Women owned businesses contribute £8.8bn to the Scottish economy

  • New research published by FSB and launched at Facebook Community Boost, reveals the contribution women-owned businesses make to the Scottish economy has increased by a staggering 76%, from £5bn GVA in 2012 to £8.8bn (2015 data)

  • Women-owned businesses are now responsible for creating 231k Scottish jobs, up from 153k in 2012.

Women are increasingly becoming the job creators and growth drivers both in Scotland throughout the UK, according to new research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), which was authored by Women’s Enterprise Scotland and staff from the University of Portsmouth and the University of South Wales.

The new report, ‘Supporting Women’s Enterprise in the UK: The Economic Case’, shows that women owned businesses in Scotland now contribute an estimated £8.8bn GVA to the Scottish economy, an increase of 76% from £5bn GVA in 2012.

Women-owned businesses contribute £105bn to the UK economy, an increase of 40 per cent since comprehensive data was last collected and analysed. This equates to women owned businesses contributing £36k Gross Value Add (GVA) for each person they employ, 6.3% of total UK GVA.

From a sector perspective, Scottish women-owned businesses contribute more GVA than Food and Drink and Life Sciences combined (£7.26bn) and more than Creative Industries and Sustainable Tourism combined (£8.3bn).

Scotland’s women-owned businesses are now responsible for creating 231k Scottish jobs, up from 153k in 2012. Across the UK, a quarter of private sector employment (23.85%) is now calculated to be generated by women-owned and women-led businesses.

The ‘Supporting Women’s Enterprise in the UK: The Economic Case’ report is being launched at a #SheMeansBusiness presentation at Facebook’s Community Boost event, in partnership with FSB, taking place on 13th and 14th November at London’s Millbank Tower.

Lorna Trainer, a Glasgow business and member of the FSB’s Scotland policy unit, said: “Over the last decade, the community of female entrepreneurs in Scotland has grown dramatically. That’s due to any number of factors – but we shouldn’t forget to give credit to the women themselves. Up and down Scotland women in business have been turning hard work and determination into jobs and turnover.

“But we can’t rest on our laurels. Scotland’s business start-up rate still lags behind both the UK average and our international competitors. One way to address this problem is to get even more women to start up on their own.FSB continues to influence policymakers on this whilst offering valuable tools to its members – from networking to access to finance.”

Carolyn Currie, CEO of Women’s Enterprise Scotland, which compiled the report for FSB, said: “Our research shows that women-owned businesses are providing critical employment in communities throughout Scotland and are now contributing £8.8bn to the Scottish economy. We must ensure that this momentum continues and we are calling on decision makers and key business influencers to step forward and help to provide the needs based support that these businesses need to continue growing. With dedicated resources and support, women-owned businesses have the opportunity to harness the momentum already created and continue to grow their economic impact and value across all areas of the UK and all sectors.”

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