Milspo Network (Milspo) founder Jess Sands is showcased by The Telegraph and NatWest on their 100 Female Entrepreneurs to Watch list. The list shines a spotlight on some of the most exciting businesses in the UK and includes The Milspo Network, a social enterprise that helps all armed forces, military spouses, partners and other-halves (SPO) to build their own sustainable businesses.

Founded by Jess Sands in 2018, Milspo offers inspiration, business advice and peer-to-peer support to armed forces partners worldwide. Today, the network has over 1,300 members and continues to develop and expand. Its goal remains to alleviate the difficulties faced by those non-serving members of the military family who are either self-employed or have their own businesses.

Milspo enables collaboration for all, using practical, digital solutions that provide valid and functional training, networking and access to like-minded business owners. It’s a network that inspires our passionate but often isolated diaspora, acting as the ‘go-to’ place for information, advice, support, training and business opportunities, all delivered in a supportive, family-orientated, collaborative and celebratory way.

Jess Sands, Milspo Founder, said: “I am so proud to be included on this prestigious list. Milspo is a true team effort, so it is a joy to have this opportunity to showcase the work of our inspirational military spouses and partner members. There are thousands of self-employed and business-owning SPO’s out there, in the UK and abroad, who I know will benefit from this recognition.

“It’s no secret that life for the families of those serving can be challenging – military partners recognise that ‘duty’ comes first, whilst also recognising that their own lives will likely suffer continual disruption due to this ‘duty’. As a result, they often face short-notice moves, long separations and starting over.

This transient and unpredictable life doesn’t fit well around the traditional ideas of employment, which is where Milspo offers solutions in supporting those who choose the flexibility of self-employment and business ownership. So we know the difference this recognition from the Telegraph and NatWest will make to our members”.

Julie Baker, head of enterprise at NatWest Group, says:

“The latest Rose Review report says that in the past year – and for the first time ever – women have started businesses at a faster rate than men. These companies need support to grow, as this could add an extra £250bn to the UK economy if women start and scale companies at the same rate as men. The 100 Female Entrepreneurs to Watch list will celebrate female entrepreneurship and highlight the support that is needed for women business owners to succeed.”

 The Telegraph and NatWest 100 Female Entrepreneurs to Watch list launched online on 18th November.