EMCC European Monitoring Centre on Change

Germany: ERM comparative analytical report on emerging forms of entrepreneurship

  • Observatory: EMCC
  • Topic:
  • Published on: 21 March 2011



About
Country:
Germany
Author:
Sandra Vogel
Institution:

Disclaimer: This information is made available as a service to the public but has not been edited by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions. The content is the responsibility of the authors.

Entrepreneurship in general has been the focus of several initiatives and campaigns sponsored by federal ministries, the social partners and business and trade associations. These initiatives aim to increase the number of new businesses launched. As far as public discussion and academic research are concerned, it should be noted that within the last ten years one-person enterprises and the transfer of business ownership have become a particular subject of investigation and debate. Part-time entrepreneurs have also been implicitly covered by studies and articles dealing with female entrepreneurs. Businesswomen and start-ups launched by them differ in many respects from their male counterparts.

The questionnaire

Part I: Public/policy discussion

General policy discussions and policy approach

Do the public/policy discussions specifically deal with the different forms of business activities, since when and for how long?

Table 1: Presence of the different emerging forms of entrepreneurship in the public debate
 

Yes, continuously since xx year? (Please indicate year)

Yes, on and off in the last 10 years

(Please indicate yes where it applies)

Yes, has been on the public agenda, but since xx year it is no longer part of the agenda (Please indicate year)

No, it has never been part of the public agenda

(Please indicate X where it applies)

One-person enterprises /self-employed  

X

   
Part-time entrepreneurs  

X

   
Parallel entrepreneurs      

X

Serial entrepreneurs      

X

Business transfers and successions  

X

   

For each of the entrepreneurship/business activities covered by policy discussions, which policy domains are they covered in? Please indicate with an ’X‘ where relevant.

Table 2: Policy domains engaged in the policy discussion of the emerging forms of entrepreneurship
 

Labour policies

Educational policies

Economic/Industrial policies

Innovation policies

Regional policies

Other (please specify)

One-person enterprises /self-employed

X

         
Part-time entrepreneurs

X

         
Parallel entrepreneurs            
Serial entrepreneurs            
Business transfers and successions    

X

   

Reform of the inheritance tax

In which media and forum do the public debate and policy discussions about the different types of entrepreneurship take place?

Please indicate whether they are implicitly (e.g. publications are covering entrepreneurs in general with implicit implications for the different forms of entrepreneurs/business activities) covered and/or explicitly mentioned (for instance parallel entrepreneurs are explicitly mentioned in publications) in these publications

Table 3: Media and forums discussing the emerging forms of entrepreneurship
 

Public media such as newspapers and magazines incl. electronic media

Policy documents and analysis

Proposed legislation and/or business support schemes

Others, please specify

One-person enterprises/self-employed

One-person enterprises were explicitly covered by public media, because new legislation was introduced.

Explicitly.

Explicitly.

 
Part-time entrepreneurs

Implicitly covered, e.g. when reporting on women’s start-up behaviour or analysing gender differences of entrepreneurs.

     
Parallel entrepreneurs        
Serial entrepreneurs        
Business transfers and successions

Explicitly covered when the inheritance tax was reformed.

Explicitly covered.

Explicitly covered.

 

Specific topics to describe the different types of entrepreneurship

What has motivated the public debate?

Please specify for each of the five forms of entrepreneurship:

Table 4: What has motivated the public debate of the emerging forms of entrepreneurship

Type of Entrepreneurship

Motivator

One-person enterprises/self-employed

In 2002, the commission on ‘Modern services in the labour market’, the so-called Hartz Commission, introduced a proposal to reform national labour market policies. Among other things, a new public subsidy for business start-ups (Existenzgründungszuschuss) was introduced in 2003. Funds were granted to lone entrepreneurs, commonly referred to as ‘Ich-AGs’. At first, there was criticism that the newly introduced scheme performed the same function as an already existing public measure called ‘bridging money’ (Überbrückungsgeld). It was also questioned whether the newly introduced scheme would really increase the number of business start-ups by unemployed persons.

