One of the trends we spotted a few years ago and started writing about is that of the older entrepreneur (read our essay, the Graying of Small Business).
This is a category of older first-time entrepreneur, who is usually someone I call a “refugee from the Corporate world.” These older entrepreneurs may be armed with severance packages or pension buyouts, or otherwise a little better off financially than a younger entrepreneur. They decide that rather than look for another job, they will try their hand at starting or perhaps buying a business.
What characterizes the older first-time entrepreneur is their business savvy and skill. Generally they have a higher level of business expertise than your average 20-something entrepreneur. Often these individuals have received million-dollar educations through their past experiences on the job working for large corporations.
The Sunday Times in an article today points out the advantages of being 50-something and becoming an entrepreneur for the first time. Among them: research by NatWest Bank suggesting that, in the U.K. at least, “businesses that are started up by people in their fifties have double the chance of surviving the first three-and-a-half years than those started by people in their twenties.”