Friday, 13 July 2018
GROFIN - GIVING WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS THEIR PLACE IN THE SUN
Women entrepreneurs play a pivotal role in the private sector comprising micro, small and medium enterprises in Tanzania. Women owned enterprises increased from 35%in early 1990s to 54.3% in 2012, according to estimates by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
The ILO Women Entrepreneurs Survey 2014 revealed that 85% of women interviewed in Tanzania financed their start-ups from their own savings, mainly due to high interest rates and collateral requirements. It also indicated that access to business development services (BDS) is crucial for women entrepreneurs to strengthen their capacity to start, effectively manage and grow their business.
Apart from limited access to finance and business development services, women also face challenges unique to their gender, which may influence the decisions they make when starting or growing their business. Research shows that women owned enterprises do not grow at the same rate compared to businesses owned by men; most of them remain small. In Tanzania, of the 1.716 million women-owned enterprises estimated in existence by the ILO, over 99% are micro enterprises with fewer than five employees and almost three-quarters have only one employee.
We turned to three successful women entrepreneurs in Dar-es-Salaam whose businesses have grown with GroFin’s finance and support, to share their insights on what it takes for women to start and grow their enterprises in Tanzania.