Increasing numbers of youngsters are now running their own businesses, according to the most recent figures from the FPS Economy, referred to in Friday’s edition of L’Avenir. Last year, new start-ups registered by entrepreneurs aged 18 to 22 showed a record increase of 18%.
In 2017, a little more than half of new business owners (50.3%) were under 35, whilst those aged 18 to 22 recorded the highest increase of the year, with an increase of 17.9% compared to 2016 figures.
Olivier Witmeur, a Business Professor at Solvay Business School (the French Free University of Brussels) believes that this exceptional rise may be explained by a combination of factors.
“For fifteen years now, we have been raising awareness of youngsters to entrepreneurship, whether within secondary or university education. With the increase of courses, competitive examinations, and business incubators within universities, the current generation has an entire toolkit at its disposal, which enables it to start any given business project. These ‘toolkits’ did not exist previously, where we operated in an environment involving simply explaining to students what skills were being demanded by employers,” Witmeur elaborates.