Young people aspire to be entrepreneurs

A lack of jobs and higher university tuition fees have led to a growing number of teenagers and young people aspiring to be their own boss, research finds.

According to a study of 1,000 young respondents by PC World Business, nearly half (44 per cent) are looking to set up their own business, with four fifths of 16 year olds reporting that they have had a business idea.

Some 44 per cent claim they could run their whole business using just a laptop.

Almost half of those surveyed are aiming to set up on their own in the next two years and an ambitious 19 per cent are looking to set up their business in the next six months.

Celebrity business programmes, such as The Apprentice and Dragon’s Den, are influencing this group of young business stars, with nearly half (49 per cent) claiming they are more aware of entrepreneurial career options after watching business TV programmes.

Jamie Murray Wells, founder of Glasses Direct says, “As someone who started a business while at university, I am a big believer in helping those people with the drive, knowledge and business ideas to set up on their own.’

Even though more young people are looking to start a business, the research finds that there are barriers to setting up on your own. When asked what is stopping them from setting up their own business, 42 per cent claim lack of funding is the biggest hurdle and 29 per cent say they do not know where to start.

However, they were aware of the resources available to help them with their business, with 40 per cent saying they would use the internet for advice, followed closely by mum and dad (38 per cent) and the bank (29 per cent).

Entrepreneurial Britain ‘thriving’

One in four people (23 per cent) have dreams of starting a business, according to a study.

Research from business software provider Sage reveals that creating an environment in which entrepreneurs can realise their ambitions is seen as critical to the UK’s economic recovery.

The YouGov study suggests that the country’s current economic dependence on the South East will start to gravitate northwards over time, with cities such as Newcastle, Sunderland, Sheffield and Leeds projected to be rife with new businesses.

Of the one in four people that want to start a business, 7 per cent will be doing so in the next two years, with the North East having the highest percentage of budding entrepreneurs (11 per cent).

Prospective start-ups in this region are driven overwhelmingly by the desire to do something they are passionate about full time (38 per cent).

Would-be business owners in the North East are also motivated by wanting to make more money for themselves (18 per cent) and wanting to have greater control over their working day by being their own boss (12 per cent).

Nationwide, the research reveals that lack of job opportunities as the principle motivator was at its lowest here at just 4 per cent, less than half the national average (10 per cent).

People in Yorkshire and the Humber region, the second most entrepreneurial area, echo these trends with one in ten people planning to start a business, and only 8 per cent of entrepreneurs being driven by a lack of employment opportunities.

However, just 5 per cent of people plan on starting their own business in Scotland.

Lee Perkins, managing director of the small business division at Sage says, ‘The UK business landscape is changing. The home for entrepreneurism, which has for so long been associated with London and the South East is moving North, and this will have a significant impact on regional economies.

‘The rollout of technology infrastructure, such as superfast broadband, alongside access to guidance and advice will be instrumental to any region becoming a hub for start-ups and in order for entrepreneurs to fulfil their potential. But what is clear is that entrepreneurial Britain is thriving.’

Alan Dobie

Alan Dobie

Alan was assistant editor at Vitesse Media Plc (previous owner of before moving on to a content producer role at Reed Business Information. He has over 17 years of experience in the...

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