by: Pete Carvell
Although reports that more businesses are closing than starting may be true, this overlooks the fact that small business start-ups and entrepreneurship are alive and well. Claims that government regulations, taxes, health care mandates and other pressures discourage new business growth are not necessarily supported by recent studies and statistics. Actually, small business creation is on the upswing.
According to the Kaufmann Index of Startup Activity, 2015 recorded the largest year-on-year increase in start-ups in two decades, reversing a downward trend that started in 2010 with the great recession. At the current rate of growth, approximately 530,000 new business owners each month enter the market.
It is important to note that the landscape of entrepreneurship is also changing, with SCORE, a non-profit 501c(3) resource partner of the Small Business Administration, developing programs to address these shifting demographics.
Here are a few examples.
Immigrants continue to be among the most entrepreneurially inclined individuals. An immigrant is nearly twice as likely to be an entrepreneur as a native-born American. Immigrant entrepreneurs now account for 28.5 percent of all new entrepreneurs in the U.S., up from 13.3 percent in 1997. The majority are of Latino or Asian descent. Several SBA programs are available to help minorities with financing and contracting opportunities.
Individuals aged 55 to 64 are the fastest-growing entrepreneurial age group, now accounting for 25.8 percent of new start-ups, an increase from 14.8 percent in 1997. To serve this demographic, SCORE have initiated the ENCORE program to address their specific needs.
While not a large percentage of new start-ups, returning veterans are increasing in numbers, prompting SCORE to create the Boots to Business program to help those who have served our country. A Reboot program has also been initiated to help veterans who have already been separated from the service to learn about starting a business.
Colleges and universities are placing prime importance on entrepreneurial curriculum. For example:
- Degree and diploma offerings in entrepreneurship have grown by five times since 1975.
- The number of freshmen who want to be entrepreneurs has doubled since 1975.
- In 1985, there were about 250 courses offered in entrepreneurship at college campuses across the nation. In 2008 that number jumped to 5,000.
- About one-third of business incubators are based at universities.
In summary, the future for entrepreneurs is bright and SCORE is there to help “For the Life of Your Business.”
About The Author:
Princeton University – B.A. degree
Commissioned Officer United States Navy – Tours of duty in Washington D.C. and Guantanamo Bay Cuba with the Naval Security Group.
Thirty six years with General Motors International. Initial assignments in sales and marketing with gradual expansion to include management positions covering warehousing and distribution, strategic planning, finance and product development.
Assignments in Lima Peru (short term), Brazil – 8 years, Antwerp Belgium 4 years, Brussels Belgium – 3 years and Mexico 6 years with responsibility for GM activities in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.
Joined SCORE in 2002. Held positions as Chapter Chair, Assistant District Director and District Director.