Stats on startups

Norway entrepreneurship at record levels

Photo: Pixabay
This is an actual photograph of what rising entrepreneurship looks like, complete with the dizzying effect of adding all those numbers while standing up.

Rasmus Falck
Oslo, Norway

Reduced oil prices made Norwegian entrepreneurs role up their sleeves and get going, and the number of startups now reaches a record high.

According to a 2015 report from SSB (the Norwegian Bureau of Statistics) published at the end of 2016, most of the new entrepreneurs establish themselves in professional, scientific, and technical activities. The second economic activity of choice for entrepreneurs is construction, and the third is wholesale and retail trade and repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles. Over half of the entrepreneurs are between the ages of 25 to 44 and have an upper secondary education. Female entrepreneurs are on average younger than male entrepreneurs but better educated, which has been the trend since the statistics began in 2002.

The statistics also show a five-year success rate for newly established enterprises in term of survival, turnover, and employment. In 2009, there were only 14,034 entrepreneurs who founded limited companies; the corresponding figure for 2015 was 25,793. The survival rate for the newly established enterprises varied by gender: a total of 49.3 percent of limited companies founded by male entrepreneurs were still in business five years after being established, while the survival rate for enterprises set up by their female counterparts was 54 percent.

Seventy percent of male entrepreneurs with surviving personally owned enterprises between 2009 and 2014 achieved turnover growth in their enterprises. The corresponding figure for female entrepreneurs was 57.8 percent; however, female entrepreneurs were the more likely ones to attain employment growth. A total of 57.5 percent of women and 51.5 percent of men employed more people in their companies. The same trends were seen in limited companies.

Eight out of ten entrepreneurs aged 16 to 24 years with surviving personally owned enterprises between 2009 and 2014 had turnover growth. This was above the average of 65.8 percent. In limited companies, by comparison, it was entrepreneurs aged 67 years or more who were most likely to experience growth in turnover.

There was no correlation between education and the likelihood that an entrepreneur achieved turnover growth. While 70.5 percent of the founders of limited companies with over four years of higher education had turnover growth, only 39 percent of the highest-educated entrepreneurs of personally owned enterprises attained turnover growth the first five years they were in business compared to 77 percent of their lowest-educated counterparts.

Rasmus Falck is a strong innovation and entrepreneurship advocate. The author of “What do the best do better” and “The board of directors as a resource in SME,” he received his masters degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He currently lives in Oslo, Norway.

This article originally appeared in the March 24, 2017, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

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