UK entrepreneurs provide welcome boost for job creation
By Daniel Hunter
UK entrepreneurs have grown sales by 20% year on year and created a major boost to demonstrate their key role in rejuvenating the UK economy, according to new figures compiled by Ernst & Young.
The findings, based on the finalists of Ernst & Young UK Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards, show that leading entrepreneurs achieved 23% employment growth at their companies in two years across the UK. The number of jobs created by the 151 finalists rose from 51,561 to 63, 618 between 2009 and 2011.
The entrepreneurs have innovated and created jobs in sectors from sushi restaurants, to construction, and clean-technology, in parts of the country suffering stubbornly low employment rates. In Scotland, entrepreneurs doubled their staff, while in London and the South it rose by 43%; the North by 24%; and the Midlands by 8%.
Despite the role in job creation, entrepreneurs still felt they were being held back on this front — with 22% saying a key challenge is not being able to recruit skilled employees.
The findings suggest that entrepreneurs are providing a major impetus to employment after official data showed unemployment falling in the three months to February. The entrepreneurs have seen revenue growth rates of 20% in the past two years.
“Dynamic businesses, led by entrepreneurs with the energy and insight to drive their businesses forward, have demonstrated that they are a major factor in rejuvenating the UK economy," Stuart Watson, UK Entrepreneur Of The Year Leader, said.
“However there is a sense that they are achieving these results despite serious issues around talents and skills shortages which need to be tackled.”
Fears about a slow economic recovery remain the biggest concern for entrepreneurs, with 28% citing this as their key challenge. Linked to this is a concern over rising costs (13%). Meanwhile,... continued on page two >