Gender, Credit Constraints and Performance of SMEs in Cameroon

Serge, Piabuo & Baye, Francis & Tieguhong, Julius. (2015). Effects of credit constraints on the productivity of small and medium-sized enterprises in Cameroon.


The role of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in providing productive employment and earning opportunities has emerged as an important concern among policy makers, donor agencies and researchers. It is estimated that women-owned businesses account for over one-third of all firms, and they are the majority of businesses in the informal sector in African countries. Second, the ability of women to formalize and grow their businesses, to create jobs, and to enhance productivity is hampered where legal and institutional barriers exist that affect men’s and women’s enterprises differently. Despite the growing body of research on female managed and/or owned firms’ under-performance hypothesis, as well as on the difficulties female entrepreneurs faced in applying for and securing loans, there are no studies aimed at analysing the gender discrimination in credit access and its effect on SMEs’ performance in an African context.. Secondly, the literature on gender discrimination on the capital market is almost always conducted in the US or in Europe. This study will examine entrepreneurs’ gender and financial constraints trying to relate the later to firm performance in Cameroon.