Contributed by Simply Business
30/03/2022 - Simply Business
More women than ever are pursuing self-employment and starting small businesses, according to new analysis.
In a review of over 550,000 small business owners, freelancers and the self-employed, new data reveals that while the majority of small businesses are founded by men, the number of female owners are rising at a faster rate, at 59% versus 51% – almost a 10% difference.
The analysis by one of the UK’s largest small business insurance providers, Simply Business, also revealed that from 2018-2022 there has been a striking increase in female-owned SMEs, rising 59% overall over the four year period.
A separate recent study by Simply Business also showed that 96% of female entrepreneurs would recommend starting a business to other women, and 92% remain confident about the next 12 months of their company.
But challenges still remain. One in three (32%) female entrepreneurs have experienced sexism as a business owner, while one in five (19%) have also experienced gender inequality and unequal access to opportunities.
Overall, a staggering 91% of female entrepreneurs say gender bias and inequality is prevalent in business, with a third (33%) describing it as ‘widespread’ or ‘severe’.
To better support female business owners, over a third (38%) called for more one-to-one mentorship from a business expert, alongside support and advice with funding (37%).
As part of its Empowering Women in Business initiative, Simply Business has partnered with renowned business executive and The Apprentice star, Baroness Karren Brady CBE to offer an exclusive one-on-one mentoring session for female entrepreneurs.
Bea Montoya, Chief Operating Officer at Simply Business, commented: “The Empowering Women in Business campaign honors and celebrates female entrepreneurship. It’s inspiring to see more women than ever before deciding to start a small business – whether it’s turning a hobby into a career or leveraging years of professional experience to go it alone.
“Small businesses are critical to the UK economy, contributing trillions of pounds a year in turnover. They will be key to the UK’s recovery from the pandemic, and women business owners are increasingly leading from the front. We’re seeing a faster rate of growth for female-owned small businesses than for male-owned equivalents, and we expect this trend to continue into 2022 and beyond.”
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