Sally C. Pipes - Contributor
[Courtesty of Pacific Research Institute]
C. Pipes is President and CEO, Pacific
Research Institute [go
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Business Month - Every Month
Liberal feminism ignores successful businesswomen...
[Sally C. Pipes] 4/21/04
On some calendars,
March was Women's History Month. But according to "Key Facts About Women Business Owners and Their Enterprises," from
the National Women's Business Council, every month could be dubbed
Women's Business Month.
Between 1977 and 2002, an average of 424 new women-owned firms
were started every day. That translates to almost 775,000 start-ups
every year, representing 55 percent of all new firm start-ups.
Nationwide, as of 2002, there are more than 10 million privately-held
businesses in which a woman or women own at least 50 percent
of the company. These firms generate $1.2 trillion in sales and
employ 18.2 million people.
More than half of the women-owned firms operate in the service
sector. Sixteen percent are in retail trade, and nine percent
in finance, insurance, or real estate. In addition to diversity,
one finds strong growth.
Between 1997 and 2002, women-owned firms grew by 11 percent,
outpacing all privately-held firms, which grew by six percent.
Among women-owned firms employment increased by 18 percent, compared
to only eight percent among all privately-held firms. Revenues
rose by a full 32 percent, compared to 24 percent among all private
firms. Those grew by seven percent from 1997 to 2002 while women-owned
business grew by 14 percent, twice the rate. The revenue increase
for the two groups was the same, a healthy 40 percent.
of women-owned firms with 100 or more employees increased by
44 percent from
1997-2002. The number with more than $1 million
in revenue grew by 32 percent. The fastest growth rates were
in "non-traditional" industries such as construction,
where women-owned firms increased by 36 percent. There was also
strong growth in agricultural services, transportation, and public
to "Key Facts About Women Business Owners and
Their Enterprises," women-owned businesses survive at virtually
the same rate, around 75 percent, as all businesses. However,
women-owned businesses showed a lower decline in unemployment,
4.2 percent, compared to a 6.7 percent decline among all business
The workforce in women-owned business is 52-percent female,
48-percent male, roughly equal and better balanced than in firms
owned by men, where women are 38 percent of the workforce. Though
somewhat smaller, women-owned firms generate sales with fewer
median employees, 26, versus 50 with male-owned firms. This translates
to a rate of productivity 1.7 times higher.
Business growth and expansion were the top issues in a survey
of the National Association of Women Business Owners. Others
issues include cash flow, capital, and, of course, taxes.
While the growth figures are impressive by any count, there
is no reason for complacency. The National Women's Business Council
notes that the fastest growing states for women-owned businesses
are Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, South Dakota, New
Mexico, Montana, Oregon, and Alaska. That leaves out a lot of
the country, including the entire East. And it also means there
is still a lot of room for women-owned firms to grow.
What there is not room for, in light of these figures, is the
mindset that women remain passive victims of a patriarchal society,
that their problems stem from gender discrimination, that they
are helpless without government assistance, and that they stand
in constant need of representation by self-appointed celebrity
The startling growth, prosperity, and efficiency of women-owned
businesses are a clear refutation of the standard-brand feminism
that has failed to keep pace with reality. CRO
2004 Pacific Research Institute