Women entrepreneurs are actually becoming more successful and ambitious in today’s business world. However, there are still a whole lot of efforts that still need to be invested in boosting and accelerating female entrepreneurship especially in an emerging nation like Nigeria. In line with this, we discuss ways to boost female entrepreneurship in Nigeria.
Better access to capital
There’s still much inequality in terms of providing women with loans and other financing that they need to start and grow businesses. When it comes to finance women face particular hurdles, from a lack of collateral to discriminatory regulations and gender bias. Small loans can make a big difference. When it comes to loans, Jumia does not discriminate. Everyone – whether male or female – has access to the Jumia loan as long as they meet the requirement. In fact, through this loan, Jumia has empowered thousands of female vendors on its platform.
Increased networking and collaboration
Much more needs to be done to help women realise that the change begins with them. Collaborating with other women, being part of networks and communicating more with others is vital to helping women gain the confidence to start their own businesses. In Nigeria, networking and non-profit organisations like Women in Business (WinBiz) and Women in Management and Business and Public Service (WIMBIZ) among others are playing a strategic role in supporting and boosting female entrepreneurs. Women should not hesitate to join these organisations.
Entrepreneurship has to feel accessible to women. More training and education programmes geared towards women could help build confidence and reduce the fears that starting a business is a high-risk endeavour.
New mentorship opportunities
Providing role models and guidance to women to show the economic, social and lifestyle benefits of business ownership could greatly enhance female entrepreneurship. Financial support, while crucial, is only one part of the equation. Having access to the advice and guidance of business mentors is invaluable for those women who are just starting out.