Part-time entrepreneurs

Generally speaking, the business start-up rate is not very high in Germany. However, the share of women who start new businesses is even smaller. The public discussion and academic analysis noted that, when they do launch a business, female entrepreneurs prefer to do so on a part-time basis, i.e. whilst still employed part-time or organising the household, taking care of children etc.

Parallel entrepreneurs  
Serial entrepreneurs  
Business transfers and successions

Public discussion was provoked by a reform of the inheritance tax intended to ease transfers of business ownership. For example, the reform was discussed and commented on by the social partners, e.g. the German Confederation of Employers’ Associations (Bundesvereinigung der Deutschen Arbeitgeberverbände, BDA), the Confederation of the German Retail Trade (Handelsverband Deutschland, HDE), the German Confederation of Skilled Crafts (Zentralverband des Deutschen Handwerks, ZDH) and the Federation of German Industries (Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie, BDI).

What has been the focus of the policy discussion?

To help you answer question 5, we list some examples of key issues that could be addressed in the policy discussion:

Please specify for each of the five forms of entrepreneurship:

Table 5: The policy focus in the public debate within each of the emerging forms of entrepreneurship

Type of Entrepreneurship

Policy focus

One-person enterprises/self-employed

The Hartz Commission’s reforms and the newly introduced subsidy for business start-ups were intended to offer the unemployed new career prospects as self-employed entrepreneurs. The scheme also sought to tackle undeclared work amongst the unemployed and help the latter to start their own businesses on a lawful basis.

Part-time entrepreneurs

Concerning female entrepreneurs, the policy focus has been on fostering their entrepreneurial spirit, as part-time entrepreneurship can serve as a viable alternative to dependent employment for those seeking to raise their income or balance their family and working lives. Apart from these gender-specific issues, part-time entrepreneurs also receive advice on how to manage their various activities and on the regulations (in terms of tax, payment of social security contributions, etc.) which apply to such businesses.

Parallel entrepreneurs  
Serial entrepreneurs  
Business transfers and successions

The newly introduced legislation was intended to ease the burden on entrepreneurs who take over family or other businesses by relaxing the tax rules. The goal was to ensure the continued existence of such companies and to safeguard jobs. A further focus was awareness raising, with campaigns calling on entrepreneurs to plan the transfer of their business well in advance in order to avoid a subsequent closure. Information campaigns such as those launched by the National Agency for Women Start-ups Activities and Services (Bundesweite Gründerinnen-Agentur, bga) also call for greater consideration to be given to suitable female candidates, e.g. daughters, when transferring the family business to the next generation.

Has the public discussion resulted in a concrete outcome/impact?

No:

Yes: As shown in Table 6, the public discussion has resulted in concrete outcomes, especially concerning legislation.

Please specify for each of the five forms of entrepreneurship:

Table 6: Outcome or impact of the public debate of the emerging forms of entrepreneurship

Type of Entrepreneurship

Outcome/Impact

One-person enterprises/self-employed

The government responded to public calls to optimise the structure of the subsidies granted by the BA. On 1 August 2006, it fused the two labour market instruments into one. The new instrument is called a ‘start-up premium’ (Gründungszuschuss). However, research indicates that the two earlier schemes attracted different applicants. People applying for ‘bridging money’ had generally attained a higher level education than ‘Ich-AG’ recipients. On the other hand, the female unemployed more often chose to apply for ‘Ich-AG’ funds. Researchers therefore concluded that the merged instrument might not attract the same number of applicants as its two predecessors (for references see Table 11).

