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Review of Entrepreneurship Barriers in Disadvantaged Communities
by Startacus Admin
Over the past year or so we have reported repeatedly that rates of entrepreneurship in the UK are at an all time high. In 2014 some 581,173 businesses were registered by Companies House, the highest ever number in the country's history.
Fantastic news of course, but the fact remains that there are many barriers to starting a business which can make the process a lot more difficult than it needs to be, and ultimately can prevent a great many people from ever achieving their entrepreneurial dream. As is often the case, these barriers are most acutely felt by those approaching entrepreneurship from a place of disadvantage, those who as a result of poverty, disability, social hardship, discrimination, unemployment or other factors may find challenges which are disproportionate to those faced by their more advantaged counterparts.
It’s an issue which is at the very heart of Startacus.net and therefore we were delighted yesterday morning by the announcement that the UK government has commissioned a review into supporting startups within disadvantaged communities.
The Details of the Review
The independent review is to be headed up by leading entrepreneur and businesswomen, Michelle Mone OBE, and will have the central aim of encouraging entrepreneurship within disadvantaged communities.
Michelle herself is no stranger to deprivation or entrepreneurship. She was raised in a disadvantaged area of East Glasgow and having started her own business Ultimo in her twenties, she has now become one of the country's most well known female entrepreneurs, running a number of businesses and holding 16 patents for various inventions. In fact, Michelle was recently voted as one of the world’s top 7 most inspiring female entrepreneurs, ranking in the list alongside the likes of Oprah Winfrey.
She, like so many entrepreneurs from disadvantaged backgrounds, has faced major barriers on her business journey; she left school at 15 with no qualifications, had her first child when she was 18, cared for an ailing father and faced personal tragedy, but managed to persevere and grow her business into a success. It is thought that her experience in tackling these obstacles will help her to oversee this review and impart a maximum level of benefit to others from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The review will examine the precise problems which stand in the way of entrepreneurship within these communities and make recommendations to the Department of Work and Pensions regarding how to solve them.
Some of the specific factors that she will be examining within the review include benefit claimants, women, young people and those with disabilities.
On the announcement of the Review, Michelle had this to say;
“It is an honour to be appointed to lead this review because I know how tough it can be setting up your own business. I am passionate about doing everything I can, to help create a climate in which people of all ages and backgrounds can succeed in setting up successful businesses.
My philosophy is that it does not matter where you are from, what education you have, or if you are from an affluent background or not, you can make it if you work hard, set your goals and never give up”.
Clearly a woman after our own heart!
Let's all get behind Michelle and help her to achieve the enormous and incredibly important task she has been set!