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‘Europe, We Have A Problem!’–8 Facts About Female Entrepreneurs In The Digital Age

Europe needs and wants more entrepreneurs, more innovation, more growth, more digital, more women leaders and founders. Among the various initiatives aimed at correcting this is the EU project titled “Peer-learning activities in entrepreneurship education and women entrepreneurship”.

The project will run until June 2021 and will include six peer-learning workshops. The first workshop held in Budapest in March tackled questions such as “How to develop entrepreneurship education in Europe? What are the European countries already doing in this area? Do they face the same challenges?”. As I am taking part in the first one focused on women entrepreneurship (14-16 May 2019) in Prague, I got pre-workshop materials that contained staggering data about female entrepreneurship in Europe.

In my pursuit of raising awareness and acknowledging the gender disbalance in entrepreneurship, I selected the following eight facts:

1. Europe has the lowest early-stage female involvement in entrepreneurship. Lithuania is the “star”! 

According to the 2nd European Start-up Monitor, only 14.8% of start-up founders are female. The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor in 2016 shows that Europe had the lowest female involvement in Early-stage Entrepreneurial Activity of every analyzed region (6%) and the lowest gender parity. Malta has the lowest and Lithuania has the highest rate of female entrepreneurs of all EU member states. The percentage of female entrepreneurs within EU member states for all economic activities shows large disparities with percentages ranging from 19.4% in Malta to 39.5% in Lithuania, the member state with the highest rate of female entrepreneurs (Women in the Digital Age, European Commission, 2018).

2. Female-founded digital startups outperform male-founded ones and yet VCs are more likely to invest in male-founded start-ups.

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