Los Angeles, CA—Small Business Majority is proud to announce the launch of its Women’s Entrepreneurship Program to assist women entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners in the Los Angeles area.
Women—especially women of color—are one of the fastest-growing segments of our economy, but they continue to be at a disadvantage in critical business indicators. Between 2007 and 2016, the number of women-owned businesses increased by 45 percent nationwide. Yet, women account for only 16 percent of conventional small business loans and 17 percent of Small Business Administration loans. And women don’t just receive fewer loans, they also receive smaller loan amounts: Women approved for loans only receive 4.4 percent of the total dollars of conventional loans made.
In order to address these concerns, the Women’s Entrepreneurship Program will help local women entrepreneurs gain the resources they need to start and grow their companies. As part of this program, Small Business Majority will be providing in-person and online resources for women through educational events in the area. Our goals include connecting women in the Los Angeles area with vetted local lenders, business resource providers and mentoring opportunities.
To kick off this critical program, Small Business Majority is hosting a thought-provoking and diverse event at Los Angeles City Hall on July 24 that will feature presentations and panel discussions intended to help women entrepreneurs, particularly those of color, succeed.
This free event will feature representatives from the Los Angeles mayor’s office, small business lenders and educational resource providers explaining how women entrepreneurs of color are shifting the dynamic in critical areas like economic security, and highlight resources for female business owners on topics like healthcare, mentoring, and access to capital. Supporting female entrepreneurs, especially women of color, has the potential to unlock tremendous growth for their communities.
“California is at the forefront of women’s entrepreneurial activity in the United States,” said Xiomara Peña, Small Business Majority’s California Deputy Director and National Hispanic Outreach Manager. “In fact, a recent survey found 37.2 percent of California’s small firms are owned by women, with 129 new women-owned firms established every day. Unfortunately, the local infrastructure hasn’t yet caught up with business growth as women entrepreneurs struggle to get the technical assistance and capital they need. Small Business Majority is working to remedy this problem in the hope that California can serve as a blueprint for women-owned small business success in this country.”
While Small Business Majority is piloting this program in Los Angeles, the Women’s Entrepreneurship Program will eventually expand to offer resources for women business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs around the country.