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Named Among Top 100

 

Chicopee Industrial Contractors, Inc. is Named Among Top 100 Woman-led Businesses in State 

 

12/06/2005

 

PRESS RELEASE
For Immediate Release

 

STUDY FINDS THAT WOMAN-RUN BUSINESSES IN MASSACHUSETTS OUTPACE THE NATION IN GROWTH

 

CHICOPEE, MA, December 6, 2005 - Chicopee Industrial Contractors was selected as one of the Top 100 Woman-led business in Massachusetts as part of a major research study released by Babson College and The Commonwealth Institute. The Top Woman-Led Businesses in Massachusetts: Lessons from 2000 to 2004 study finds that 54 percent of woman-led businesses in Massachusetts have achieved annual growth greater than five percent from 2003 to 2004, outpacing the national rate. An additional 18 percent of the companies grew between one and five percent during that timeframe.

 

The study underscores the significant contribution that woman-led businesses across all industries are making to the Massachusetts economy - the 215 companies participating in the research this year generated more than $7.8 billion in 2004, and employed 24,510 people. Additionally, 43 companies that have participated over a five-year period have realized productivity gains of 15.9 percent over that timeframe.

 

The 2004 Top Woman-Led Businesses in Massachusetts research study was co-developed by The Center for Women's Leadership at Babson College and The Commonwealth Institute. This study, which is being conducted for the fourth time and covers a five-year timeframe, identifies the top 100 woman-led businesses in the state and includes data from 215 woman-led firms. According to the survey, the top five woman-led businesses in Massachusetts based on 2004 revenues are: Cumberland Farms Inc. in the number one spot; followed by National Grid New England Distribution (formerly Massachusetts Electric Company); Axcelis Technologies; Agar Supply Co., Inc.; and Garber Travel.

 

The success of Massachusetts woman-led companies can be attributed to many factors, including: the achievement orientation of women CEOs, a management philosophy that focuses on customer and employee satisfaction, and the CEOs strong emphasis on education and learning. Findings from the total group of 215 respondents uncovers key trends about woman-led businesses:


* Women CEOs are ambitious and are primarily motivated by personal achievement (85%) and a desire for challenge (80%). Debunking the stereotype that women are driven to start businesses solely out of economic necessity, more than 54 percent stated that economic necessity was barely a motivator or none at all. Similarly, while nearly 32 percent cited the glass ceiling as a motivator, 48 percent said it was minimally a motivator or none at all. These findings replicate those first identified in the 2000 study.


* Establishing strong customer and employee relationships are considered the cornerstones to conducting business. The women CEOs cited customer satisfaction as the leading factor in doing business (97 percent), followed by key human resource issues: employee satisfaction (92 percent), company culture (81 percent) and work/life balance (67 percent). These areas were ranked higher as daily business priorities than rapid sales growth, high profitability, personal financial reward, high market share and personal autonomy and control.

* Of the 43 companies that consistently participated in the study over a five-year period from 2000-2004, the average company grew nearly 27 percent from revenues of $13.9 million in 2000 to revenues of $17.9 million in 2004. In the same timeframe, average employment increased by 9.5 percent, resulting in productivity gains of 15.9 percent.

 

* The woman-led firms are solidly focused on future growth. Ninety-two percent of the companies expect to grow over the next two years, and 59 percent are anticipating growth of five percent or more annually. The primary focus for growth is through new clients and customer accounts, followed by new products and new geographic markets. Most firms expect to finance growth through cash flow from operations, short-term debt and retained earnings reinvestment.

 

* Women leaders have a long-term commitment to building their careers and their businesses. The typical CEO of woman-led companies has 27 years of work experience, and 13 years in her current position. These leaders are well educated and are committed to ongoing learning. They tap mentors for business advice and - despite the preponderance of privately held firms - are savvy users of formal boards of directors and advisors.

 

* Women CEOs in Massachusetts combine entrepreneurial vision with an ability to successfully manage and grow their companies.

 

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