New York City is teaming up with Citigroupto boost the ranks of women entrepreneurs.
On Thursday, the de Blasio administration announced the creation of WE NYC — Women Entrepreneurs New York City— an initiative to provide some 5,000 women over the next three years with free training and services to start and expand their own businesses. The services will be provided by the city’s Department of Small Business Services and public-private partnerships.
The department also released a Citi-sponsored report on the state of women entrepreneurs in New York City to coincide with the launch of WE NYC. Its findings show there are about 359,000 women-led entrepreneur businesses in New York City, an increase of 43 percent since 2002. That’s about a third of all registered companies in the city. However, men own 1.5 times as many businesses as women, employ 3.5 times more people per business and generate 4.5 times more sales per business.
Of those women-owned businesses, the vast majority (92 percent) are “non-employer” businesses, that is, self-employed women. According to the report, these solopreneurs average $32,000 per year in annual business income.
One of the goals of WE NYC is to help these entrepreneurs take their business to the next stage.
In an interview with WNYC, Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen used the example of a woman in the Bronx who makes an incredible mole sauce. “We’re going to teach you how to take that amazing mole and get into the stream of commerce. We’re going to introduce you to the people at Etsy so you can sell your mole,” Glen told WNYC.
Or, if you prefer samosas: “They’re the best samosas in the neighborhood, but she doesn’t know how to take it to the next level,” Glen told Fortune.
You get the idea.
(Alex DalenbergUpstart Business Journal contributor)