Business Buyer Demographics and Startup Timeframes Shift in February Survey

By: Michael Alston for Franchise Insights

March 8, 2023 – In February 2023, 59.1% of entrepreneurs surveyed say they are “more likely to launch their startups than three months ago.” Coincidentally, 59.1% of survey respondents either agree or strongly agree that “now is a good time to start a business”, consistent with the prior month, but down from the high of 73.5% in February 2022. compiles monthly the Small Business Startup Sentiment Index™ (SSI) of individuals who have recently inquired about businesses for sale. 

While 28% see business conditions deteriorating in three months, 72% still see conditions for business startups “the same or better in three months. On a more cautious note, in February 2023, only 43% of entrepreneurs planned their startups within the next three months, down from August’s recent high of 69.2%.

The most recent Startup Sentiment Index™ survey was conducted February 23-28, 2023. 

Additional highlights:

  • Future business conditions: While the majority of respondents see conditions “about the same” in three months for startups (53.8%), the declining trend of those seeing future conditions better (now 18.3%) and increase in those seeing future conditions worse (28%) mirrors lower consumer confidence and portends possible recession in the U.S.
  • Access to funding: The percentage of entrepreneurs concerned about finding  adequate funding stands at 69.95, though those seeing funding “harder or much harder” to obtain in the next three months dropped precipitously to 26.9% from 46.8% in the January survey.
  • Demographics: 44.1% of respondents were currently employed full-time, and 20.4% were current business owners seeking an additional business. The Gen-X cohort dominated with 53.8% of respondents – more than double Millennials in second place at 21.5, while Baby Boomers (19.4%) remained in third place. Gen-Z grew to 5.4% of survey respondents in February, well above the 3.29% share of respondents seen in the full year of 2022.

Download a copy of the February 2023 SSI report here. See excerpts from prior SSI™ surveys and subscribe to receive the Small Business Startup Sentiment Index™ monthly report when it is released.

The Small Business Startup Sentiment Index™ is based on a monthly survey of individuals who have recently inquired about businesses or franchises for sale on the digital assets of FranchiseVentures.

FranchiseVentures is the leading franchise lead-generation platform for potential franchisees to thousands of growing franchise systems in the United States and Canada. Its franchise lead generation brands include, Franchise Solutions, Franchise Gator, Franchise Opportunities, Franchise For Sale, and, and together they provide the largest aggregation of prospective franchise buyers in the U.S.

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Published on Wednesday, March 8th, 2023.

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