27 Amazing Entrepreneur Statistics for 2020

While entrepreneurship was once for the business-minded at the top of their game, ecommerce and cloud capabilities have seen a drastic rise in entrepreneurs in the UK. 

The thing is:

People who had never even contemplated entering the business landscape are now managing to build successful businesses with little more than a good idea and a home computer. 

What’s more: 

Many of them are seeing high levels of success to boot.

To see just how much entrepreneurs are beginning to dominate the modern market, you only have to look at our latest entrepreneur statistics

These mind-blowing stats paint a pretty compelling picture of who’s making it big and how they’re doing it!

Whether you’re interested in starting something new yourself or you simply want to better understand this new business landscape, we’ve got you covered.

Amazing Entrepreneur Facts (Editor’s Pick)

  • 31% of entrepreneurs are between 45-54.
  • 29.4% of entrepreneurs have only an A level or equivalent.
  • Two-thirds of entrepreneurs had no management experience before starting their companies.
  • Women run only 14% of small and medium UK businesses.
  • There were 5.82 million small businesses in the UK at the start of 2019.
  • 50.1% of small businesses in London succeed.
  • Small businesses in Scotland enjoy the highest success rates (61.2%).
  • 22.5% of small businesses fail in their first year.
  • There are 582 million entrepreneurs in the world.

Entrepreneur Statistics UK

1. The majority of entrepreneurs are between the age of 40 and 60.

(Startups)

According to entrepreneur stats, a 31% majority of businesses are now started by individuals between 45-54. By comparison, just 25% of entrepreneurs are 35-44, and 6% are between the ages of 55-64. This figure plummets even further into later life, with a mere 7% of entrepreneurs now over 65. Equally, just 9% of small business owners are under 35.

2. 29.4% of entrepreneurs have only an A level or equivalent.

(Startups)

Statistics about entrepreneurs also reveal that, far from being university-educated, an impressive 29.4% of entrepreneurs have education levels no higher than A level, with just 9% holding a Bachelors’s in business or similar. Entrepreneurship education statistics also reveal that 11%of these individuals have no educational qualifications at all. 

3. Two-thirds of entrepreneurs had no experience before starting their companies.

(Startups, Forbes)

While half of all active entrepreneurs work in their fields in some capacity before starting businesses, entrepreneur stats reveal that an astounding two-thirds of business owners have no experience managing a business setting before breaking from the crowd. What better testament could there be for the fact that we are truly living in the entrepreneurial age?

4. Only 14% of UK entrepreneurs are women.

(Startups)

Perhaps unsurprisingly, female entrepreneur statistics paint a rather bleak picture. Just 14% of UK small businesses are currently run by women. For reference, that’s merely one in five small and medium enterprises across the UK. 

The discrepancy is so large, in fact, that recent women entrepreneurs statistics have incited investigation by the UK government. After all, it makes little sense that there are twice as many men as women in the entrepreneur market right now, given that women outnumber men in the general population by around 1 million!

5. 93% of the UK’s entrepreneurs are white.

(Startups)

According to the latest entrepreneur data, just 7% of UK small business owners are members of an ethnic minority, even though startups are easier to launch than ever. While things have definitely improved from the even lower 5% recorded in 2004, it seems we still have a long way to go in this area before we get to true equality within the entrepreneur landscape.

entrepreneur statistics - business

UK Startup Statistics and Success Rates

6. There were 5.8 million small businesses in the UK at the start of 2019.

(FSB)

Startup statistics for the UK show a dramatic increase in startups of late, with 5.8 million reported at the beginning of 2019, a rise of 3.5% compared with startup statistics for 2017. These rising figures mean that SMEs now account for a mind-boggling 99.9% of the business population.

7. Success rates for entrepreneurs are as high as 91% after one year.

(Accounts and Legal)

While many statistics dwell on entrepreneur failure rates, recent studies reveal that the vast majority of UK businesses are still successful after their first year of trading. This is contrary to previous studies stating first-year failure rates of as much as 50%, and it’s a sure sign that success is growing easier to come by. 

However:

8. 60% of small businesses fail in the first five years.

(Accounts and Legal)

Despite increasing first-year success rates, startup failure rate statistics sadly reveal that six out of ten small businesses continue to fail within their first five years. 

While it’s difficult to judge precisely how many entrepreneurs fail, the figures suggest it isn’t a rare occurrence, even with small businesses lasting longer than they have traditionally. Reasons for failure do, of course, vary, but top culprits seem to include a lack of goal-setting, poor management, insufficient capital, and the wrong location. 

