Foreign investors wanting to have a presence in Germany have several opportunities:
Many small and medium size companies do not want to hire a large number of employees due to the German Employment Law which establishes strict regulation for the protection of employees. However, it is recommended to have an established presence in the country by opening a virtual office in Germany. The cheapest way to operate a business in Germany is by appointing a fiduciary (Treuhänder) or a trustee to hold the shares of the company.
The German Commercial Law allows a trust agreement (Treuhandvereinbarung) to be signed, as long as the tax authorities are informed.
Our lawyers in Germany offer fiduciary services for foreign investors wanting to expand their business.
The importance of the nominee shareholder and directors in Germany resides in the protection they offer to the real shareholders and directors within a company. While the nominee director will represent the German company’s director, the nominee shareholder will represent the company’s owner in relation with the authorities. Both nominee shareholder and director will disclose their personal information and other relevant details with the German Commercial Register, as required by the law.
Even if conducting certain activities on behalf of the shareholders and directors, the German nominated fiduciaries will have limited rights with respects to the positions they represent. The nominee shareholder will not have any rights with respect of the German company’s shares, while the nominee director will not have any right regarding the management of the company.
The fiduciary management system was first designed and implemented in the Netherland, many companies in other countries adding this type of services to their portfolio. Many German investment schemes implement the fiduciary management system nowadays and provide excellent services to their customers. Even if currently pension fund managers are the ones employing this system the most, the German Corporate Governance Code has started to amend its legislation in order to allow more investors to set up their asset management companies in the country.
For fiduciary services you may also contact our lawyers in Germany.
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