Just in time for International Women's Day, a campaign in Kazakhstan is highlighting the role female entrepreneurs play in its economy--despite the fact that women's rights are not often discussed in the country.
The country's ForteBank created a fragrance, ForteFemme, which it sent to 2,000 female businesswomen in the country and encouraged them to spray it on the cash used by their businesses. The banknotes then went into circulation and are now being dispensed by ATMs, and we're told "a huge number of people have noticed the smell."
The campaign, by Moscow-based agency Voskhod, is also being promoted in a TV ad, seen here, which looks like a more traditional fragrance ad until it's revealed the bank is behind the scent. The women in the ad are all real-life businesswomen. Another 500 bottles of the scent have been sent to ForteBank clients too.
According to ForteBank, nearly nine million Kazakhstan women account for 40% of the country’s GDP. 43% of all Kazakhstan’s small and medium-sized businesses are operated by women and 52% of the country’s sole proprietors are female.
Anton Kim, head of marketing, says in a statement: "Kazakhstan is a region where women are traditionally expected to play the archetypal role of stay at home mothers, yet they contribute a huge amount to our country’s GDP. We wanted to address this imbalance and champion the role of women in our economy. Encouraging the distribution of scented banknotes will raise awareness of this issue and demonstrate how important women are to our economic development.”