UK Government Unleashes Taskforce to Support Women Entrepreneurs

The ‘Taskforce on Women-Led High-Growth Enterprises’ wants to “raise the aspirations of the next generation of female entrepreneurs, especially looking to encourage women based outside of the capital”. 

The UK government has launched a taskforce to try and increase the number of women-led businesses across the nation.

The ‘Taskforce on Women-Led High-Growth Enterprises’ is not limited to the tech sector, but it’s designed to “raise the aspirations of the next generation of female entrepreneurs, especially looking to encourage women based outside of the capital”.

According to the government, one in three UK entrepreneurs is a woman – a gender gap equivalent to 1.1 million missing businesses, and male-led SMEs are five times more likely to scale up to £1 million turnover than female-led SMEs.

Minister for Women and Equalities (and Foreign Secretary), Liz Truss, explains: “This country can only grasp its full potential by ensuring everyone, regardless of their background or where they live, has the opportunity to succeed.”

Anne Boden, CEO and Founder of Starling Bank, will be the Chair of this new initiative.

She adds: “The Taskforce’s work will provide a blueprint for all entrepreneurs to follow.”

  • Check out our interviews with Inspiring Women in Tech and Fintech here.

Along with Boden the other members include Poppy Gustafsson OBE, CEO and Co-Founder of Darktrace; Judith Hartley, CEO of British Patient Capital & British Business Investments, British Business Bank; and Zandra Moore, CEO and Co-Founder, Panintelligence. Moore was featured at eWeek UK in our series on ‘Inspiring Women in Tech’.

Boden and the taskforce members will use their combined expertise and connections to work with organisations across the UK to support the government’s overall target of increasing the number of female entrepreneurs by half by 2030 (equivalent to nearly 600,000 female entrepreneurs).

The taskforce will build on the work of the Rose Review, “which found that breaking down the barriers for women entrepreneurs could boost the economy by £250 billion”.

The government points out that today’s (26 May) launch follows a package of initiatives announced on International Women’s Day (8 March).

This includes a pay transparency pilot to help businesses attract women to their companies. The government notes that evidence shows listing a salary range on a job advert and not asking applicants to disclose salary history provides a firm footing for women to negotiate pay on a fairer basis.

Antony Peyton
Antony Peyton
Antony Peyton is the Editor of eWeek UK. He has 18 years' journalism and writing experience. His career has taken him to China, Japan and the UK - covering tech, fintech and business. Follow on Twitter @TonyFintech.

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