New research from HSBC Private Bank indicates that 48 percent of entrepreneurs in Hong Kong worth more than $1 million are female – with half of them being under the age of 35 – and that they are worth more on average ($3.7 million) than their male counterparts ($3.3 million).
The study is based on a survey of more than 2,800 active business owners worth more than $1 million, which will form part of the HSBC Private Bank Essence of Enterprise report that is due to be released early in 2016. The interviews were conducted in Hong Kong, Singapore, mainland China, United States, United Kingdom, Germany and France.
These figures are favourable as compared to the number of female entrepreneurs in other markets – Germany seeing the lowest proportions (21 percent) and the United Kingdom coming in at 28 percent.
According to the study, there is also a greater proportion of women higher up the wealth scale – 67 percent of entrepreneurs in Hong Kong with a net worth of over $15 million are female, compared to 33 percent in the West.
Apart from that, it was also found that entrepreneurs in Hong Kong display notably different career trajectories as compared to those in the West. Many have the tendency to start earlier and rely more heavily on support from family and friends. On average, these entrepreneurs set up their first business at the age of 27 (compared to 34 in the West). More than four in ten (44 percent) of those surveyed are still under the age of 35.
Entrepreneurs in Hong Kong were also found to be more focused on their ventures for the long-term than their Western counterparts. Less than a third (32 percent) intend to exit – compared with those in the United Kingdom, 55 percent of whom expressed intention to sell their business.
"For Asian entrepreneurs who are proud to have built successful empires, there is more of a focus on consolidating and growing their current enterprise," commented Bernard Rennell, regional head of global private banking, Asia-Pacific and global head of family governance and family enterprise succession at HSBC Private Bank. "We often see family members in Asia reinvesting into the business to drive further growth."