The FSB has launched a new campaign aimed at increasing the number of women in business. Speaking in Cardiff, Helen Walbey, chair of the FSB’s UK-wide diversity panel said: “If women were to set up businesses and grow them at the same rate as men, we would see a huge boost to growth and prosperity in this country. In fact, the UK Government estimates it could add £600bn to the economy.”
The campaign has at its centre a call for more UK and Welsh Government support and better access to finance. It said that by supporting more women entrepreneurs both Wales and the UK as a whole would benefit from more economic activity.
It says that the number of self-employed women in the UK has risen by 40% between 2008 and 2016, and that women now account for almost a third of all self-employed workers according to Office for National Statistics figures. The FSB research also shows that women-led businesses face many of the same challenges all small firms encounter – including cash flow issues (42%), and difficulty accessing finance (25%).
The campaign builds on the growing number of women starting up businesses – and the fact that they are proven to have greater start up success than men: a recent report found that “only 11% of the female business owners questioned failed to set up a successful business, compared to 17% of men.”