Women own 36 percent of all small businesses in the U.S., notes Forbes. And yet, while the number of women-owned businesses has seen record growth, these firms continue to face obstacles in accessing capital and markets.
Despite government programs supporting women-owned businesses, women-owned businesses are “21 percent less likely to win government contracts,” according to a study released by Women Impacting Public Policy, a nonpartisan advocacy group that works to even the playing field for women-owned firms.
March is Women’s History Month, and marks the perfect occasion to reflect on the needs of women business owners in the U.S., and how our government policies can better support those needs.
The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is #BeBoldForChange, and on March 8, we at Quantum Leaps are thrilled to join “A Celebration of Women Business Owners: History, Participation and Progress,” sponsored by WIPP and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). This public meeting will be conducted online, and it is free to join via a webcast. By honoring and acknowledging our past and what has worked, we can then look toward the future, and how everyone can grow by giving woman-owned businesses an equal place in the marketplace.
Quantum Leaps serves at the vanguard of support for women-owned businesses internationally, from increased access to markets especially public procurements, vocalizing the need to have inclusive finance opportunities, to encouraging knowledge sharing and networking. Quantum Leaps’ four pillars of Knowledge Development, Advocacy, Capacity Building and Incubation strive to help women-owned businesses around the globe to find the resources and support they need to grow and thrive. This isn’t just about helping one subset of business owners. Studies have shown that women business owners greatly increase national GDP.
“Greater participation of women in the labor force correlates with higher GDP growth. Households where women have more control over resources enjoy higher savings rates and increased spending on children’s health and education,” notes an international study released by Ernst & Young.
Jennifer Bisceglie is the CEO of Quantum Leaps, and the past chairwoman of WIPP.
“Women-owned business are an engine that drive our economy, and policies that support and encourage these firms generate more jobs, taxes and contributions that benefit all of us,” Bisceglie says. “I’m proud of the work WIPP and Quantum Leaps have done, and look forward to participating in this vital conference.”
As delegates to the Women’s 20, an engagement committee for the G20, Bisceglie and Quantum Leap’s co-founder, Virginia Littlejohn, have the ability to represent these needs on an international stage.
A Celebration of Women Business Owners: History, Participation and Progress
Wed, March 8, 2017, 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM EST
Quantum Leaps, Inc. is a global accelerator for women's entrepreneurship based in Alexandria, Virginia. It works with governments, international institutions, and women’s business associations to promote women’s entrepreneurship as a means of driving quantifiable economic growth at the national, regional, and global levels.