Region
Sub-Saharan Africa

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Entrepreneurship To the Point (eTTP) conducted research in South Africa on accelerating women-owned businesses in male-dominated sectors with the goal of better understanding the key barriers to entry and growth that women-owned businesses face in male-dominated sectors, as well as identifying key factors required to accelerate the participation and growth of women-owned businesses in infrastructure/Construction, agriculture, or agribusiness.
This work was carried out with the aid of a grant from the International Development Research Centre, Ottawa, Canada, in partnership with the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent those of IDRC or its Board of Governors.

Accelerating the participation and growth of women-owned businesses has resulted in rises in certain sectors, steady growth in others, and declines in others. 60% of women-owned businesses in agriculture, 61.5% in manufacturing, and 44.1% in construction said that female engagement has increased slightly, while 37.5% of women in infrastructure reported that it has stayed stable. However, 26.9% of women in the manufacturing sector surveyed indicated a decline in participation during the past five years.

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"In recent decades, the number of female entrepreneurs has grown substantially, particularly in low and middle-income countries. However, the characteristics and performance of female-led ventures differ significantly from those of ventures led by men. A potential reason for this is the lack of clearly defined venture goals, including the profit margin that ventures target. We study the relationship between gender and target margins using a large dataset of ventures located in Latin America and the Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa. We find that ventures led only by women are almost five percentage points less likely than male-led ventures to establish target margins, even after controlling for observable venture and founder characteristics. In addition, ventures with only female founders tend to set lower target margins than those with only male founders. These results suggest that policymakers, accelerators, and incubators, can play a major role in supporting female entrepreneurs as they grow their businesses by encouraging women to set clear and realistic target margins to be more successful at raising funds for their ventures."

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"Après avoir vécu pendant plus de deux ans avec les défis majeurs de la pandémie du  COVID-19, le secteur des petites entreprises et de celles en croissance (PECs) est maintenant confronté à une réalité sur le long terme qui affecte non seulement les opérations commerciales mais aussi la façon dont ces entreprises mesurent et communiquent leur impact. Le secteur des PECs se trouve à un moment critique de la pandémie où les organisations doivent réfléchir à la manière dont leurs solutions de MGI élaborées à la hâte s’inscrivent ou non dans leur stratégie de MGI à plus long terme.

Pour toutes ces raisons, le but de ce rapport est de :

Mettre en évidence les défis MGI uniques auxquels sont confrontées les PECs d’Afrique subsaharienne en raison du COVID-19 ;
Guider les créateurs d’écosystèmes entrepreneuriaux dans l’adaptation de leurs systèmes de MGI dans le contexte de la nouvelle réalité du COVID-19 ; et
Fournir des ressources sur mesure pour permettre aux créateurs d’écosystèmes
entrepreneuriaux d’adapter davantage leurs systèmes de MGI afin de mieux soutenir les entrepreneurs dans la «nouvelle anormalité.»"

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"The evidence is indisputable: high-growth scaling ventures are game changers. Scale-ups are the ventures that:

Create the vast majority of new jobs in an economy;
Generate the most value in the form of financial, economic and social returns;
Drive innovation and shape ecosystems;
Incubate and develop talent pipelines; and
Spawn the next generation of thriving scale-ups and the experienced entrepreneurs that create them.

Africa needs more startups that transition to scale. Many more.

But scaling is rare. And difficult. All the more so in sub-Saharan Africa, where large populations do not equate to large addressable markets, necessitating very early (and risky) expansion into new markets in search of the critical mass of customers needed to raise funding and scale a business.

Whilst there are some universal scaling principles that can and should be applied, there isn’t a formula for scaling. Because it isn’t pure science. On the contrary, scaling is predominantly an art: a unique blend of inputs, decisions and actions that is different for each scaling business."

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"Après avoir vécu pendant plus de deux ans avec les défis majeurs de la pandémie du  COVID-19, le secteur des petites entreprises et de celles en croissance (PECs) est maintenant confronté à une réalité sur le long terme qui affecte non seulement les opérations commerciales mais aussi la façon dont ces entreprises mesurent et communiquent leur impact. Le secteur des PECs se trouve à un moment critique de la pandémie où les organisations doivent réfléchir à la manière dont leurs solutions de MGI élaborées à la hâte s’inscrivent ou non dans leur stratégie de MGI à plus long terme.

Pour toutes ces raisons, le but de ce rapport est de :

Mettre en évidence les défis MGI uniques auxquels sont confrontées les PECs d’Afrique subsaharienne en raison du COVID-19 ;
Guider les créateurs d’écosystèmes entrepreneuriaux dans l’adaptation de leurs systèmes de MGI dans le contexte de la nouvelle réalité du COVID-19 ; et
Fournir des ressources sur mesure pour permettre aux créateurs d’écosystèmes
entrepreneuriaux d’adapter davantage leurs systèmes de MGI afin de mieux soutenir les entrepreneurs dans la «nouvelle anormalité.»"

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"After more than two years of living with the acute challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the small and growing business (SGB) sector is now facing a longer-term reality that affects not only business operations but also how these businesses measure and communicate their impact. The SGB sector is at a critical junction in the pandemic where organizations need to reflect on how hastily crafted impact measurement and management (IMM) solutions may or may not fit into their longer-term IMM strategy.

For these reasons, the purpose of this brief is to:

Highlight the unique IMM challenges faced by Sub-Saharan African SGBs due to COVID-19;
Guide entrepreneurial ecosystem builders in adapting their IMM systems within the context of the new COVID-19 reality; and
Provide tailored resources to enable entrepreneurial ecosystem builders to further adapt their IMM systems to best support entrepreneurs in the «new abnormal.»"

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"In 2021, ACT Foundation Research Team set out to capture the landscape of technology adoption for African non-profits. We surveyed over 400 social impact professionals to understand the current state of technology adoption within their organizations and to assess their digital readiness. In this report, we explored the digital investment landscape and investigated the barriers to greater technology adoption. We also attempted to identify areas of support needs across the sector."

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"This report reveals the state of social enterprises in Nigeria. It is based on desk research, interviews with key stakeholders and a survey distributed to social enterprises from a diverse range of industries and sectors across the county. The findings are timely. Governments and communities are looking to minimize the economic and social damage caused by Covid-19 and, in the longer term, see the pandemic as an opportunity to rebuild economies on a fairer, more inclusive footing. As businesses that combine positive social and environmental impact with financial sustainability, social enterprises have a vital role to play."

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"Women entrepreneurs are critical to a thriving and inclusive economy, and yet they face numerous challenges in growing their businesses. These challenges are compounded for women climate entrepreneurs (WCEs), given limited research that assesses the issues or presents actionable recommendations to the wider ecosystem. This knowledge product identifies challenges and opportunities for WCEs with a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa - specifcally, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, South Africa and Malawi."

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"Endeavor Insight partnered with the Lemelson Foundation and Small Foundation to understand how entrepreneurial agriculture companies can maximize their impact in developing countries. The purpose of the study is to provide a data-backed assessment of the challenges and opportunities for supporting entrepreneurs. Endeavor Insight’s approach used several lenses, including a special focus on the types of innovation the founders have created, as well as an analysis of the dynamics within selected agricultural value chains. The results offer guidance for decision makers who support entrepreneurs as they address the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially in raising the incomes of smallholder farmers and alleviating poverty, creating transformative solutions that can address global food security, and generating quality jobs. This study builds on recent research in the international development and social investment communities, and takes into account the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis."

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