Every year in the UK , 500,000 new businesses start trading. Currently starting a business is seen as the preferred option for many young people rather than a university degree. So it’s good that so many enthusiastic young people start a business. It is also an alternative for many over 50’s who want to take their career in in new direction, either to exploit skills and knowledge learnt in employment or to capitalise on a hobby or interest.

But 40% of start-ups do not survive three years. Why is that? And many that trade beyond three years fail to take the business to the level they aspire to. So I’d like to talk about the steps businesses can take to increase the odds that they will survive and grow and some of the business issues which they will confront when they start their business.

Meet Clive Lewis FCA ACMA


Clive is Head of Enterprise at The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). He is a chartered accountant and a chartered management accountant. After qualifying he spent 20 years in business finance roles including four years as finance director of a small electronics plc. In his current role he writes articles for the media and gives presentations on SME issues.


He also works on member surveys to obtain feedback on the state of the UK economy. He is the ICAEW representative on the British Bankers Association Business Finance Roundtable and has contributed recently to ICAEW responses.to consultations on the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill.