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Women-Owned Business Facts

The Overall Picture

  • 10.1 million firms are owned by women (50% or more), employing more than 13 million people, and generating $1.9 trillion in sales as of 2008.
  • Three-quarters of all women-owned businesses are majority-owned by women (51% or more), for a total of 7.2 million firms, employing 7.3 million people, and generating $1.1 trillion in sales.
  • Women-owned firms (50% or more) account for 40% of all privately held firms.
  • Women-owned businesses survive downturns in the economy better than their counterparts and leverage the assets of societal changes to sustain the momentum for the women-owned businesses

Characteristics of Women Business Owners

  • Women business owners are prepared to face risk: most (66%) are willing to take above average or substantial risks for business investments.
  • Men and women business owners have different management styles. Women emphasize relationship building as well as fact-gathering and are more likely to consult with experts, employees, and fellow business owners.
  • Firn owned by women with $1 million or more in revenue is more likely to belong to formal business organizations, associations, or networks than other women business owners (81% vs. 61%).

Businesses Owned by Women of Color

  • 1.9 million firms are majority-owned (51% or more) by women of color in the U.S.
  • These firms employ 1.2 million people and generate $165 billion in revenues annually.
  • Between 2002 and 2008, these firms grew faster than all privately held firms.

Technology and Business Growth

  •  Women business owners’ top concerns about technology are the protection and security of data.
    • Security of internet purchase: 82%
    • Computer viruses: 81%
    • Protecting business data: 77%
    • General system failure: 73%
  • Women business owners are as likely as men business owners to be willing to adopt new technology and more likely (24% vs. 18%) than women in general.
    • Women business owners value technology as a means to create workplace flexibility:
    • 61% use technology to integrate the responsibilities of work and home.
    • 44% use technology to enable employees to work off-site or to have flexible work schedules.

Million-Dollar Businesses

  • One in five firms with revenue of $1 million or more is woman-owned.
  • 3% of all women-owned firms have revenues of $1 million or more compared with 6% of men-owned firms.

Exit Strategies of Women Business Owners

  • Men and women business owners are equally concerned about the price when selling their business.
  • Women owners who plan to sell are more concerned than their men counterparts about: – the buyer’s identity, personality, and background (72% vs. 39%) – the buyer’s plans for the business (79% vs. 52% ) – plans for current employees (86% vs. 61%)
  • Women business owners are nearly twice as likely as men business owners to intend to pass the business on to a daughter or daughters (37% vs. 19%).

Banking and Finance

  • Women business owners’ satisfaction with banking relationships has more than doubled since 1992 (35% vs. 82%).
  • More than two-thirds (67%) of women business owners choose financial products and services based on their relationship and experience with a lender.
  • Women business owners who obtained capital persevered, making an average of four attempts to get bank loans or lines of credit and 22 attempts to obtain equity capital.

This information was provided by the Association of Women’s Business Centers. For more information, please click the link below.

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