Young women lead the way in UK start-ups

Women under the age of 35 are more likely to succeed than their male counterparts when it comes to starting a business, new research has revealed.

According to research by Microsoft 365, new businesses run by those under 35 are three times less likely to run at a loss when compared to those run by over 55s.

While just 3% of those run by the younger age bracket run at a loss, that figure rises to 9% for the older generation.

There was a noticeable difference between the sexes too, with men four times as likely to create a business that runs at a loss than women.

Just 2% of women run a firm that is losing out, compared to 8% of men in the same position, while Bristol is the best location to launch a business, as 86% of firms were currently recording a healthy profit.

A total of 250 people took part in the study and all had aspirations to own their own business, although those plans are yet to be implemented.

Many of the younger generation were found to have significant barriers to launching their own business.

Some 55% cited a lack of funds as a reason for delaying plans while 35% pointed to more general financial risks, 23% blamed a lack of experience and 21% said they simply didn’t know where to start.

Despite all of these factors, less than one in five of the aspiring business owners said they felt having a mentor is important to the process.

When it came to reasons for beginning a business, half said they wanted to be their own boss while 38% said it provided more flexible opportunities to work.

Figures from earlier in 2016 from Ormsby Street show that although 91% of start-ups survive their first year of trading, that figure slumps to 40% after five years.

There are any number of reasons why a business may be left facing insolvency or the need for restructuring, with late payments, cash flow issues, a lack of access to alternative finance options and poor management the major reasons.

Those fearing financial issues should seek help and advice from an insolvency practitioner at the earliest opportunity, as acting early can mean there are a wider range of solutions available.

By Phil Smith

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