Which leads us nicely to…

9. London and the South East accounts for 35% of the UK business population.

(FSB)

London and Brighton have been hailed as ‘startup capitals’ of the UK. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that small business startup statistics reveal that many entrepreneurs are choosing to start in these locations. London and the South East alone now account for over one-third of the UK business population. 

In other words: 

940,000 private sector businesses are located here compared with just 152,000 in the North East. 

10. London has the lowest startup survival rate at just 50.1%.

(FT)

Despite its popularity as a startup landscape, London also experiences the lowest rates of startup survival. 

In fact: 

Despite its nickname as ‘the business capital of the world’, only half of London entrepreneurs will succeed in making their names, startup statistics show. In large part, this is due to the sheer amount of businesses that arise there daily. While getting past the five-year hurdle here can be a sign of success that’ll take you far, the fierce competition makes that an increasingly difficult goal to achieve,

11. NE Scotland and the Highlands enjoy startup success rates of 61.2%.

(FT)

In spite of low business startup rates, entrepreneurial statistics reveal that those operating in the north-east of Scotland can enjoy success rates of as much as 61.2%. This is a drastic increase compared with more localised areas thanks to reduced competition and more startup need on the market. 

12. 64% of the UK workforce wants to set up a business.

(SME Loans)

Regardless of potentially high failure rates in certain areas, business startup statistics UK still broadly show that nearly two-thirds of the UK workforce would like to set up a business. 

Despite a currently older entrepreneur focus, Generation Z seems most keen here, with 4 in 5 individuals in this age group eager to break from traditional employment and go it alone. Unsurprisingly, employment stats reveal that 75.90% of these individuals are based in London. More hearteningly, studies reveal that 63.30% of budding entrepreneurs are based in Scotland.

Entrepreneur Statistics- Startup

The UK Cost of Entrepreneurship

13. Unexpected costs and poor budgeting are the leading causes of startup failure.

(Simply Business)

Startups fail for various reasons, but statistics about entrepreneurs continually show that budgeting issues are a leading problem. The vast majority of businesses that fail within their first five years do so for this reason. Even in the modern landscape, many entrepreneurs don’t account for escalating stock and storage prices. So, as their businesses grow, their chances of success shrink.

14. 32% of entrepreneurs start with £250 or less.

(Startups)

Despite the need to account for escalating costs down the line, online entrepreneur statistics, reveal that starting something new is now cheaper than ever. Studies from 2017 show that nearly one-third of entrepreneurs started with less than a thousand quid! 

What’s more:

A further 40% were founded with no more than £500. While setting money aside for business growth should be a priority from day one, we’re in an age where entrepreneurial undertakings are within more comfortable financial reach than ever.

15. Average UK start-ups spend £22,756 in their first year.

(Telegraph)

Despite a potentially low initial starting cost, it’s also worth noting that the average UK startup currently spends around £22,756 in its first year. Legal fees, accountancy, HR, and formation costs all play a part in boosting this initial first-year spend. In fact, a failure to account for these costs is a leading cause of early startup failures. Even individuals starting on a budget will quickly need to increase earnings to cover those expenses.

16. London-based entrepreneurs face the highest average costs of £30,211.

(Telegraph)

Yet again, London-based businesses take the fall from a financial standpoint. Startup statistics here state that entrepreneurs can expect to pay whopping average startup costs of over  30 grand! In contrast, individuals pay just £8,096 to get going in Wales! 

Of course, demand and customer availability mean that these expenses even themselves out somewhat. Still, they’re well worth considering during your initial startup efforts.

17. One in four employed adults now embark on entrepreneurship through ‘side hustles’.

(The Mirror)

With costs too high for many, entrepreneurship statistics reveal that one in four adults in full-time employment are now embarking on ‘side hustles.’ Alongside full-time positions, such individuals earn an average annual income of £12,000 through undertaking their own career ideas. 

18. 80% of entrepreneurs fund their businesses out of pocket.

(Crowd Spring)

Despite a rise in funding opportunities for entrepreneurs in recent years, the entrepreneurial facts still point to the reality that eight out of ten entrepreneurs fund their businesses out of pocket.

Entrepreneur statistics-chart

Entrepreneurship Statistics Worldwide

19. There are 582 million entrepreneurs in the world.

(The Hill)

While the UK shares the top-spot with the US for entrepreneur opportunities, these are far from the only countries enjoying this career change. Successful entrepreneur statistics reveal that there are now 582 million entrepreneurs in the world, with many operating from exotic locations. 

