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There are now more than a million people aged over 50 who are self-employed in the UK – this is 89,000 more compared to 2020.

The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE) report revealed that this is despite the total solo self-employed population falling by 154,000 in the same period.

The report also shows that the sector’s economic contribution soared by more than £50bn in 2023, to a total of £331bn, after declining in 2022.

Commenting on the findings, IPSE’s Director of Policy, Andy Chamberlain, said, “It’s clear that self-employment’s offer of independence and autonomy in work are particularly attractive to experienced professionals, especially if they have lost an employed role or have become disillusioned with the 9-to-5.

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“Many harbour dreams of starting their own business, whether it’s to pursue a lifelong dream, increase their income or find a better work-life balance.

“But the over 50s, now in the prime of their careers and with decades of experience under their belt, likely have even more confidence in their ability to make a success of it.

“The UK is fortunate to have a vibrant self-employed sector that offers a fresh shot at success to people at any stage in their careers, and we should celebrate the fact that tens of thousands more people – especially those over 50 – are doing just that.”

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