Global Entrepreneurship Monitor United Kingdom 2011 Monitoring Report

Levie, Jonathan and Hart, Mark (2012) Global Entrepreneurship Monitor United Kingdom 2011 Monitoring Report. Aston Business School and the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship, Glasgow.

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In 2011, the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) research consortium measured entrepreneurial activity of individuals in 54 economies, making it the world’s most authoritative comparative study of entrepreneurial activity in the general adult population. In 2011, 10,573 adults aged 16 to 80 participated in the GEM UK survey. This monitoring report compares Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) measures of entrepreneurial attitudes, activity and aspirations in the UK, France, Germany and the United States, and the four home nations of the UK. It also examines the anticipated and actual challenges facing individuals starting a business in the UK. Attitudes of non-entrepreneurial individuals to entrepreneurship were more subdued than in 2010, reflecting uncertainties in the wider economy. • In the UK, 9.8% of working age adults expected to start a business within the next 3 years in 2011, compared with 15.8% in the US. Total early-stage entrepreneurial activity or TEA (the sum of the nascent entrepreneurship rate and the new business owner-manager rate - without double counting) in the UK in 2011 was 7.6%1. The rise in the UK TEA rate, while just not significantly different from the 2010 figure, appears to bring it beyond the historical trend (2002-2010) which was very stable at close to 6%. Despite the apparent rise in entrepreneurial activity in the UK since 2010, the gap with the US widened as a result of a sharp rise in the TEA rate in the US: the UK TEA rate was around twothirds (62%) of the US equivalent rate of 12.3% and above that of France (5.7%) and Germany (5.6%). When surveyed in mid-2011, 4.2% of the adult population in the UK were actively trying to start a business (nascent entrepreneurs), compared with 8.3% in the US. Nascent entrepreneurship rates in the UK, US, France and Germany rose between 2010 and 2011 – in fact, they doubled in the US. When surveyed in 2011, 3.4% of the UK working age adult population were owner-managers of a business that was 3 - 42 months old (new business ownermanagers). This is unchanged on the 2010 estimate of 3.4%, and it compares favourably with the estimate for France (1.7%) and Germany (2.4%) although it is slightly lower than the US (4.3%). In 2011, the proportion of the adult population who owned and managed a business older than 42 months (established business owner-managers) in the UK was 6.5%, similar to 2010 (6.2%). This was similar to Germany (5.6%), higher than in France (2.4%) but lower than in the US where the rate returned to pre-crisis levels at 9.1% after a dip since 2008. The estimated proportion of working age people in the UK who discontinued a business (whether through closure or sale) in the past 12 months rose slightly but not significantly to 1.6% from 1.2%, while they increased slightly to 2.9% in the US. On average, discontinuations by entrepreneurs of businesses in France and Germany were the same in 2011 as in 2010 (around 1.5%). The proportion of UK TEA entrepreneurs reporting new product/market combinations, export propensity and high or medium technology sectoral choices were just as high as in the US although fewer had high growth expectations. Necessity-driven early-stage entrepreneurship in the UK rose significantly in 2011 from 0.7% to 1.3%. In 2011, UK levels of female early-stage entrepreneurship (TEA rate of 5%) were 49% of male early-stage entrepreneurial activity – up from 44% in 2010. This is similar to France but in the US and Germany male and female TEA rates were much closer although they had widened since 2010. The sub-national distribution of TEA rates in 2011 was Scotland: 6.2%, Northern Ireland: 7.1%, England: 7.7% and Wales: 8.1%.These differences across the home nations were not statistically significant.