Fertile environment for women entrepreneurs in India: Study

NEW DELHI, June 19: From being treated as a quiet, supportive half of society, women who want to start a business in India now find the country to provide one of the most fertile environments based on indicators such as business confidence, motivation, financing options and other sources of support.
The finding is part of Dell Women’s Global Entrepreneurship Study conducted across 450 women entrepreneurs from US, UK and India commissioned by Dell.
It reveals that 71 per cent of woman entrepreneurs in India have a branding in market for their businesses and eight in every 10 woman entrepreneurs are hiring which indicates an expansion spree in their individual businesses as well as increase in employment opportunities too.
“When I started my business I didn’t even know how to write a business proposal for getting a loan sanctioned. But I was born to be a businesswoman and hence I could reach this stage without looking back,” says Rita Singh, MESCO Steel Group who has been awarded the “Best Woman Entrepreneur of the decade” by FICCI.
Another entrepreneur Ishita Swarup, who owns a shopping portal 99 labels says, “Women have become more experimental and are slowly shedding their inhibitions of taking risk. I frequently meet women who want to start something of their own but are afraid of taking the plunge and always advise them to just make a plan and hit the market. Over thinking should be kept for handling crisis if there are any.”
Early results show tremendous optimism on part of women in business in India. The study found that women entrepreneurs in India expect 90 per cent growth in their business over period of five years compared to 24 per cent and 50 per cent growth in business expected by entrepreneurs in the UK and the US respectively.
“Women are playing increasingly important roles in leadership and we are witnessing some of the most exciting global growth coming from female led companies”, says Moira Forbes of Forbes Women.
A lot of business women say that apart from inspiration and financing options, it is the motivation given by their families which builds the momentum for them to be entrepreneurs and leaders.
“Over the past twenty years the role of women community in India has transformed from homemakers to home facilitators. Both husband and wives contribute to their share of household and work related responsibilities. That’s what comes as a big relief to any career oriented women,” says Chavi Hemanth, Secretary General, Indian Direct Selling Association (IDSA) which provides entrepreneurship opportunities in direct selling industry to women.
The study found that getting fund for business has been biggest challenge for business across geographies. Women entrepreneurs in India need an average of USD 9,376 in start-up capital for business, compared to USD 8,060 required in the UK and USD 19,985 in the US.
While the easiest source for getting funds for women entrepreneurs in the US is family members, the UK is friends, for Indian women entrepreneurs, it is angel investors.
However, women entrepreneurs in the country are seen to be expanding their horizons and trying out traditionally male dominated fields.
“I have been in this profession for quite a long time now but people are still awestruck when they discover that I own a business of providing security services,” shares Aman Singh, who boasts of being the sole women entrepreneur in the security sector for over a decade. (PTI)


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