• 4,794 new businesses were created on this day alone in 2014
  • Day falls in the midst of the Great British Bake Off, as UK sees staggering 51% rise in baking businesses since the show first broadcast
  • Wales and the North East have seen the most substantial growth, whilst Scotland and Yorkshire and Humber have stayed static in the last year

Today is the most popular day to start a business according to a new study by O2 Business.

Analysing data from Companies House, O2 Business established that more businesses were started on this day than on any other last year, with a total of 4,794 businesses being created. This is 185% more than on the most popular day in 2013, when the figure was 1,679.

The popularity of this date varies significantly from trends in previous years, where the majority of businesses were incorporated close to the start of the fiscal year. In 2013, 2nd April was the most popular date, in line with others prior to the recent recession (see Table 1).

The study found that the number of businesses rose on average 11% year on year between 2009 and 2013 compared to just 3% on average in the years before. However  as the economy has begun to stabilise, the UK has not seen the number of new businesses slow to pre-recession levels, with a steady 10% rise between 2013-2014.

2014 was a record year for entrepreneurialism, again seeing over half a million businesses being created, with 581,000 starting compared to 2013’s record of 526,400. This rise in the number of UK entrepreneurs is supported by additional research from O2 Business, which found that 46% of Brits still have a desire to one day build their own company, rather than work for someone else.

Ben Dowd, Business Director at O2 said:

“It’s encouraging to see that the UK continues to have a thriving start-up scene, with a record number of entrepreneurs seizing the day and starting their own business.

“We want to help more small businesses grow and thrive in an increasingly digital Britain, and we believe a key step is to take the hassle out of technology. We see first-hand how the right technology can allow any company to run smarter, faster and more efficiently, ultimately helping that business grow.”

It also seems that the Great British Bake Off has been playing its part when it comes to inspiring the next wave of entrepreneurs. According to Companies House data there are a whopping 4,190 baking businesses in the UK taking advantage of Brits cake-mania, more than double the amount that existed before the Bake Off hit our screens in August 2010.

However, research by O2 Business found that some budding entrepreneurs are being put off their start-up dreams because they do not feel that they have enough initial funds for start-up costs (41%) and don’t know where to start when creating a business (35%). Furthermore, despite the growth of the technology industry in the UK, over half (61%) of Brits aren’t confident that their grasp of modern business technology is solid enough to start a business.

Harriet Hastings experienced some of these issues first-hand when she started up Biscuiteers with her husband in 2007. Growing from a corner of his catering kitchen to a proper bakery, then to recipe books and recently their own string of cafes, Biscuiteers has overcome many challenges on the way to success.

Harriet Hastings said:

“Starting my business was daunting at times, particularly at the start, but it has also been one of the most creative, interesting things I have done.  I had a clear idea of the market opportunity and I knew that I wanted to launch Biscuiteers as an e-commerce business so technology has always been at the heart of everything we do. I think understanding the opportunities that technology creates is one of the most helpful starting points for any business.”

O2 Business offers a range of products for growing businesses and start-ups, including the first flexible tariff, Business Essentials and Microsoft Office365, in addition to the latest mobile devices and tablets. All O2 Business products come with support from the O2 Gurus team, who are on-hand to offer advice to customers through their start-up process.

For more information on starting a business visit http://businessblog.o2.co.uk/

Journalists can contact the Virgin Media O2 press office on:
press@virginmediao2.co.uk 01753 565656
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