Gender Inequality

These are the best cities for women to start a business

The Empire State Building (C) sits between the Bank of America building (L) and the Chrysler Building (R) at sunset in New York, September 11, 2010. REUTERS/Gary Hershorn (UNITED STATES  - Tags: ANNIVERSARY CITYSCAPE DISASTER) - RTR2IAFQ

The Empire State Building (C) sits between the Bank of America building (L) and the Chrysler Building (R) at sunset in New York. Image: REUTERS/Gary Hershorn

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Starting a business is hard no matter where it begins. Some locations, though, can make it easier to grow that business into a successful company, thanks to a combination of culture, talent, technology, and capital.

On Wednesday, Dell unveiled its 2016 Women Entrepreneurs study. The survey examined which cities would be most supportive to "high potential women entrepreneurs" — women who are building a business to surpass $1 million or more in revenue a year.

Most cities still have a long way to go to fully support the woman entrepreneurial community — the No. 1 city only scored a 'mediocre' score of 58 overall — but some places stand out from the pack.

Here's the list of the best cities for a high potential woman entrepreneur to start a business:

19. Sao Paulo

The Brazilian city got high marks for the city's "attitudes and expectations" toward women entrepreneurs, yet its access to capital is holding it back.

18. Mexico City

Better access to female mentors and role models would "go along way" for Mexico City, the survey said.

17. Tokyo

The Japanese city placed at the top of the list for market size, but it could do a better job helping women entrepreneurs access the market and find female role models.

16. Shanghai

Shanghai's market size was second compared to Tokyo's, but it's easier for women to break into it.

15. Taipei

Taipei, like Seoul and Tokyo, needs to work on increasing access to markets for women-owned businesses.

14. Hong Kong

Hong Kong is good for both capital and technology.

13. Beijing

Beijing excelled in technology and placed 6th overall for access to talent.

12. Austin

Austin topped the list for tech-friendly policies — a ranking that might change now that Lyft and Uber have announced their exits from the Texas city.

11. Munich

Munich gets high marks for its policies and strong women entrepreneurs, but the size of its markets and a lack of access to capital hold it back, the survey said.

The 10 best cities for women to start a business
Image: Dell

10. Seattle

Seattle is top for access to female mentors and role models. And there's a good proportion of funding that goes to women in the city.

9. Paris

Paris is one of the best for talent, culture, and market size, but it lacks capital and technology compared to other cities.

8. Sydney

Sydney is one of the top cities for women entrepreneurs, thanks to great access to mentors and increased connectivity.

7. Washington D.C.

America's capital city provides ready access to funding and talent, making it one of the top operating environments for women entrepreneurs.

6. Toronto

Toronto tops the list for its culture score: It has mentors, networks, and role models for women and the city has the right policy and attitude to support them.

5. Singapore

The island city-state in Southeast Asia is an ideal environment for women to launch a business venture thanks to its ample supply of talent, culture, and technology.

4. Stockholm

Stockholm tops the list for technology, which gives it an edge as a great "enabling environment" for women entrepreneurs.

3. London

London has better access to markets and capital for women entrepreneurs than most cities.

2. San Francisco Bay Area

The San Francisco Bay Area doles out the most money to businesses founded and led by women. Plus it has plenty of talent available for companies.

1. New York

New York ranks first for both being able to attract women entrepreneurs and to support them as they build their companies.

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Gender InequalityFuture of Work
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