Part-time entrepreneurs  
Parallel entrepreneurs  
Serial entrepreneurs  
Business transfers and successions

Initial changes to the inheritance tax were introduced with effect from 1 January 2009. The reformed Inheritance and Gift Act (Erbschaftssteuer- und Schenkungsgesetz, ErbStG) offers two options to business successors, whose choice is then binding and irreversible: Firstly, if for the seven years after the transfer a business successor pays salaries and wages totalling 650% of the annual average wage-bill over the preceding five years, inheritance tax is payable on only 15% of the company’s assets. In this case, so-called ‘administrative assets’, i.e. those held and administered rather than used for the operative part of the business, must not exceed 50% of all the business’s assets. Secondly, if salary and wages total 1000% over the first ten years after the transfer, a complete exemption from inheritance tax can be granted. In this case, administrative assets must not exceed 10% of the total.

At the end of 2009, these rules were once more changed with the passing of the Acceleration of Growth Act (Wachstumsbeschleunigungsgesetz). The Act lowered the barriers for the transfer of businesses. In particular, the total sum of salaries and wages was reduced from 650% to 400% and the required holding period shortened from seven to five years. It should also be noted that companies with fewer than 20 employees are not required to meet the total wage-bill criterion. These changes took effect retrospectively from 1 January 2009.

Overall assessment

Within the last couple of years, to which extent has the public and policy discussion been more focused on the following different types of entrepreneurship compared to the business policy/entrepreneurship debate in general?

Table 7: Increased focus at the emerging forms of entrepreneurship?
 

To a low degree To a high degree

 

1

2

3

4

5

One-person enterprises/self-employed    

X

   
Part-time entrepreneurs  

X

     
Parallel entrepreneurs

X

       
Serial entrepreneurs

X

       
Business transfers and successions    

X

   

Please list the main sources of information in the search for the above

  1. Research publications and papers: see Table 11.
  2. Information material on the separate forms of entrepreneurship covered by this CAR, available from government programmes, initiatives and publications, such as:
  • The National Agency for Women Start-ups Activities and Services, which was set up jointly by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung, BMBF), the Federal Ministry for Family, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend, BMFSFJ) and the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Technologie, BMWI).
  • The BMWI initiative ‘Germany – land of business start-ups’ (Initiative Gründerland Deutschland), which is supported by the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (Deutscher Industrie- und Handelskammertag ), the German Confederation of Skilled Crafts (Zentralverband des Deutschen Handwerks, ZDH) and the Federal Association of Liberal Professions (Bundesverband der Freien Berufe, BFB).
  • nexxt’ and ‘ nexxt change ’, two initiatives founded by the BMWI in cooperation with the KFW Mittelstandsbank, a government-owned bank with a remit to support small and medium-size enterprises, and a multitude of other partners to promote the smooth transfer of business ownership.
  1. Social partner programmes, initiatives and publications on matters affecting entrepreneurship (including commentaries on proposed or passed legislation etc.).
  2. Public entrepreneurship information services provided by the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit, BA), chambers of commerce and the BMWI.
  3. Proposed and enacted legislation, as documented in press releases by the ministries and legislative bills.
  4. Reporting in the media (printed and online publications), e.g. the Financial Times Deutschland, Handelsblatt, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

Part II: Standardised structural data

Which standardised business statistics are available covering the different forms of entrepreneurship/business activities (explicitly or implicitly, i.e. also data that could be used to describe these forms of entrepreneurship without being published with this specific objective/heading)?

Please note that official statistical datasets offer only few insights into the five forms of entrepreneurship in Germany as shown in Table 8 and 9. Due to these circumstances, I have at least indicated cases of potential or partial availability of data from different datasets in this way: (X). Terms of availability and methodology applied for the different datasets are explained in Table 10.

