Business competition The Pitch asked applicants to reveal who their idol was. 16% said the Virgin entrepreneur while 21% feel that their mother, father, uncle, aunt, brother or sister provides them with more inspiration.
It also discovered that 9% chose a former boss or colleague, while 8% said it was Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and 4% picked The Apprentice host Lord Sugar.
A huge number of applications were received but only 50 suceeded and were chosen to compete at The Pitch Live in Bristol on 25th September. One lucky contestant will receive business support worth thousands of pounds and also have the chance to win a share of £275,000 equity investment.
Dan Martin, editor of BusinessZone.co.uk and founder of The Pitch, said: “Despite the high profile nature of entrepreneurs like Sir Richard Branson, it’s not surprising that many small business owners find inspiration close to home. After all, Britain is a nation of shopkeepers!
“Fear of failure and access to funding are key concerns for most of our applicants but events like The Pitch 2013 can help deal with that. I urge anyone with an interest in supporting British entrepreneurship to join us at The Pitch Live in Bristol on 25th September.”