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National Hispanic Heritage Month spans from September 15th – October 15th and celebrates the contributions of the Hispanic community. Research on Hispanic women entrepreneurs conducted by NWBC finds that there are over 1.9 million Hispanic women-owned firms in the United States. These firms are growing in number, revenue, and employment. According to the 2018 State of Women-owned Businesses Report by American Express, 400 Hispanic women-owned businesses are launched each day; and since 2007, Hispanic women-owned firms have grown at a rate of 172 percent.

Hispanic women are also job creators. Recent U.S. Census Bureau data analyzed by the NWBC shows that from 2014-2016 employment amongst Hispanic women-owned firms grew at a rate of 14 percent. In 2016, Hispanic women employed over 570,000 workers.  

NWBC spent Hispanic Heritage month celebrating and acknowledging women entrepreneurs’ success and impact. Federal agencies across Washington, D.C. hosted events to pay tribute to the Hispanic Americans who have made a significant impact in U.S. history. The U.S. Department of Transportation and the Honorable Elaine L. Chao hosted a celebration featuring a fireside chat with U.S. Representative Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25).

The U.S. Small Business Administration also celebrated Hispanic and Latino American culture and heritage with a presentation from Ilka S. Rodriguez-Diaz, a Chief Foreign Language Strategist for the Central Intelligence Agency. Ms. Rodriguez-Diaz is also a founding member of the Agency’s Latino employee resource group, the Hispanic Advisory Council.

The White House celebrated 2019 Hispanic Heritage Month with a reception on Friday, September 27th. The event was attended by a diverse group of American Latinos representing various industries, NGOs, faith-based groups, as well as geographic regions from across the country. One prominent Latina businesswoman from Texas delivered brief remarks about her journey to becoming one of the state’s most successful female founders.

NWBC staff also participated in the Embassy of Spain’s and the Association of Hispanic Leaders’ (ALH) Hispanic Heritage Month roundtable discussion titled “Hispanic USA 2020: A Conversation About Our Impact and Influence in American Society Today.” The roundtable brought together key national Hispanic leaders who shared their respective viewpoints and insights on the current state of the U.S. Hispanic community – specifically, the growing, political, economic, and social clout of Latinos, the nation’s second largest demographic community.

To wrap up Hispanic Heritage Month, Nina Roque, NWBC Executive Director, participated in ‘The Essentials of a Successful Business’ panel at the Latina Style Business Series on October 18th. It was an honor to provide insights and trends related to Latinas in business, as well as on alternative forms of capital, including the findings of the Council’s crowdfunding research.

Latina-owned businesses are one of the fastest growing sectors of national entrepreneurship in the U.S. High potential Latina business owners drive local and national economic development, and often make substantial contributions to their communities. The rate of new businesses being launched daily by Hispanic women is a testament to how their entrepreneurial spirit is shaping the new workforce of the 21st century. NWBC is committed to supporting Hispanic women-founded firms from startup to scale. With a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem, these firms will continue to have great success.

We are thrilled to announce that the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) is a 2020 Census Partner! We look forward to supporting the U.S. Census Bureau in its monumental efforts to secure a successful decennial count across the nation.

H.R. 5050, the Women’s Business Ownership Act of 1988, established the NWBC as a federal advisory committee dedicated to the empowerment of women entrepreneurs, and among other provisions, required the U.S. Census Bureau to include women-owned C Corporations when reporting data. Before the passage of this landmark legislation, government agencies tracked mostly self-employed women but overlooked larger women-owned enterprises.

Since its inception, the NWBC has relied heavily on data collection from the U.S. Census Bureau to fulfill its statutory obligation and mission. The Council is statutorily charged with, in relevant part, promoting and assisting in the development of a women’s business census and other surveys of women-owned businesses.

The U.S. Constitution mandates that each person be counted every 10 years. These critical results determine the apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives, direct the effective distribution of federal funds, and assist small business owners in choosing where to start, grow, and scale their businesses. The data also allows the NWBC to better convey the irreplaceable economic impact of women’s business enterprise and more effectively advocate for the policies that empower women business owners and entrepreneurs.

We cannot measure what we cannot count. So female founders…Make the pledge now! Achieving a complete and accurate 2020 Census starts with you!

Women often start businesses out of necessity.
A 2017 report from the National Women’s Business Council uses the term “necessity entrepreneurship” to explain what’s happening among women business owners.

