Baden-Württemberg is home to global market leaders – more inventing, innovating and development happens here than anywhere else. From the outside, Baden-Württemberg is often thought of as a state driven by the automotive industry, but its industrial base is actually extremely diverse. Mechanical engineering, environmental and energy technology, and the medical and biotech sectors shape the region at least as much as the automotive industry. The area is also shaped by established family businesses, characterised by strong innovation and a stable system of values. With almost 700 employees, we provide support to companies in Baden-Württemberg with operational and strategic issues – and help them secure their corporate success in the long term.
Many companies in the region are in a process of transformation. This creates pressure to change, but also many new opportunities. We want to enable you and your company to recognise your potential and achieve your goals.
of the top 1,000 family businesses (by turnover) in Germany come from Baden-Württemberg.
The proportion of Baden-Württemberg’s gross value added that the manufacturing sector generates.
The state’s industrial companies generate well over half of their turnover from exports.
That’s how many patents there are in Baden-Württemberg per 100,000 inhabitants. Germany’s nationwide average is much lower: just 56.
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“Even after 25 years, the family businesses here in the region continue to surprise me with their ideas and their willingness to change. Their capacity to innovate is impressive – and they’re fun to work with.”
All the signs for Baden-Württemberg startups point to growth. Startups here differ significantly from those in other regions: they have much smaller teams and generate significantly less in sales than the national average. Above all, they rely on conservative financing from their own savings and state funding – which may well prove to be an advantage in the coronavirus crisis.
For the first time, we’ve created a special edition of the Deutscher Startup Monitor (DSM) for company founders from Baden-Württemberg.
Which result from the Baden-Württemberg DSM are you most surprised by?
Minkus Fischer: When you work with venture capital clients, you sometimes forget that this way of getting involved in startups still has considerable potential to grow in Baden-Württemberg. The DSM shows very clearly how great this potential actually is.
How have the local startups got through the pandemic so far?
Fischer: From the DSM figures, we can conclude that local startups have come through the coronavirus crisis quite well so far. Their business was adversely affected, but they have fared better than most startups in Germany when it comes to reduced liquidity or sales forecasts. I certainly think they’ll be in a very good starting position for the period after the pandemic when the economy as a whole picks up again.
What would you say to company founders? Why should PwC be the first port of call for startups?
Fischer: We have a lot of experience in establishing networks between startups and investors, especially from the corporate sector. This helps things run smoothly, so everyone involved avoids losing time and money. I feel that our scale programmes, which are regional and industry-specific, are a unique selling point. And I should say that we have already put more than 300 startups nationwide through these programmes.
Dr Minkus Fischer
Dr Minkus Fischer works for NextLevel, PwC’s startup initiative, providing support on growth strategies to startups in the Baden-Württemberg region. He has been a lawyer at PwC Legal since 2018 and specialises in legal advice for areas including venture capital companies, corporate venture capital companies, angel investors and startups.
In all family businesses that are already thinking about tomorrow, the transition to the next generation will play an important role. As well as a coherent strategy, you’ll need watertight contracts, clear wills and much more. Our experts cover all the relevant areas of this complex process: strategy, people, the law, and taxes. It doesn’t matter what point you’ve reached in your business handover: we can provide support tailored to your individual needs, so that you can pass on your family business seamlessly and smoothly to the next generation.
Sustainability and meeting environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria are becoming key success factors for more and more companies – certainly in ‘green’ Baden-Württemberg, with its high proportion of mechanical engineering and automotive companies. In order to anchor sustainability broadly and in all its facets, you need clarity about your starting point, a holistic strategy, concrete measures for creating sustainability, and transparent reporting. At PwC, we have a team of sustainability experts who can advise you on sustainable transformation and corporate governance.
Decisive action counts, especially in uncertain times. Reorganisation or restructuring measures are not just important during a crisis. Above all, they are an opportunity to proactively gain – and maintain – control of your company. Our experts can support you in discovering opportunities and perspectives for your company. We can analyse your business plans, develop reorganisation plans and implement restructuring measures together with you – so that crises become opportunities.
It all comes down to the data – this is perhaps especially true for finance departments, which are currently undergoing fundamental transformation. More and more people responsible for finance are looking ahead to the future instead of going back to the past. This makes their area increasingly important for your business’s strategy and direction, and finance leaders themselves are becoming sparring partners for management – because all data and information that are relevant for planning and control of a company come together in the finance office. Increased automation makes this possible, enabling faster reaction times, easier processing of large quantities of data, and forecasting at the push of a button.
Digitalisation is changing the way we work. Accelerated by the pandemic, Baden-Württemberg companies are at the forefront of shaping the ‘new normal’. This change is also creating new tasks for HR. Our team can support your company through the realignment process: from setting up efficient internal processes and using digital tools, to compliance advice for mobile working. We can help you to exploit the opportunities of digitalisation for HR, minimise risks and develop your most important resource for the future – your employees.
As a state with an above-average number of patents, protecting information and confidential data is particularly important for companies in Baden-Württemberg. The fact is that data will become a central component of value creation as digitalisation advances. It’s therefore all the more important to develop strategies and take measures to prevent cyberattacks and to make the right decisions in an emergency. Our experts can support you in adequately assessing cyber risks, identifying threats at an early stage and creating the foundation of trust in digital products and services.
Tax obligations for companies change at regular intervals. Middle-market companies and family businesses that have always done everything right can quickly and unknowingly make mistakes as a result of changes in the law. The situation is particularly complicated for the numerous international companies based in Baden-Württemberg. An effective tax compliance management system enables you to not only limit liability risks, but also make processes lean and structure them coherently. Appropriate documentation and clearly regulated processes save time and create scope for tax optimisation within the company. Our tax experts can help you from implementation to automation – locally, nationally and internationally.
Our events feature exclusive expert knowledge and insights. We especially value personal contact with our guests, although the current pandemic means that only selected events will be able to be held in person until further notice. However, we are delighted to be able to offer a variety of webcasts on relevant topics.