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Germany

October 16, 2013

Hans Riegel, the second-generation head of German family confectionary firm Haribo – renowned for its colourful ‘gummi bear’ sweets – has died at the age of 90.

Hans Riegel, the second-generation head of German family confectionary firm Haribo – renowned for its colourful ‘gummi bear’ sweets – has died at the age of 90.

He had headed the family firm for almost 70 years, and still held the post of chief executive at the time of his death.

He had been convalescing following an operation to remove a benign brain tumour, but died of heart failure on Tuesday, in his hometown of Bonn in Germany.

September 19, 2013

The return of German chancellor Angela Merkel and the current coalition government at next week's general elections would be the best outcome for the nation's family firms, according to an organisation representing some of Germany's largest family-run companies.

The return of German chancellor Angela Merkel and the current coalition government at next week's general elections would be the best outcome for the nation's family firms, according to an organisation representing some of Germany's largest family-run companies.

August 15, 2013

The Mittelstand is the envy of the world. Other family businesses could profit from looking closely at the way things are done there. 

It is often said that Germany’s Mittelstand companies, which are largely family-owned, are the reason that the country’s economy isn’t in such a dire state as, say, Britain’s. So what can family firms learn from the Mittelstand?

October 10, 2012

More than half of German next-gens want to take over their family business, bring in outside managers and focus on international expansion, while only 4% would consider selling the family firm. 

More than half of German next-gens want to take over their family business, bring in outside managers and focus on international expansion, while only 4% would consider selling the family firm.

April 21, 2012

CampdenFB and Ernst & Young held its second European family business roundtable in March, with the meeting this time in Frankfurt. And, as to be expected, top of the agenda was the German family business model and its success.

CampdenFB and Ernst & Young held its second European family business roundtable in March, with the meeting this time in Frankfurt. And, as to be expected, top of the agenda was the German family business model and its success.

Delegates came from a number of top German/Austrian family businesses, including the white goods manufacturer Miele, and the logistics groups Fiege and Gebrüder Weiss.

March 4, 2012

Family businesses are the driving force of Germany’s economy and behind much of its success as the second biggest exporter in the world. CampdenFB takes a look at some of the leading German family businesses in an interactive graphic.

Family businesses are the driving force of Germany’s economy and behind much of its success as the second biggest exporter in the world. They come in all shapes and sizes and include two of the country’s iconic car makers, Volkswagen and BMW.

But many of them are the famed Mittelstand companies – small and mid-sized firms, controlled by the founder or the founder’s family, that drive forward Germany’s economy, which is Europe’s largest.

February 28, 2012

It’s been a good week for three of Europe’s biggest family businesses, although Denmark’s Moller-Maersk Group has been hit by “voltatile markets”.

It’s been a good week for three of Europe’s biggest family businesses, although Denmark’s Moller-Maersk Group has been hit by “voltatile markets”.

German carmaker Volkswagen said revenues jumped 25.6% to €159.34 billion in 2011, from €126.88 billion in 2010.

February 27, 2012

Global volatility looks to be taking its toll on European family-run companies Merck and Fiat, which are respectively cutting jobs and considering closing plants to improve margins.

Global volatility looks to be taking its toll on European family-run companies Merck and Fiat, which are respectively cutting jobs and considering closing plants to improve margins.

German family business Merck, which operates in the pharmaceutical industry, plans to reduce its workforce “across all businesses and regions”, according to a statement.

January 31, 2012

The family behind German drugstore chain Schlecker has lost its multi-billion-euro fortune and will be unable to put in money to revive the family business.

The family behind German drugstore chain Schlecker has lost its multi-billion-euro fortune and will be unable to put in money to revive the family business.

That’s according to second-generation Meike Schlecker, who said in a statement that “there are no significant funds [with the family] anymore that could have helped the company”.

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