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Report: Women of color-owned businesses doubled, outpace growth for all women-owned businesses

women of color business 3

women of color business 3

The number of businesses owned by Women of Color has more than doubled since 1997 and today is estimated at 2,934,500, accounting for one in three (32%) of all women-owned firms.

Businesses owned by women of color traditionally are smaller, have less employees and less revenue, but their growth outpace all women-owned firms,  according to the 2014 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN.

Here are some of the highlights from the report:

  • Firms owned by African American women number an estimated 1,237,900 as of 2014. These 1.2 million firms employ more than 287,000 workers in addition to the owner and generate an estimated $49.5 billion in revenue. The greatest number of African American women-owned firms are located in New York (126,800), followed by Georgia (108,900) and Texas (98,800);
  • Firms owned by Latinas number an estimated 1,033,100 as of 2014. These firms employ 433,600 workers in addition to the owner and generate an estimated $71.1 billion in revenue. The greatest numbers of Latina-owned firms are located in California (228,500), followed by Texas (190,000) and Florida (144,600);
  • Firms owned by Asian American women number an estimated 675,900 as of 2014. These firms employ 676,000 workers in addition to the owner and generate an estimated $115 billion in revenue. The greatest numbers of Asian American women-owned firms can be found in California (195,300), New York (70,500) and Texas (64,700);
  • Firms owned by Native American or Alaska Native women number an estimated 119,900 as of 2014. These firms employ 40,600 workers in addition to the owner and generate an estimated $10 billion in revenue. Native American/Alaska Native women-owned firms are not as geographically concentrated as are the other ethnic groups. The greatest numbers of Native American/Alaska Native women-owned firms are located in California (21,400), Oklahoma (9,100) and Texas (8,400);
  • Firms owned by Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander women number an estimated 20,000 as of 2014. These firms employ more than 15,000 workers in addition to the owner and generate an estimated $1.9 billion in revenue. The number of Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander women-owned firms remains relatively small, however – less than 1% of women-owned firms are owned by Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander women. Thus, state-level data can be shared from only three states: Hawaii, where there are an estimated 5,200 such firms; California, home to 4,600 Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander women-owned firms; and Florida, where there are an estimated 600 firms.

A news release announcing the results of the 2014 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN is available online here.

The report reflects good news in terms of how women of color are taking matters in their own hands when it comes to growing income by starting businesses. For African American women, in particular, that has been essential considering this racial group has consistently had double digit unemployment during the most recent recession.

But this data also present a reminder that access to start up and growth capital remains an ever present challenge.  As many have hypothesized and what is certainly true is that  capital resources limitations is what stagnates the revenue, growth and ability for minority women-owned businesses ability to hire and sustain more employees.

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