The Number of Women-Owned Businesses Is on the Rise

200px-Census_Bureau_seal.svg_As women have increasingly begun to earn more bachelor’s degree in business and more MBAs, it would make sense to believe that women would be gaining ground in business ownership in the United States. New data from the U.S. Census Bureau confirms that this is so.

Every five years the Census Bureau releases a new report on business ownership in the United States. The latest data, which was recently made available to the public, is for the year 2012. The most recent data prior to this recent release was for 2007.

The new figures from, the 2012 Survey of Business Owners show that in that year, there were 9.9 million businesses owned by women in the United States. This was up from 7.6 million women-owned businesses in 2007, an increase of 26.8 percent. In 2012, women-owned businesses accounted for 35.9 percent of all businesses in the United States. In 2007, women owned 28 percent of all businesses. This is significant progress over the five-year period.

Here are some other interesting facts from the new data:

  • Sales of women-owned businesses rose from $1.2 trillion in 2007 to $1.4 trillion in 2012.
  • Women-owned enterprises were more than half of all firms in the health care sector and in educational services.
  • There were 1.3 million businesses owned by women in the state of California, the most in any state. Los Angeles County had the most women-owned firms of any county in the nation.
  • In the District of Columbia, women owned 42.7 percent of all businesses, the highest percentage of any geographical area in the country.

Filed Under: Gender GapResearch/Study

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