According to a survey of female company presidents in Tokyo compiled by Tokyo Shoko Research, Ltd. (TSR), the number of female presidents in the capital rose by 10.3% over 2015 to reach 95,176 in 2016. The number of female presidents has increased every year since the survey was launched in 2010 and set a new high this year as well. More than 40% of the female presidents worked in the services industry, a field where it is easy to launch a company with little capital. The rise was reportedly bolstered by the government’s policies to empower women and “an increase in cases in which a woman who wants to take over a small or medium-sized company is made president,” according to TSR.
The number of female presidents rose 1.8-fold over the 2010 figure of 53,119. By prefecture, Tokyo had the largest number of female presidents, followed by Osaka (31,766) and Kanagawa (24,351).
Women made up 14.8% of all company presidents in Tokyo. Only Okinawa Prefecture (20.6%) and Fukuoka Prefecture (15.2%) outpaced Tokyo in terms of the percentage of female presidents.
By industry, women made up 45.2% of all presidents of service companies, with 43,016 women heading such companies. According to TSR, “there are many women presidents in the service industry because restaurants, beauty parlors, and the like can be set up with little capital and it is a field that requires attentiveness.”
By Tokyo municipality, Minato Ward had the highest number of women presidents at 11,001. Central urban areas where many companies are located had the highest number of women presidents. In terms of percentage of women presidents, however, Meguro Ward was highest (21.6%), followed by Setagaya Ward (21.0%), Kunitachi City (19.0%), and Musashino City (18.9%). “There tends to be a higher percentage of women heading companies in residential areas than in the center of Tokyo,” says TSR.
The survey found that Nihon University produced the highest number of female presidents, at 166, followed by Keio University at 164 and Waseda University at 133.