Thursday, June 12, 2014
How Women of Color Are Driving U.S. Entrepreneurship
According to a report released by the Center For American Progress, women of color represent almost one third of all women-owned businesses in the U.S. Their growth is remarkable, given all the obstacles they have to face.
The women of color referenced in the report includes African American, Latino, Asian, Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander women. From 1997 to 2013, these specific groups of women-owned businesses increased in numbers ranging from 108 percent to 258 percent. These numbers are extraordinary when compared to the 59 percent growth, although quite admirable in itself, in overall women-owned firms during the same period.
Growth despite obstacles
Women of color, in particular, often have a difficult time getting financing for their businesses. They often have to use their own money to finance their business. There are many who are single parents. And most of them have limited wealth. Yet, in spite of the odds, they are growing at rates that are faster than the national average. African American women, in particular, are starting businesses at a rate that is 6 times the national average.
The future looks good for the growth of businesses owned by women of color. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, women of color will represent the majority of the female population by the year 2045. During the past two decades, more and more women of color are turning to entrepreneurship as an opportunity for them to charter their own course and control their own destiny. All indications are that they will most likely continue to drive entrepreneurship in the U.S. and greatly influence the U.S. economy.