On The Up

The small business advent calendar: 10 December Another treat as Christmas creeps closer

Hannah Wilkinson | 10 December 2015 | 8 years ago

december 10

Behind door number ten are some inspiring statistics about the older entrepreneurs making the most of retirement to start new businesses.

Some ten per cent of self-employed people were over 65 years old in 2014 according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and the average age of a self-employed worker is 47, making them seven years older than the typical employee.

A recent Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) UK report revealed that a record number of over 50s were starting their own businesses with over seven per cent engaged in some sort of entrepreneurial activity in 2014.

this is particularly the case for men and one possible interpretation is that older men find it difficult to get back into the labour market, said Mark Hart, one of the academic at Aston Business School who worked on the GEM project.

Additional research by Barclays published in October showed that ageism hindered many over 50s looking for new jobs.

But analysis by Saga in March found that only five per cent of self-employed older people would prefer to be working for someone else. Some 77 per cent of all self-employed respondents to the survey cited the lure of the independence offered by running your own business as the primary reason for their situation.

And a recent later-life entrepreneurs study by AXA Wealth revealed that over half a million over 55s were planning on using changes to pensions to start their own company.

Margaret Mountford, a former advisor to Alan Sugar on The Apprentice, commented on the findings: This trend has come about as a result of a combination of things: longevity, health, and the fact people can get hold of some of their pension money. You may think the word pensioner suggests that image of the old people crossing the road, but it’s not like that now. People are looking for a lifestyle change doing something different but staying active.

Businesses with older founders have much higher success rates than those started by their younger counterparts. Some 70 per cent of enterprises started by older entrepreneurs last more than three years, compared 28 per cent of firms with younger owners.

don’t miss the next instalment of our small business advent calendar come back tomorrow to find out what is behind door number 11.

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On The Up

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