Young entrepreneurs: Teen players lead the field

They source products and open shops, set up limited companies and establish bestselling brands. And they might have time for a bit of homework, too. Alex Kasriel meets the tycoons of tomorrow


As university places become less attainable with the onset of high tuition fees, teenagers are increasingly turning to start their own businesses. A recent survey found that those who began degrees last October would be saddled with £24,700 of debt by the time they finished their courses, so it is hardly surprising that they might want to start making their own money now, either to help pay for college in the future, or to skip higher education altogether. These teen-preneurs mostly use the accessible marketplace provided by the internet to make cash.

According to a Virgin Media survey of 700 youngsters aged 13 to 18, an impressive 43 per cent have made money on the internet in the last 12 months and 22 per cent of these teen-preneurs have gone as far as setting up their own online businesses from their bedroom while still in full-time education.

Often, they started making money in the playground selling sweets and went on to source stock direct from manufacturers, auctioning it off on the online marketplace eBay.

During this economic downturn, these bright young sparks going it alone certainly gives the rest of us something to think about.

Last updated: 12:00pm, December 13 2010