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This is the face of female micro-entrepreneurship in Mexico and its transformation

The Nenis play a special role in the economic recovery of the country. This is what they think and the supports they require.

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This article was translated from our Spanish edition. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The New Internet Business Entrepreneurs, known as “las Nenis” play a special role in the economic reactivation of Mexico. However, the majority (eight out of 10) operate informally, lack access to traditional credit (seven out of 10) and express a lack of support and fear for their safety.

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This was revealed by a study carried out jointly by Tala and Metrics, which analyzed the conversations on social networks and the media that took place around the Nenis during the period from June 2020 to May 2021. This social listening (technique that consists of proactively monitoring millions of conversations on the Internet), extracted the aspirations, fears and feelings that characterize these new microentrepreneurs, from which the following emerged:

Who are they?

The woman who has a small business that, most of the time, runs entirely on her own.

  • 10% are under 30 years old.
  • 33% of 30-40 years.
  • 36% of 40-50 years.
  • 30% 20 years or more.
  • 19% are single.
  • 67% as a couple.
  • 14% divorced or widowed.

How are they perceived?

  • 40% are proud to undertake.
  • 25% do it to support their families.
  • 20% feel strong in the face of the pandemic.
  • 10% feel grateful for being part of this segment.
  • 5% are in charge of the house.

Courtesy Tala

What worries them?

  • 46% security.
  • 18% credits for women.
  • 18% market regulation.
  • 18% education and courses.

What do you sell?

  • 43% clothing
  • 21% makeup
  • 10% jewelry and other accessories.
  • 8% footwear
  • 7% skin care products.
  • 4% kitchen products.
  • 4% gifts
  • 3% mobile phones and covers.

These conversations revealed that users celebrate the visibility of the “las nenis” movement and indicate that they are hard-working women who offer a variety of services. 84% have a positive attitude towards them.

16% have a negative attitude towards the Nenis; They share some negative experiences they have had during purchases they have made with them and consider that the income generated from these movements should be regulated.

Logistics

  • More than 90% of Nenis sales are physical products that require delivery.
  • 10% have considered logistics in their planning.

Logistics and deliveries, despite being a key element when launching a micro-enterprise, is rarely considered by the Nenis, said Griselda Hernández, CMO of Estafeta. “By trying to make their deliveries alone, they are unnecessarily exposing themselves to dangers of all kinds. And beyond the physical danger, when they are making personal deliveries, they stop focusing on creating and promoting their merchandise and services, ”he commented.

“Logistics and last mile deliveries are an essential service in the development of the digital economy. Making use of logistics services for deliveries represents greater security, punctuality, greater scope and range of clients ”, he added.

That is why Estafeta is deeply committed to promoting the Nenis. In recent months, it has implemented important changes in its service model to provide greater security, convenience and training to microentrepreneurs, explained the management.

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Financing

  • 90% of the Nenis requested a loan to invest in their business.

The study carried out by Tala revealed that 53% of the Nenis generated more in 2021 than in 2020. "The Neni segment plans financing in an orderly and progressive manner to be able to make inventory purchases or payments to suppliers", highlighted Aurora Chávez, Senior Tala's UX Research, a digital financial services platform that has been defined by alternate credit assessment methods.

90% of the Nenis applied for a loan to invest in their business and only 20% reported problems paying their debts. "It is imperative to support the Nenis by breaking down barriers, offering support and fostering their survival and growth," said David Lask, CEO of Tala Mobile.

Why is this relevant? Because generally people are excluded from the formal financial system due to the lack of history or credit score, a situation experienced by the Nenis, explained the manager.

The specialists agreed that digitization and credits are not enough to consolidate this segment, it is just the beginning, which is why they made a call to continue promoting these digital microentrepreneurs.