REUTERS

Wells Fargo on Women Entrepreneurship: Find Funding to Grow Your Business

(Wells Fargo is No. 12 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list)

Women’s History Month is a great time to recognize the important role of women-owned businesses in the nation’s economy. From tech to fashion to healthcare and manufacturing, there are 9.9 million women-owned firms spanning almost every industry, and representing a third of all small businesses in America. And that number is only expected to grow. According to the latest U.S. Census data, women-owned firms increased more than 26 percent from 2007-2012, and had receipts of $1.4 trillion in 2012.


Despite their successes, women entrepreneurs can face the same challenges as all business owners when it comes to obtaining funding for their businesses. This is especially true for new business owners who are just starting out and may have limited business credit history. There are, however, more small business funding options today than ever, and it pays to be familiar with each one.

Here are five types of funding to explore when starting, running and growing a small business.

SBA Loans and Resources Whether you’re launching a new business or growing an existing business, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has a variety of lending products designed to meet the financing needs of businesses of all sizes, including smaller, newer businesses. Through SBA lending, Wells Fargo offers financing to businesses that may not be able to obtain a conventional loan or loan terms that meet their business needs.

The SBA also has a number of programs and resources devoted specifically for women entrepreneurs. A good place to start is with the SBA Women’s Business Centers, which consist of nearly 100 educational centers around the U.S. These centers are dedicated to helping women start and grow their businesses by offering seminars and workshops on various business owner topics, including raising capital.

Business Credit At some point, most small business owners will see a need for credit as their business evolves and their financial needs change. When used appropriately, credit can fuel opportunities for business growth from helping cover basic expenses to supporting a capital expenditure. There are many types of credit to consider depending on your business financing needs and stage of business. Talk with a business banker to learn what option is right for your business.

Self-funding Many entrepreneurs fund their businesses themselves, either by tapping into savings, selling assets for cash, or taking on personal debt. While self-funding increases your personal liability, there are several advantages to this method of financing, including having complete control over your business’ financial decisions. As our bankers will tell you, self-funding is also a smart way to show that you are truly committed to succeeding the more you invest in your business, the easier it will be to secure capital from other sources down the road.

Investors Another common way to fund a business is through investors. Often, an investor is a family member or friend with the means to invest capital upfront to cover startup costs. While this may seem like a good idea at first, it’s important to set up a formal arrangement to protect your relationship from losses that may result if the business fails. If you want to steer clear of personal connections, then an angel investor may be a better fit. Angel investors are typically affluent individuals or investment groups who are willing to invest in new businesses and ideas. To improve your chances of securing an investor, you’ll need to demonstrate a healthy credit history, and provide a written business plan complete with a strategy for paying back investors.

Crowdfunding Based primarily online, crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising small amounts of money from a large number of people. While crowdfunding has been around for a long time, social media and online crowdfunding networks comprised of thousands of investors have helped it gain in popularity among entrepreneurs and startups. From donation-based, to rewards- and equity-based options, there are many types of crowdfunding options available. The method you choose may depend on the type of product or service your business offers, cash flow and revenue projections.

As you explore funding options, it’s also important to become familiar with the credit process so you know what to expect from preparing to apply, applying and managing credit. Wells Fargo’s new Business Credit Center is designed to help inform business owners on the credit process and financing options, and address gaps in their understanding of credit.

No matter how you fund your business, remember that knowledge is power. Take time to arm yourself appropriately so you can confidently navigate the credit journey throughout all stages of your business.

Read more news @ DiversityInc.com

Latest News

Syracuse University campus

News Roundup: TV Diversity, Syracuse Hire, and Segregated Training

Check out our news roundup of diversity and inclusion updates and insights from across the U.S.: Syracuse University Creates Athletics Diversity Position  While most colleges and universities around the county are making COVID-19-related cuts in regard to their athletic departments, Syracuse University has hired Salatha T. Willis as the associate athletic…

What Friends Tell Friends: Choose Kaiser Permanente

Originally published on about.kaiserpermanente.org. Integrated, nonprofit health plan tops NICE Satmetrix customer experience benchmark study for 10th straight year. For the 10th year in a row, more people would recommend Kaiser Permanente to a friend or colleague than any other health plan in the nation, according to the recently released…

Cesar Conde

NBCUniversal Sets Ambitious 50% Diversity Goal for Women, People of Color

Cesar Conde, chairman at NBCUniversal News Group, announced a groundbreaking goal to have a 50% diverse workforce at NBCUniversal, according to Deadline. Conde, the first Latino in this role, outlined his plans in an internal video for employees on Wednesday. The ultimate goal is for NBCUniversal, No. 7 on DiversityInc’s 2020…

Mastercard Expands ShopOpenings.com to the U.S. & Canada, Delivering a Search Tool That Identifies What Stores Near You Are Open for Business

Originally published on mastercardcontentexchange.com. Search solution complements new Digital Acceleration for Small Business global initiative which helps small businesses advance digitally and drive online commerce As businesses seek to draw customers back both in store and online, Mastercard is introducing new tools to support them. Today, Mastercard announced the geographic…

TIAA Launches Programs to Raise Awareness of Racial Injustice and Support Communities in Need through the “Be The Change” Initiative

On June 30, TIAA announced new virtual programs designed to raise awareness of racial injustice and support communities in need as a part of the company’s recently launched “Be the Change” initiative. One is TIAA’s “Race Against Racism,” an effort in support of The Innocence Project which included more than…

Stop TB Partnership and Johnson & Johnson, with support from USAID and The Global Fund, Announce Price Reduction for SIRTURO® (bedaquiline) for Treatment of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

Originally published on jnj.com. Joint efforts aim to accelerate scale-up of WHO-recommended all-oral treatment regimens – a transition urgently needed to help protect the health of people with drug resistant-tuberculosis who are particularly vulnerable during COVID-19 pandemic In 2020, the initiative aims to reach at least 125,000 patients and could…

Toyota, Alabama A&M and Huntsville Hospital Collaborate to Make COVID-19 Testing Easier

Originally published on pressroom.toyota.com. $100,000 grant provides free service to the community Alabama A & M University (AAMU), Huntsville Hospital and Toyota are developing a mobile health clinic initiative to provide free COVID-19 testing to underserved communities in Madison County. Launching later this year, the mobile medical clinic program has…