According to recent research by The Gender Index, the number of female-owned businesses created in the UK has continued to rise to record breaking levels in 2023.

In total there are more than 870,000 businesses in the UK led by women, more than 160,700 of which were created in the last 12 months. This figure is an increase on the more than 150,000 new businesses started by women in 2022.

At the time of writing, the North West sits in third place amongst the regions with the highest percentage of female-led companies, sitting only behind London and the West Midlands, with 18.18% of the region’s 484,652 companies being female led. This is higher than the overall national rate.

The continued increase in the number of women stepping out of employment to start their own businesses is thought to be fuelled by the restrictions women have faced in the workplace, from flexibility to the gender pay gap, many of which came to the forefront during the recent pandemic. Many women have found that starting their own companies allows them the flexibility and freedom they weren’t experiencing in their traditional workplaces.

Women who chose to take the leap into entrepreneurship have cited improved work-life balance, the ability to choose where they work from, reassessing their careers after having children, and the opportunity to pursue a passion as the main reasons for doing so.

Despite the fact that more women than ever are now starting their own businesses, the percentage of women-led businesses by the end of 2023 sat at just 17.3%. While the cost of living crisis is undoubtedly putting pressure on businesses, the marked rise in female-led companies seems to be showing no signs of slowing so I expect that figure will rise again in years to come.

Whether you are looking to buy, sell, or create your own business, Farleys’ corporate and commercial teams can help with all of the necessary legal aspects. Contact us today for a discussion about how we can help. Call 0845 287 0939 or get in touch by email.