What is a foreign market

Survey: hurdles for foreign fund houses on the German market

Germany remains attractive as a market for foreign investment companies: More and more fund houses are moving to Frankfurt, Munich or the Rhine-Ruhr region. At the end of 2002, the number of non-German investment companies in Germany was still 28[1]According to the financial supervisory authority BaFin and the industry association BVI, over 700 foreign asset managers are now active between Flensburg and Passau.[2]

But the road to “good old Germany” is not easy and the difficulties before you can do business in Germany are manifold (as anyone in the fund industry who has already worked for a US, French or British company will probably confirm Has). They range from the complex German tax system and special knowledge of sales to getting used to the (from some non-German point of view) very direct interaction with one another. And new challenges and trends in Germany such as ESG / SRI and the digitization of the industry are not making life any easier ...

What legal, administrative and personal hurdles do employees of foreign fund companies in Germany have to overcome?

Hagen Gerle, Director Gerle Financial Communications

In order to find out more precisely which hurdles foreign investment managers had to take and still have to take in order to be successful in the German market, Gerle Financial Communications (GFC), a specialized communications consultancy for financial service providers, initiated a short survey. This is about taking legal and administrative issues into account (e.g. the question of a branch or permanent establishment), as well as sales in Germany and personal challenges, such as the partner's job search.

The path for foreign asset managers who want to gain a foothold in the German fund market is often arduous and involves some effort.

The questionnaire only consists of twelve questions and a critical review of your own market entry; answering should therefore take no longer than ten to 15 minutes. Participants can request the anonymized results from GFC at the end of the survey - the survey is open from January 21 to February 29, 2020 - in order to provide a benchmark for access to the German fund market.

The asset manager survey (in English) for foreign fund companies in Germany starts here.


January 21, 2020

[1] Source: Handelsblatt, 22/10/2003: "Foreign fund houses want to conquer the German market"
[2] Source: Fund professionell, 3/2019: "Newly arrived"