Ahead of International Women’s Day, Meesho – India’s fastest-growing internet commerce company, surveyed 9,000 women entrepreneurs across 28 states and 4 union territories. The survey highlights how e-commerce is boosting opportunities for women through entrepreneurship.
Over the last 6 years, Meesho supported women to become entrepreneurs and achieve their quest for financial independence through the company’s reselling business model. Currently, the platform hosts 15 million entrepreneurs of which 9 million are women. Nearly 60% of Meeeho’s women entrepreneurs hail from tier 3 markets.
As per survey respondents, besides financial independence, most women believe happiness, a sense of identity and networking opportunities are important facets of becoming entrepreneurs. With more than 90% of respondents stating that it is easy to become an entrepreneur with Meesho, 43% said zero investment to start their own business was a key enabler. Further, 16% believed it offered independence and gave them an identity and more than 40% of respondents chose entrepreneurship as it is a good earning option.
41% of the respondents are homemakers who have turned their passion into a business, 38% are employed or own other businesses, 5% are teachers and 16% are students.
Furthermore, 40% of respondents are Gen Z (between 18 and 25 years of age) whereas 20% are 35+. An equal opportunity platform, Meesho has provided women from all walks of life an opportunity to become entrepreneurs. More than one-third of the women surveyed have basic school education (37%) and one in every five women entrepreneurs is a postgraduate (22%).
Managing time between home and business as well as access to technology are among their biggest challenges.
A respondent from West Bengal says, “I became an entrepreneur without any prior investment on Meesho. The earnings were a major source of support for myself and my family during the pandemic.” Another respondent, who is a homemaker from Maharashtra says, “Being a homemaker, I found my self-esteem being affected since I was not financially independent. Connecting with Meesho helped me become an active contributor to my family’s expenses and restored my self-confidence.”
Elaborating on the value Meesho creates for female entrepreneurs, Utkrishta Kumar, CXO, Business at Meesho said, “Being financially independent is an important goal for women of all backgrounds. More than 60% of our entrepreneurs come from Tier 3+ markets like Dimapur, Faizabad and Haldwani. We are proud that Meesho is championing socioeconomic equity, enabling more women from the remotest regions to find financial independence, a sense of identity and happiness.”
Despite the challenges of managing time between home and business (cited by 55% of respondents), their entrepreneurial spirit is undeterred. To encourage this spirit, Meesho ensures it offers opportunities that women entrepreneurs can leverage for their financial security, independence and identity.