Typically, that term describes people who start businesses out of economic need — but the NWBC proposes expanding the definition to include non-economic factors as well. Based on interviews with women business owners, the report highlights workplace discrimination and the fact that childrearing and household management typically fall to women.

The very notion of entrepreneur has become associated with a sexist, exclusionary culture, one where women are treated with hostility. In addition, there is the very real bias that exists when women entrepreneurs seek funding; female CEOs get only 2.7% of all venture funding. Moreover, a report by the National Women’s Business Council notes that “Compared with men, women business owners raise smaller amounts of capital to finance their firms and are more reliant on personal, rather than external, sources of financing.”

“Women’s pursuit of social entrepreneurship can be an important engine for the economy, particularly in the United States,” according to a 2017 report by the National Women’s Business Council.


Temren Wroge

The U.S. Census Bureau today released new statistics from the 2018 Annual Business Survey (ABS). Since its founding in 1988, the NWBC has depended on data collection from the U.S. Census Bureau to fulfill its statutory obligation and mission. The Council must, in relevant part, promote and assist in the development of a women’s business census and other surveys of women-owned businesses. We are thrilled to share the most recent findings relating to women-owned employer firms.

Estimates show that in 2017 1.1 million employer firms were owned by women. The sectors with the most women-owned businesses included the health care and social assistance industry with 16.9% (192,159), professional, scientific, and technical services with 16.4% (185,649), and the retail trade industry with 11.7% (132,894).

 Please click here to view the complete release

ABS data accounts for only 10% of women-owned firms in the U.S., as the overwhelming majority are nonemployer businesses (those without employees). NWBC continues to highlight the need for timelier, reliable data collection efforts that ensure every woman-owned business in America is counted. We look forward to the completion of the Nonemployer Statistics by Demographics (NES-D) product, which will provide a more holistic look at the landscape of women’s business enterprise.

ICYMI – In April, we announced that the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) is a 2020 Census!


Temren Wroge

WASHINGTON, D.C. – (December 17, 2020) – The U.S. Census Bureau today released 2017 estimates from its premier blended-data statistical product, the Nonemployer Statistics by Demographics (NES-D). This new product provides the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) with comprehensive data and a clearer picture of the women’s business enterprise landscape including women sole proprietors, partnerships, and S-corporations.

Approximately 90% of women-owned businesses are nonemployer firms. Given the lack of precise data in previous years, NWBC recently entered into an Interagency Agreement with the Census Bureau to fund the development of custom tabulations on women-owned employer and nonemployer firms. These unique products will utilize data from both the Annual Business Survey (ABS), which accounts only for employer firms, and from the NES-D. This is critical. 

We cannot measure what we cannot count.

•   •   •   •   •  

Today, NWBC is pleased to share the following highlights on women-owned nonemployer firms:

As of 2017, there are 10.6 million woman-owned nonemployer firms across all sectors in the United States. These firms generate $286.1 billion in revenue.

Revenue Size for Women-Owned Nonemployer Firms

Nearly half of all women-owned nonemployer firms generate less than $10,000 in annual receipts.

Approximately 5,100, or .05%, of all women-owned nonemployer firms generate $1 million or more in revenue.

Top Five Sectors for Women-Owned Nonemployer Firms

 SectorTotal Number of Women-Owned Nonemployer Firms[1]   Total Revenue Generated
 Other Services (except  public administration)   2,049,000  (19.4% of all women-owned nonemployer firms)   $42.4 billion  
 Health Care and Social Assistance   1,449,000 (13.7% of all women-owned nonemployer firms)   $34.9 billion  
 Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services   1,428,000  (13.5% of all women-owned   nonemployer firms)   $46.2 billion  
 Retail Trade        1,172,000 (11.1% of all women-owned nonemployer firms)   $27.1 billion  
 Administrative and Support and Waste Management   1,139,000 (10.8% of all women-owned nonemployer firms)   $18.2 billion  

Top Five States for Women-Owned Nonemployer Firms

StateTotal Number of Women-Owned Nonemployer FirmsTotal Revenue Generated
 California   1,392,000 $45,887,822,000
 Texas 992,000 $26,507,028,000
 Florida  935,000 $23,565,745,000
 New York 668,000 $20,602,854,000
 Georgia 416,000 $9,572,384,000

[1] The numbers of nonemployer firms in the following tables have been rounded to the nearest 1,000 following disclosure avoidance rules.