Women Biz Crowdfunding Site Delivers Major Benefits

Money BagThe number of businesses started by women in recent years has really been one of the bright spots in the economic news.

Between 1997 and 2014, women-owned business rose by 68 percent – twice the growth rate posted by men. And here’s the kicker: this tremendous growth has happened without very much support from the traditional lending and investing world.

Lenders and investors are woefully reluctant to back a project by a woman entrepreneur, despite federal programs and laws designed specifically to encourage lending to women-owned businesses.

Enter MoolaHoop

Studies have shown the bias. Given identical pitches from men and women, lenders and investors favor men by a large margin. However, I don’t want to focus on the negatives, I want to applaud women for overcoming these obstacles and posting such a tremendous growth rate. I also want to point out a new crowdfunding platform that aims to do its part to fix this inequity: MoolaHoop.

To be totally honest with you, I think women have a lot of advantages in the entrepreneurial world, and as others recognize this, MoolaHoop should become a great tool for women startups. For example, anyone who’s hardwired to cope with the pains of child birth, can easily manage the stress dished out by a startup, don’t you think?

Further, I believe women tend to be excellent – if not superior – networkers, and this is an attribute that is mandatory for success on a crowdfunding platform. Let’s look at how MoolaHoop works.

Entrepreneurs post videos, photos and information about their projects on MoolaHoop. They list “rewards” given at various support levels. The rewards can be anything from products and discounts to t-shirts and thank-you cards. The businesses have 21 days to make their fundraising target.

Networking vital

Once a project is up on MoolaHoop, its organizer needs to get busy networking and encouraging friends, family members and existing customers to pledge their support. Supporters enter a credit card number and support amount. If the goal is met within 21 days, credit cards are charged. If not, the project fails and no one is charged.

As I mentioned above, over the years Congress has enacted legislation to increase loans and contracts to women-owned businesses. The results have been less than spectacular.

In the long term, I see a lot more potential in MoolaHoop. It is easy to use, easy to find and a woman can get funds for a new business or the expansion of an existing business in three weeks. Government programs, ahem, don’t typically move that fast.

And beyond the immediate financial impact of MoolaHoop, I think it will demonstrate to the larger lending and investing world that women businesses are just as worthy for funding as businesses owned by men.

Ultimately, that may be MoolaHoop’s biggest contribution to our economic future.

Sponsored by AT&T