Pop-up shops popular among aspiring entrepreneurs

Almost a third of British startups will begin trading as pop-up businesses, research by EE has found.

A 'pop-up' shop is a temporary retail store or stall that is used to sell goods and services for a limited time period. Owners typically sell goods such as clothes, local produce, and food and drink to take advantage of a current or seasonal trend.

EE's survey of more than 2,000 people reveals that 29% plan to start their own pop-up business. The model is seen as an ideal way to set up a business by 57% of respondents, while 39% said they were inspired by the success of pop-ups.

The most popular types of pop-up among survey respondents were:

  • food (30%)
  • drink (18%)
  • art and crafts (15%)
  • fashion (12%)
  • jewellery (11%).

The research also identified the challenges faced by would-be pop-up owners. A third (32%) worry that they don't have access to the required technology to set up their business, while others are concerned that they won't be able to find the space to set up their shop.

The research builds on last year's report by EE and the Centre for Economic and Business Research which found that pop-up retailers made £2.1 billion in turnover in 2013/14. There were 9,400 pop-up shops across the UK employing around 23,400 workers.

Mike Tomlinson, director of small business at EE, said:

"This research shows that Britain is now a nation of aspiring business owners. Whether you're starting your first business on your own or you're an established company testing out a new location or product, pop-ups have become a tried and tested business strategy."

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