Table 8: Availability of business statistics about the emerging forms of entrepreneurship
 

Type of data available

Indicate access to data by an ‘X’ in the first column

First published

Indicate year

Time series of data

(Biannually, annually, quarterly, monthly, once only, other)

Data source for the data

One-person enterprises/ self-employed

Number of enterprises

       

Enterprises by branch (please specify which NACE code digit level is available)

       

Availability of regional data (please specify)

       

Type of ownership of enterprises (sole propriety, limited company, publically listed company, etc)

       

Economic performance e.g.:

Turnover

       

Exports

       

Employment

       

Others: ___________

       

Sustainability:

Number of new enterprises (start-ups) by year

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Parts of them are collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

Number of discontinued enterprises, incl. bankruptcies –

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Parts of them are collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

survival rate of enterprises

       

Others, specify:

       
Part-time entrepreneurs

Number of enterprises

       

Enterprises by branch (please specify which NACE code digit level is available)

       

Availability of regional data (please specify)

       

Type of ownership of enterprises (sole propriety, limited company, publically listed company, etc)

       

Economic performance e.g.:

Turnover

       

Exports

       

Employment

       

Others: ___________

       

Sustainability:

Number of new enterprises (start-ups) by year

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Parts of them are collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

Number of discontinued enterprises, incl. bankruptcies –

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Parts of them are collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

Survival rate of enterprises

       

Others, specify:

       
Parallel entrepreneurs

Number of enterprises

       

Enterprises by branch (please specify which NACE code digit level is available)

       

Availability of regional data (please specify)

       

Type of ownership of enterprises (sole propriety, limited company, publically listed company, etc)

       

Economic performance e.g.:

Turnover

       

Exports

       

Employment

       

Others: ___________

       

Sustainability:

Number of new enterprises (start-ups) by year

       

Number of discontinued enterprises, incl. bankruptcies –

       

survival rate of enterprises

       

Others, specify:

       
Serial entrepreneurs

Number of enterprises

       

Enterprises by branch (please specify which NACE code digit level is available)

       

Availability of regional data (please specify)

       

Type of ownership of enterprises (sole propriety, limited company, publically listed company, etc)

       

Economic performance e.g.:

Turnover

       

Exports

       

Employment

       

Others: ___________

       

Sustainability:

Number of new enterprises (start-ups) by year

       

Number of discontinued enterprises, incl. bankruptcies –

       

survival rate of enterprises

       

Others, specify:

       
Business transfers and successions

Number of enterprises

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Partly collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

Enterprises by branch (please specify which NACE code digit level is available)

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Partly collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

Availability of regional data (please specify)

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Partly collected by the statistics on business notifications.

Type of ownership of enterprises (sole propriety, limited company, publically listed company, etc)

(X)

   

The total number is not available! Partly collected by the statistics on business notifications. For details see Table 10.

Economic performance e.g.:

Turnover

       

Exports

       

Employment

       

Others: ___________

       

Sustainability:

Number of new enterprises (start-ups) by year

       

Number of discontinued enterprises, incl. bankruptcies –

       

survival rate of enterprises

       

Others, specify:

       

Is it possible to crosstab or merge the demographic data identifying the individual persons running any of the five forms of entrepreneurships/business activities with the company data specified in question 9 in a common database for analytical purpose?

No:

Yes: Official statistical datasets offer few insights into the demographics of the self-employed in Germany. Little data has been published and even that is limited in scope. However, the questionnaire of the microcensus 2008 from the Federal Statistical Office (Statistisches Bundesamt Deutschland, destatis) and the questionnaire of the German Socio Economic Panel from the German Institute of Economic Research (Deutsches Institut der Wirtschaft, DIW) are available online. Using the questionnaires, I have indicated in Table 9 what should be possible in terms of cross-tabulation. Cases of potential or partial availability of data from different datasets, I have once more indicated in this way: (X).

Table 9: Availability of demographic statistics about the entrepreneur within the emerging forms of entrepreneurship
 

Type of data available

Indicated access to data by an ‘X’ in the first column

First published

Indicate year

Time series of data

(Biannually, annually, quarterly, monthly, once only, other)

Data source for the data

One-person enterprises/ self-employed Number of enterprises held by each entrepreneur/owner        
Gender

(X)

   

a) Microcensus (annual data from 2002 onwards are available online, data from 1991-2001 for the unified Germany could be provided by destatis on request).

b) Special investigation called Gendermonitor which analyses the microcensus annual data from 1985 or 1991 (for the unified Germany) to 2005. This Special investigation was published in 2006.

