Historic low: interest in starting a business collapses

The Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce advises potential founders.

Historic low: interest in starting a business collapses

The Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce advises potential founders. According to the DIHK, however, interest has decreased noticeably in the past year, especially in the classic start-up sectors such as gastronomy or retail. However, there are two positive developments.

Interest in starting a business has noticeably decreased in Germany over the past year. Especially in classic start-up sectors such as gastronomy and retail, fewer and fewer people are interested in taking the step into self-employment, reports the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK) in its “Report on company start-ups”, which is available to the editorial network Germany.

The number of potential founders who had obtained information about starting a business in personal discussions with the Chambers of Industry and Commerce (IHKs) fell by ten percent. With 159,682 face-to-face meetings, interest in starting a business in industry, trade and the service sectors reached a historic low in the statistics kept since 2002. In the IHK start-up consultations, most of which are based on a formulated business concept, the decline was even 13 percent.

"We see a number of worrying developments," DIHK President Peter Adrian told RND. "Once again, many start-ups have been shelved. We are seeing a clear reluctance, especially in the areas that shape entrepreneurship in the regions," Adrian continued. The DIHK President complained that the uncertainties after the long lockdown phases as a result of the corona pandemic are particularly high in retail and gastronomy. "There is a risk of losing a lot of entrepreneurial spirit," he warned. "Because it is above all the numerous shops, restaurants and the many small and medium-sized companies that make personal responsibility and entrepreneurship tangible on site."

However, the DIHK also sees two positive developments. According to the start-up report, interest in part-time start-ups bucked the trend: four percent more founders wanted to establish a second professional and financial mainstay in economically uncertain times. And the number of start-ups also increased among larger companies.

Both are "very good news," said Adrian. "Especially in uncertain and challenging times, it is entrepreneurial spirit that sees opportunities even in a difficult environment. Innovations that bring our economy forward arise from such a positive spirit," he emphasized. "This gives hope that our country can rely on innovative and courageous entrepreneurial personalities, despite the current imponderables as a result of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine."

The DIHK President appealed to politicians to take the expectations of founders seriously. This included less bureaucracy, simple and fast processes and better access to start-up financing. "These are crucial levers for a success story in business start-ups. The current DIHK report provides concrete information on how the environment for founders can be improved."

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