UK entrepreneurs across the country remain as optimistic as in 2017, yet the appetite among the general population to launch a business has decreased. Among the start-up environment, the British young entrepreneurs remain resilient showing the highest levels of motivation and highest hopes for the next years regarding their entrepreneurship plans.
This second edition of the Idinvest Barometer on entrepreneurship reflects a ‘wait-and-see’ mood across the country. When we compare the results with the 2017 Barometer, there is undoubtedly a greater sense of caution, reflected in the 20% decrease in the percentage of the population motivated to start a business. However, these findings also show that would be entrepreneurs in the 18 -29 age group’s commitment to starting a new business has not been dented and that they are demonstrating a youthful resilience and optimism. Respondents in this age category were 20% more likely to be motivated to start a business. Unsurprisingly young respondents were also found to rate ‘ambition’ and ‘risk-tasking’ as more important personal values for entrepreneurs than those in the older generation. All in all, the survey confirms that entrepreneurs in general are a ‘class apart’ with a sustained and steady optimism in their capacities and the start-up environment in the UK.
Some key figures:
- A start up capital: 49% of Londoners are motivated to start a business, which is 16% higher than UK as a whole
- 33% the population still consider the UK ‘one of the best countries to start a business‘ down from 44% in 2017
- Germany, Scandinavia and Sweden are thought of as the best locations to start a business in Europe outside of the UK
- Entrepreneurs are systematically more optimistic than the overall population on issues such as economic growth (+17%), employment (+17%), purchasing power (+18%), and inflation (+12%)
The profile of a British Entrepreneur
Being motivated to start a business is not a forward-looking perspective: 31% of those potentially interested have a concrete and thorough plan to execute the project in the next coming year (2 points more than the last survey). The two sectors that are more attractive for entrepreneurs are wholesale/retail trade, and the arts, entertainment and leisure activities.
This particular interest by sector hasn’t changed much in one year.
In comparison with the last survey, the motivations behind entrepreneurship have slightly changed over the last twelve years. While ‘financial success’ and ‘expected increase in income’ were the first motivations in 2017, this time those financial motivations arrive in second place, behind a set of motivations linked with the will of being ‘free and independent’ and to develop ‘an idea for a product or business with potential’.
The profile of the young British entrepreneur
Compared with the general population of entrepreneurs, the young UK entrepreneurs show some particularities.
They are for example significantly more interested in the sector of hotels and restaurants (+ 4 points than the average entrepreneur), as well as regarding the financial and insurance activities (+ 5 points than the average entrepreneur). Compared to the overall population of entrepreneurs, the group aged between 18 and 29 are more inclined to use as sources of financing some private equity funds (+ 6 points than the average entrepreneur), contributions from their relatives (+ 5 points than the average entrepreneur) and public sector assistance
(+ 5 points than the average entrepreneur). Those young entrepreneurs are also more sensitive to some sectors, which they judge more attractive and more promising for the future compared to the whole population of entrepreneurs such as water, manufacturing and energy (+ 6 points than the average entrepreneur), education, healthcare and social action (+6 points than the average entrepreneur) and real estate (+5 points more than the average entrepreneur).