Hope comes out of the woodwork, and comes courtesy of entrepreneurs. So suggests a new report from Hiscox, entitled: DNA of an entrepreneur. For once it is good news, and points to an economic revival driven by entrepreneurs.

The study was carried out in the UK, Germany, France and the Netherlands.
Curiously, when asked if they were planning expansion in the first half of 2009, entrepreneurs from the UK were the least enthusiastic. But when asked how they felt about risk, more British entrepreneurs were comfortable about taking risks than entrepreneurs from the other three countries.

In Germany, no less than 37 per cent of entrepreneurs would prefer to run their business without having to take any chances. In the UK, the number is just 15 per cent.

Across Europe as a whole: “One in five SME bosses are concerned that there is not enough support for emerging small businesses. In fact, the majority (65 per cent) believe that government bureaucracy is threatening their country’s entrepreneurial sprit, identifying four major barriers to setting up on your own: unfavourable taxation system (71 per cent), inflexible labour laws (63 per cent), burden of benefits and social security payments (58 per cent) and lack of support from government (37 per cent).”

The study also found the recession impacting on entrepreneurs’ attitude to risk – just one in three (36 per cent) small business owners say they are comfortable with taking risks, compared to 40 per cent at the time of the last study two years ago.

But on the whole, the study was positive. Over half (53 per cent) of those questioned believe 2010 is a good year to start up a small business, with nearly one-fifth (19 per cent) pinpointing gaps in the market caused by company closures as a key opportunity to capitalise in the economic upturn.

The study makes interesting reading, but would have been more meaningful if it included the US in the study. For its attitude to entrepreneurism, Europe is way behind the US.

© Investment & Business News 2013