c) German Socio-Economic-Panel (SOEP)

Ethnicity

(X)

   

a) Microcensus asks for the nationality of a person, i.e. citizenship and not ethnicity.

b) SOEP (citizenship)

Civic status (married, single, children)

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) SOEP

Age

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) SOEP

Geographical location

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) SOEP

Educational background (last registered education)

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) SOEP

Current/previous employment of entrepreneurs (business experience)

(X)

   

Microcensus

Sector familiarity of the entrepreneur – branch/NACE

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

(annual data from 2002 onwards are available online, data from 1991-2001 can be provided by destatis on request).

b) SOEP

Working hours of the entrepreneur

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) SOEP

Income of the entrepreneur

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) SOEP

Other types of data (Specify):

(X)

   

The SOEP questionnaire from 2008 also asks for the termination of self-employment.

Part-time entrepreneurs Number of enterprises held by each entrepreneur/owner        
Gender

(X)

   

a) Microcenus; Special investigation called Gendermonitor which analyses the microcensus annual data from 1985 or 1991 (for the unified Germany) to 2005. This Special investigation was published in 2006.

b) KFW-Start Up Monitor

Ethnicity

(X)

   

a) Microcensus asks for the nationality of a person, i.e. citizenship and not ethnicity.

b) KFW-Start Up Monitor (survey asks for citizenship)

Civic status (married, single, children)

(X)

   

Microcensus

Age

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) KFW-Start Up Monitor

Geographical location

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) KFW-Start Up Monitor (East/West Germany)

Educational background (last registered education)

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) KFW-Start Up Monitor

Current/previous employment of entrepreneurs (business experience)

(X)

   

a) Microcensus

b) KFW-Start Up Monitor

Sector familiarity of the entrepreneur – branch/NACE

(X)

   

Microcensus

Working hours of the entrepreneur

(X)

   

Microcensus

Income of the entrepreneur

(X)

   

Microcensus

Other types of data (Specify):        
Parallel entrepreneurs Number of enterprises held by each entrepreneur/owner        
Gender

(X)

   

Microcensus

Ethnicity

(X)

   

Microcensus asks for the nationality of a person, i.e. citizenship and not ethnicity.

Civic status (married, single, children)

(X)

   

Microcensus

Age

(X)

   

Microcensus

Geographical location

(X)

   

Microcensus

Educational background (last registered education)

(X)

   

Microcensus

Current/previous employment of entrepreneurs (business experience)

(X)

   

Microcensus

Sector familiarity of the entrepreneur – branch/NACE

(X)

   

Microcensus

Working hours of the entrepreneur

(X)

   

Microcensus

Income of the entrepreneur

(X)

   

Microcensus

Other types of data (Specify):        
Serial entrepreneurs Number of enterprises held by each entrepreneur/owner        
Gender        
Ethnicity        
Civic status (married, single, children)        
Age        
Geographical location        

Educational background (last registered education)

       
Current/previous employment of entrepreneurs (business experience)        

Sector familiarity of the entrepreneur – branch/NACE

       
Working hours of the entrepreneur        
Income of the entrepreneur        
Other types of data (Specify):        
Business transfers and successions Number of enterprises held by each entrepreneur/owner        
Gender        
Ethnicity        
Civic status (married, single, children)        
Age        
Geographical location        

Educational background (last registered education)

       
Current/previous employment of entrepreneurs (business experience)        

Sector familiarity of the entrepreneur – branch/NACE

       
Working hours of the entrepreneur        
Income of the entrepreneur        
Other types of data (Specify):        

Is the data freely accessible or does it require registration, payment and/or a special effort to access the data? Please explain the accessibility for each of the forms of entrepreneurs/business activities and datasets referred to above.

Table 10: List of statistical sources about the emerging forms of entrepreneurship

List data source/dataset

Explain the accessibility

Microcensus by the Federal Statistical Office (Statistisches Bundesamt Deutschland, destatis)

Cross-tabulations usually require special investigations. Availability depends on the dataset holder, publishing rights and secrecy obligations. A general statement on the accessibility and potential integration of such data into another database can therefore not be provided. The issue would need to be taken up with destatis, which usually levies a fee for special investigations.

