Next Avenue: Should you start a business in your 50s or 60s? Here’s how to find financing and build a new career.

by | Oct 19, 2023 | Stock Market

This article is reprinted by permission from Many experienced workers in the second half of life are joining the ranks of entrepreneurs rather than sticking with their current job or retiring. They’re using their experience, skills and creativity to start new enterprises and to embrace self-employment.

Older people are well suited to the startup culture, whether they are pushed into it by involuntary retirement or pulled into it by entrepreneurial passion. These second-life entrepreneurs are adept at solving problems, thanks to long years of work experience and deep networks of business contacts. In 1996, 14.8% of entrepreneurs were 55 to 64 years old and by 2020, 24.5% were 55 to 64 years old, according to the Kauffman Foundation. “Entrepreneurship can be really fun,” says William Gartner, the Bertarelli Foundation Distinguished Professor of Family Entrepreneurship at Babson College near Wellesley, Massachusetts. “Why not? Go ahead and do it.”Where to find financing? The question is, how should 50-year and older entrepreneurs finance their startup? Getting access to capital to fund a new business is difficult for anyone. But older entrepreneurs confront the additional challenge that potential funders often see their advanced age as a negative. Venture capitalists and angel investors generally are not interested. They look for businesses with national and global ambitions, while many businesses started in the second half of life are small, with a handful of employees at most. Banks aren’t eager to lend to startups, either. The credit risk is too great t …

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