Too old to start a business? This will change your mind.

Ritchie Cotton

Monday, 24 February 2020

You’re alive. There’s no better time to smash your business goals than now.

If you think you’re too old to be successful, that’s not only destructive, but untrue. Entrepreneurs aged 50 are twice as likely to succeed than those aged 30.

And, remember—a successful start-up doesn’t necessarily lead to successful long-term growth. One study discovered that on average, the more successful start-ups in their sample had older founders.

Age isn’t just a number. We all grow and change, collecting nuggets of wisdom—and wrinkles—along the way. Use those nuggets to your advantage!

You know more than you think.

Maybe your memory is declining and your joints ache more than you’d like, but you’re becoming wiser everyday. You probably have experience in several jobs now, and maybe even several careers, building a wealth of knowledge and refining your skillset. It’s time to put that time and expertise to good use, not let it waste fear.

If you’re still not convinced, the average business owner in Australia is 48 years old, and the following companies (some of which are now iconic brands) were founded by entrepreneurs aged 35+. They did it, and so can you.

1. KFC

The iconic Kentucky Fried Chicken was started by Colonel Sanders at age 65. Sanders didn’t exactly have an easy life before starting KFC—his dad passed away when he was just six years old, and throughout his career in law, Sanders struggled to keep a job down. He even had a brawl in court with one of his own clients.

But these challenges didn't dampen Sanders' spirit—he used each setback as fuel to move forward and smash his goals. Sanders set up a roadside restaurant in Kentucky and shared his now-famous fried chicken with hundreds of satisfied customers. He later went on to franchise KFC, which led to the billion dollar success story it is today.

2. Ford

Henry Ford’s parents had high hopes that one day, their son would run the family’s farming business. But Ford had a completely different idea. At the young age of 16, he left home to become a machinist, despite his family's wishes.

A career in engineering allowed him to grow a valuable skill set that he later leveraged to start Ford at age 40, which now has a net-worth of 199 billion.

3. Netflix

Netflix was founded by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in the late nineties, after Hastings copped a $40 late fee at a video store. But it didn't start as the popular streaming service we all know today. Netflix was originally an online DVD service, and later evolved into the well-known streaming site many of us are now addicted to. Netflix streaming was launched in 2007 when Hastings was in his late 40s, so never say never!

4. Archibald’s Swiss Cheese Mountain

The inspiring entrepreneur, Sylvia Lieberman, published her award-winning children’s book at age 90, named Archibald’s Swiss Cheese Mountain. The book inspires children to shoot for the stars and reach for their dreams. Lieberman is proof that it’s never too late to smash your business goals. To this day, she attends book signings, interviews and TV appearances to promote her book.

5. Lululemon

The popular Canadian yoga brand, Lululemon, was founded by Chip Wilson at age 42. Wilson's grand idea to start Lululemon was inspired by his first yoga class, where he observed how uncomfortable his classmates looked sweating away in baggy clothes. Lululemon now offers a range of high-quality yoga essentials.

Whether you’re 25 or 90, we see no difference. Valiant helps entrepreneurs and small business owners from all walks of life take their business ideas to new heights, everyday. The truth is, if you’re determined enough to put in the hard work, there’s never a ‘good’ time to start (or grow) your business.

Compare hundreds of business loans in just minutes to secure funding at the right rate, and finally bring your vision to life.

The information in this post is correct at the time of writing, and for general purposes only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional financial advice.

Ritchie is our CPO and a Co-Founder of Valiant. His number one mission is to make business finance easy for Australians, and help SMEs reach their full potential. Ritchie loves playing music and cooking Italian food, with risotto being his specialty!

Related Posts

Here's why you should consider a cafe refurbishment

Why refurbishing your cafe is not only beneficial, but essential in 2021.

6 key areas to focus on in 2022 that drive lasting business growth

After a year like 2020, you might be wondering where to even start. Click for six key focus areas that drive lasting business growth.

How to take a break from your business and switch off these holidays

Get the most of your holiday with these three tips for winding down, and return to the office feeling genuinely refreshed.

5 ways a business loan can benefit you these holidays

Could a business loan benefit you these holidays? Get your last minute finance for Christmas and start the new year off strong.

Our top tips for managing cash flow this Christmas

Christmas doesn’t have to equal chaos. Check out our top tips for managing cash flow this silly season.

9 realistic mental health tips for the busy SME owner

One in three small business owners struggle with their mental health. Here’s what you can do to keep yours in check.

7 tips for creating momentum in business, and why it's key to success

Ever hit a wall and not know where to go next? Here’s the key to building momentum in business (and in life).

Too old to start a business? This will change your mind.

You’ve been dreaming of that grand business idea for years, maybe even decades. These 5 famous entrepreneurs will inspire you to finally get started!

Real Talk: Does Work/Life Balance Exist?

Spoiler: it definitely exists. Make 2018 your best year yet by using these 5 tips to strike a work/life balance.

3 Great Ways To Drive Sales Through Customer Loyalty

Get more customers and keep them. Here's the low-down on setting up your very own customer loyalty program.

How To Develop Your Unique Selling Proposition

A Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is fundamental for any business looking to grow. Learn how to develop your USP and stand out from the crowd.

12 Business Set-Up Costs You Need To Know About

Setting up a business is hard enough, without getting stung with unexpected costs. Here are the things you should be thinking about before you dive in.