Half of the UK’s newest business owners are millennials

The largest proportion of new businesses were started by millennials, according to a study based on figures from Companies House

Almost half (49 per cent) of new business owners since July 2020 are between the age of 25 and 40.

More than 227,000 businesses were set up by millennials in the past 11 months by 14.2m (1.6 per cent) of people in that age range.

Meanwhile, Generation X (aged between 41 and 56) set up a third of new businesses. Baby boomers – currently aged between 57 and 75 – set up 9.6 per cent of businesses and Generation Z, 16-24-year-olds, launched 7.8 per cent of new companies.

Figures come from a study conducted by cloud accounting company Ember, analysing 400,000 records from Companies House.

Ilford is the most entrepreneurial area in the UK, followed by Manchester and Dagenham. Romford is in fourth, Hayes is fifth and Southall six. This means that five of the six most entrepreneurial places in the UK are London boroughs. However, the capital is 25 on the list for ratio of new businesses to population.

AreaRatio of new businesses to population

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The most popular type of new business is eCommerce. More than 26,000 new companies registered as ‘retail sale via mail order houses or via Internet’. The second most popular type of new business is defined as ‘management consultancy activities other than financial management’, which saw more than 14,000 new providers.

In third place was ‘Other service activities n.e.c.’, which can include a vast range of businesses – from pet sitting services and pavement artist, to tattooist and genealogist.

David is the most common name of new male entrepreneurs while Sarah is the most common name of new female entrepreneurs.

RankWomen's namesMen's names
6Claire Daniel
8Charlotte Christopher

Commenting on the study, Ember co-founder Daniel Hogan said: “It’s fascinating to see the trends and themes that emerge when we look at the UK’s newest entrepreneurs. The country has had to adapt to massive changes over the past year, so despite the uncertainty it’s inspiring to see so many people taking the initiative to set up their own business.”

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Anna Jordan

Anna is Senior Reporter, covering topics affecting SMEs such as grant funding, managing employees and the day-to-day running of a business.