The age of entrepreneurialism is falling at a rapid rate, with the number of 16 to 20-year-old sole traders up by 206 per cent in three years, research has revealed. The Covid-19 pandemic has propelled enterprising Gen-Z’s into starting almost 350 new IT consultancies.
There was a 72 per cent increase of 16-20-year-olds registering as sole traders between February 2020 and February 2021, while all other age groups experienced fewer new businesses than the previous year.
Out of the 8,899 IT consultancy start-ups registered in 2020, more than 350 were started by 16-20-year-olds, according to The Age of Entrepreneurialism research data from The Accountancy Partnership.
IT consultancy was in the UK’s top ten most popular start-up sectors in 2020, accounting for 8,899 (1.9 per cent) new businesses. Other popular sectors include business and software development.
According to The Accountancy Partnership, the barriers to starting a business are lower than ever, with the ease of selling services online with little to no initial costs.
Lee Murphy, managing director at The Accountancy Partnership, said: “It’s incredible to see the enterprising nature of the latest generation. From our data it is clear to see how each age group has been affected by the pandemic in relation to entrepreneurialism, turning to enterprise because their other options are so limited.
“Between 16-20-years-old is typically an uncertain time of life in normal circumstances as people decide whether to pursue further education or start their career. Closures in retail and hospitality, and money worries surrounding university have made this year even more trialing, triggering this rise in young people starting businesses.”
The Accountancy Partnership says the pandemic has highlighted how important a digital presence is for business and over the past 12 months, social media has become a petri-dish of new business startups. Thirty-one per cent of businesses in 2020 started on Facebook and 30.9 per cent on Instagram. Meanwhile, e-commerce platform Shopify saw a 71 per cent growth in merchants in Q2 2020.
The data also shows that males make up 71 per cent of new sole traders in total. In 16-20-year-olds, women are 80 per cent less likely to start a new business than men.