Rise In Women Starting Their Own Business, Study Finds

More women started up new businesses in the last 12 months than in the previous year, with cleaning, beauty and hairdressing the most popular trades, according to a survey.

Simply Business, a UK online business insurance broker, reported a 12% increase in female-run start-ups this year, with women accounting for 37% of all start-up businesses, up from 33% last year.

The data is based on more than 117,000 start-up business quote requests received by Simply Business so far this year.

Dominating the top 10 are creative and service-driven businesses, with cleaners, beauticians and hairdressers filling the top three slots.

Others in the top 10 include pet minders, cake makers and market traders, as well as caterers, teachers and those offering accountancy and financial advisory services. There has also been a 16% rise in self-employed female lawyers over the past year.

The results suggest that female entrepreneurs are good at seizing on emerging trends, with the high ranking of cake making a possible reaction to people's new found thrift and inspiration taken from BBC's The Great British Bake Off.

There has been a 95% increase in women starting up as market traders since 2009, as they embrace the popularity for local market produce and capitalise on any talents they have for cooking or making arts and crafts.

Similarly, pet-minding has grown dramatically over the past year, as has complementary therapy, with a 15% rise, showing that women are keen to come up with ideas for businesses that they believe will fill a gap in the market.

There has been a sharp rise in the number of women embarking on business in the traditionally public sector spheres of education and health, with female start-up education consultants up by 61% and independent nursing businesses up by 46%.

Jason Stockwood, Simply Business chief executive, said: "With unemployment at its highest for 23 years it is encouraging to see that more and more women are embracing the opportunity to set up on their own."