All in a name: UK’s ‘most careless’ business owners unveiled

  • Leo and Brenda the most accident prone business owner names
  • Norman and Frances are the UK’s most careful business owners
  • Men more likely to claim than women

Leo and Brenda have been labelled the UK’s ‘most careless’ business owners according to Simply Business, with research revealing the top male and female names most likely to run into trouble in the workplace.

Analysis from the UK’s largest business insurance provider, based on the claims data of almost a quarter of a million businesses, pitted Leos at the very top of the table, with 7.7 per cent of owners with that name claiming on their business insurance last year – nearly five times the national average (1.6 per cent). Brendas followed closely behind with 6.3 per cent.

Other men’s names featuring in the top five included Giuseppe, Desmond and Perry, while for women June, Gaynor, Naomi and Cheryl also proved among the most accident-prone.

On balance, men emerged as the most careless business owners – comprising 80 per cent of the top ten names most likely to make a claim. The claims themselves ranged from amputations to earthquakes, but theft, injury and accidental damage ranked as the most widespread.

At the other end of the scale, Norman took the title as the most careful name in the country – just ahead of Henry as the least likely to make a claim out of all the UK entrepreneurs studied. Frances was named most careful female business owner, narrowly pipping Hilary to the post.

Amongst small business trades, the mobile phone retail industry made the largest number of claims with 11.8 per cent of phone shops claiming in the last year, compared to an average of 1.6 per cent. Sweet shops, ice cream parlours and laundrettes also made it into the top ten most ‘careless’ trades, while masseur is statistically the ‘safest’ profession, receiving the least claims per business owner out of all the trades covered.

Scotland ranked as the ‘riskiest’ region in the country, with entrepreneurs north of the border claiming more frequently than the rest of the UK. Delving into towns and cities across the country, the findings suggest that businesses in central London are most likely to make a claim followed by Bradford and Kirkaldy in Scotland, implicating these areas as some of riskiest places in the country to start a business.

In comparison, the South West was the most careful region of the UK, with business owners claiming less than any other region in the country.

Jason Stockwood, CEO of Simply Business, commented:

“We conducted this research to investigate any correlations that might exist between people, places and professions in insurance claims behaviour. While we wouldn’t generalise this to all business owners, the results do seem to suggest that certain names can have less luck than others, even if it’s through no fault of their own. For example injury and accidental damage featured heavily amongst the claims for male names in our top ten, whereas damage to property dominated the female ranks. Amongst our top ten names for men and women we received claims for a fracture from a painter & decorator, laceration from a pub landlord and escape of water from a coffee shop owner. The data was also interesting at trade level, revealing the extent to which certain retail business owners are particularly susceptible to theft.

“On the flipside, we discovered some interesting businesses with exceptionally low claims data, such as masseurs, florists and jewellers, suggesting these businesses are particularly adept at safeguarding themselves. Any of these trades run by people with our ‘safest’ names such as Norman and Frances might well offer the winning formula for the UK’s safest business ventures.”

Careless and careful businesses (Infographic) Source: Simply Business

For further information, please contact:

Simply Business Media:
Sophie Howard / Ben Jenkins
+44 20 7009 3128 / +44 20 7009 814

About Simply Business

Simply Business is the UK’s biggest business insurance provider, specialising in public liability insurance for SMEs and landlord insurance.

Launched in 2005, Simply Business provides an online brokerage service delivering policies tailored to individual business requirements. It has a team of UK based insurance specialists and employs almost 300 people across offices in London and Northampton.

Simply Business provides insurance to more than 400,000 UK SMEs and landlords and owing to its internal underwriting capability can cover over 1,000 trade types. It has been a Sunday Times Tech Track 100 company for the past three years and was recently named in the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA. Revenues have grown from £4.2 million in 2006, to £25.4 million in 2014, and the company has been named 2015 and 2016 winners of The Sunday Times’ Best Company to Work For.