Female entrepreneurs in SG face more gender bias than in HK, but lesser than global

Singapore-based entrepreneurs face one of the highest hurdles when it comes to securing capital with 59% having been rejected for funding, the second highest after Hong Kong (68%). Compounding this, 41% of female entrepreneurs in Singapore have experienced gender bias when attempting to raise capital for their business, said a research commissioned by HSBC.

Named "She’s The Business", the research aims to understand barriers facing female entrepreneurs during the investment process. The survey polled more than 1,200 entrepreneurs in eight markets across Asia, Europe, US and Middle East, including 151 from Singapore. At 41%, the number of female entrepreneurs in Singapore experiencing gender bias ranks higher than Hong Kong (31%) but lower than international markets such as the UK (54%) and US (46%).

According to the report, they are asked explicit personal questions such as their family circumstance and credibility during the pitch process.

However, despite the odds, Singapore-based female entrepreneurs are achieving almost the same funding success as men more than many other major markets. About 54% of women in Singapore secured the total funding they sought, which was on par with men (56%) and makes it the most gender-neutral market for business capital raising globally with the exception of Hong Kong. One reason attributed to this is that female entrepreneurs in Singapore are aware of the obstacles and make preparations to overcome them, said the report. About 93% of them sought advice ahead of the pitching process.

Siew Meng Tan, regional head, Asia Pacific at HSBC Global Private Banking said the report raises the question of whether business capital funding in Singapore is simply a tough but gender-agnostic market or are Singapore-based female entrepreneurs forcing gender parity when it comes to funding.

"Either way, the report reflects my experience of Singapore-based female entrepreneurs as being tenacious, committed and meticulously prepared. The fact that Singapore is demonstrating gender parity when securing capital bodes well for the country,” she added.

[Marketing is proud to once again present PR Asia in Singapore this year. Join us for a series of exclusive case studies, interactive and thought-provoking discussions this 13-14 November in Singapore and discover the latest strategies, insights and groundbreaking ideas to elevate your PR practice. Register now.]

(Photo courtesy: 123rf)