UK trails Burkina Faso for women’s enterprise

According to the latest Gender Gap report from the World Economic Forum (2012), which quantifies gender-based disparities globally and tracks progress over time, the UK has slipped from an overall ranking of 16th in 2011 to 18th in 2012. And there is worse news still, as we discover that in world rankings for women’s economic participation and opportunity, the UK lies 33rd, ahead of Ukraine, but trailing behind Burkina Faso, a tiny country in West Africa with a population of around 17 million, and Ghana. Why does UK business support policy ignore half of the population?

YTKO Group has long campaigned for equal opportunity and a tailored approach to business support for female entrepreneurs. If you want real results, it’s simply not good enough to offer a generic, off the shelf service and ‘paint it pink’.

Our Enterprising Women programme was among the first to launch in the UK, targeted to address the different challenges that women face in the world of business. In its first four years it has enabled the creation of more than 450 new businesses, with survival rates over 80 per cent after three years, and trained more than 4,000 women to increase their skills and performance. It works very well, and was selected as BIS national best practice for SME support in 2009, and as EU good practice by the European women’s enterprise research project WINNET8 in 2011.

In 2013, YTKO Group’s Enterprising Women community is getting a facelift, with the launch of new, localized communities around the UK to further extend our dynamic programme of networking and support for women starting or growing their businesses.

To find out more about what’s happening in your area, please contact YTKO Group’s director of Special Projects, Eileen Lennon, by email or call 01223 421470.