What We’re Not Talking About: The Over-50s Business Boom

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Based on the latest Asia-Pacific Small Business Survey, CPA Australia has stated that Australian small businesses need more participation from millennials and Gen Z.

According to a leading accountancy body, there is a worrying trend in Australia’s innovation and economic growth capabilities. This is because more millennials and Gen Z need to be in the business ownership space.

Australia had the highest percentage of small business owners aged 50-plus among the 11 surveyed regions.

When it comes to business owners under the age of 40, it ranked ninth out of 11.

Gavan Ord, the senior manager for business and investment policy at CPA Australia, has used the data to ask: “Where are the young business owners?”

Mr Ord has labelled the young generation as “generation MIA” and acknowledged that Australia has been performing poorly in attracting young individuals towards small business owners since the survey started in 2009, as per the Asia-Pacific rankings.

He thinks a public inquiry conducted by the federal government is necessary to identify why young individuals are not starting their businesses. He believes the survey outcomes demonstrate that young business owners and founders are critical to the country’s economic future, technological strength, and upcoming innovations.

“It is essential to have small businesses owned and operated by Australians of all age groups,” he continued, emphasising the positive impact of diversity on the economy.”

The situation is worrying because Australian small businesses have lower digital capabilities than their peers in the Asia-Pacific region and are among the least likely to innovate by 2023.

The analysis revealed that businesses primarily invested in technology related to updating their website and computer hardware. However, they needed to explore newer and more innovative options like artificial intelligence, possibly indicating their reluctance to consider new ideas and advancements.

“Young people with digital skills should be encouraged to consider running small businesses by the government to make the sector more appealing,” he shared.

“We encourage young people to take charge of their future.”

“Australia’s continued recovery presents a significant opportunity to inspire and encourage young people to engage in the business community. We request that the government and current business owners explore strategies for attracting young talent to this crucial sector.”

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