January is the time for more than just New Year’s resolutions, it’s the ideal time to take stock and pursue our passions. Do you dream of quitting working for The Man and setting up your own business? You’re not alone.
Companies House figures show a spike in new businesses set up at the start of the year, a trend which plays out almost every single year. Last year, nearly 168,000 companies were set up between January and March – more than in the second and third quarter, respectively. The year before, around 20,000 more companies were set up in the first quarter versus the following three quarters.
January is the time of year when people get fired up and take the plunge. Helen Zec did just that - she co-founded Paysap in January 2017 after spotting a gap in the invoicing market. Paysap chases unpaid invoices and pays them in advance for freelancers and micro-businesses. Having spent years working in accounts receivables, Helen identified an opportunity to offer invoice services to workers in the gig economy. She made it a New Year’s resolution to pursue her business idea.
We applied to Companies House, we just wanted to kick off as soon as possible and see how it goes. You have the whole year in front of you to do right and make mistakes - by the end of the year you realise where you are and where you can do better.
Helen Zec, Paysap
Paysap is now going from strength to strength. But what can you do to stop your company from being one of the hundreds of thousands that ends up dissolved?
Pursue something you are truly passionate about to ensure you remain motivated long after the New Year buzz wears off, says business and strategy growth coach, Ramona Da Gama. But make sure to take off the rose-tinted spectacles before setting up shop.
Who is your audience? The big question is, are they going to buy your product? People get excited about setting up a business, but don’t think about why people should want to buy what they’re selling.
Helen Zec, Paysap
If you still think your business idea has what it takes to succeed, 2019 could be your year. Workspace is partnering up with business accelerator, Founder Institute to offer a free place on its three-month start-up programme in March, worth £1,000. In addition, the winner will get three months of free co-working space at Club Workspace, worth £900. The Founder Institute works with entrepreneurs on an intense programme to validate ideas, build teams and launch businesses.
Founded in California, it has spread to more than 180 countries and helped launch more than 3,500 companies. Former Workspace customer Oddbox, who were based at Parkhall Business Centre in West Dulwich, is a graduate of the London Founder Institute; the programme helped co-founders Deepak Ravindran and Emilie Vanpoperinghe find success with their wonky fruit-and-veg delivery company.
Kick-start your new business and apply today. The submission deadline is 16th February.
Get inspired at these events
January 19th. Startup 2019 at King’s College London (£10) - tinyurl.com/Start-Up-2019
February 13th. London School of Economics Startup Networking Evening (free to register) - tinyurl.com/LSE-startup-networking
Thinking of setting up your own business and need a suitable space? Give co-working a try at any of our 19 Club Workspace locations around London, and enjoy working on the go at our thriving business centres.