Black Women Are More Likely to Start a Business than White Men

Written by Donna Kelley, Mahdi Majbouri, and Angela Randolph
Published on 11th May 2021

HBR Staff/Jessica Felicio/Unsplash

 A study published by the Global Entrepreneurs Monitor revealed that 17% of Black women are starting businesses in the U.S. compared to 10% of white women and 15% of white men. However, only 3% of Black female entrepreneurs own mature businesses in comparison to 7% of white female entrepreneurs. The study involved analysing data from interviews of over 12,000 entrepreneurs, including 1200 people who run established businesses.

 The study found that 61% of African-American women start businesses in retail, wholesale, health and education services. These businesses tend to be smaller start-ups operating in these competitive fields where it is more difficult to maintain success in the long run. Also, the research reveals that 61% of Black women self-fund their start-up capital, despite only 29% of Black female entrepreneurs living in households with an income of over $75,000 compared to 52% of white male entrepreneurs. The study revealed that financial institutions have racial and gender biases towards which groups receive vital resources for entrepreneurship. The report addresses this issue, recommending the re-education of financial institutions to evaluate and challenge long-held biases and implement methods that support Black female entrepreneurs to expand and establish businesses.

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