Young professionals blocked from starting a business

Young professionals don't have the right contacts or the finance to launch their dream business, a new study reveals.

Almost a third of 18-24 year olds have started or are considering starting a business and young professionals are three times as likely to write a business plan than any other age group, new research reveals today.

However, the study by the New Entrepreneurs Foundation finds that 50 per cent of these young professionals are stumbling to get their entrepreneurial dreams off the ground due to poor access to finance, a lack of business skills and the right contacts.

A resourceful, optimistic and entrepreneurial generation

While the study recognises the barriers holding some would-be entrepreneurs back, the NEF study also reveals that those aged between 18-24 years who have thought about or started their own business are resourceful in finding new ways to acquire missing attributes.

Young founders are four times more likely than all UK adults to have done an apprenticeship as a way to help start setting up their own business (16 per cent vs 4 per cent), join university business societies (12 per cent), get advice from family (25 per cent) and use accelerators/incubators (6 per cent) as alternative ways to help them progress.

When it comes to their hopes and aspirations, the study shows that the next generation of business leaders are optimistic about the changes they can make to the world.

A fifth (21 per cent) of young UK adults see themselves running global organisations that significantly changes the world but are also wary of the risks involved in doing so.

The research says 85 per cent of young UK adults understand that entrepreneurship is a career gamble but more than four-fifths (82 per cent) say that they can make a lot of money as an entrepreneur.

Neeta Patel, CEO of the New Entrepreneurs Foundation, thinks that even in the turbulent times we live in, it is good to see that young people are enthusiastic about creating a business.

She says, ‘It is clear to see that they are stumbling before they can even get a chance to begin. While 30 per cent of young adults are writing business plans and almost 10 per cent suggest they will start a business in the year ahead, it is the lack of access to finance, business skills and networks that is holding them back.

‘We must give these young people the very best chance to succeed by helping them jump over these hurdles.’

Further reading on alternative finance

Owen Gough, SmallBusiness UK

Owen Gough

Owen was a reporter for Bonhill Group plc writing across the and titles before moving on to be a Digital Technology reporter for the

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