Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered on 12th December 2017.

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Photo of Stephen Morgan Stephen Morgan Labour, Portsmouth South

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to (a) improve data collection on business ownership and (b) encourage more women to set up small businesses.

Photo of Margot James Margot James Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

We are working to ensure we have the right business support for everyone, including women, to set up and grow a business.

We carry out and publish the Longitudinal Small Business Survey which provides estimates of ownership of businesses by women. The 2016 survey can be found at:

Start-Up Loans provide funding and intensive support to new entrepreneurs. As at the end of October 2017, there were over 20,130 loans issued to women totalling over £132.5m. To date 39% of start-up loans have been issued to women.

Government has also supported and invested in the creation of a network of 38 Growth Hubs (one in each Local Enterprise Partnership area), providing businesses across England with tailored advice and support.

The Business Support Helpline also provides information and guidance to people across England - 49% of users in the last year (2016-17) were women.

As part of the Industrial Strategy, we will identify ways to tackle barriers faced by female-led businesses in accessing venture capital through new behavioural research commissioned by the British Business Bank.

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