Affordable credit to women-owned businesses is need of the hour: Study

Our Bureau Bengaluru | Updated on August 21, 2020

Women mean business   -  THE HINDU

Global Alliance for Mass Entrepreneurship (GAME) and Sattva Consulting have released a segmentation study report of women entrepreneurs in Bengaluru. on Friday. The purpose of the segmentation study across priority sectors like food, apparel, education, health and wellness in Bengaluru is to build a nuanced understanding of women-owned small businesses and to ensure that efforts made to enable growth are mapped to the differing needs of the segments.

The study finds that for women entrepreneurs in Bengaluru to run and scale their businesses, there is an urgent need to increase sales and marketing channels and make them finance ready, so that they can access capital. While women entrepreneurs in the region face formidable challenges, the combination of new market platforms, peer-support networks, capital will make women entrepreneurs a force to reckon with before the end of the decade.

“GAME’s mission is to catalyse 10 million mass entrepreneurs in India by 2030, half of whom will be women. Our study in Bengaluru focused on the four sectors of Food, Apparel, Healthcare and Education that typically have more women entrepreneurs compared to other sectors. Noticeably, even across these four sectors, only 15 per cent are women-owned and of these only 4 per cent employ greater than five people. The study reinforces the sentiment that while women in Bengaluru have many opportunities to build entrepreneurial ventures, the ecosystem lacks in supplementing them with the adequate resources, infrastructure and freedom” said M Srinivas Rao, CEO, GAME.

The study was launched at an event in Bengaluru in the presence of key industry leaders - Ameera Shah, Managing Director, Metropolis Healthcare, Dr. Rajeshwari Ranganathan, President, Association of Women Entrepreneurs (AWAKE), Karnataka; Dr B R Mamatha, Additional Mission Director, SAKALA, Rachna Rao, co-founder, FoodyBuddy; Aarti Mohan, co-founder and Partner at Sattva Consulting; Shailesh Dixit, co-founder, Gromor Finance; Dr. Nina Pais, founder, Ennelle Skin and Hair Co; Venkatesh Panchapagesan, Associate Professor of Finance, Chairperson, NSRCEL and M. Srinivas Rao, CEO, GAME.

“Covid’s impact has made lack of access to affordable credit, more so for women entrepreneurs. Gendered factors in access impede these women entrepreneurs from applying to formal credit. The need of the hour is to bring them under a formal and affordable credit system to help them scale their business” said Aarti Mohan, co-founder and partner at Sattva Consulting. Talking about sustaining business in the new normal, Aarti added, “With Covid severely affecting businesses, women entrepreneurs need to re-look at their business models. As an immediate recourse keeping in line with the new normal, they should be looking at online channels like social media and e-commerce platforms to sustain business. In the mid-to longer term, women need to access more government schemes and stimulus including financial assistance to recover from their negative cash flow.”

Published on August 21, 2020

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