Woman Entrepreneurship in India
A challenge and an opportunitySeema Sharma
Entrepreneurship has been a great topic of discussion in recent years, especially in India, a lot of entrepreneurs emerged with some great products and some with not that great ones, some succeeded while some didn't but one thing is a fact that a lot has been happening in this field and will continue to happen.
One thing has always been a topic of discussion and concern is the ration of women entrepreneurs, which is extremely low but changing for the better with time, and the reasons for this low ratio are the challenges a woman entrepreneur faces, to be precise they have the responsibility of family and are not only the business makers but a home maker too, they are best in whatever they do, but accepting and then out performing in these two fields hand in hand is beyond words.
Indian Women Entrepreneurs are recognized and valued not only in India but globally. Still they have many problems to overcome and to give you a look into what they go through, here is a glimpse of the problems they go through:
- First and one of the most challenging issue is the male dominant society, here people don't let women come forward so easily, whether it be her husband, father, brother or a friend.(Accepting the fact that some males are really supportive) This is a matter of hurting the male ego, as to how a girl or a woman can do something great.
- Second is they all the time have to wear a lot of hats and try to outperform in everything they take on. They are a home maker and a business maker, they have to take care of family, relations, responsibilities and cannot avoid anything by saying that they have some important work which a male might easily can do.
- One more problem that is seen very commonly is that women are not taken seriously and their dreams and aspirations are considered as something to keep themselves busy. Even in business they are not taken as seriously as a man would be. In home when a woman say to take up entrepreneurship, they often hear things like go for a job as it would be easy for you or if you want to keep yourself busy join a club or family business or a number of things. Similarly in business world, people fear to bet money on then thinking they might leave or they are mentally not prepared to take these challenges. People don't trust in terms of business and think that they might compromise business for their family or other priority
- Finance is one more issue which women face very commonly, as family properties and assets are on the name of males of the family, hence makes it difficult for them to take loans. Even it is very difficult for a female to ask for finance help from family and friends and often these types of helps comes with some unfair advantages given to the other person.
- Women are generally taken as a weaker gender and that is one more barrier for women in the journey of entrepreneurship, recently many people have accepted their strength with their mind but still most people consider women weak. Whether it be mental strength or physical people see woman as someone who always needs to depend on someone else for the help.
These problems are not new, everyone knows about them and some people are working hard to change this situation. Also government has taken many steps to improve this situation, whether it be providing them loans on low interest or starting other initiatives to boost women entrepreneurship. But these are some steps which are taken for overall improvement in the startup sector. Some of the schemes which are for women entrepreneurship particularly are as follows:
This scheme is offered those women entrepreneurs who are into food, catering or similar type of business. The amount granted as a loan under this scheme can be used to fulfill the working capital needs of the business like buying utensils and other kitchen tools and equipment. This loan is a collateral one and can go for up to ₹50,000 and can be paid back in 36 months leaving the first month.
Stree Shakti For Women Entrepreneurs
This scheme is offered by most of the SBI branches to women who have 50% share in the ownership of a firm or business and have taken part in the state agencies run Entrepreneurship Development Programs (EDP). In this scheme loan amount can go up to ₹2 lac with discount in the amount of rate of interest.
Bharatiya Mahila Business Loan
This loan support entrepreneurs in the fields of the retail sector, loan against property, MICRO loans, and SME loans.The maximum loan amount under this loan goes up to ₹20 crores with a concession available to the extent of 0.25% on the interest rate and interest rates usually range from 10.15% and higher. This is a non collateral loan and hence doesn't require any security but may require a lot of business validations.
This scheme is offered in Agriculture, retail and small business enterprises to get loans for business at flexible terms and concessional interest rates. One can claim a loan amount of ₹1 lakh but your family income is also taken into consideration and is set at ₹45,000 annually for SC/ST women.
Dena Shakti Scheme
This scheme is provided by Dena bank to those women entrepreneurs in the fields of agriculture, manufacturing, micro-credit, retail stores in need of financial assistance. The interest rate is also decreased by 0.25% along with the maximum loan amount being ₹20 lacs.
Cent Kalyani Scheme
Offered by the Central Bank of India this scheme is focused on women in starting a new venture or expanding or modifying an existing enterprise. Supports village and cottage industries, micro, small and medium enterprises, self-employed women, agriculture and allied activities, retail trade, and government-sponsored programs.
Mahila Udyam Nidhi Scheme
This scheme is launched by Punjab National Bank and aims at supporting the women entrepreneurs involved in the small scale industries. Loan can be paid in 10 years and supports businesses like beauty parlors, day care centers, purchase of auto rickshaws, two-wheeler, cars, etc. the maximum amount granted under this scheme is ₹10 lacs and the interest depends upon the market rates.
Mudra Yojana Scheme For Women
This scheme has been launched by the Govt. of India for individual women or a group of women wanting to start small new enterprises and businesses. This is non collateral loan and available through 3 schemes–
i. Shishu – loan amount is limited to ₹50,000 and can be availed by those businesses in initial stages.
ii. Kishor – loan amount ranges between ₹50,000 and ₹5 lakhs and can be availed by well-established enterprise.
iii. Tarun – loan amount is ₹10 lakhs and can be availed by those businesses which require further funds for the purpose of expansion
If the loan is granted, a Mudra card will be given to you which functions the same way as a credit card however the funds available are limited to 10% of the loan amount granted to you.
Apart from these government schemes, we have many initiatives taken by many organizations or individuals to support women entrepreneurship and encourage more and more women to come forward and help in creating a better future for the world with their skills and thinking and give a different perspective to things going on till now, as a result we can see a great change taking place in the ecosystem, which will eventually change a lot of things.
We request more and more woman to come forward and help this ecosystem with your knowledge, power and great discipline and problem solving skills, the world needs you and you should do something which you are capable of.