Apr 18, 2024 - News

Seattle's "she-conomy" is growing

Data: Yelp; Table: Alice Feng/Axios

New women-owned businesses in the Seattle area increased 14% in 2023 compared to 2022, according to new Yelp data.

Why it matters: The trend is more evidence that the "she-conomy" — economic growth attributed to women and marked by "Barbie," Beyoncé's "Renaissance" tour and Taylor Swift last year — continues to expand.

Zoom in: Vanessa Barrios, the founder of Pumarosa Candles — which hosted its first pop-up in 2023 and recently opened a new storefront at Pacific Place — told Axios that support of her business is not just about gender equality, but also about embracing diversity, sparking innovation and empowering economic growth.

What they're saying: "As a female founder, I have seen firsthand how crucial community support is," Barrios said. "It's what propels us forward and makes our entrepreneurial journey so rewarding."

By the numbers: Nationally, women-owned business openings rose 17%.

  • The highest growth rates among U.S. cities with at least 500 openings in 2023 were logged in Austin (34%), Miami (31%), Washington, D.C. (25%) and Denver (25%), per Yelp.

Between the lines: Yelp did not collect data on the number of male-owned businesses for this report, Fernanda Paguaga of Yelp told Axios, but overall business openings in the Seattle area (which includes Bellevue and Tacoma) increased 18% from 2022 to 2023.

Fun fact: Female entrepreneurs are opening businesses in traditionally male-dominated industries — such as general contractors, electricians and pressure washers — as women-owned home services business openings grew above the national average in 2023.

Is there a new women-owned business you love that we should know about? Email us at [email protected].


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