Veteran Women Entrepreneurship On The Rise

This Veterans Day, we’re celebrating the growing number of women veterans whoare building businesses here in the United States. Preliminary data from the Survey of Business Owners reveals that between 2007 and 2012 the number of businesses owned by women veterans increased by 296 percent. In total, there were 384,548 businesses owned by women veterans in 2012, up from about 130,000 in 2007. According to Carla Harris, the Chair of the National Women’s Business Council, “The growth of veteran women entrepreneurship has been higher than any other segment of the entrepreneurship economy.”

While this is a tremendous increase, it is important to note another side to the story. Despite such a dramatic rise in women veteran owned businesses, and women-owned businesses in general, there remains a severe gap in revenue earnings between male and female-owned businesses nationwide. According to Pew, the combined sales of all women-owned firms in the United States were $1.6 trillion in 2012 – roughly 11.3% of all sales. In contrast, male-owned firms accounted for 79.2% of sales.

This only proves that women entrepreneurs hold the most potential to contribute to our national economy and improve their local communities. With the steep rise of women veteran-owned businesses, there lies an opportunity for us to truly empower women entrepreneurs to succeed.