People at a start-up meeting


According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) that was published today, Germany’s start-up rate was at its highest level – 7.6% in 2019 – since these figures were first recorded 20 years ago. This is the share of Germany’s population between the ages of 18 and 64 who started a business within the last three-and-a-half years or were actively involved in their own start-up project at the time of the survey.

Commented Federal Government Commissioner for SME Thomas Bareiß: “The data from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor shows that we in Germany are seeing a cultural shift towards greater entrepreneurial activity. It is now important to keep up this entrepreneurial spirit, also and especially during these economically challenging times of coronavirus. The federal and Länder funding programmes made available at short notice provide much-needed financial support for start-ups and young companies.”

It is also worth noting that the overall start-up climate in Germany is positive: 63% of Germans respond that fear of failure would not hold them back from venturing into self-employment. This puts Germany in 7th place among the 33 highest-income states in a list led by South Korea and Norway.

The new GEM Country Report for Germany was created in cooperation between the RKW Centre of Excellence and the Institute for Economic and Cultural Geography at Leibniz University, Hanover. The results of the new country report are based on surveys of 154,991 citizens in 50 states (of which 3,002 in Germany) and 2,315 start-up experts in 54 states (of which 66 in Germany). The report can be accessed at (in German).

The Federal Government is currently supporting start-up entrepreneurs with a comprehensive umbrella in these economically difficult times. The aid programmes are open to all industries and target companies of all sizes. For start-ups, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy has put together a special aid package to facilitate venture-capital financing.