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  • Writer's pictureCalla Norman

Why Pittsburgh is a Great City for Women-Owned Businesses

Updated: Aug 10, 2021

There are many reasons to love Pittsburgh, such as its walkability, blue-collar history, and bustling food scene. Here at Honeycomb, we especially love the fact that it’s a great place for women-owned businesses to get a start!

Read on to find out why Pittsburgh is well-suited for supporting female entrepreneurs, the different resources available to women-owned businesses, and some examples of some of our favorite female business owners in the area.

Pittsburgh skyline with caption "Why Pittsburgh is a Great City for Women-Owned Businesses"

1. There are a multitude of resources for women entrepreneurs

The first reason that Pittsburgh is a city perfect for women-owned businesses is that there are so many women-centered resources available right in the city.

The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University offers counseling, workshops, labs, networking opportunities, and other resources all aimed at women entrepreneurs.

Additionally, Pittsburgh’s network of amazing universities also has many resources for small business owners. In addition to the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham that we mentioned earlier, Duquesne University and the University of Pittsburgh both have Small Business Development Centers that have tons of resources for any aspiring business owners.

Also, Pittsburgh is home to many women-centered pitch competitions and accelerator programs, such as the Invest in Her competition and IncubateHer. There’s also Catapult and the Prototype Incubator, so there are many options to choose from.

There are more than 500 women- and minority-owned businesses in Pittsburgh, so a vast network of female entrepreneurs like you who have your back and can act as inspiration or resources - but more on them later.

2. Pittsburgh has a blossoming economy for small businesses and is working on improving diversity and equity

After spending any amount of time in a Pittsburgh neighborhood, it’s highly likely that you’re going to run into a small business. In fact, in 2019 Pittsburgh was actually ranked the best city to start a small business, period.

So, it’s a fabulous city for small businesses, yes, but is it a great place for women business owners? Thanks to all the industry in Pittsburgh’s history, it receives the second-highest number of foundation dollars in the country, and much of that money goes to helping minorities and women get contracts and help with starting their business.

Last year, the City of Pittsburgh awarded 37% more contracts to agencies run by minorities and women, indicating that there is growth in equitable practices at even the governmental level.

3. You’re in good company, surrounded by other women-owned businesses

If you aren’t already convinced that Pittsburgh is a great place to start a women-owned business, we have some friends we’d like you to meet.

Honeycomb has had the honor of hosting campaigns for a number of successful women-run businesses in the area, and we’re so proud to have them in our network!

Sherree and Jeanne, owners of My Goodness Market in Pittsburgh

Sherree Goldstein is a local restaurant owner whose campaign to build a restaurant space in East Liberty has been one of our most successful campaigns yet, raising $250,000 on Honeycomb! Square Cafe is a neighborhood institution with its delicious brunch and is also known as one of the most philanthropic restaurants in the Pittsburgh area.

Sheree is also co-founder of My Goodness in Regent Square along with Jeanne Herbert, which was another successful Honeycomb Campaign.

One of our recent Honeycomb alumni is Stephanie Nicolaas of Tonic Coffee in Lawrenceville, a woman-owned coffee shop with the goal of supporting other women in coffee.

Stephanie raised $30,000 to purchase necessary equipment for her specialty coffee shop that is coming soon to her neighborhood and also hire two new baristas to sling out caffeinated masterpieces.

Not only will Stephanie’s business support women in the area, but also all over the world, as she’s planning to source her coffee beans from women farmers through a partnership with Sey Coffee.

Women-owned businesses are the future, so why not be a part of it?

Wherever you decide to locate your business, you can look to your community to help fund your business journey with the help of a Honeycomb crowd investing campaign! Learn more at

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