Friday, 16 December 2011 12:05
Three quarters of ‘e-pportunists’ hope to grow their hobby into a full-time business.
The number of people earning a second income by trading online has doubled in the last year, new research finds. The survey dubs such online entrepreneurs ‘e-pportunists’, finding that a third earn over £10,000 a year.
Over half (59%) of those trading online began doing so within the last 12 months, suggesting many have turned to the net to supplement their income as real wages fall and the job market remains stagnant, the report by Collect+ states. More than a quarter of these are young entrepreneurs, aged 25-34.
Ambitions to grow
According to the research, many e-pportunists depend on the additional income to make ends meet: almost a quarter (23 per cent) said that they would struggle to pay bills without this additional income. However, for a third of those surveyed, success has meant that they are planning to leave their day job and focus on online trading as their primary source of income in the near future.
That ambition is shared by almost three-quarters of those quizzed, who hope to grow their hobby into a full-time business and start employing staff.
However, this latest research finds that a quarter can’t afford to spare any more of their time on their own business, struggling to fit it in and around the demands of their day job. In addition to the pressures of time, many e-pportunists are held back by access to finance. 44 per cent of those who trade online are fearful that they do not have enough capital to grow the business any further.
The entrepreneurial spirit is particularly strong among younger self-starters. Recent research found that 32 per cent of graduates in 2010 and 2011 are considering starting up their own company following graduation and that nearly a quarter are already running a business.
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