Monday, July 19, 2010

Women-Owned Businesses on the Upswing, Positive Economic Impact


New Census Data Reinforces the Economic Power of Women-Owned Businesses in the U.S. Says NAWBO

(July 15, 2010)—Preliminary results released this week by the U. S. Census Bureau from the 2007 Survey of Business Owners (SBO) show an increase of 20.1 percent in women-owned businesses since 2002, accounting for 7.8 million non-farm U. S. businesses. In 2007, women-owned firms held 28.7 percent of all non-farm businesses in the United States, 6.4 percent of total employment and 4.0 percent of total receipts. The SBO Survey defines women-owned businesses as firms in which women own 51 percent or more of the stock or equity of the business.

A 2010 Member Survey by the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) indicates the trend will continue, not only in women starting new businesses, but also in the growth and expansion of existing businesses. The NAWBO survey shows 34 percent of members expected to hire new workers and 21 percent planned to increase capital investment in 2010.

This is good news for the women's business community and the economy at large. "In the past decade, the number of privately owned companies started by women in America has increased twice as fast as the number owned by men," said NAWBO President and CEO Helen Han. "Even in the current business landscape where all businesses are forced to do more with less, and for less, women business owners are holding their own and contributing significantly to the overall economy."

NAWBO believes there are many reasons for the success of women-owned businesses. "Women business owners are often very resilient because of the challenges they face in starting and growing their businesses," said NAWBO Chair Kelly Scanlon. "Women also have a natural aptitude for business marketing and tend to be more creative and grassroots in their campaigns—all key to helping them thrive."

Other notable highlights of the SBO survey include:

In 2007, 31.9 percent of women-owned firms operated in the repair, maintenance, personal and laundry services industries and the health care and social assistance industries. Women-owned firms accounted for 45.2 percent of all U.S. businesses in these industries. Wholesale trade and retail trade accounted for 36.2 percent of women-owned business revenue.

California had the most women-owned firms at 1 million (13.3 percent of all such firms), with receipts of $181.5 billion (15.2 percent of all women-owned firm receipts). Texas was second with 610,279 women-owned firms or 7.8 percent, with receipts of $96.8 billion or 8.1 percent. New York followed, accounting for 7.6 percent of all women-owned firms, and 7.1 percent of receipts.

In 2007, there were 911,285 women-owned employer firms. These firms employed 7.6 million persons with a total payroll of $218.1 billion, an increase of 6.2 percent and 25.7 percent respectively from 2002. In 2007, these firms generated $1.0 trillion in receipts, an increase of 25.9 percent.

For the complete release of data, go to


Founded in 1975, NAWBO propels women entrepreneurs into economic, social and political spheres of power worldwide. More than 35 years later, NAWBO is still the only organization that solely represents the interest of women entrepreneurs in all industries. The organization's mission is to strengthen the wealth-creating capacity of its members and promote economic development; to create innovative and effective change in the business culture; to build strategic alliances, coalitions and affiliations; and to transform public policy and influence opinion makers. To learn more about NAWBO, visit

Media Contacts:

NAWBO Media Relations

Christina Jorgensen (ext. 103)

Lauren Astor (ext. 115)

Phone: (818) 772-9555



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