UK Entrepreneurs are getting younger

Study of 160,000 British small businesses reveals a 4% increase in proportion of young business owners in the last 3 years

Analysis by Simply Business has found that the average age of UK small business owners fell between 2007 and 2010 as the number of young entrepreneurs choosing to start their own business has grown dramatically.

Among UK small business owners the fastest growing age groups over the last three years have been 18-24 years and 25-34 years, producing a dramatic change in the composition of Britain’s entrepreneurial landscape.

Simply Business is the UK’s leading small business insurance broker and the analysis was based on the profiles of its 160,000 small business customers.

The proportion of small businesses owned by 18-25 year olds has risen by 4% in the past three years, whilst those owned by 25-34 year olds has risen by 6.5%. The proportion of businesses run by owners over the age of 35 has shown a slow but steady decline since 2007, with a 3% fall in the 35-44 age bracket and a 3.6% fall in 45-54 year olds.

This pattern has been seen in every region of the country but is most pronounced in London, which saw a 14% rise in owners aged 34 and under over the last three years. The North East and Scotland saw the next-biggest rises, with an 11% increase in small business owners aged 34 and under.

Rebecca Holder, 24, founder of an online UK handmade merchandise and craft company called The Emporium Oundle, said: “Having graduated from University earlier this year with a good degree, I spent months trying to find employment but with no success. I soon realised that in order to find employment I would have to make a job for myself, rather than just waiting for one to land in my lap”.

“Initially it was a very daunting process as I had no idea about how to run a business. However, with the support of family, friends and third parties such as The Prince’s Trust and Simply Business, I have significantly improved my understanding of how to manage a company. It’s been a steep learning curve but I’m having a great time and enjoying the challenge”.

Jason Stockwood, CEO of Simply Business, commented: “This data shows that young people are adapting to a challenging employment landscape by taking their destiny in to their own hands and starting a business. In the summer, David Willetts, the Universities Minister, suggested graduates were thinking more and more about a start-up as an alternative to a graduate scheme. Our data supports this view, it’s a really inspiring picture.”

For further information, or to arrange an interview please contact:

Eleanor Gough, Simply Business
+44 207 920 8010
[email protected]

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 475,000 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.