The small-business gender gap for female entrepreneurs seems to be shrinking as the U.S. economy steadily improves. According to a study just released by Biz2Credit, a leading small-business lending portal, last year the approval rate on loans for women-owned businesses was 15.3 percent, up from 11.7 percent in 2013. In contrast, the loan approval rate for male-owned businesses was 21.5 percent, up from 18.8 percent in 2013. This narrowed the lending gap by 29 percent.
This is great news for an estimated 9 million women-owned businesses and other budding entrepreneurs. We have never seen more success among female entrepreneurs. According to the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), women-owned firms in the U.S.:
- Employ nearly 7.9 million people.
- Generate more than $1.4 trillion in sales and generate 11 percent of revenues in the U.S. economy.
- Account for 30 percent of all privately-held firms.
- Contribute 14 percent of employment.