The number of women who are starting and owning their own businesses has been steadily increasing in recent years. Throughout 2015, the number of businesses owned by women continued to increase at a steady pace. According to a report published by American Express OPEN and Womenable, 30% of all businesses in the United States are now owned by women.
Many of these women have inspired others to start their own businesses, too. Some of the inspiring female entrepreneurs people draw inspiration from vary, based upon the industry and market segment. The following are just a few of the many women who help inspire others:
- Rachel Ray – Rachel Ray hosts cooking shows on the Food Network, has her own talk show, a magazine, and cook ware, and has published several books.
- Caterina Fake – Caterina Fake is the cofounder of Flickr, which was sold for an 8 figure amount to Yahoo in 2005. She is also the cofounder of Hunch.com, and was named one of the most influential people of 2006 by Time Magazine.
- Sara Blakely – Sara Blakely is the woman who created and invented Spanx. She started Spanx in her apartment with just $5,000, and went on to become the top entrepreneur of the year winner in 2002.
- Janet Rickstrew – Janet Rickstrew founded Tomboy Tools. She got the idea for the company after attending a Pamper Chef party. She developed a similar concept using tools that are designed just for women.
- Julie Aigner-Clark – Julie Aigner-Clark found a need and met it back in 1998 when she founded Baby Einstein, which she later sold to the Walt Disney Company. She wanted educational videos for her daughter, and, since she was unable to find them, decided to start her own company to create them instead.
- Doris Christopher – Without Pampered Chef founder Doris Christopher, Janet Rickstrew would never have started her own business. Doris founded Pampered Chef back in 1980 out of her home in Chicago, and the company grew into a 9 figure enterprise, which was later sold in 2002 to Berkshire Hathaway.
- Maxine Clark – Maxine Clark was the president and chief merchandising officer for Payless Shoesource before she decided to start her own business, Build-A-Bear Workshop. Today Maxine’s company has hundreds of stores, not just in the U.S., but around the globe.
These are not the only women who provide inspiration for other women, either. From corporate executives and scientists, to fashion designers and manufacturing, as well as every type of job in between, you can find inspiration to start your own business, too.
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