Some of New Zealand's most promising entrepreneurial women gathered this week for an intensive two-day training session to help them grow their businesses and think "big and bold".

EY's Entrepreneurial Winning Women is an international programme that grew out of the Entrepreneur of the year competition.

One of the founders, programme ambassador Diane Foreman said it became clear that women were under-represented at the annual competition Monte Carlo.

"A win for us would be seeing one of these women become Entrepreneur of the Year for New Zealand and go on to do the same thing for the world."


Foreman was EY Entrepreneur of the Year in 2009.

She grew her Emerald Food Group - which includes brands like NZ Natural Ice Cream - to a franchise network of more than 650 stores in more than 24 countries before selling it last year.

Speakers and mentors at the Winning Women event included Theresa Gattung, Anne Norman, Dame Rosie Horton and Franceska Banga.