Women are starting 1,288 (net) new businesses per day, which is double the rate from only three years ago, according to the 2014 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN. The report includes detailed analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau and finds that during the past 17 years, the number of women-owned businesses has increased at 1.5 times the national average.
As daily business creation hits a record pace, the number of women-owned firms reached a new milestone in 2014. The fourth annual report estimates that there are more than 9.1 million women-owned businesses in the United States (compared to 8.6 million in 2013). These businesses generate more than $1.4 trillion in revenues, employ 7.9 million people and account for 30% of all enterprises.
During the past 17 years, women-owned businesses have steadily increased their influence on the U.S. economy. Since 1997 women-owned firms have:
- increased in number by 68%
- grown revenues by 72%, and
- added 11% more jobs.
With regards to job creation, these businesses have emerged from the recent recession as second only to publicly-traded companies in U.S. with 274,000 net new jobs since 2007.
“The report clearly shows that women are choosing the path of entrepreneurship at record rates,” said Randi Schochet, Vice President, Brand Strategy and Activation, American Express OPEN. “Imagine the economic impact if more of these new ventures were transformed into thriving businesses. This is why American Express OPEN remains so passionately dedicated to helping women entrepreneurs become successful business owners.”
To help women business owners reach their full potential, American Express OPEN launched OPEN for Women: CEO BootCamp, which is designed to immerse women CEOs in the fundamental pillars for success: confidence, competence, and connections. The initiative, now in its second year, works with leading academics, major advocacy organizations, and a who’s who of visionaries to help women entrepreneurs grow their businesses through live events, exclusive content, and online networking communities.
Firms Owned by Women of Color Experience Greatest Growth
From 1997 to 2014, the number of firms owned by women of color skyrocketed 216% from just under one million to an estimated 2,934,500 (compared to 68% for all women-owned firms in the same period). Businesses owned by women of color jumped from one-in-six (17%) of all women-owned firms to one-in-three (32%) in the same time period. Growth in employment (85%) and revenues (168%) of firms owned by women of color topped growth rates of all women-owned firms (10% and 63% respectively) by wide margins.
The states with the fastest growth in the number of women-owned firms between 1997 and 2014 are:
1. Georgia (118%)
2. Texas (98%)
3. North Carolina (91%)
4. Nevada (91%)
5. Mississippi (81%)
The states with the lowest growth in the number of women-owned businesses between 1997 and 2014 are:
47. Vermont (30%)
48. Kansas (30%)
49. Iowa (23%)
50. West Virginia (23%)
51. Alaska (11%)
The states with the highest combined economic clout for women-owned firms – a measurement averaging the rankings in growth in number, revenues and employment of women-owned businesses from 1997-2014 are:
1. North Dakota
2. District of Columbia
4. Arizona (tied for fourth)
5. Georgia (tied for fourth)
The states with the lowest combined economic clout for women-owned firms – a measurement averaging the rankings in growth in number, revenues and employment of women-owned businesses from 1997-2014 are:
46. Kentucky (tied for forty-sixth)
46. Wisconsin (tied for forty-sixth)
49. Rhode Island
Of the 25 most populous metropolitan areas, the cities with the highest combined economic clout for women-owned firms – a measurement averaging the rankings in growth in number, revenues and employment of women-owned businesses from 2002-2014 are:
1. San Antonio, TX
2. Atlanta, GA
3. Baltimore, MD
4. Houston, TX
5. Portland, OR
Of the 25 most populous metropolitan areas, the cities with the lowest combined economic clout for women-owned firms – a measurement averaging rankings in growth in number, revenues and employment of women-owned businesses from 2002-2014 are:
21. Miami, FL
22. Boston, MA
23. Pittsburgh, PA
25. San Francisco, CA (tied for twenty-fifth)
25. St. Louis, MO (tied for twenty-fifth)
The State of Women-Owned Business Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN, is based on data from the United States Census Bureau, specifically their business census, the Survey of Business Owners (SBO), which is conducted every five years in years ending in 2 and 7. Data from the past three censuses – 1997, 2002 and 2007 – were collated, analyzed and projected forward to 2014 factoring in relative changes in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) not only nationally but also at industry and state levels. State-level GDP changes over the period of analysis are applied to our estimates of change at the metropolitan level. Please note the metropolitan area trends can only be analyzed back as far as the 2002 Economic Census because the boundaries of metropolitan areas were changed after Census 2000.
This report was prepared for American Express OPEN by Womenable, a research, program and policy development consultancy whose mission is to improve the environment for women-owned businesses worldwide. Womenable pursues this mission by working with the stewards of women's entrepreneurship around the world – policy makers, multilateral organizations, corporate decision makers, entrepreneurial support organizations and the women's business community – to evaluate, implement and improve policies and programs to support women's enterprise development. Learn more at www.womenable.com.
The report was published in March of 2014. The report along with the data included in this press release is provided solely for informational purposes and is not to be construed as providing advice, recommendations, endorsements, representations or warranties of any kind whatsoever. Opinions and analysis contained in the report represent the opinions and analysis of Womenable, and do not necessarily represent the opinions or analysis of American Express Company or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries or divisions (including, without limitation, American Express OPEN).
For detailed information on the 1997, 2002 and 2007 economic censuses, visit: http://www.census.gov/econ/census07/www/get_data.html (The 1997 economic census is no longer available electronically). A preview of upcoming changes for the 2012 economic census may be found at: http://www.census.gov/econ/census/new_for_2012.html.
About American Express OPEN
American Express OPEN is the leading payment card issuer for small businesses in the United States and supports business owners and entrepreneurs with products and services to help them run and grow their businesses. This includes business charge and credit cards that deliver purchasing power, flexibility, rewards, savings on business services from an expanded lineup of partners and online tools and services designed to help improve profitability. Learn more at www.OPEN.com and connect with us at openforum.com and twitter.com/openforum.
American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, foursquare.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/companies/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress.