Unlocking Opportunity for Female Entrepreneurs Through Non-Traditional Financing

Mar 13, 2024 11:00 AM ET

by Stella Tai of Praxis Mutual Funds and Kersy Azocar of Greenline Access Capital 

There are a number of ways capital providers can meet the needs of female entrepreneurs when it comes to financing.

First, capital providers need to be cognizant of the fact that there is a gender barrier that prevents many women business owners from accessing traditional financing. Providers can and should actively work to reduce and eliminate these barriers.

A good place to start is to analyze the lender’s history of ‘who applies for’ versus ‘who receives’ financing and the reasons for denial. Additionally, capital providers can proactively create products that are a good fit for female entrepreneurs and allow for outside the box thinking when it comes to risk and return.

A recent partnership between Greenline Access Capital, a mission-driven nonprofit financial institution that works to address the continued and persistent gap in access to capital for financially underserved entrepreneurs in Philadelphia, PA, and Everence Financial®, a faith-based financial services company, seeks to bridge this gap.

Since 2021, Greenline has served more than 250 people and has helped 48 clients connect with $5.3 million in grants and loans, including 23 loans from Greenline’s own funds. Of these loans, 48% were made to women-owned businesses. By collaborating with Everence, Greenline is able to connect mission-driven funds with underserved businesses, many of which are women-owned. By combining the provision of capital, customized technical assistance and training focused on entrepreneurial and financial success, these types of organizations are helping bridge the gap in serving communities and individuals often excluded.

By creating long-term relationships with organizations like Greenline Access Capital, capital providers can support impact at scale by increasing efficiency and productivity for all parties. These partnerships can cross public, private and non-profit capital sources and can function locally, regionally or across the country. Though more work is required, especially at the beginning of the relationship, in the long run these partnerships will pay off for both capital providers, alternative lenders and underserved communities.

Read the full article, that includes numerous resources, here - https://greenmoney.com/unlocking-opportunity-for-female-entrepreneurs-through-non-traditional-financing