More small companies and fewer big ones

18/09/2007 15:00

The total number of Dutch private sector companies reached almost 594 thousand on 1 January 2006. This is a 32.5 percent increase since 1996. The number of small companies (ten employees or less) continues to rise, whereas the number of mid-sized and large companies (100 employees or more) is falling rapidly.

Number of companies by size class, 1996–2006

Number of companies by size class, 1996–2006

Almost two thirds of all companies is less than ten years old

63 percent of all companies that existed on 1 January 2006 started or were created after 1 January 1996. Exactly half of all major companies are less than 5 years old. The mid-sized companies (10 to 100 employees) are oldest, on average: 54 percent were more than ten years old on 1 January 2006.

Companies by age and size class

Companies by age and size class

The effects of globalisation and policies

A record number of new companies has started over the last three years, especially in construction and business services. The effects of globalisation make that large enterprises are concentrating their economic activities. Almost a third of the large enterprises has been involved in mergers or takeovers of a company or part of a company in recent years.

Companies by age and size class

Companies by age and size class

25 thousand companies involved in major restructuring

Over 25 thousand companies had been involved in a merger or take over on 1 January 2006 came into being through splitting one company or they have been restructured. This is 4 percent of all companies. The share is 63 percent among large enterprises.

Number of jobs by size class

Companies by age and size class

Employment in private enterprise

Between December 2001 and December 2005 the total number of jobs in private enterprise in the Netherlands fell by 3.4 percent. In large enterprises job numbers fell by 50 thousand, in medium-sized companies by 56 thousand and in small companies by 62 thousand. On the other hand, there was an increase of 61 thousand in companies without employees in this period.

Rico Konen