There are currently less spin-offs in the German economy

A joint study by the Centre for European Economic Research and Microsoft Germany showed that in 2006 the number of newly founded companies decreased by 4% in Germany as compared to the previous year. In the high-tech industry, however, the number of business start-ups has stabilized at a low level: there were 17.700 start-ups in 2006 as compared to 17.600 in 2005.

Thus, the high-tech sector develops contrary to the general trend given that the total number of newly-founded companies in Germany is still declining. However, the study also shows that a lack of skilled workers and financing problems continue being major obstacles for company founders. The Centre for European Economic Research explains the current rather positive figures with an economic pick-up in Germany.

What is particularly striking in this context is a decline in the number of new spin-offs. The percentage of spin-offs in proportion to all start-ups has been decreasing steadily since the year 2004: In the period between 2005/2006 the proportion of spin-offs in research-intensive fields of the economy amounted to just 12% while in 2003 and 2004 it had been 18% and 14% respectively. A possible explanation may be the lack of natural scientists and engineers: following the economic pick-up many young skilled people are very much sought-after which might prompt many potential company founders to prefer a secure position as an employee to taking entrepreneurial risks. GERMAN