Women’s exporting success: evidence from Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises

Based on the Statistics Canada 2017 Survey on Financing and Growth of Small and Medium Enterprises, this chapter examines the role of gender on the export participation of Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and identifies specific characteristics and business activities of women-owned SMEs that are associated with their export propensity and export intensity. It also provides empirical evidence of the benefits of online payments and innovations to the internationalization of women-owned SMEs. The study finds no statistically significant gender differences in the export propensity and the export intensity when business characteristics are controlled for. However, the impact of some characteristics on export propensity are significantly different between men and women-owned SMEs. Firstly, larger SMEs owned by women are less likely to export than men-owned and equally owned SMEs of the same size. Secondly, online payment and innovations play a more crucial role in facilitating exports for women-owned SMEs. Finally, for higher export intensity, the owner’s education level and managerial experience are much more important for women-owned SME exporters than for men-owned and equally owned exporters.

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