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For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Women entrepreneurs add £105bn to UK economy

13 November 2018

Women entrepreneurs add £105bn to UK economyWomen entrepreneurs and business leaders are increasingly delivering growth and creating jobs in the UK, according to a new report.

Research published by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and launched at Facebook Community Boost has found that women-owned businesses contribute £105bn to the UK economy. That figure rises to £221bn when it also includes businesses led by women.

Female entrepreneurs are also creating many new jobs. The FSB report, Supporting Women's Enterprise in the UK: The Economic Case, reveals that 24% of private sector employment is now generated by women-owned and women-led businesses.

The findings show that there has been a 40% increase in the UK economic contribution and a 26% increase in employment generated by businesses owned by women between 2012 and 2015. Across UK nations, Wales and Northern Ireland lead the way in the contribution women-owned businesses make to their economies.

However, despite the rise in female founders overall, the report has found that the proportionate contribution from women-owned businesses in manufacturing has declined. In fact, the findings show that women are less well represented in a number of high profit sectors, including manufacturing.

Lina Bourdon, FSB's Women in Enterprise lead, said: "Developing and supporting women's enterprise is proven to be critically important for economic prosperity. The government must now address this untapped potential with a range of suitable measures, such as career advice, role models and access to business support and finance."

Carolyn Currie, ceo of Women's Enterprise Scotland, which compiled the report for FSB, said: "Our research shows that women-owned businesses are providing critical employment in communities across the UK and now represent 11% of total private sector employment. We must ensure that this momentum continues and we are calling for economic development organisations to step forward and provide the needs-based support that these businesses need to continue growing.

"With dedicated resources and support, women-owned businesses have the opportunity to harness the momentum already created and continue to grow their economic impact and value across all areas of the UK and all sectors."

Nicola Mendelsohn, Facebook's vp EMEA said: "We all have a role to play in addressing the diversity imbalances that exist around the world. It's unacceptable that our culture is still hard-wired against women in leadership roles. Until that changes we need to find ways to get behind the women who want to step forward and lead, to give them the skills and courage to succeed."

Through the #SheMeansBusiness programme, Facebook, together with the FSB, Enterprise Nation and AllBright, has provided training, tools and advice to 13,000 women entrepreneurs this year.

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