FILE - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives to a roundtable discussion with Black entrepreneurs at HXOUSE in Toronto, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Cole Burston

FILE - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives to a roundtable discussion with Black entrepreneurs at HXOUSE in Toronto, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Cole Burston

Black women entrepreneurs lack access to capital, mentorship, says report

Under-representation of Black women in business

HALIFAX — A new report says Black women entrepreneurs are facing a significant lack of access to capital in the Canadian business landscape.

The study, produced by Toronto-based market research firm Pitch Better, is based on a survey of more than 1,500 Black women-led for-profit and non-profit businesses in Canada.

The report says Black women often struggle with a lack of networks and mentorship, which results in lower yields for their business ventures.

Respondents of the survey also reported under-representation of Black women in business and customer bias against Black-owned businesses has negatively impacted their ability to navigate the Canadian business ecosystem.

More than 43 per cent of the respondents reported raising no external funding in the creation of their businesses and at least a third of respondents never take advantage of funding programs.

The report found that the top three reasons respondents didn’t apply for funding were a lack of awareness of available programs, not meeting the eligibility requirements and frustration over past outcomes with the application process.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 23, 2021.

Business