Women-Owned Businesses Received Under 5% of Federal Contracts in FY2018

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Burgandy Basulto is a Content Writer at NAWRB. She has a bachelor’s degree in both English and Philosophy, and a master’s degree in Philosophy. When she’s not reading or writing, she loves running, kickboxing, watching films, trying new restaurants she finds via Yelp, and experiencing other cultures during her travels.

The National Women’s Business Council’s (NWBC) just released their 2019 Annual Report, titled,  “Advancing Women Entrepreneurs. Growing America’s Economy.” The report identifies three important initiatives and provides policy recommendations for the following: (1) improving access to capital for female founders, (2) encouraging more women entrepreneurs to start companies in STEM-related fields, and (3) removing obstacles for women business owners in rural areas. 

This 2019 Annual Report underscores the importance of having timely, reliable data to make sure that every women-owned business is included in data analysis, including nonemployer businesses, or those without employees, which make up 90 percent of all women-owned businesses. There are an estimated 13 million women-owned businesses in the U.S., according to the 2019 AMEX State of Women-Owned Businesses Report. These businesses employ 9.4 million workers and generate $1.9 trillion in revenue.

Key Findings of the NWBC 2019 Annual Report

  • The 2018 Annual Business Survey accounts for only 10 percent of women-owned firms in the U.S. and states there are only 1.1 million women-owned firms.
  • Women-owned businesses received 4.75 percent of federal contracts in fiscal year 2018.
  • Female founders only received 2.2 percent, or $2.88 billion of $130 billion venture capital dollars in 2018.
  • Almost 75 percent of rural women entrepreneurs are married, while only about 55 percent of the population is married.
  • In rural areas, animal production and crop production are the second and fourth most common industries, but they are not in the top ten industries for non-rural women entrepreneurs.
  • Nearly 20 percent of rural women entrepreneurs do not have internet access.
  • The number of patents with at least one woman inventor increased from 7 percent in the 1980s to 21 percent by 2016.

Read the full report here.

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