Concerning methodolgy: the questionnaire of the microcensus asks for main and sideline income and activities of the surveyed participant. Combining the categories of participants with a main and/or sideline income as self-employed plus their working hours should theoretically allow for an analysis of the microcensus for part-time and parallel entrepreneurs. However, if the number of cases is too small, it is not published by destatis.

Statistic of Business Notifcations (Gewerbeanzeigenstatistik) by destatis

Please note that the statistic on business notification only provides data on business that have to (de-)register with the competent authorities as laid down by the Industrial Code. Not subject to the Industrial Code are the liberal professions (e.g. doctors or lawyers), primary production such as agriculture, forestry and mining, as well as insurance. These are therefore not covered by this statistic. Also the definition of being a part-time entrepreneur is made by the entrepreneur him- or herself when (de-) registering the business. Within its limits, the statistic also collects data on business transfers or the sale of businesses, a withdrawal of partners, a change of the legal form, and when the business is being handed over to a successor.

Concerning availability: Generally speaking, the statistics of business notifications provides information since 1996. Online available are monthly reports from January 2004 to March 2010 (as of 6 July 2010, annual reports are also compiled). Earlier data has to be requested at destatis. Availability depends on the dataset holder, publishing rights and secrecy obligations. A general statement on the accessibility and the integration of such data into another database can therefore not be provided and would have to be enquired at destatis.

German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP)

SOEP is a wide-ranging representative longitudinal study of private households in Germany. The same private households, persons and families have been surveyed annually since 1984. Data on certain types of entrepreneurs, i.e. one-person enterprises/self-employed can also be drawn from SOEP. Accessibility and the integration of such data into another database would have to be enquired with the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) which hosts the panel. The following link provides information in English on the terms of data usage, access etc.: http://www.diw.de/en/diw_02.c.238238.en/conditions.html.

KFW-Start Up Monitor (KFW-Gründungsmonitor)

The KFW-Start Up Monitor is an annual representative survey. Data are available for the years 2000-2009. For the latest wave in 2010, 50,000 persons in Germany were telephoned. In Table 8 and 9, I have indicated which data were published in the KFW-Start Up Monitor 2010 which looks at the start up situation in 2009. Persons identified to have launched a business within the last 12 months were interviewed on their start-up experience (over 40 questions). Participants are also asked to indicate, if they launched their business as a main or sideline employment. Data for sideline entrepreneurs are included in Table 9 (part-time entrepreneurs). The published report also offers in its annex data from 2000 or 2001 to 2009 (depending on the item). Integration of this data into another database would need to be taken up with the KFW Bankengruppe (bank owned by the federal states and the Federal Republic) which hosts the panel.

   

Part III: Research

Please describe studies and research available nationally for each of the forms of entrepreneurs/business activities.

Table 11: List of selected studies and research about the emerging forms of entrepreneurship
 

List the references (author’s name, title of publication etc, year of publication, organisation)

A short summary of the contents (e.g. topic covered, methodology applied)

One-person enterprises/self-employed

Caliendo, M. and Steiner, V., ‘Ich-AG und Überbrückungsgeld – Neue Ergebnisse bestätigen Erfolg’ (Ich-AG and ‘bridging money’: New results confirm their success), in DIW Wochenbericht, No. 3, Berlin, 2007, pp. 25–32.

Caliendo, M. et al, ‘Existenzgründungen. Unterm Strich ein Erfolg’ (Business start ups. On balance a success), in IAB Kurzbericht, No. 10, Nuremberg, 2007, pp. 1–6.

