The Best Places for Millennials to Start a Business | Global Trade Magazine
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  June 28th, 2018 | Written by

The Best Places for Millennials to Start a Business

New Research Measured Cities According to Metrics Essential for Young Entrepreneurs

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  • Study highlights best hubs around the world for millennials looking to build their empires.
  • Research ranks cities according to metrics including the availability of early-stage funding and cost of living.
  • The top three business hubs for millenials are Tallinn, Estonia, Toronto, and New Zealand.
  • Tallinn crowned the world’s most attractive city for millennials to start up a business.

Dubbed the global generation, over half of all millennials would consider moving abroad for work opportunities, and an increasing number are starting their own business ventures. With possibilities of owning a home becoming increasingly difficult in the world’s cities, rent prices soaring and the political climate changing, research shows that millennials are less financially stable compared to previous generations.

GoCompare has released data to reveal the best places for millennials to start a business, measuring ease of registering property, starting and running a business on a day-to-day level, trading across borders, and diversity, among other metrics.

New research has revealed Tallinn in Estonia to be the world’s best city for millennials starting a business, with Canada winning as a country overall – with four of its major cities, Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto featuring in the top ten.

Millennials are the backbone of the “digital nomad” generation, meaning finding hubs for opportunities, innovation and entrepreneurialism are becoming increasingly more sought after.

The top five Locations include:

Tallinn. A reputation for being digitally savvy, tops the leaderboard owing to a combination of the ease of registering property, and starting and running a business. Estonia scored 6.5 for the cost of living, the best score compared to all European, and North American cities.

Toronto. Canada’s leading city in tech innovation, Toronto offers the best business funding in the country. With four of its major cities featured in the top ten, Toronto comes in second to London with an impressive 10,000 WiFi hotspots available citywide.

New Zealand. Named as #1 for starting and running a business with a perfect score of 10, New Zealand also ranks at #4 for biotech potential – with the highest density of PhD graduates in Life Sciences in the world. New Zealand also scores highly for their diversity rating with a score of 6.7 making it one of the best places for women and immigrants to start businesses.

Singapore. Despite having higher living costs than London, Singapore scores highly for starting and running a business, making it attractive for tech startups – being home to over 270 Fintech startups. However, the financial hub also scores highly for diversity, with an impressive score of 6.9.

London – With London’s tech sector fuelling the growth for its digital economy, the capital ranked 2nd to Silicon Valley and Singapore for diversity – with 42 percent of business owners originally from outside the UK. Despite a high living cost, London still scores highly amongst all other metrics making it a popular destination for entrepreneurs.

What are millennial entrepreneurs looking for?

With opportunities to travel and being globally-connected being important to most millennials, many are looking outside of their home countries to start their own businesses. Here are some of the key factors in attracting young entrepreneurs:

Digitally-savvy cities. Digital connectivity is a non-negotiable in the 21st century working world, where location-independent entrepreneurs are set to dominate. Despite not featuring in the top ten, Moscow leads the way for public wi-fi hotspots, offering a total of 41,250. Helsinki offers the fastest internet connectivity, racing ahead with 17.4mbps. Ironically, the Silicon Valley offers some of the slowest wi-fi, at 3.7mbps.

Diversity is key. Diversity in business broadly equates to fairer representation across the whole of society. In this study, diversity was ranked according to the relative number of businesses with female and/or immigrant founders. With 31 percent, Silicon Valley led the way on the diversity front. London (17 percent) lagged behind New York (25.5 percent), Chicago (24.5 percent), and Paris (26.5 percent). Cape Town and Seoul came second and third overall for diversity, with 28.5 percent and 28 percent respectively of their businesses founded by minorities.

Cost of living. Millennials around the world are notoriously trapped by soaring rents and ever-less attainable property ladders.  Of the top ten, the stats reveal that most have a relatively high cost of living; however, Ottawa and Vancouver are notable exceptions. Perhaps surprisingly, Singapore and even New Zealand are ranked as having a higher cost of living than London.


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