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Business

Mapping the DNA of entrepreneurs

Business DNA

Business DNA Credit: iStock

With an eye to “sequencing the startup DNA,” the people at LinkedIn have sifted through the more than 120 million public profiles on the site to determine some common characteristics of entrepreneurs. They came up with more than 13,000 entrepreneurs, those who identified themselves as founders or co-founders of U.S. companies started after 2000.

Among the findings:

--Most common ages to launch a first start-up? Ages 30 to 39. Next most common? Ages 20 to 29.

--Top start-up regions: New York City, Boston, San Francisco.

--Most common majors in college? Entrepreneurship, computer engineering, computer science.

--Least entrepreneurial majors? Nursing, administration, human resources.

“While young (and serial) entrepreneurs are often in the spotlight, our data shows that 65% of entrepreneurs are 30 and older – and only 2% are serial entrepreneurs,” wrote Monica Rogati, senior data scientist, in a LinkedIn blog entry.

Erica Prince, 58, who for 16 years has been running her third entrepreneurial venture, The Professional Speaker's Bureau Inc. in Roslyn, says she wasn't surprised to see the youth of those starting a first business. She was 21 when she launched hers, one that put greeting card-type messages on records. (Remember those old vinyl discs in pre-iPod days?)

Still, she said she would have expected to see more entrepreneurs in their 50s and up. (LinkedIn says that age group accounts for just five percent of their start-up founders.) “With the decline of the economy,” says Prince, “there’s a tremendous emphasis on starting your own business.”

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