Leadership & Productivity

Could you make your hobby pay?
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Hobby-based entrepreneurs see higher levels of job satisfaction

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Over a quarter of Britons (28 per cent) have at some stage considered starting up a business off the back of a hobby. Personal passions helped create arts and crafts enterprises, fitness studios and cake-making companies.

This is according to research from the Start Up Loans Company (SULCo) in partnership with YouGov. However, despite so many hobbyists considering starting businesses, only 29 per cent of this group has gone on to do so – which leaves around six million hobby-based businesses that have yet to be launched.

Of those that have started a hobby-based business, average turnover was recorded as £65,000 with a profit of £15,800 – a 24 per cent profit margin – in the last year.

Joanna Hill, interim CEO of The Start Up Loans Company, commented: “Britain is home to a booming shared economy where skills exchanges are creating all sorts of opportunities for people who want to start a business.
 
“We find some of the most successful business ideas are borne out of people’s passions. So many of us have activities we pursue as a side line to our careers, but nowadays, with the right level of support and encouragement, these hobbies can be transformed into profitable businesses.”

Around 74 per cent of respondents believe they could achieve higher job satisfaction and be more motivated running a business inspired by their hobby. Of those that have actually launched a hobby-based business, 86 per cent reported higher levels of job satisfaction.

Occasional earners should take note that, in 2016, it was announced micro businesses would be allowed to earn up to £1,000 a year tax-free. This was dropped in May this year, but is set to be re-introduced at some point.

Hobby entrepreneurs in action

Jenk Oz founded his company iCoolKid off the back of his hobbies. His site carries reviews of pop culture, events, science and tech, all aimed at children.

Oz set up his company three years ago, and now at 11 years old he is Britain’s youngest CEO.

You can read more about Oz’s business and how he juggles a business with school work here: http://businessadvice.co.uk/on-the-up/meet-britains-youngest-ceo-11-year-old-jenk-oz/

This article is part of a wider campaign called the Scale-up Hub, a section of Real Business that provides essential advice and inspiration on taking your business to the next level. It’s produced in association with webexpenses and webonboarding, a fast-growing global organisation that provides cloud-based software services that automate expenses management and streamline the employee onboarding process.

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