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French Women-led companies outperform

Only 13,2 % of SMEs (in France) are led by women, but they exhibit a better growth curve. They begin to get their own business networks.

Women represent 48 % of the active population and 30 % of business leaders of all sizes, including self-entrepreneurs and micro-SMEs, yet they’re only …13,2% of leaders for SMEs counting over 10 employees .  In business incubators the rate of accompanied women amounts only 10 %.

A study to be published soon by KPMG entitled « Femmes dirigeantes en France 2003-2013 » (Women leaders in France 2003-2013), shows a regular but slow progression of feminisation of management positions whatever the size of the company.   

Beyond mere calculations about gender parity, another study made by the consultancy Women Equity for Growth, with the support of BNP Paribas, shows however that women managers outperform. Designed in partnership with the Ensae from public data, the study screens 40.000 SMEs with a turnover between 4 and 100 million €. The spectrum is broad but speaks for itself: out of a total of 28.733 documented companies with only three balance sheets … 3.454 are led by women (CEO, General Director or Managing Director). The more the size of the company increases, the less we’re likely to find women CEOs.  « A negative correlation to be linked with the problem of access to equity financing », explains Women Equity.

Industry, first sector of excellence

Looking closer at growth companies, Women Equity shows that growth companies led by women are more numerous, on a recurring basis, over the last five years.   In 2013, women-led companies had a benefit decrease of 1,2 %, against 2,1 % for men-led companies for a turnover between 5 to 10 million. In the tranche from 10 to 20 million, for a 3-year period, men-led companies record an increase in revenues of 1,5 % against … 2,7 % for women. Even more surprising , with 26 % of best companies , industry is the first sector of excellence for women-led companies.  

However, only 3 to 4 % of financial operations are conducted with business women! «  Industry follows the logic of the success model reproduction. Intermediaries who run capital increases are men who deal with men in male colleague networks   », explains Dunya Bouhacene, president of Women Equity. Problem : to be identified by capital-riskers you need to network with them. In Lyon (FR), the Cercle de l'Union is still reserved for men! And even if women start to organize themselves within large groups, women networks remain unknown*.

Translated extracts from :


Published on 26-12-2014 00:00 by Nathalie Marchand. 2914 page views

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