The Role of Entrepreneurship in the She-conomy

Special Guest Blog

By Intuit

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Of all the trends shaping the future of the global economy, the role of women has proven to be a key driver for growth. An excerpt from the Intuit 2020 Report, co-authored by Emergent Research, envisions a She-conomy where women will attain greater leadership roles in the workplace, politics, health and education.

By 2020, women around the world will enter the workforce at an unprecedented rate. Close to 1 billion women, many of whom have either never worked or worked at a subsistence level, will be contributors in the world economy. Because of urban migration, increased access to education, mobile technologies, micro-credit and low market entry costs, women will create work and start businesses more readily than ever.

Between 1997 and 2009, the number of majority women-owned firms in the U.S. grew at nearly twice the rate of all privately held U.S. firms. Throughout this decade, the trend will continue as more women choose entrepreneurship.

By 2020 :

  • Globally, about 870 million women who have not previously participated in the mainstream economy will gain employment or start their own business.  Most of these women – 822 million – will come from non-industrialized countries, while roughly 47 million will come from North America, Western Europe and Japan.
  • In countries with limited support services, such as viable childcare, many women will start their own businesses to provide flexibility for their families and avoid traditional constraints that once kept them out of the workplace. Others may choose a hybrid solution where one spouse works for the benefits and job security while the other starts a business.
  • Women will overcome the legal or traditional barriers that prevented them from participating in some regions by using virtual, mobile and Internet technologies to run businesses without having to be physically present.

And when it comes to second stage entrepreneurs – women whose businesses have reached the million dollar revenue mark and who qualify for membership in the Women Presidents’ Organization (WPO) – the news is equally impressive. According to the Growing Under the Radar study, commissioned by American Express OPEN, the number of million-dollar women-owned firms has grown 31 percent over the past decade.

This trend will likely accelerate as a greater proportion of women entrepreneurs continue to accelerate their business growth.

Intuit is an annual WPO Corporate sponsor.

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