A growing number of baby boomers are leveraging a career’s worth of contacts and experience and setting up their own businesses, according to Guidant Financial, a small-business financing company.
In a recent nationwide poll, 54% of small-business owners were older than 50, a 10% year-over-year increase.
“Those who decide to start businesses later in life have several advantages over their younger counterparts,” David Nilssen, Guidant Financial’s chief executive, said in a statement.
“Baby boomers often have larger professional networks and years of business experience, and we’re seeing an increasing amount who are leveraging those benefits to launch and grow their own ventures.”
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Guidant Financial conducted an email survey in December of some 2,600 male and female small-business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs in the U.S. age 18 and older.
Thirty-three percent of the sample were in their 50s, 17% in their 60s and 4% 70 or above. California accounted for the highest volume of boomer entrepreneurs, followed by Florida, Texas, New York and North Carolina.
These later-life businesspeople focused on the business-services, food and restaurant, general retail, health/beauty/fitness and automotive sectors.
Forty-three percent of 50-and-older respondents cited “ready to be my own boss” as their main reason for starting business, while 42% “wanted to pursue my passion.”
Others said an opportunity had presented itself or that they were dissatisfied with corporate America or had lost their job.