46% of Black Small Business Owners are Women

46% of Black Small Business Owners are Women

These women represented the largest number of female business owners of any segment
A Black female business owner

Despite the numerous barriers they face as professionals and business leaders, Black women are staking their claim in the entrepreneurial community.

A new survey from Guidant Financial found that a historic number of Black women own small businesses, making up 46% of all Black entrepreneurs.

The annual Small Business Trends report, based on information gathered by the Small Business Trends Alliance (SBTA), also discovered that the number of women-owned businesses was higher in the Black community than in any other segment.

More Black women take control of their careers

The SBTA found that Black women business owners made up almost half (46%) of all Black business owners that participated in the survey — a 53% increase from the number of white women business owners.

With racial and gender-based discrimination rampant in corporate America, the decision to forge their own path is not surprising. A report by Lean In found that more than 50% of Black women with goals of becoming a top executive at a company do so in part to influence the culture of their workplace — a number much higher than that of any other racial or ethnic group of women.

The SBTA survey findings support this as well. When asked about the reason for starting their own business, 36% of Black entrepreneurs wanted to be their own boss while another 17% were dissatisfied with corporate America.

Black small businesses disproportionately impacted by pandemic

Reporting from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that COVID-19 has devastated Black communities more so than white Americans. However, the coronavirus pandemic has disproportionately impacted them on the small business front as well.

The SBTA report showed that only 67% of Black-owned small businesses expect to survive the economic stresses of the pandemic, compared to 81% of white business owners that participated in the survey. Additionally, only 54% of Black small business owners reported a profit in 2020.

And although 38% of Black-owned small businesses revealed that funding for their company was their biggest struggle last year, 53% of them did not receive government assistance from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).

These circumstances haven’t dampened their spirits though. More than half (55%) of Black small business owners want to grow their business in the months ahead, while 61% have already made plans to expand or remodel their business this year.

With confidence in the economy increasing among small business owners, 2021 may very well turn out to be a good year for Black-owned small businesses overall.

Methodology: The SBTA gathered survey responses from over 2,400 current and aspiring small business owners from around the country between Dec. 1-18, 2020. The joint email survey was conducted by the organizations that make up the SBTA: Guidant Financial, Deluxe, FRANdata, Flippa, AP Intego and MyCorporation.

Feli Oliveros is a finance and business writer with experience covering personal finance, small business finance, and payment processing. In 2015 she graduated from UCLA, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in English and minored in Anthropology.