20. The United States is continually voted as the most entrepreneurial country in the world.

(CEO World)

According to the Entrepreneurial Index, the US is the most entrepreneurial country in the world right now, followed by the UK, Israel, Poland, and Malaysia. Entrepreneurs in the USA enjoy a varied business landscape that’s unrivalled anywhere else on the globe. With top spots like New York and California, it’s hardly surprising that around 62% of US billionaires are now self-made. 

21. San Francisco and Silicon Valley are home 13.5% of all global startup deals.

(Guidant Financial)

Across the entire global landscape, an astounding 13.5% of global startup deals happen in the Bay Area. That’s hardly surprising when big names like Google, Apple, and Facebook have all made their homes in these hot economic locations. That said, as with London, residents might want to think about high levels of competition before starting something new here. 

22. India is ranked as the second-worst country in the world to start a business.

(Silicon India)

Despite being the world’s fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP, India entrepreneurship statistics reveal that this country is widely rated as the second-worst place to start a business. Only Argentina is rated worse. 

In large part, this is due to India being ranked the 70th most corrupt country by World Audit Corruption. A four-year business enforcement process in Indian courts is also a leading cause of entrepreneurial issues. 

23. 14% of the Belize population started a business in 42 months.

(Women on Business)

While the top startup countries are relatively predictable, some likely areas for entrepreneur growth are far less obvious. Belize, in particular, saw an impressive 14% of its population starting an employee-based business in 42 months alone. Burkina Faso and Thailand were both close contenders on the list. While the US and UK are undeniably more obvious landscapes, market need certainly opens more varied opportunities for entrepreneurs working in these off-track areas. 

24. Slovenia, the UK, and North Macedonia are the cheapest countries to start a business.

(World Atlas)

Interestingly, entrepreneurs facts also reveal that Slovenia, the UK, and North Macedonia all share the top spot as the cheapest startup countries, with a GNI per capita of just 0.1%. In large part, cost-saving here is thanks to relatively easy startup legal proceedings in each location. 

25. South Sudan is the most expensive country to start a business.

(World Atlas)

The recently-formed African country of South Sudan is, by comparison, the most expensive country in which to start a business. Entrepreneur fact statistics from there show that entrepreneurs can expect to pay as much as 330.1% GNI per capita. It’s followed closely by Haiti with 253.3% GNI, and the Central African Republic with 204.0% GNI.

26. 163 million women worldwide started businesses in the past year.

(Score)

While statistics of women entrepreneurs are still primarily bleak on a global scale, 163 million women across the world did start their own businesses in the past year, with a further 111 million already operating established companies. 

27. Female entrepreneurial confidence is lower in developed economies.

(Score)

Surprisingly, the entrepreneur facts also reveal that females experience much lower levels of business confidence in countries with developed economies, such as the US and UK. In fact, just 35% of women in these economies believe they have the capabilities to start a business, compared with a much higher 67% operating in factor-driven economies.

Entrepreneur Statistics-business

Is Now the Time to Start Your Own Business?

Having looked at these entrepreneur statistics, you may be seeking the answer to one last pressing question: 

Should I start my own business now? The news outlets all say as much, after all, but do the stats live up to the claim?

The thing is:

In reality, it all depends on where and how you undertake your efforts. There’s no denying that recent years have seen significant entrepreneurial advancements and increases across the world, but the matter isn’t always as cut and dry as it may seem. 

Remember, for example, that hotspots such as London and many top US locations are experiencing such high levels of business startups that success becomes much harder to come by. Instead, it seems that considering less obvious locations could well be crucial to success right now.

Equally, money remains a leading factor in startup failure, even though costs keep coming down. Too often, unexpected expenses within the first year are tripping entrepreneurs, which really needn’t be the case. Instead, be sure to keep the figures touched on here in mind, and make sure to either seek funding or project profit margins that will cover the costs.

One thing’s sure, though: 

No matter where in the world you intend to set up shop, keeping these entrepreneur statistics to hand makes it much more likely that you’ll be able to enjoy success on a broad scale and, more importantly, overcome that lethal five-year leap.

Of course, the entrepreneurial landscape is changing all the time, and one year looks incredibly different from the next right now. So, you’ll want to keep your facts and figures up to date to ensure you can stay on top, no matter what.