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Business start-ups

Business start-ups are of great importance for economic dynamism and the renewal of the municipal knowledge base. A distinction must be made between commercial and freelance business start-ups.

Commercial start-ups are on the rise

In 2019, the number of business start-ups in Bonn amounted to 2,392, a significant increase of +4.2% compared to the previous year; in NRW as a whole the increase was less pronounced at +1.2%. The number of business registrations in Bonn in 2019 fell sharply by -11.7% with 2,021 deregistrations in absolute terms, while the number of deregistrations in the state as a whole declined at a lower rate of -5.9%. As a result of the growing number of business registrations and fewer deregistrations in 2019, there was a clearly positive balance of net start-ups in Bonn of plus 371 (previous year: +5). A larger value was last achieved in 2013.

Bonn remains attractive for freelance start-ups

Qais Kasem, Co-Founder from Murmuras
"The Economic Development Agency supports the start-up with inexpensive offices in a good location in which Murmuras can grow gradually.“ Qais Kasem, Co-Founder from Murmuras

With the study "Freelance business start-ups in Germany and its regions in 2014", the Bonn Institute for SME Research (IfM) has for the first time comprehensively determined the number of business start-ups in the liberal professions on the basis of data from the tax authorities. The start-up activity of the liberal professions is concentrated primarily in the large cities, whereby the IfM researchers assume that these are particularly attractive for start-ups of liberal professions "...if the local demand for services is stimulated by government or administrative institutions, company headquarters and/or numerous cultural institutions. In addition, local universities and other educational and research institutions generate a large potential workforce for the liberal professions with a tendency to have a high affinity for self-employment. 

According to IfM data, around 740 business start-ups in liberal professions were registered in the federal city of Bonn in 2019. This corresponds to 14th place of all about 400 German cities and administrative districts. The freelance business start-up intensity in Bonn is 22.5 per 10,000 inhabitants and is thus about twice as high as the average value for Germany as a whole (11.3). The state of NRW accounts for 12.0 start-ups per 10,000 inhabitants.

Fewer insolvencies

In Bonn, a total of 71 companies filed for insolvency proceedings in 2019, compared to 73 companies in 2018. The number of employees affected by the corporate insolvencies is also declining, and in 2019 was much lower at 315 (previous year: 696), with receivables amounting to around 26.6 million euros (previous year: 193 million euros), also a large decline over the year.

Self-employment rate declines further

The self-employment rate measures the percentage of self-employed as a percentage of all employed persons at the place of work. According to the data currently available, the number of self-employed persons in Bonn in 2018 was 17,200 (previous year: 17,500); the number of employed persons was 251,800. This corresponds to a self-employment rate of 6.8% (previous year: 7.1%) in Bonn, which is significantly lower than in the previous year. It should be noted that the rate has changed both due to the absolute decline in the number of self-employed (-300) and due to the change in the reference value. For example, the number of employed persons increased strongly in absolute terms by 4,200 between 2017 and 2018. This growth is entirely attributable to employees - blue-collar workers, white-collar workers, civil servants, soldiers and trainees according to the definition of the Federal Statistical Office. The self-employment rate for NRW as a whole will be 8.6% in 2018, which means that it will decline by 0.3 percentage points compared to the previous year - in the same order of magnitude as in Bonn.

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