One out of seven in Hong Kong is entrepreneur

One out of seven in Hong Kong is entrepreneur

Macau Daily Times.com
Tuesday, 22 January 2008 

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than one out of every seven in Hong Kong was entrepreneur, a study on
entrepreneurship released yesterday by a local university showed.The
study by the Chinese University of Hong Kong found that the SAR
territory’s early-stage entrepreneurial activity index, measured as
starting up new business, to be 10 percent, ahead of Tokyo’s 2 percent
and Singapore’s 6 percent.
But the figure was "yet still
far behind that of China as a whole, which recorded an early-stage
entrepreneurial activity index of 16.4 percent, researchers said.

Put
together with Hong Kong’s already established business rate of 5.4
percent, however, it means 15 out of 100, or more than one out of
seven, in Hong Kong were entrepreneurs, said the report.The
study was part of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, an international
consortium founded by Babson College and the London Business School in
1999 with over 200 scholars to measure entrepreneurship worldwide.
"From
2002 to 2004, Hong Kong’s annual entrepreneurial activity rate was only
3 percent, which was among the world’s lowest.

It is not surprising
entrepreneurial activities have grown significantly when we consider
the low level of confidence and few perceived business opportunities in
the uncertain years from 1999 to 2004," said Professor Hugh Thomas,
director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at the Chinese University
of Hong Kong.
A typical entrepreneur in Hong Kong would be
male, between 25 to 34 years of age, well educated and well-off, he
said, adding that 55 percent of the entrepreneurs would have previous
experience in starting up business.

"It is interesting to
see more educated people join the echelon of entrepreneurs. This
indicates that Hong Kong entrepreneurs are starting a business to
pursue an opportunity rather than being forced by necessity," Thomas
said.
The study also showed new enterprises in Hong Kong
were overwhelmingly service-oriented, with consumer services and
business services accounting for 59 percent and 18 percent respectively.
In
terms of financing, 43 percent of the entrepreneurs planned to fund the
startup completely on their own savings while 57 percent said they
would find formal or informal investors, which means one out of 12
adults in Hong Kong was an informal investor, which was higher than the
GEM average.
"HK business has been associated with high
levels of entrepreneurial activity for a very long time, owing to the
people ‘s high level of skill and flexibility.

Also, setting up a new
business is both fast and relatively inexpensive. On the other hand,
downsides are the high costs in HK, the small local market and highly
fragmented regional markets, which hinder growth," said Toby Marion,
chair of the entrepreneurs committee of the American Chamber of
Commerce.

HK would do well to provide courses in how to set up a small business, he added.

 

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