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Hi-ho Silverpreneurs…

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Older shoulders take the weight of late retirement as thousands of ‘Silverpreneurs’ (over 65s) start their own businesses.

New research from Creditsafe, reveals that concerns over the raising of the retirement age may be unfounded given the number of senior business positions currently held by those aged over 65. According to Creditsafe, complaints are not coming from the current working geriatric population – there are already 360,000 directors in the UK over the age of 65, equating to three percent of the pensioner population.

From today the Default Retirement Age is being phased out, meaning it can no longer be used to force workers to retire at 65 and it is set to be abolished altogether in October 2011. Creditsafe’s analysis shows that pensionable directors are already demonstrating that they have much to offer UK Plcs and the business community as over 100,000 companies (four percent) currently employ directors over the standard retirement age.

The research proves that pensionable directors are also a desirable asset for new companies as 10,000 directors over 65 have been appointed to newly incorporated businesses in the last six months (3.5 percent of all new companies).  Indeed, we are witnessing a new generation of entrepreneurial pensioners, which Creditsafe has dubbed the “Silverpreneurs.” David Knowles, Business Development Director at Creditsafe, expressed no concern for the next generation of pensioners: “To say that all today’s workers want to work later, perhaps into their 70s, would be misguided. However there are strong signs that the businesspeople of Britain will have no problem coping with a delayed retirement.

“At the highest level, over 65s are showing their worth – one in thirty over the retirement age are not only active in business, but hold a directorship. This is by no means a legacy of past success; of directors growing old with their position, as almost the same proportion of new companies are making over 65s directors (3.5 percent).” The average age of the top 20 billionaires for 2011 is 67.4, over two years above the state retirement ages for the UK and five about that of France. Iain Duncan-Smith spoke recently about tomorrow’s pensioners: “They will, on average, be working for a lot longer, they will be retired for longer, they won’t on the whole have final salary guaranteed pensions in the way that perhaps their parents did.”

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