A survey was conducted among 6,000 people who had set up their own business and who had received either financial assistance from the ‘Ich-AG’ funds or grants of ‘bridging money’ in 2005. One year later, approximately 70% of the respondents were interviewed again. The survey showed that between 2003 and 2006 about one million business start-ups were launched with BA funds. Out of these, almost 400,000 lone entrepreneurs received financial support from the ‘Ich-AG’ funds. After 28 months, between 70% and 80% of the recipients were still in business. The authors therefore conclude that the ‘Ich-AG’ scheme performed much better than had been expected at the time of its inception.

This article also analyses the number of business start-ups aided by public funds, i.e. the ‘Ich-AG’ scheme and ‘bridging money’. In addition to the survey results mentioned above, it provides a closer look at the characteristics of the participants in these programmes. For example, the ‘Ich-AG’ scheme attracted a higher rate of female participants (over 48%). The authors conclude that the ‘Ich-AG’ scheme appealed to different participants than those already covered by other public programmes such as the ‘bridging money’.

Part-time entrepreneurs

Piorkowsky, Michael-Burkhard et. al.: Gendermontior. Existenzgründung 2005. Bonn: 2006.

The report, which analyses the data available from the microcensus, is a special investigation into the data on the self-employed for the years 1996 to 2005 and focuses on gender. The analysis includes information on part-time entrepreneurs and provides tables showing their characteristics, e.g. the sectors in which they work, number of employees, nationality, marital status, working hours.

Parallel entrepreneurs

Kirschenhofer, Florian: Habitual Entrepreneurs. Einflussfaktoren auf die langfristigen Erfolge von Mehrfachgründern (Habitual entrepreneurs: Factors influencing the long-term success of multiple entrepreneurs), Frankfurt am Main: 2008.

This Ph.D. thesis analyses the factors contributing to the success of habitual entrepreneurs, i.e. social networks, motivation and their previous experience as entrepreneurs. Firstly, two case studies, one of a parallel and one of a serial entrepreneur, were undertaken. Interviews were conducted with the entrepreneurs in question; newspaper articles and online-information analysed and compared with quantitative data. Secondly, 350 companies from the multi-media sector were contacted for a survey. However, only 60 answers were received (response rate: 17.14%). Due to this very small sample, no general conclusion can be drawn from this study.

Serial entrepreneurs

(also see research by the Institut für Mittelstandsforschung, Bonn)

Kirschenhofer, Florian: Habitual Entrepreneurs. Einflussfaktoren auf die langfristigen Erfolge von Mehrfachgründern (Habitual entrepreneurs: Factors influencing the long-term success of multiple entrepreneurs), Frankfurt am Main: 2008.

Brem, Alexander: The Boundaries of Innovations and Entrepreneurship. Conceptual background and Essays on Selected Theoretical and Empirical Aspects, Wiesbaden: 2008.

See above.

Also based on a Ph.D. thesis, this book focuses on the linkage between innovation and entrepreneurship. Whilst there are several chapters presenting various articles and conference contributions, it also includes a chapter on serial entrepreneurs. Between September and November 2006 the author interviewed seven serial entrepreneurs, five in person and two by telephone. Again, however, due to the small sample (of the seven, all were male and most operated in the high-tech sector), no overall conclusions can be drawn from these findings.

Business transfers and successions

(also see research by the Institut für Mittelstandsforschung, Bonn)

Röhl, Klaus-Heiner; Schmidt, Jörg: Unternehmensnachfolge durch Frauen (The transition of business ownership by women). Köln: 2010 (IW Analysen No. 61).

This study investigates the planning process, strategies and priorities involved in transferring company ownership. In this survey conducted in cooperation with the Association of German Women Entrepreneurs (Verband deutscher Unternehmerinnen, VdU), 249 of the 1,080 members of the VdU asked to participate completed the survey questionnaire (Return rate: 23.1%). The responses indicated, amongst other things, that the businesswomen often took over companies without much preparation. The results also show that the female entrepreneurs surveyed had no preferences concerning the sex of their successor.

Sandra Vogel, Cologne Institute of Economic Research (IW)

Useful? Interesting? Tell us what you think. Hide comments

Add new comment