the-2016-state-ofwomen-owned-businesses-reportThe number and economic contributions of women-owned firms continue to rise at rates higher than the national average – with even stronger business formation rates seen since the recession.

As of 2016, it is estimated that there are now 11.3 million (11,313,900) women-owned businesses in the United States, employing nearly 9 million people (8,976,100) and generating over $1.6 trillion $1,622,763,800,000) in revenues.

The greatest growth in the number of women-owned firms has been seen in the South. Eight of the top 10 fastest growing states and metro areas for women-owned firms are found in that region. However, when looking at growth in economic clout – combining growth in the number, employment and revenues of women-owned businesses over the past nine years – the top state and metro area rankings take on a different mix, and are much more geographically dispersed. The 10 fastest-growing states since the recession in terms of combined economic clout are:

  • North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas (all tied for first),
  • Iowa,
  • Indiana and Wyoming (tied for 5th),
  • Georgia and Tennessee (tied for 7th),
  • Utah,
  • Maine

This year, for the first time, analysis of women’s entrepreneurship at the metropolitan area level has expanded from the 25 most populous metro areas to the top 50 metro areas. The top 10 metropolitan areas, ranked on growth in economic clout between 2007 and 2016, are:

  • Charlotte NC/SC,
  • San Antonio TX,
  • Dallas TX, and Memphis TN/MS/AR (tied for 3rd),
  • Austin TX and Indianapolis IN (tied for 5th),
  • Miami FL,
  • Detroit MI,
  • Richmond VA, and
  • Houston TX.

The expansion of the analysis at the metropolitan area level shows a good deal of dynamism in local economies beyond the top tier of most populous cities – most notably in Charlotte (22nd most populous metro area, yet ranked 1st in growth in economic clout), Memphis (30th in population, 3rd in growth), and Austin (27th most populous, yet ranked 5th in growth of economic clout).

[Read the full report here]