Business development ยท 7 March 2016

Growth in serial entrepreneurs seen as key for future startup success

Serial entrepreneurs tend to prefer a detached, portfolio approach to running businesses
The potential for Britain?s community of serial entrepreneurs to feed back into the UK economy and increase the potential for success for first-time business owners has been realised by the findings of a new study.

By providing mentoring and advice based on the success or failure of previous experiences, serial entrepreneurs hold unique attributes which could provide valuable insights for one-time startup founders.

Released by Coutts and the Centre for Entrepreneurs (CFE), the report, entitled ?Beyond the first business: the myths, risks and rewards of being a serial entrepreneur?, provided an overview of the depth and reach of serial entrepreneurship in the UK.

It found that whilst 80 per cent of first-time business owners enjoy being immersed in the day-to-day operations of running a business, just 55 per cent of serial entrepreneurs do, as they tend to prefer a more detached portfolio approach.

Serial entrepreneurs were found to be less afraid of failure, with just 13 per cent expressing a fear of failing in business as opposed to 40 per cent of first-time entrepreneurs. Luck was hailed as less important by entrepreneurs as they gain business experience ? 36 per cent of six-to-ten time startup founders recognised the good fortune that helped their businesses succeed as opposed to 67 per cent of first-time founders.

Exploring the motivations, fears and ingredients for success surrounding UK entrepreneurialism in its different guises, the report indicated that serial entrepreneurialism could help foster a new network of support for first-time business owners.

?To go beyond the first business can be an entirely different challenge to being a one-time founder,? said CFE director Matt Smith.

?Millennials are widely challenging the notion that entrepreneurs hang up their boots and retire after just one business. Entrepreneurs are starting businesses younger and have faster expectations to sell ??these factors together with longer life expectancy means we are starting to see a new breed of serial entrepreneurs,? added Smith.

Individuals were generally found to be starting a business at a younger age, with 57 per cent of entrepreneurs surveyed stating that they?d established their first venture by the age of 25 as opposed to 23 per cent by the age of 35.

Younger entrepreneurs were also more impatient to exit a business, with 63 per cent reportedly planning to exit their current venture within the next five years, versus 46 per cent of those aged 35 and over.

Looking to build your startup into a business with sustainable, long-term growth? Read our expert’s guide on how to recruit wisely.

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Fred Heritage was previously deputy editor at Business Advice. He has a BA in politics and international relations from the University of Kent and an MA in international conflict from Kings College London.

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