About This Report
In partnership with the Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub (WEKH), the Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship (BII+E) conducted in-depth interviews with 30 high-growth entrepreneurs across Canada. The report, Growing Their Own Way: High-growth women entrepreneurs in Canada, explores the experiences of women founders as they scale their companies, revealing divergent pathways to growth, persistent systemic barriers, and funding challenges. Most importantly, the report presents opportunities and recommendations for government, policymakers, financial institutions, other funders, business support organizations and stakeholders in the entrepreneurial ecosystem who are seeking to champion the success of high-growth women entrepreneurs.
Women currently comprise 28% of all entrepreneurs in Canada, according to a 2019 BDC study, but only a small percentage of high-growth firm founders. This is significant when we consider the important role of high-growth firms, also known as scale-ups, as a source of job creation and revenue growth. Scale-ups are defined as companies with an average annualized growth of at least 20% in the past three years, and at least 10 employees. The federal government’s Innovation and Skills Plan aims to double the number of high-growth firms in Canada by 2025. The unique priorities and challenges of women-led firms must be addressed.
Read this report to help you:
- Learn about the distinct priorities and challenges of high-growth women founders, and the unique ways they are scaling their firms.
- Understand the types of support that can help overcome persistent challenges faced by women throughout the high-growth phase.
- Find ways to provide greater value to high-growth women entrepreneurs, whether you are a government body, a policymaker, a financial support organization, or a business support organization.
- Identify opportunities for further research on how to support the success of women-led firms.