Business Ownership and Financing

One of best work opportunities for women is to own their own businesses. Luckily Iowa offers many resources to entrepreneurs. The Iowa Department of Economic Development has comprehensive information available to assist in business start-up, including specific financing for businesses owned by women and minorities.

The Institute for Social and Economic Development (ISED) is the state's Women's Business Center provider for the U.S. Small Business Administration. The Program's mission is to level the playing field for women entrepreneurs still facing unique obstacles in the business world. The Small Business Administration (SBA) is another great resource for women.

Microenterprise is an emerging field of financing across the country. Iowa is looking at ways to start such programs that make smaller loans to entrepreneurs who may not other wise get financing. The Abilities Fund currently makes loans to entrepreneurs with disabilities, and has specific resources to assist women with disabilities finance their businesses.

Networking with other women's business owners is very helpful in growing a business. The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) is one of many networking groups. Check to see if your local Chamber of Commerce has a women's affiliate, and consider participating in both.

Let us know about other networking opportunities for women entrepreneurs.