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Swiss Start-Ups Show Resilience Despite Covid-19 Pandemic

The number of Swiss start-ups launched has risen significantly in the first six months of 2021 while the number of companies filing for bankruptcy has decreased, studies have shown.

In the first half of 2021 over 26,000 new companies were added to Switzerland’s commercial register. © Keystone / Christian Beutler

In the first half of 2021 over 26,000 new companies were added to Switzerland’s commercial register, an increase of over 20% compared to the year before, a new report by Dun & Bradstreet has found.

This boom was felt in almost every sector of the economy and constitutes a new record for the number of Swiss start-ups founded in a six-month period, the report claims.

The Covid-19 pandemic is credited as the cause of the increased company registration, Dun & Bradstreet said. In June 2021 the Swiss government scaled up its plans to support small companies that had been hit by Covid-19, adding an additional CHF300 million ($330 million) to its hardship payments fund. The report also says that the number of Swiss companies filing for bankruptcy has fallen by one percent compared with last year.

Despite this, a recent study by the KOF Swiss Economic Institute, part of the federal technology institute ETH Zurich, indicates that bankruptcies may now be on the rise again. The number of companies going bust increased significantly in May of 2021. Particularly affected are sectors such as the hospitality or entertainment industries that have faced structural shifts as a result of changing consumer behaviour brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The trend of increasing bankruptcy amongst Swiss companies is likely to continue, the ETH report claims.

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