Over 1 million family-owned businesses run by couples, research shows

Research from online accounting software provider FreeAgent has found that out of the UK’s 4.7 million family-owned businesses, 1.4 million are run by couples.

Dubbed “copreneurs”, businesses run by couples are expected to increase as more people in the UK look to set up their own business.


FreeAgent’s research follows recent figures that found that 10 per cent of workers in the UK want to set up their own business within the next year, with many wishing to go into business with their partner.

Harvard Business Review also released research highlighting the differences in earnings between women who enter business with their partner and those who choose to set up a business on their own. Women who set up their business with their partner were found to earn over 25 per cent more than they did before they entered into the business partnership, whilst women running a business on their own earned over 30 per cent less than those running a “copreneur” business.


Commenting on the research, FreeAgent Co-Founder, Ed Molyneux, stated that while many will choose to set up a business alone, FreeAgent believes that there will be a significant number who will decide to team up with their partner to start and run a business together.

He added: “That’s because it’s a potentially great move for couples to make with their careers — as you’ll be able to coordinate your work around your family commitments, share your passion with your soulmate and have all of your household and business finances in one place.”

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