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Senior entrepreneurs

Senior entrepreneurs

Seniors are increasingly interested in becoming entrepreneurs and retired business people can provide precious knowledge and skills for budding entrepreneurs. The European Commission is exploring how to benefit from the knowledge and skills of seniors, and how to ensure that they are able to go into business for themselves.

Challenges faced by seniors

Many seniors wish to stay active and explore new opportunities. Those wanting to start a business for the first time should benefit from the full range of support services. Those who already have a successful business experience may also enjoy sharing their expertise with others. They face certain challenges however. For instance:

  • they might not be reached through the traditional marketing of business support services;
  • they might not be aware of business support organisations and those organisations may not realise their entrepreneurial potential;
  • they might not be seen as valuable mentors to other entrepreneurs.

The European Commission’s actions to support senior entrepreneurs:

To help support seniors who want to become entrepreneurs or to mentor others, the European Commission organised 2 European Workshops ("Laboratories") in 2015 to exchange good practices. These events helped to gather information on existing practices and disseminated lessons learned from successful initiatives. As a final outcome of the Laboratories, a manual was produced.

Senior Entrepreneurship Good Practices Manual

The objective of this manual is to present some of the existing initiatives in this field to seniors, intermediaries and policy makers, so that these key actors can better utilise existing resources, create new opportunities for cooperation or identify the gaps in supporting seniors. The manual includes 24 good practice examples, key conclusions and recommendations for further action.

Senior Entrepreneurship Good Practices Manual

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