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Scots top survey of budding Covid entrepreneurs

Scotland is home to the highest number of budding entrepreneurs in the UK, with one in 10 people saying they hadn’t previously planned on starting a business, but the impact of Covid-19 has made them want to go freelance or start their own business.

Scots were followed by Londoners (7.8%) and those based in York (7.7%) who said the same thing.

A survey of 2,000 employed people in the UK by Edinburgh-based fintech firm FreeAgent revealed that nearly a third (31%) of Scottish adults have plans to start their own business or strike out as a freelancer at some point in the future.

Digging a bit deeper, 7.4% of Scots plan to start their own business within 2021, while a further 7.4% plan to strike out in the next couple of years and 17% are planning to do so at some point in the future.

Overwhelmingly, Scots want to start their own business in order to have more choice over what they do for a job, with half of the respondents citing this.

More a third (36.1%) want a better work/life balance, while just under a third (30.1%) believe they could earn more this way, and a quarter (25.3%) feel they would get a better sense of achievement.

Brexit does impact entrepreneurial plans however, with 40% of Scotts saying it puts them off starting their own business.

Among the other biggest concerns from when starting a new business were having the confidence to do so (25.6%), dealing with tax (22.7%) and complying with business regulations (21.6%).

Ed Molyneux, chief executive and co-founder of FreeAgent, said: “After a year of many businesses falling short and feeling the negative impact of Covid-19, it was no surprise to see people were mostly concerned about the financial burden of starting a business.

“This and the high number of people with the lack of confidence to do so, calls for intervention on a higher level, the government must seriously consider the ways in which they can best encourage and support entrepreneurs to practically turn their vision into a reality.”

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