The Chances your Startup will Fail Broken Down by Sector [Infographic]


Creating and sustaining a successful startup takes a certain amount of grit, moxie and outright luck.


Staff.com has created a helpful infographic that breaks down some of the details that aid a startup’s survival (or failure), and that also projects success rates for some of the fastest growing startup industries in the U.S.

In general, long-term survival rates for startup businesses have been plummeting over the past 20 years. Between 1994 and 2010, survival rates have been gradually declining from a nearly 100 percent survival in 1994 to just 25 percent in 2010. Of course, there were a lot less startups around in 1994.

Despite the great drop off in long-term survival overall, startup business were only slightly less likely to survive for 5 years in 2005 (47 percent) as compared to 1995 (50 percent). It’s still pretty much either heads or tails.

There’s also a core of startup business types that have consistently been shown to be the most likely to fail. They are those in the independent restaurant, direct sales, retail store and consulting and business services arenas.

All of these types of businesses suffer from a 50 percent rate of failure overall, and all also suffer from a 60 percent rate of failure within the first 5 years.

Luckily though, there are still plenty of industries that are ripe for startup development over the next few years. Let’s take a look The seven leading startup business areas highlighted on the infographic are  mobile games, internet publishing, residential construction, transport and logistics, e-commerce, environmental consulting, and IT consulting.


About the author: John Tyczkowski

John Tyczkowski is a masters student in linguistics at the University of New Mexico. He’s the managing editor and opinion editor of the New Mexico Daily Lobo, UNM’s independent student-run newspaper, and an avid reader of Popular Science.

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