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Huge increase in teenage entrepreneurs, study suggests

By Alan Jones, PA Industrial Correspondent

The number of teenagers setting up their own business has increased eightfold in the past decade, new research suggests.

The rise from 500 in 2009 to more than 4,000 now has been driven by tech company start-ups, said financial services provider OneFamily.

Entrepreneurs like former Apple boss Steve Jobs, Sir Richard Branson and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook were said to be among the most inspirational figures to youngsters interested in starting a business.

Youth-run businesses are most likely to be tech-based, clothing or accessory lines, entertainment or media, food or drink, or health or beauty products, the study indicated.

Nici Audhlam-Gardiner, savings and investments director at OneFamily, said: "Generation Z were born after Google and have grown up with social media, so it's no surprise that these teens are already using their networks to help build their career.

"We also know that many are already making money from it. This way of working gives young people the chance to bring in some extra money, and provides them with the opportunity to try out different careers and get used to managing and saving their earnings for the future.

"If your teenager shows a passion for starting a business, we'd encourage parents to see the benefits of their children working while studying at school or further education.

"The lessons that starting a job can instil, from a strong work ethic to earning and budgeting, is invaluable, particularly during the teenage years."

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