7 Easy Loans for Women-owned Businesses in India

women business grants

The number of women-owned businesses has risen to 8.05 million, which makes 14 per cent of the total 58.5 million businesses in India, as per Global Women Entrepreneurs Leader report released in 2015. In support of the rising women leaders in the country who face difficulty in accumulating the capital, many banks have laid down steps to maximise the potential of the women of India by offering special loans at attractive interest rates.

These special schemes offer flexibility in terms of collateral security as well as interest rates. The list of these beneficial loans is as follows

Annapurna Scheme:

  • The scheme is for women entrepreneurs who want to set up food catering units
  • The maximum loan amount provided on this composite term loan is INR 50,000
  • The loan needs to be repaid in 36 monthly instalments
  • There is a one month ‘EMI free’ period after the loan is disbursed
  • This loan requires a guarantor and assets to be submitted as collateral
  • The interest rate applicable on this loan is as per market rate

Stree Shakthi Package:

  • This package is available for women entrepreneurs who enjoy a 50 per cent ownership in a firm or business
  • Most State Bank branches offer this scheme
  • Women are eligible for a 0.50 per cent concession on the interest if the loan amount exceeds INR 2 lakhs
  • Development Programmes organised by state level agencies are eligible to apply

Bharatiya Mahila Bank

  • This bank supports and encourages women entrepreneurs to start their new ventures
  • This bank offers loans for the retail sector, loan against property, MICRO loans, and SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) loans

Dena Shakti Scheme

  • This scheme offered by Dena Bank aims at providing financial assistance to women entrepreneurs
  • Women benefit from a 0.25 per cent reduction on the interest rate
  • This loan is available for entrepreneurs engaged in agriculture, manufacturing, micro-credit, retail stores or small enterprises

Udyogini Scheme

  • This scheme is promoted by Punjab and Sind Bank
  • This loan is available at lower interest rates and on flexible terms
  • The loan can be used for agricultural activities, retail, and small-business enterprises

Cent Kalyani Scheme

  • This scheme has been launched by Central Bank of India
  • It is available for self-employed women and women employed in village and cottage industries, micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), agriculture and allied activities, retail trade and government sponsored programmes
  • The interest rate varies from one sector to another and is based on market rates

Mahila Udyam Nidhi Scheme

  • This scheme has been launched by Punjab National Bank
  • This scheme is mainly targeted towards the small-scale sector
  • Women can avail of a loan up to INR 10 lakh
  • This soft loan is repayable within ten years
  • The interest rates are dependent on market rates and are revised periodically There are special loans catering to beauty parlours, day care centres, buying auto rickshaws, two-wheelers and cars
  • The rate of interest varies for each of these loans

Out of the 14 per cent women-led-businesses over 79 per cent are self-financed, as many female entrepreneurs are not aware of the different benefits that they can avail of. Given the scenario, keeping information about various loans handy can help women leaders further their cause with better financial freedom as well as stability.


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