Women who own small businesses are among the millions being honored today (March 8) on International Women’s Day, in part because of their strategic use of financing to grow their companies and create new jobs.
The number of women-owned firms is now estimated to have surpassed $9.4 million, generating revenue of nearly $1.5 trillion and employing close to eight million workers. Women-owned firms now make up an estimated 30 percent of all businesses in the U.S.
Women small business entrepreneurs own all sizes and varieties of successful companies. One of the reasons for their success is their ability to leverage capital to grow and create new jobs.
One such business is Chunk-n-Chips Cookies, based in Santa Ana, California. Owner Claudia Gonzales initially leveraged an SBA microloan from CDC Small Business Finance to jumpstart her company and then took advantage of SBA Community Advantage loans to purchase and outfit a food truck and later open a retail store for her unique, yummy products.
Latina Maria Harrington opened Casa de Espanol in downtown Sacramento in 2011. A few years later she’d outgrown her original facility. She found a new 4,000-square-foot location to double the school’s space, but needed cash to renovate the facility. She turned to CDC Small Business Finance which helped her secure an SBA Community Advantage loan. With the expansion, Casa De Espanol anticipated increasing its adult students from 304 to 540, a 77% gain.