How Women-Owned Firms Still Face a Financing Gap

Women have made great strides in the business world. The number of women-owned businesses surged by nearly 60% between 1997 and 2013. But women business leaders still face a key obstacle — in the form of financing.

This infographic shows a number of ways in which women-owned businesses remain at a distinct disadvantage when it comes to accessing capital.  Small business lender Biz2Credit found that while women-owned firms enjoyed nearly twofold increase in applications and were more likely to obtain a loan, approval rates still lagged those of male-owned businesses.

The relative youth of women-owned firms accounted for part of the discrepancy, says Rohit Arora, CEO of Biz2Credit, though he predicts the gap will continue to narrow. “I expect that this scenario will correct itself as women-owned companies mature and expand,” he said.

The infographic also demonstrates how women are gaining traction in key areas of growth funding — in areas such venture capital and crowdfunding:

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Meridith Dennes is a co-founder and the CEO of Project Eve LLC, a leading women's lifestyle media company online including some of the web's best loved communities including the eponymous Project Eve, Getting Balance, Project Eve Moms, Project Eve Money and Scary Puppy Silly Kitty. With a digital readership in excess of 20+ million monthly uniques, and over 1 million social media followers, Project Eve provides the news and resources to inspire and empower women. Meridith also works as a digital consultant and social media strategist and has worked with several Fortune 500 companies to help increase brand awareness and improve social media engagement.Meridith holds a BA from Northwestern University and an MBA from NYU's Stern School of Business. Prior to founding Project Eve, she spent 15 years working in investment banking. Meridith currently lives in Vermont with her husband and 2 daughters and spends her free time teaching skiing, practicing yoga, hiking and snowshoeing.