This edition of the Building Markets SME Snapshot takes a look at women-owned businesses in our network of enterprises in Turkey. The majority (98%) of the 2,800+ verified businesses in this network are owned by and employ Syrians. Among these businesses, only 6% are owned by women. While women entrepreneurs face greater challenges to growing their businesses, they are important potential job creators, as they are more likely to employ underrepresented populations, including other women. Enabling women to compete in business can increase equitably in markets, improve their livelihoods and broader economic gains, and support the overall prosperity of society.
This Snapshot is based on an analysis of data collected through business surveys conducted by the Building Markets team in Turkey with 164 enterprises that have at least one female owner. These surveys collect operational information from small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), such as ownership, products and services sold, staffing, financial history, business environment perception, and training needs. Re-verification surveys, conducted at regular intervals with businesses, help to maintain the accuracy of data and track program impact over time. Building Markets’ unique access to these businesses helps identify market trends, gaps, and other insights that otherwise might not be brought to light.
The following analysis provides an overview of the operational environment of women-owned SMEs and their unique business challenges and outlook. Recommendations are included for women entrepreneurs to grow their operations and create jobs in Turkey. Creating more jobs, particularly for women, helps reduce poverty and improve social cohesion between refugees, other newcomer groups, and the host community. To learn more about Building Markets’ work in Turkey and to read other publications, click here. Building Markets sincerely thanks, and celebrates, all the women entrepreneurs that made this publication possible.