Millions of ‘lost’ UK entrepreneurs could benefit hospitality

By Sophie Witts & Liam Garrahan

- Last updated on GMT

Thinkstock/RawPixel
Thinkstock/RawPixel

Related tags: United kingdom, Economics, Entrepreneurship

A scholarship to tackle gender and race gaps in UK start-ups has been launched by business leader Reuben Singh.

The move could offer a boost to the hospitality industry, which has the largest proportion of start-ups​ of any sector.

While the number of UK businesses has risen to 3.5m since 2012, research highlights that the economic benefits are not shared evenly across all communities.

The UK has one of the largest gender gaps in Europe, with women 6.3 times less likely to be involved in a new business venture than men.

Entrepreneurs from ethnic minority backgrounds make up just eight per cent of start-ups - despite representing 14 per cent of the UK population.

Hospitality businesses form the majority of start-ups

Singh - the founder of call answering service alldayPA - said his scholarship was aiming to give all businesses a ‘positive start’.

“Entrepreneurial activity generates wealth, jobs and local investment," he said.

"Ensuring this activity is more evenly spread in society is key to a fairer distribution of wealth and opportunity.

“More needs to be done to encourage start-ups amongst lost sections of our communities, and businesses should take a lead in mentoring or offering financial support to help narrow these gaps.”

Singh believes that a cause for the ‘lost’ entrepreneurs is a lack of financial backing.

“I was lucky enough to get [financial] support from my family,” he said.

“This scholarship is designed to help those who have entrepreneurial flair, but don’t have the back-up required to give them that positive start.”

For more information on the scholarship see http://www.ReubenSingh.com/Scholarship​                                  

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