Business creation driven by self-employment
Business creation jumped 75% to a record high of 580,200 in 2009. This unprecedented surge, observed in nearly all economic sectors and in all regions, is due to the introduction of a new “freelance entrepreneur” (auto-entrepreneur) status. More than one-half of business creators in 2009 were “freelance entrepreneurs”. As a result, the share of new businesses started as incorporated firms dropped from 50% to 25%. The proportion of freelance entrepreneurs is highest in the service sector, where they account for two out of three business starts. The number of creations in other legal categories fell sharply in all sectors except manufacturing and in all regions. Almost all freelance entrepreneurs start their businesses without employees. In the other categories of new businesses, the share of units with at least one employee rose very slightly. The sizable impact of freelance entrepreneurs on creation volume is not due to their personal profile, which resembles that of other founders of unincorporated enterprises.