Increasing the number of women in leadership roles has become a major theme in this country – from the number of women sitting on corporate boards to gender parity in the federal cabinet. The idea was to bring some new thinking to the table. Now we can add the participation of women in business ownership to the conversation.
StatsCan completed a study on women-owned businesses, especially start-ups, compared those started by men and how the two have differed in their performance.
Men, in very broad terms, might be seen as a bit more aggressive. The number of start-ups led by men that survive is slightly higher than those started by women. And men tend to generate more profit at an earlier stage. It can take up to five years for women-owned businesses to catch up.
But when they do, there’s not much difference between them. The number of women-owned small businesses that are exporters is almost identical to the number of male-owned ones – that’s about 12 per cent of all enterprises in this size range.
And they account for about one-sixth of all small and medium-size businesses in the country.