‘Olderprenerurs’ cash in on pension to fund startups » SMEInsider

‘Olderprenerurs’ cash in on pension to fund startups

Research from Clifton Asset Management has found that so called ‘olderprenerurs’ (new business owners over 50) are set to take an estimated £400m of their pensions to help get their new venture off the ground.


Taking advantage of government changes

Six months ago, the government allowed people over the age of 55 to have greater control over their pensions, enabling them to take out a sizeable sum of their retirement fund.

In a piece of research commissioned by Clifton Asset and pensionledfunding.com, the two firms suggest that olderpreneurs are expected to to cash in around £400million to fund their enterprising ideas.

Clifton points out that those olderpreneurs using their tax free allowance to fund their start-up may be taking the right strategic decision, but for larger pension investments, they should also consider Pension-led funding (PLF).

A Nesta report in conjunction with the University of Cambridge found that pension-led funding (PLF) was worth £25m in 2014, and almost two-thirds of SMEs using PLF saw their profit rise, and almost half employed more people. The average amount raised by a small business through PLF in 2014 was £70,527.

‘‘We have seen a marked rise in entrepreneurs aged over 50 looking to use their pensions to either start a business, or fund an established enterprise,’’ said Adam Tavener, chairman of Clifton Asset Management and pensionledfunding.com.

Travener added that ‘‘the government pension changes are not a giveaway for all business owners – particularly for those that wish to mobilise tens of thousands of pounds from their pension to fund their business.’’

‘‘Providing funding to these experienced individuals, who have the energy and enthusiasm to start and run a business, is vitally important to the growth of the UK economy. Research has shown that if the employment rate of 50 to 64 year-olds matched that of the 35-49 age group, the UK economy could be boosted by £88 billion,’’ continued Tavener.


Experience trumps youth

With over half of all startups failing within the first five years, Clifton suggests that the rise in older startup owners could have a positive impact upon the stability of UK SMEs.

Clifton estimates that more than 70 per cent of businesses started by people in their 50s survive for at least five years, whereas only 28 per cent of those started by younger people last that long.

According to the latest Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, entrepreneurial activity in the over 50s has risen by more than 50 per cent since 2008.

Nicola Horlick, non-exec director of Clifton Asset Management, has given some great advice to the over 50’s who are thinking about accessing their pension to delve into the startup world.

‘‘As you need an accrued pension of more than £50,000 to make the Pension-led funding process viable, the over 50s are more likely to have sufficient funds available,’’ explained Horlick.

‘‘These funds might be held in a number of different pension arrangements by one or more owners/directors. Pension-led funding could be the right strategic choice for business owners who require more funding than their tax free cash allowance will provide, or those that would like to save their allowance for the future,’’ concluded the non-exec director.