A few days ago, the White House Women’s Entrepreneurship Conference was hosted by White House Senior Advisor and Chair of the White House Council on Women and Girls Valerie Jarrett.
The event was schedule to “bring together a mix of business owners, leaders from the women’s community, administration officials, academics and lenders to discuss the critical challenges, opportunities and solutions needed to move the women’s business agenda to the next level.”
Women-owned businesses make an annual $1.2 trillion in sales/receipts and grew 44% between 1997 and 2007, which was double the rate that men-owned businesses grew; they also added a half million jobs while so many employment opportunities were being lost during the same time.
As noted by Jarrett, though, “women-owned businesses have their own unique set of challenges and we must find the best way to solve these problems.” What are some of those challenges? Joanne Bamberger (PunditMom) writes that “women haven’t sought as much outside business financing as men, and when women do seek business loans, they’re turned down in greater numbers than men or receive less financing than men.”
The conference was organized to help address such issues and included “a panel moderated by Mika Brzezinski of MSNBC’s ‘Morning Joe,’ with participation by Bobbi Brown, Founder of Bobbi Brown, Theresa Daytner, CEO of Daytner Construction Group, Rebecca Blank, Undersecretary for Economic Affairs at the US Department of Commerce and Marie Johns, Deputy Administrator at the Small Business Administration.”
Did any of you attend the conference? What special challenges do you think women entrepreneurs face? How can women help each other meet these challenges? And where do men fit into this paradigm?