60% of women want to start their own business

Nearly two thirds of women in the UK would ideally like to start their own business, a new survey has found. The poll, by Avon, found that 60% of women wanted to run their own business as they felt it would improve their own work/life balance.

Of those who had taken the first steps of looking into starting a business, 45% said they had not followed through on the initial idea. The most common reasons given were that fear held them back or that the whole process seemed too complicated.

The fear of failing in a new business is not restricted to female would-be entrepreneurs of course. A 2015 study by consumer goods company Amway, looked at the desire people had to start their own businesses across a number of different countries, the chances that they would be put off doing so, and their confidence in actually getting a new business up and running.

The UK came 22nd of 44 countries surveyed for entrepreneurial spirit. UK respondents cited a lack of finances and business knowledge as factors that would potentially put them off starting a business but the number one reason, given by 70% of male and female respondents, was the fear of not succeeding.

There is always a risk in starting a new business and many do end up facing insolvency or liquidation. The most recent figures released by the Office for National Statistics showed that there were 246,000 business deaths in 2014, representing 9.6% of all businesses that were active that year. More than half of new businesses failed to survive beyond five years but despite all these factors, there were more start-ups recorded last year than ever before in the UK.

Recent figures released by Companies House show that 608,100 new businesses were launched in 2015, beating the 581,173 started in 2014 and setting a new record for the fourth consecutive year. SMEs now make up more than 99% of all UK businesses and generate around 47% of all private sector turnover in the UK.

By Phil Smith

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