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One-in-six UK undergraduates plan on starting a business

15 per cent of British students plan to start their own business upon graduation, according to new research from Direct Line for Business.

The survey of more than 1,000 students across the UK found that the primary motivations for setting up in business after university was the desire to be their own boss (45 per cent), to earn more money than working for a company (25 per cent) and as an alternative to poor job prospects (19 per cent).

The report discovered that more than 52,000 undergraduates are already running their own business while studying; with popular start-up niches ranging from events promotions to fashion and software development.

Amid a growing culture of entrepreneurialism, the study claims that male students boast a “greater entrepreneurial spirit” than their female counterparts.

Around a fifth (20 per cent) of male undergraduates plan to set up a business after university, compared with 11 per cent of female undergraduates.

In a comparison between study disciplines, undergraduates on creative, arts and design courses are deemed more likely than any other student to set up their own business.

Students on science, technology, engineering and mathematics courses are the least likely to enter a business venture after graduation.

Jane Guaschi, manager, Direct Line for Business, said: “This research goes to show that we are truly a nation of entrepreneurs.

“It’s encouraging to know that companies such as Google, Facebook, Wordpress, Asceno and even Time Magazine, which were all founded by students at university, are inspiring the millennial generation to strike out on their own.

“The latest generation of graduates is clearly fiercely independent and wanting to control the destiny of their own careers, rather than answering to anyone else.”

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