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NZ Tops List of Best Conditions for Women Entrepreneurs

New Zealand Tops List of Best Conditions for Women Entrepreneurs

Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs reveals top countries where female-owned businesses flourish. Tweet: New Zealand tops inaugural Mastercard Index of #WomenEntrepreneurshttp://news.mstr.cd/2luI9Vp

Auckland, New Zealand – 8 March 2017 – Ahead of International Women’s Day, the inaugural Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs has revealed New Zealand has the best conditions in the world for women entrepreneurs to thrive.

The Index, which measured 54 economies representing 78.6 percent of the world’s female labour force, ranked New Zealand in first place with an overall score of 74.4, followed by Canada (72.4), United States (69.9), Sweden (69.6) and Singapore (69.5). The Index looked at a number of measures to determine the level of women’s advancement outcomes, knowledge and financial access, and supporting entrepreneurial factors.

The research found New Zealand women are making solid progress as business leaders and professionals, underpinned by the degree of access to benefits and opportunities such as SME training and development programmes, and outreach initiatives for women targeted at financial literacy and risk management.

“While there is still work to do, it is encouraging to see New Zealand’s supporting conditions for women in entrepreneurship are the highest in the world,” says Peter Chisnall, Country Manager for Mastercard New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.

“It is clear that the solid economic stability of New Zealand, access to financial services, robust small and mid-sized business communities and ease of doing business helps provide opportunities for businesses owned by women.”

The leading markets of New Zealand, Canada, United States, Sweden, Singapore, Belgium and Australia show women thrive when in an environment where there are more opportunity driven educational, occupational, entrepreneurial, cultural and financial conditions.

In nearly all 54 economies evaluated, there is at least one barrier holding back the growth of women business ownership. In New Zealand, the most significant barrier for women entrepreneurs is fear of failure, at 22%. This was followed by the SME employee turnover rate (16%).

The supportive conditions in New Zealand help Kiwis overcome the two most common obstacles that discourage most women from becoming entrepreneurs – cultural biases and fewer opportunities for advancement.

Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs – Top 10 markets with the strongest supporting conditions and opportunities for women to thrive as entrepreneurs

1. New Zealand – 74.4

2. Canada – 72.4

3. United States – 69.9

4. Sweden – 69.6

5. Singapore – 69.5

6. Belgium – 69.0

7. Australia – 68.5

8. Philippines – 68.4

9. United Kingdom – 67.9

10. Thailand – 67.5

Although New Zealand took top spot on the Index, Uganda (34.8 percent) and Botswana (34.6 percent) have the largest number of women business owners as a percentage of total business owners, driven mostly by necessity rather than business opportunities.

Women business owners as a % of all business owners – Top 10 markets

1. Uganda – 34.8 percent

2. Botswana – 34.6 percent

3. New Zealand – 33.3 percent

4. Russia – 32.6 percent

5. Austria – 32.4 percent

6. Bangladesh – 31.6 percent

7. Vietnam – 31.4 percent

8. China – 30.9 percent

9. Spain – 30.8 percent

10. United States – 30.7 percent

“The prevalence of ambitious, resourceful women should be regarded as a prime business opportunity. As society addresses existing cultural bias, we will do our part to help create those conditions that will strengthen and fuel the foundation for personal and economic growth,” said Martina Hund-Mejean, Chief Financial Officer, Mastercard.

“By increasing access to critical networks, our study shows that women are more able to recognise their full potential, achieve their goals and ultimately accelerate more inclusive growth. We have a fantastic opportunity to address cultural and organisational issues and further empower women leaders,” said Ann Cairns, President, International Markets, Mastercard.

ENDS


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