The transfer of a business involves a multitude of challenges. Among them, it is essential to find a successor willing to take over the business to avoid a closure. This study is the first of its kind to examine for Germany how many businesses are being closed down during the planned transfer period and which influencing factors can strengthen or inhibit closure or continuation. The study reveals that a quarter of all business owners who had planned a transfer in the period from 2012 to 2016 had to close down their businesses during this time span. Smaller firms and those with poor profitability, low export orientation or low investment expenditures were more likely to be shut down during this period of time. In contrast, those businesses whose owners aimed to transfer their business to a family member continued to exist comparatively more often.
IfM-Materialien | 2021 Challenges related to Business Transfers: Companies between continuation and closure
Pahnke, A.; Schlepphorst, S.; Schlömer-Laufen, N. (2021): Herausforderungen der Unternehmensübergabe: Unternehmen zwischen Fortführung und Stilllegung, IfM Bonn: IfM-Materialien Nr. 286, Bonn