Women who want to start their own businesses have the potential to boost the Nigerian economy by N19.7 billion, Facebook said on Tuesday in its research.
The study, conducted by Development Economics on behalf of Facebook using data from the Future of Business survey commissioned by Facebook in South Africa, with surveys undertaken by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) in Nigeria, also showed that if the 44 per cent of women who said they were ‘very likely’ to start a business did so, this would create over seven million new businesses within four years and over 8.9 million jobs within five years.
Compared to men, 31 per cent of women are more likely to be interested in setting up businesses in Food & Drink; 13 per cent for Tourism & Leisure; Lifestyle-10 per cent; and Business Services 10 per cent. The motivations for women wanting to set-up a business also varies, with financial gains amongst the highest (56 per cent), followed by wanting to create jobs for family or other people (45 per cent), those wanting to work around family commitments (40 per cent) and those wanting to be their own boss (39 per cent).
Thirty-six per cent of the women in the research cited lack of access to finance as the main barrier to women setting up independently. Facebook’s research also showed that among those likely to start a business, 32 per cent are not sure of how to get started; 30 per cent not feeling prepared or ready; 26 per cent lacks access to premises or equipment. These factors, Facebook said, are the key reasons holding them back from taking this step.
Small and Medium Business (SMB) Sales Manager EMEA at Facebook, Abi Williams, said: “These impact women at every stage of their life – with women 55+ being less likely to start a business followed by those between 35 and 44.
“Facebook recognizes how important women are in building stable economies, and the potential impact of this in Nigeria is encouraging to see. We know that when women do better, economies do better, and with the right support, tools and trainings in place Nigerian women entrepreneurs can, and will be able to compete on a global level.”
The study also revealed that in the area of the use of online tools to facilitate the sale of products or services to potential customers, the proportion of female managers in Nigeria reporting the use of such tools was 83 per cent compared to 74 per cent for males.
A slightly higher proportion of female business managers reported the use of online tools to enable customers to pay for products or services (39 per cent for females compared to 37 per cent for males).
Overall, of those women who are very interested in setting up a business, over 4.1 million appear to want to set up their business within one year. A further 2.5 million anticipate establishing their business within two to three years, and 378,000 say they expect it would be more than four years in the future.