Virtuzone Chairman, Neil Petch, comments on gender balance among entrepreneurs

20 March 2019 Category :

The Rose Review, a new study commissioned by the UK Treasury, has revealed some eye-opening statistics with regard to female entrepreneurs.

The report, conducted by the Royal Bank of Scotland’s Alison Rose, found that female entrepreneurs tend to have to start new enterprises with around half as much startup capital as their male counterparts.

This funding gap is just one of many areas where the playing field on which men and women do business seems rather less than balanced.

The Rose Review also found:

  • Men start businesses at a much higher rate – should this balance be redressed, there would be 1.1 million more companies headed by women in the UK.
  • Women-only funding teams received £32m in investment in 2017 compared with the £5bn awarded to male-only teams.
  • Female-led start-ups receive just 0.5% of all funds invested by venture capital groups – the lowest level for over ten years.

To enable greater gender balance among entrepreneurs, the UK Treasury has pledged to help 600,000 more women to start their own businesses by 2030. Many UK banks and investment funds are also being urged to sign up to the new Investing in Women Code to track the amount of funding given to female entrepreneurs.

We have seen similar measures here in the UAE, with changes to visa regulations and the creation of accelerator schemes aimed at encouraging greater female entrepreneurship.

In a country where women make up 43% of the total labour force, it would be interesting to see how the UAE would compare with the Rose Review’s findings.

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About the author: Neil Petch, Chairman at VirtuGroup

About the author: Neil Petch, Chairman at VirtuGroup

With a history of business successes, Neil Petch is well known in the UAE and beyond as a visionary entrepreneur with a passion for helping others establish and grow their own businesses. Neil founded Virtuzone in 2009 and quickly established it as the region’s leading company formation expert, before launching Virtugroup, a holding company that has a wider mandate of supporting startups from establishment; to successful market entry; and all the way through to exit.