The Infogreffe “Women and Entrepreneurship in 2021” barometer, published on 8 March on the occasion of International Women’s Rights Day, shows encouraging data even if some inequalities persist.
32% of businesses were created by women in 2021 in France. A stable figure for three years. Indeed, female entrepreneurs have not been particularly affected by the health crisis. These entrepreneurs have thus fully participated in the growth of the French business sector, which has seen a 30% increase in businesses created compared to 2020.
Geographically, the west of France is the best student in terms of female entrepreneurship. Brittany and Normandy take first place on the podium, with an average of 36% women out of all their entrepreneurs in 2021. The Île-de-France region, head of business creation, does not represent the contrast of 29% of women entrepreneurs.
Stereotypes still present
This barometer highlights the persistence of some gender stereotypes. In 2021, three quarters of female entrepreneurs are still working in the clothing and textile manufacturing sector. Then come the personal services such as laundry drying, hairdressing and beauty care. Female entrepreneurs are still much less present in the construction or technology sector, for example.
The share of women in governance has also remained stable since 2019. Among the businesses created, almost 20% of them are managed exclusively by one or more women, compared with 63% by men. The remaining 17% are now led by leaders of both genders. “Availability in terms of time represents the last frontier of gender equality. The selection effect then works towards women, already stressed by their family life, and even more so when they have children …”, he stressed Anne Boring, director of the chair for women’s entrepreneurship at Sciences-Po, on Big media last December.
Shares supported by Bpifrance
In March 2021, Nicolas Dufourcq, CEO of Bpifrance, and Elisabeth Moreno, minister for equality between women and men, signed a three-year agreement to “develop and promote the creation and acquisition of businesses by women”. Upon signing, Nicolas Dufourcq said: “Since its creation, Bpifrance has taken strong action in support of female entrepreneurship. Diversity and representativeness in entrepreneurship is a source of wealth and value creation, which is why we are strengthening the means provided to information, support and financing for women entrepreneurs. “.
To implement this agreement, Bpifrance structures its action in favor of female entrepreneurs around four axes. Initially by supporting and financing more projects carried out by women. Hence, increasing the share of female-managed companies in its direct investment portfolio and driving the investment capital market towards greater diversity. At the same time, the bank for entrepreneurs is making its programs more feminine, raising awareness and training managers and employees on the challenges of gender diversity and promoting the visibility of female managers. Finally, to remove the barriers to the development of female entrepreneurship, Bpifrance is working towards a better understanding of its funding difficulties and obstacles.