The Age of The Social Entrepreneur

Young entrepreneurs are motivated by purpose over profit, according to a brand-new research.

In fact, an HSBC’s recent survey found out that 25% of entrepreneurs aged under 35 are more motivated by social impact than by moneymaking.

In contrast, only 11% of entrepreneurs over the age of 55 are chiefly driven by the desire to create a social impact.

Younger entrepreneurs know that their business cannot have the impact they want without sustainable growth.

These socially-minded millennials prioritise areas such as protecting the environment or taking practical action in their community over, say, building financial security for their family.

However, socially conscious entrepreneurship and commercial ambition go hand in hand:

entrepreneurs who start their venture with the intention of creating a positive social impact are more likely to predict high growth for their company.

GIVING BACK TO THE ENTREPRENEURIAL COMMUNITY. Moreover, young entrepreneurs engage in angel investing  as to support other start-ups to take off whilst sharing their own expertise as 57% of owners under 35 have undertaken this type of investment, compared with 29% of those over 55.

Stuart Parkinson, Global Chief Investment Officer for HSBC Private Banking, said:

It’s clear younger entrepreneurs want to do good, and we would be wrong to dismiss this as youthful idealism that will act as a brake on financial success. They know that their business cannot have the impact they want without sustainable growth, and they are focused on achieving both.

DIFFERENCES IN THE ENTREPRENEURIAL MIND-SET GLOBALLY. The report also brings to light the differences in the entrepreneurial mind-set in markets around the globe. Entrepreneurs in the Middle East (66%) are the most active angel investors, with the US (54%) and Mainland China (53%) next in line. By contrast, 45% of UK entrepreneurs are angel investors, along with 35% in Germany and 33% in Switzerland.

ENVIRONMENT AND COMMUNITY IMPACT. In relation to social impact, finally, entrepreneurs in the US and China show a greater emphasis on environmental concerns – 8.1/10 prioritise environmental issues in their business planning compared with 6.7/10 in the UK, Singapore, Switzerland and Australia. When asked about their desire to contribute to communities, entrepreneurs from the Saudi Arabia (64%) and UAE (62%) are most likely to reference being active in the community and civil society as important to their business operations compared to the global average of 44%.

Download the full report here.