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Helping Women Business Owners Access Capital

women owned business financingWomen-owned businesses are one of the fastest growing segments of the small business community. Today, about 30% of small businesses are owned by women, compared to about 5% in 1970. This is good news.

However, women business owners still face several challenges when it comes to growing their businesses and accessing capital.

According to the latest data:

Access to growth capital is a critical factor in growing a successful business. However, as the statistics show, even when women business owners seek financing, they don’t always get it. Critical factors to ensuring that women get the funding they need often comes down to awareness and education:

While there aren’t any specific loan programs for women business owners, there are a number of government-backed and business loans that women business owners can take advantage of and resources in your community to help you secure them. Here are two worth getting to know:

Women’s Business Centers

With a nationwide network of more than 110 offices, Women’s Business Centers [3] (WBCs) operate with the mission to “level the playing field” for women entrepreneurs, who still face unique obstacles in the world of business.

Specifically, they can help guide women through the process of finding and applying for loans, guidance on how to bid on government contracts and offer regular training seminars on financing topics. Some also provide access to alternative capital financing programs.

FACT: Government data proves that businesses that receive assistance from WBCs have significantly better survival rates than those that don’t receive similar support.

Women Accessing Capital Program

Another resource for women business owners is the Women Impacting Public Policy’s Women Accessing Capital [4] program. The national program is designed to educate women business owners on all steps of accessing capital, from understanding and evaluating funding sources, creating a strong application for capital, to maintaining and managing growth.

Specifically, program participants get information that can be immediately applied to advancing their businesses. Look out for events, webinars and courses that provide the necessary tools to competitively seek the appropriate type of funding, obtain much needed cash, and then manage a financed firm, to help small business owners take their businesses to the next level.

Check out the events calendar [5] on the main WIPP site for upcoming activities.

Hand and Woman [6] Photo via Shutterstock