Supporting women in business

We’ve made a bold commitment to supporting women in the UK in starting and running their own businesses. We have set ourselves the target of helping 100,000+ female-led businesses start out by the end of 2023.

This stand is in response to Alison Rose’s Review of Female Entrepreneurship, which found:

  • Only 32% of UK entrepreneurs are women
  • There’s a huge untapped potential for the UK economy
  • A need for greater support for entrepreneurial women
We want to support entrepreneurial women in their journey and believe we’re in a strong position to do exactly that. Working with small businesses every day, we understand the support and guidance needed to make the big step to start out in business – whether it’s as a contractor, freelancer, sole trader, or small business owner.

Commitment objectives include

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    Welcoming 100,000 female-led businesses to Tide by the end of 2023

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    Tracking and reporting on female entrepreneurs using Tide

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    Organising initiatives and events to support women in opening their own businesses

Business inspiration from entrepreneurial women

Key findings

We surveyed 1,000 women who work for themselves, to learn more about their motivations for starting a business, the challenges they can face and the opportunities available to boost their businesses.

We’re using this data to identify how we can best support women in starting out in business, but it also makes interesting reading.

  • There are 1.6m self-employed women in the UK, mostly working in services (21%): 15% in health and 14% in professional services 
  • 6 in 10 female entrepreneurs say confidence was their biggest challenge when they first started out
  • Comparatively, only 38% say they needed financial support
  • The top areas where more support is needed are:
    • advice and information about growing a business
    • mentorship
    • advice and information about marketing a product
    • a network of peers
    • affordable workspace
    • advice and information about loans and credit

These insights will help us ensure we’re providing the right kind of support and initiatives to empower women in business.

You can read more about our research in this blog, and in this article published by Forbes.

Tips for starting a business

Supporting f:Entrepreneur


We’re the official sponsor of f:Entrepreneur, a campaign that highlights inspiring female business leaders across the UK.

The goal of the campaign is to celebrate the dynamic and inspirational businesses led by women in the UK.

It’s aimed at both men and women, because everyone has something to learn from these stories of challenge and success. Through events, content and story-telling, f:Entrepreneur showcases role models to help and inspire all small businesses.

Read their #ialso stories here.

Meet our members