginning they chose to make the customer their priority by viewing them not as accounts, but as trusted neighbors and partners.
Who qualifies for ATHENA PowerLink?
- At least 51% owned and actively managed by one or more women
- Minimum of two years in operation
- Minimum of two full-time employees (including owners)
- Revenues of at least $250,000 for retail or manufacturing business, at least $100,000 for service business
- Operates in the Nashville/Middle Tennessee area
What must the business owner have?
- Clearly defined company objectives and goals
- Up-to-date business plan
- Vision for how APL will help
- Ability to read and understand financial reports of the business
- Willingness to share information about the business (including permission to request a credit report) and to take advice from outsiders
- Participation in interviews and site visits
What must the business plan include?
- Management team
- Strengths and weaknesses
- Areas of concern
- Chief competitors (include strengths, weaknesses)
- Personal strengths owner brings to the business
- Opportunities available to business
- Goals for the Advisory Panel