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Women Entrepreneurship Can Uplift The State of Employment in India, Also Generate 150-170mn Jobs

Of all women-owned enterprises, a majority are single person enterprises, with the largest group represented by rural non-farm home-based business owners

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A joint report by Bain & Company and Google titled "Women Entrepreneurship in India - Powering the economy with her", underlines the need to accelerate efforts to grow women entrepreneurs in India in both quantity and quality to solve employment challenges in the country. Pixabay

Women in entrepreneurship can generate transformational employment in India and generate 150-170 million jobs, which is more than 25 per cent of the new jobs required for the entire working age population by 2030, a new report said on Tuesday.

A joint report by Bain & Company and Google titled “Women Entrepreneurship in India – Powering the economy with her”, underlines the need to accelerate efforts to grow women entrepreneurs in India in both quantity and quality to solve employment challenges in the country.

“In spite of India’s economic progress in the last decade, women’s participation in the labour force has declined and is expected to be under pressure due to labour trends, technological disruption and constraining social barriers,” said lead author Megha Chawla, Partner, Bain & Company.

“Unlocking entrepreneurship amongst women in India is a complex effort, but it provides an unprecedented opportunity to change the economic and social trajectory of India and its women for generations to come,” Chawla added. “This will drive tremendous job creation and also deliver transformational social and personal outcomes for women,” she added.

The report identified six dominant segments of women entrepreneurs and estimates India to have 13.5-15.7 million women-owned enterprises, representing approximately 20 per cent of all enterprises today. In many cases, women are named as owners for financial and administrative reasons with no active role to play, which overstates true entrepreneurship amongst women.

Of all women-owned enterprises, a majority are single person enterprises, with the largest group represented by rural non-farm home-based business owners at 38 per cent, followed by urban self-employed women solopreneurs at 31 per cent, who usually work from home.

According to the study, the other dominant segments include rural agripreneurs who are farm-based business owners at 18 per cent and small business owners at 14 per cent – split across urban (6 per cent) and rural (8 per cent) – employing less than 10 employees and contributing most to employment generation.

Finally, there are the scalers, who employ more than 10 people and account for less than one per cent. In total, these women entrepreneurs provide direct employment to an estimated 22 to 27 million people today. The report projects an opportunity to accelerate both quantity and quality of entrepreneurship to create over 30 million women-owned enterprises out of which 12 million can generate employment.

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Women in entrepreneurship can generate transformational employment in India and generate 150-170 million jobs, which is more than 25 per cent of the new jobs required for the entire working age population by 2030, a new report said on Tuesday. Pixabay

“At Google we have been investing in scaled skilling efforts across SMBs, Startups and overcoming the digital gender gap in the country through the Internet Saathi program. Across all our programs, we have seen that women are hungry for opportunities to grow their household incomes,” said Sapna Chadha, Senior Country Marketing Director, Google India and Southeast Asia.

“Hundreds of women in rural India want to learn more about doing business and many have already made the start to enhance their livelihoods. We are already running a pilot accelerator program for rural entrepreneurs from our Internet Saathi network,” Chadha added.

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According to Chadha, this joint effort report with Bain is a start to better understand the barriers facing the various types of women entrepreneurs across India and find synergies with like-minded companies and the government to accelerate women entrepreneurship in the country. (IANS)

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India’s Lockdown Disrupts Functioning of Amazon and Flipkart

Amazon India Delivery and functioning of Essential Goods via. E-commerce companies Disrupted

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Virus Outbreak Amazon
India's coronavirus lockdown is disrupting e-commerce companies including Amazon and Flipkart. Pixabay

India’s coronavirus lockdown is disrupting e-commerce companies including Amazon and Flipkart, despite government assurances it would not, four sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Differing state and district level regulations relating to the 21-day lockdown, which began on Wednesday, are hindering operations, the sources said on Friday, with e-commerce firms finding it difficult to get curfew passes for delivery staff.

The disruptions highlight the difficulties of ensuring the supply of essential goods to 1.3 billion people during the shutdown in India, which has so far reported 724 cases of coronavirus and 17 deaths. Most of Amazon’s 60 plus fulfillment centers in India are shut and the U.S. company is in talks with state authorities to try to reopen them, three of the sources said. Industry executives say local authorities have not followed guidelines, stopping deliveries and warehouses from operating.

Virus Outbreak Amazon
A sign is lit on the facade of an Amazon fulfillment center. VOA

“It’s worse than one can think,” one source said, while a second added that only a “miniscule” number of Amazon warehouses were operating, citing this as a key reason for disruptions. Even when operations do begin to return to normal, it will only be in major cities, the second source added.

Amazon said in a statement that its top priority was to deliver the products which customers need the most and it was seeking urgent help from federal government and local authorities with detailed on-the-ground operating procedures. In New Delhi, Amazon’s Pantry service was suspended and the delivery slot for essential goods, such as oil and soaps, was shown as being April 26.

“There are clear guidelines provided by Government to enable essential services, and so we are working with the relevant authorities to ensure we are able to operate,” Amazon said on Twitter in response to questions from users in India.

Indian trade minister Piyush Goyal held a meeting with e-commerce executives on Thursday and said the government was “committed to ensuring that essential goods reach the people.”

Also Read- Effects of Quarantine on Mental Health and Relationships

Walmart-owned Flipkart has also been hit, with some grocery items which had been available earlier on Friday in New Delhi intermittently going out of stock. A source familiar with the situation said Flipkart was facing challenges with last-mile delivery of goods once they leave its warehouse due to restrictions on movement.

Flipkart said in a statement it had resumed grocery operations and there was a significant spike in orders. “We are enhancing capacity to meet the increase in customer requirements,” it said, adding it had received support from local and federal authorities.  (VOA)