Start-ups: New industries attract founders

Status: 28/04/2022 08:14 a.m.

The number of start-ups in Germany has increased. The founders are focusing on new areas – specifically one area in the south competing with the original capital Berlin.

By Lilli-Marie Hiltscher, tagesschau.de

The number of start-ups increased again in 2021. A total of 3,348 start-ups were established in Germany last year. The number of start-ups has increased by eleven percent compared to 2020. This is the result of an evaluation by the analysis company Start-updetector. For the third time, the company presents data on start-up institutions and funding rounds in Germany.

After the first coronavirus lockdown in March 2020 that caused the collapse of the number of new start-ups, the situation has now eased again. “The numbers also appear to be stabilizing at a strong level with just over 800 start-ups per quarter,” the analysis said. The union of the industry is satisfied with the current developments. “Start-ups are the economic force of the future,” says Christoph J. Stresing, CEO of the Federal Association of German Start-ups. However, there are still many untapped possibilities. “This is true, for example, of spin-offs from universities or research institutes. Despite the excellent research landscape, we often find it very difficult to translate research results into marketable products and thus stand in our own way.”

In addition to start-ups, the number of companies that have been able to attract outside investors, such as venture capitalists, gives us hope: it has grown by 27 percent by 2087. Streing points out, however, that this is still not close to funding. in other countries: “Despite the positive development of investment figures in recent years, we in Germany are still far behind not only the US, but also countries such as Sweden and the United Kingdom in terms of per capita investment.”

What is a startup?

Start-ups are innovative, mainly digital companies that develop new business models in mainly new markets. So not every start-up company is a start-up. Self-employed craftsmen or freelancers, such as architects and lawyers, are considered entrepreneurs – not novices. In addition to an innovative business idea, the criterion for the latter is the primary goal of rapid growth.

Although companies from all walks of life can be described as young, in practice they are often active in the fields of technology and the internet. Typical areas are e-commerce, application software, financial technology, biotechnology, nanotechnology, new manufacturing processes, industry 4.0 or aerospace technology.

Berlin remains the founding capital

As in previous years, most start-ups in 2021 were established in Berlin: 747 companies, about 22 percent of all new start-ups, were created in the federal capital. “Especially in Berlin we see a mature start-up ecosystem in many places,” explains the CEO of the start-up association. It consists not only of founders and investors, but also of highly qualified employees, universities and colleges and is now able to be “triggered by its own dynamics”.

But other federal states have been able to follow suit, as in most of them the number of start-ups has increased. According to the analysis, Baden-Württemberg (plus 21 percent), Lower Saxony (plus 30 percent), Saxony (plus 54 percent) and Saxony-Anhalt (plus 166 percent) recorded particularly high growth. With 108 start-ups in 2021, Saxony is the number one start-up in East Germany with a relatively low start-up rate.

The assessment of new start-ups at the district level shows something surprising: The Starnberg district tops the list with a density of 20.5 new start-ups per 100,000 inhabitants, ahead of Berlin. “Companies from the Starnberg area are different: from the regional fresh food courier Regioluzzer to Servail, whose robots are supposed to maintain the train tracks in operation, to Exploration, whose founder Hélène Huby wants to build a spaceship, “according to analysts. “According to Wikipedia, the region will have both the highest per capita income and the highest life expectancy in Germany in 2021. This may be due to the high average income in the region.”

Environmental technologies are coming to the fore

Examining the areas in which start-ups are established, software, medicine and e-commerce continue to dominate. “However, the potentially pandemic e-commerce boom of 2020 seems to be slowing down as the industry declines slightly,” the report said.

On the other hand, the number of start-ups has increased, especially in the fields of gaming, media and environmental technology. New methods of combating the climate crisis seem to be the new big trend in start-ups and investment, as the industry managed to grow by 144%.

For the first time over 20 percent of women

Start-ups are still started mainly by men. However, the percentage of companies with at least one woman on the executive board has been growing for years and was able to exceed the 20 percent threshold for the first time in 2021: “Thus, the percentage of start-ups (co-) women is still alarmingly low, but 84 new After all, women start-ups account for an absolute increase of 14 percent compared to 2020 “, according to analysts.

The percentage of people with an academic degree involved in starting a start-up is very high. 14 percent of the teams have doctors or professors in the group, while professors and doctors make up only 1.2 percent of the total population: “The comparison shows that a high academic degree clearly favors starting a start-up.”

It is very fast in Bavaria

If you want to set up a start-up very quickly, you have to pay close attention to the federal state. Because, as the analysis showed, start-ups in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg were already registered in the commercial register after an average of 28 days. In Hesse and Saarland, on the other hand, it took almost four more weeks. The fastest way is in the Bavarian town of Landshut: Here, registration takes only eight days.

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