A serene aerial view of a green landscape with a winding road beside a reflective lake, bathed in the golden hue of the setting sun.
© Polina Kuzovkova / Unsplash

Family businesses are an important element of a diverse corporate landscape.
This is due to the fact that they themselves are unimaginably diverse.
Big and small. Located in the city centres – and in the furthest corners of our country. Known to everyone or overlooked.
With local roots and at home on the world stage. High-tech and solid as a rock.
This diversity makes the economy resilient to crises.
New innovations are constantly emerging from this diversity.

Similarly, the perspectives on family businesses are also diverse and could not be more different.
On the one hand, the figures are impressive: 90 per cent of all private companies are family businesses.

"90 per cent" text overlay on an aerial view of a cityscape during the day with scattered clouds. Buildings are densely packed, and roads are visible between them. In the foreground, there is a large green space with trees that have autumn foliage. Mountains can be faintly seen in the distant background.
© Datingjungle / Unsplash. Edit by WLDX
"60 per cent" text overlay on an overhead shot of a bustling city square with historical architecture and street vendors, surrounded by people. A large, ornate building borders one side of the square, and a tall monument or statue stands in the center.
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They provide around 60 per cent of jobs in Germany and train almost 60 per cent of vocational trainees.

More than half of the turnover in the private sector is generated by family businesses.
They provide half of the corporate tax revenue in Germany.

Classical architecture with white columns and intricate carvings and statues. The text "more than half" is overlaid in white font across the middle of the image. The sky is clear and there are no visible clouds, suggesting a bright and sunny day.
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A view looking up at the intricate design of a spiral staircase leading to a circular skylight at the top.
© Luke White / Unsplash. Edit by WLDX

On the other hand, there are prejudices and clichés. An image of business owners that often does not correspond to reality. Sometimes ignorance of how much better family businesses often survive crises. How many more jobs they maintain and create overall, especially in comparison to the corporates in anonymous free float. The extent to which they are involved in environmental technologies and continuously orientate their business model towards sustainability.
Family businesses have demonstrated their resilience time and again. Across the centuries. Even in difficult times, such as after the waves of expropriation in the former East Germany.
What makes entrepreneurs that start a family business tick? How do they react to crises, social upheavals and generational challenges? How exactly do they say “yes to entrepreneurship”?

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