Still a man’s world for business in SD, survey says

SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — If you’re a woman who owns a business in South Dakota, there’s a good chance your revenue is under $1 million, according to a study by Clarify Capital.

The study ranked the state 50th for women-owned businesses with revenues of more than $1 million. Overall, the study ranked South Dakota the 22nd best state for a woman to own a business.

That’s behind Minnesota (7th) and North Dakota (8th), Wyoming (11th) and Nebraska (20th), but ahead of Iowa (24th).

California is the best state for women-owned businesses, according to the study. The state has many women-owned businesses, partly because of the population, but also because of the business climate.

South Dakota ranks 21st for the percentage of small businesses owned by women, but 32nd for the number of women-owned businesses per 10,000 people.

The number of women-owned businesses increased from 2002 to 2020.

According to the US Census Bureau, “women-owned businesses made up just 19.9% ​​of all businesses that employed people in the United States in 2018.” But the number is higher than in previous years.

The growth rate in South Dakota is slower than in neighboring states. States that rank higher in the best states for a woman to own a business tend to have a higher rate of change in the growth of the number of women-owned businesses.

South Dakota’s growth was 7.84% compared to North Dakota’s 44.18%, Minnesota’s 24.44%, Iowa’s 8.2%, Nebraska’s 15.25% and Wyoming’s 26.24%.

In 2018, the most recent report in the category, The Status of Women in the States, ranked South Dakota 24th in employment and income. The status report is from the Institute for Policy Research on Women.

While women’s participation in business is growing, according to a 2013 report by the US Chamber Foundation, 90% of women-owned businesses employed only one person.

Clarify Capital’s report also includes information on how states are helping women business owners.

California, Colorado and New York have the friendliest environments for women-owned businesses, according to the Clarify Capital study.

South Dakota did not rank in the top 10 for capital investment.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration announced a Disadvantaged Business/Support Services Program in March to help a specific group of business owners compete for highway projects. “A DBE is a small, for-profit business owned and controlled by minorities, women, or other socially and economically disadvantaged individuals or, in the case of a corporation, one in which 51 percent of the stock is owned by one or more such individuals,” said The Federal Highway Administration.

The program earmarked about $99,000 for South Dakota.

The Minneapolis Federal Reserve explored a variety of issues at the January 2022 Regional Economic Conference.

An expert weighed in on the highs of minority- and women-owned businesses after the conference in a story published by the University of Minnesota.

“Overall, the performance of minority- and women-owned businesses has lagged behind that of business as a whole, and that has a lot of knock-on effects,” said Ron Wirtz of the Federal Reserve in a U of Minnesota story.

But in March there were indications that things were changing. The Minneapolis Federal Reserve’s March 2022 report said minority- and women-owned businesses are experiencing growth and are optimistic about their outlook.

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