ENTREPRENEURS NEWS | IN BRIEF

SMES ARE NOT TAKING DATA LAWS SERIOUSLY
Half of small firms in the UK still believe that the loss or theft of data from their organisation would have no impact on their business, according to new research commissioned by Shred-it, a document destruction company. The survey among 1,000 UK businesses, undertaken by Ipsos, found that more than two thirds of UK SMEs (68 per cent) either never train their employees on company information security procedures and protocols (30 per cent), or do so only on an ad hoc basis (38 per cent). This news comes despite last year’s new legislation, threatening a £500,000 fine for serious breaches of the Data Protection Act.

NEW MENTORING SCHEME LAUNCHED
A new business mentoring scheme has been set up by the UK’s five largest high street banks. Start ups, established companies or those looking for a sounding board will receive support from networks of mentors, including current and retired bank staff that have volunteered and been trained as mentors. Business and enterprise minister Mark Prisk says: “Small business owners have repeatedly told us that the support they value most comes from other experienced business people. For the first time in the UK, there will be a single, cohesive network of mentoring provision.” For more information visit www.mentorsme.co.uk

ENTREPRENEURS ARE MADE NOT BORN
Almost 60 per cent of entrepreneurs worked in a corporate environment before they started their venture, according to Ernst & Young. The research challenges the stereotype that all entrepreneurs start their companies without completing any formal education and without any experience of corporate life. Although many of the entrepreneurs that were surveyed started at a young age, 45 per cent of the respondents said they did not start their business until they were 30 or more. And nearly 60 per cent described themselves as “transitioned” entrepreneurs, who have previously worked in a corporate environment before setting out on their own.