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Start-up owners more optimistic and outperforming established small business: Research

Tuesday, 10 December 2013 | By Rose Powell

Start-up businesses are outperforming established smaller businesses, according to the MYOB Business Monitor created from a survey of over 1000 small to medium Australian businesses.


Start-up business owners reported stronger revenue performance with just under a quarter (24%) reporting a revenue rise this year compared to the average of 18%.


Newer businesses also had higher revenue expectations than average small to medium business owners. They were also more optimistic about the economy, with 32% expecting it to improve compared to the average of 23%.


Despite the stronger performance and sunnier outlook, start-ups were facing similar challenges to more established small businesses, with cashflow, attracting new customers and fuel prices identified as the key anticipated pressure points for 2014.


The survey also found start-ups are committed to growing and sustaining the customer base, with 39% increasing their focus on customer acquisition strategies and 42% their focus on customer retention, compared to the averages of 35% and 24%.


Just under half of new companies (40%) plan to develop and roll out new offerings.


Despite the customer development strategies, most start-ups (63%) aren’t looking to hire more full-time employees. Only 11% said they were planning on hiring more full time workers.


These findings were similar for part-time and casual hires as well, with 46% of start-up operators not looking to hire.


The start-up business owners surveyed were planning on investing more in their businesses than the more established companies, with a quarter of the start-ups surveyed planning to increase investment in their IT systems and processes, compared to the 16% average.