Times are changing! India is quickly emerging as one of the fastest-growing major economies in the world.

Entrepreneurship in India

Entrepreneurship plays a key role in a budding economy like India. Entrepreneurs contribute to the overall growth of the economy (GDP) as they create job opportunities and improve standards of living. India is ranked third in entrepreneurship as the new firm creation has grown by almost 12.2% from 2014 to 2018, and by about 80% in 2018 as per the Economic Survey 2019-20.

Women Entrepreneurship in India

Increasing women entrepreneurship from the current 20% to 30% is expected to create more than 30 million enterprises owned entirely by women by 2030. Such acceleration can lead to large scale job creation of 150 – 170 million jobs in India. This is higher than 25% of the new jobs which will be needed for the entire working-age population till 2030.

Women entrepreneurs in India have shown that leading an organization by themselves is not beyond their reach. The best example would be that of the founder of Bitcoin limited, Kiran Mazumdar Shaw who is one of the country’s richest self-made women entrepreneurs today. Ritu Kumar is yet another inspiring fashion designer who has scaled great heights within a short period of time by making a mark in international markets. The former CEO of PepsiCo, Indra Nooyi is now the board member of Amazon. Falguni Nayar has made big waves in the cosmetics and wellness industry by founding Nykaa. Aditi Gupta, the co-founder of the comic Menstrupedia has been listed on Forbes India 30 under 30 for creating awareness about the myths of menstruation across 6,000 schools in India. The co-founder of one of India’s leading learning app BYJU’s is also a woman, Divya Gokulnath. The list is endless, but these success stories rightly suggest that women have the power to transform our society and become phenomenally successful entrepreneurs in varied streams if they get the right kind of backing and encouragement.

Homemakers to successful entrepreneurs, these outstanding businesswomen have come a long way. These women have efficaciously overcome criticism and have broken the trends to prove themselves beyond the stereotypes. They are on a remarkable journey of entrepreneurship and are leading others with confidence and optimism. Such leaders have inspired other women to pursue their passion by believing in themselves and setting out on unfamiliar trodden paths.

Challenges Faced

Although women entrepreneurs have proven to excel in diverse sectors, it is a sad reality that old prejudices die hard. Traditional, conservative family businesses that were founded by men and previously run by a succession of male heirs, are now witnessing women rise as a new generation of leaders in such enterprises.  However, when it comes to building big businesses from scratch, very few Indian women have been able to follow the trail blazed by successful women entrepreneurs.

Motivating women entrepreneurs is essential for economic growth as their participation has a direct influence on improving the standard of living by helping in job creation. It also allows them more social independence that in turn, brings about more positive outcomes at the community level.

If India failed to yield sufficient female entrepreneurs over the last two decades (which were considered a golden age of economic liberalism and openness), the odds of more coming up now maybe even lower, as the global and national economy is hit by the covid-19 pandemic crisis. India is predicted to face the first economic downfall since 1979, plunging into recession, as its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is projected to diminish significantly in the current financial year up to March 2021.

According to data published by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation compiled in the Sixth Economic Census, 14% of entrepreneurs in India are women. That is, there are more than 8.05 million women business owners in the country. Younger female entrepreneurs widely agree that traditional expectations about a woman’s role in the family and the society and likely life trajectories continue weighing heavily on career choices.

Financial Aid for Women Entrepreneurs:

Becoming an entrepreneur is considered impractical by many womenfolk, as it means facing the big struggle of seeking finance and support from others. The aspiring female entrepreneurs face the challenge of obtaining financial backing for new business ventures. This is in sharp contrast to Asia’s other giant economy, China, where women have been much more successful in setting up businesses and building them up successfully to a large scale. It has become exponentially harder for women to approach banks to risk taking a chance on fresh start-ups.

In general, lenders have been reluctant to hand out business loans to women compared to men. Lack of business experience and not enough collateral are two of the main reasons for the hesitation.

To unlock the true potential of women, it is vital to enable them to be able to avail of business loans in a hassle-free manner. Today’s digital lending platforms offer women entrepreneurs loans to obtain the funds required to establish and develop their business startups.

Business Loan for Women:

Some of the best business loan options available to women entrepreneurs in India are explored below:

  1. MUDRA YOJANA SCHEME FOR WOMEN

The Government of India launched this plan to support freshly budding women entrepreneurs who are seeking to set up their own business ventures. One of the main advantages of this plan is that there is no collateral. There is an option to procure this loan under any of these three schemes- Shishu (Rs.50,000), Kishor ( Rs.50,000 to Rs.5 lakhs), Tarun (Rs.10 lakhs).

  1. SREE SHAKTI PACKAGE FOR WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS

Women who hold 50% ownership of a business, are eligible for this business loan package. The upper limit on the amount you can avail under this loan scheme is Rs.25 lakhs. There is no need for collateral if the loan amount is lesser than Rs.10 lakhs.

  1. ANNAPURNA SCHEME

The State Bank of Mysore offers this special loan scheme, particularly for women entrepreneurs in the food business. The maximum loan amount is capped at Rs.50,000. The repayment period is over a tenure of a maximum of 36 months.

  1. CENT KALYANI SCHEME

This scheme, offered by the Central Bank of India, is sanctioned to women who are involved in trade, micro, small and medium enterprises, agriculture and related activities, cottage and village industries, and other self-employed organizations.

  1. DIGITAL LOANS OFFERED BY SME CORNER

While there are several schemes available in India, that are meant specifically for women entrepreneurs, they are often restrictive in many aspects. They also come with a horde of conditions and limitations. Traditionally, obtaining business loans for women from conventional lending channels is a laborious, complicated, and time-consuming process. In addition to these negative connotations, most of these business loans schemes require the submission of collateral.

The business loan application process is simplified by using digital lending platforms such as SMEcorner. The entire loan process commencing from application to disbursal of funds is performed on an online portal. This saves both time and energy. With easy eligibility, many lenders, flexible repayment terms, minimal paperwork, and competitive interest rates, makes it possible for women entrepreneurs to realize their entrepreneurial dreams.

Women entrepreneurs are now better poised with the rise in popularity and availability of digital lending. Kickstart your small business loan application and enlarge your startup today.