Why move far away? For many years, Germany has been the most important trade partner for the Netherlands and the Netherlands has always been among the top three most important foreign trade partners for Germany. Almost no other commercial pairing is as successful as a German-Dutch venture. Yet despite having numerous things in common, there are some significant differences that you should understand if you are seeking to do business together. Of course, our Dutch Desk knows these differences and takes them into account when providing advice.
Take the plunge into your neighbouring country. The business opportunities on offer are at least as good as those in other countries, but those other countries are much further away and can be quite culturally averse. Despite all their differences, the Germans and the Dutch are rather close, especially when it comes to doing good business.
Take the chance.
Speak to us!
Our focus areas
Are you a Dutch company looking to
- expand your sales into Germany?
- establish a subsidiary or find a business partner?
- recruit employees or sign agreements with suppliers or customers?
- ensure that your general terms and conditions are effective in Germany, too?
- purchase a company?
- realise a real estate project?
- participate in public procurement tenders?
- bring legal proceedings in Germany?
Are you a German company looking to:
- enforce a claim in the Netherlands?
- find a suitable lawyer, tax adviser or auditor?
- post an employee to the Netherlands?
- employee staff in the Netherlands?
- establish a subsidiary or branch office?
We can help you too, because we know the Netherlands well, really well.
Your added value
For 20 years, our Dutch Desk team has specialised in assisting Dutch companies that have an economic connection to Germany. We know that Holland is not a synonym for the Netherlands, that the Dutch are not always creative and that Germans are not always precise. Our advice goes beyond the clichés.
We understand that the expression “fauler Kompromiss” (lazy compromise) is typically German, and that some good ideas can arise while “polderen” (reaching a consensus). We provide solutions, and don’t just ask questions.
For Dutch companies
Our Dutch clients value our swift responses, flexibility and clear answers. Our Dutch Desk is located close to the border in our Düsseldorf office and is available at any time.
We can anticipate many of the questions that you will have as a Dutch company that is seeking to become active in Germany or already is. We know that director liability in Germany is quite different to liability in the Netherlands. We know how to read an excerpt from the Kamer van Koophandel, and also understand the background to your questions, because we are familiar with the main features of Dutch law.
Our advice regularly covers more than purely legal issues. Because its often the finer points, the small tips, that can help you understand your German business partner better and avoid blunders in interactions or correspondence.
If you’re in the area, come and see us – een koppie koffie staat altijd klaar voor U.
For German companies
German companies also find it useful to talk to us at an early stage. For many years, we have maintained a highly efficient network in the Netherlands. We have excellent connections, such as to the German-Dutch Chamber of Commerce (DNHK), business clubs, various law firms, translators, etc. and have many years of experience that we would like to share with you. Even if it is only a matter of how best to find staff in the Netherlands, which company form is best for your subsidiary, or who best to talk to locally, when you want to establish as new site in a specific city: we are here to help you.
We don’t advise on Dutch law, but we definitely know people who can advise you well.
Overview of our focus areas
- Corporate law
- Contractual law
- Commercial law
- Tax law
- Labour law
- Our network
- Contacts to representatives from business and politics and in the Netherlands
Of course, we also regularly hold events on various topics in Düsseldorf and at our other offices. You can find an overview of these events under the Event Overview. Please let us know if you would like us to add you name to the invitation list. We also regularly speak at events run by the German-Dutch Chamber of Commerce. If you like, we can even come to you: you might want to run some training for sales staff on German distribution law, or be contemplating posting staff members to your German offices. We will work with you to plan you next M&A project and make complex topics easier to understand.
In the past we have also held a regular Dutch Legal Day, which has developed into one of the most important platforms for the exchange of ideas between German and Dutch companies. We are currently working on a new format for the event: one, which will allow us to compare and contrast important aspects of German and Dutch law, but will also provide ample opportunity for German and Dutch companies to exchange views. The gezellige part of the event shouldn’t be too short either. We hope we will be able to welcome you to our new event soon.
Dr Knut Schulte
Rechtsanwalt, LL.M.(M&A), Licensed Specialist for International Commercial Law, Licensed Specialist for Commercial and Corporate Law, Licensed Specialist for Transport and Forwarding Law, Dipl.-Wirtschaftsjurist [Business law], Meester de rechten (NL)
Dr Knut Schulte