The focus of schemes for women entrepreneurs has been primarily on financial aid followed by training and skill building of women entrepreneurs.
Goa, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Rajasthan and West Bengal have emerged as top 5 states offering the maximum number of schemes for women entrepreneurs according to a report on the State of Women Entrepreneurship in India unveiled by sheatwork(www.sheatwork.com), a one-stop knowledge hub for women entrepreneurs.
The education sector sees the maximum number of women entrepreneurs followed by financial services, insurance, livestock, forestry, and lodging.
The nature of research is secondary and is based on information available on the internet and other online public forums.
The report also finds that nearly 80% of women entrepreneurs across the country are self-financing their businesses with little utilization of the various government schemes that provide financial aid to women entrepreneurs.
The Southern states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu along with West Bengal have the highest number of women entrepreneurs in the country with a majority in small and medium-sized businesses.
This could be attributed to a higher literacy rate as well as women empowerment in general in the region.
The North-Eastern states of Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Nagaland have a lesser overall number of women entrepreneurs but the ratio of male to female entrepreneurs is very strongly favored towards women.
According to Ruby Sinha, Founder,sheatwork.com, While significant efforts have been made by the central and state governments as well as independent agencies through the years in India, there still exists a huge gap in awareness and promotion levels of women entrepreneurship. Our objective behind the report is to understand where Women Entrepreneurship in India stands today, how the existing ecosystem and the various government schemes for women entrepreneurs can be better utilized and enhanced further to encourage more and more women to start their own ventures.”
While there is a long way to go for entrepreneurship in India, the steps are being made in the right direction. There are many central and state-level schemes available that not only provide financial aid, but also provide training and know-how through their development centers.
With the government’s overall focus on women’s development, the social, cultural and economic environment is fast becoming one in which women entrepreneurship can grow and thrive.