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U.S. Department of Commerce Issues Report on Women-Owned Businesses in the 21st Century

Monday, October 4, 2010  
Posted by: Oriana Camacho
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Monday, October 4, 2010

CONTACT: OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
Jane Callen
202-482-2235

U.S. Department of Commerce ISSUES REPORT ON WOMEN-OWNED BUSINESSES IN THE 21ST CENTURY
Women-owned businesses grew 44 percent, contributed over $1 trillion to economy

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Commerce Department's Economics and Statistics Administration (ESA) today released a report on "Women-Owned Businesses in the 21st Century” that analyzes the changing role of women-owned businesses in the U.S. economy. The report, prepared at the request of the White House Council on Women and Girls and released today during a White House Entrepreneurship Conference, looks at trends in women-owned businesses from the late 1990s through 2007, explores the characteristics of businesses owned by women as compared to those owned by men, and discusses potential reasons why these firms look different.

"Here's the good news: women-owned businesses are steadily expanding and now account for $1.2 trillion in economic output,” said Commerce Department Under Secretary for Economic Affairs Rebecca Blank. "Considering the recent economic environment, this growth shows the important potential of women-owned businesses for future economic growth.”

Between 1997 and 2007, women-owned businesses grew by 44 percent – twice as fast as businesses owned by men. In 2007, women-owned firms had sales of $1.2 trillion. In addition, the number of businesses owned by minority women increased faster than those owned by non-minority women.

"While women-owned businesses grew twice as fast as those owned by men, on almost every other measure, women-owned businesses continue to lag,” Blank said.

Businesses owned by women are typically smaller and sales receipts are only 25 percent of those owned by men.

The data presented in the report come from three different sources: The Survey of Business Owners (SBO), the Current Population Survey (CPS) Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC) - both conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau - and the Kauffman Firm Survey (KFS), conducted by the Kauffman Foundation. The report also relies on several recent research studies that investigate the differences between women-owned and men-owned businesses.

Small businesses are the engines of job creation, and with the recent passage of the Small Business Jobs Act, the Obama administration is providing critical support to small business owners – including tax cuts and loans – and reinforcing its commitment to a business environment that fosters job creation and economic growth.

The full report can be seen here: www.esa.doc.gov/WOB/


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