WIPP Policy Priorities 2017
Thursday, January 5, 2017
WIPP 2017 Policy Priorities
Eliminate Capital Access Barriers for Women Entrepreneurs
Stung by the revelation of the Senate Small Business Committee that only 4% of all commercial loan dollars and only 2.7% of all venture capital funds go to women, WIPP endeavored to take on the access to capital challenge. Looking for policy changes which impact freeing up capital to women, WIPP launched its Capital Access Platform, “Breaking the Bank: Women Entrepreneurs and the Need for Capital.” The platform’s release focused discussions on Capitol Hill and led to an examination of how SBA programs could better serve women.
In 2017, WIPP will turn these policy initiatives into reality. To spur lending and fuel innovation, WIPP will engage on three broad themes:
• Change the capital infrastructure
• Support small lending institutions
• Strengthen government investment
To enhance SBA’s Microloan Program, WIPP will continue advocating for removing limitations on technical assistance and allowing funds to be distributed more effectively. To increase access to capital from private lenders, WIPP will ensure that community banks and credit unions will not be burdened by one-size-fits-all regulations. Creating an “Emerging Managers” track in the SBIC program and allowing these managers to engage in equity-based financing would help develop a generation of female fund managers, who in turn would increase the venture capital opportunities for women-owned firms. WIPP is also pressing Congress and the SBA to increase support for financial and business counseling available to women entrepreneurs through the Women’s Business Center Program.
Increase Federal Contracts for Women-Owned Businesses
In 2015, WIPP pressed for – and achieved – the swift implementation of sole source authority to the WOSB Procurement Program. In 2016, WIPP published a report, Do Not Enter: Women Shut Out of U.S. Government’s Biggest Contracts. The report showed that women have limited opportunities to win some of the government’s largest contracts, also knows as Multiple Award Contracts (MACs). This year, WIPP will work to ensure that agencies structure MACs to include all socio-economic groups, including women.
Through its education programs, outreach through the ChallengeHER program and advocacy, WIPP opens doors for women owned businesses seeking to access the federal marketplace.
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