Women’s productive activities, particularly in industry, empower them economically and enable them to contribute more to overall development. Whether they are involved in small or medium-scale production activities, or the informal or formal sectors, women’s entrepreneurial activities are not only a means for economic survival but also have positive social repercussions for the women themselves and their social environment. This study sought to assess the factors that affect women entrepreneurs in establishing their businesses. A sample of 325 women entrepreneurs in different sectors from five towns (Assayta, Logia, Mille, Awash and Chifra) were taken for the study using snowball and simple random sampling. In the process of answering the basic questions, a questionnaire that includes demographic profiles, characteristics of women entrepreneurs and their enterprises, factors that affect the women entrepreneurs in MSEs was designed in an open and closed-ended and Likert scales. Moreover, interviews were held with top officials of MSEs. The study also made use of simple statistical tools such as tables and percentages. Mean and standard deviation was also calculated for analyzing the collected data. The results of the study indicate inadequate access to training and low educational background and conflicting gender roles, social acceptability and, network with outsiders were the major social factors that affect women entrepreneurs.
Key words: Entrepreneurship, women entrepreneur, socio-cultural factors, education, training, business.
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