Our main focus is to serve founders, self-employed persons, freelancers and small businesses (with typically less than ten employees) in Germany.
Our association is a non-profit organisation. All revenues are used to strengthen the interests of founders and the self-employed and to promote them, for example by offering free further training. This is supported by a large number of active members who work in an honorary capacity.
Please read our statement of goals, which is an extract from our by-laws (Satzung).
The following translation is based on our original by-laws. There were an number of changes on 10th of January 2017 which haven’t been tranlsated yet, sorry! For a translation of our current by-laws, please use DeepL.com.
Association of Founders and Entrepreneurs Germany
= Verband der Gründer und Selbstständigen Deutschland (VGSD)
From § 2 (2):
The purpose of the association shall be realised in particular by…
- Representing the interests of founders and freelancers in political and administrative arenas (political parties, parliaments, governments and other official organizations, especially at a federal level), as well as to banks, insurance agencies and other industries. We are independent of any political party and are committed solely to the interests of founders and freelancers.
- Improve the public image of founders and freelancers. The aim is to overcome existing prejudices and stereotypes, to create an understanding of the unique challenges faced by this group, and demonstrate the enormous cultural and economic importance of these individuals. This is achieved primarily through the use of press and public relations.
- Boost the appeal of independent working to increase the number of self-employed, and to promote the culture of self-reliance in Germany.
- Provide direct support for individuals and initiatives which seek to promote the interests of founders and freelancers, e.g. by providing funds for their travel or by supporting their public relations undertakings.
- Work towards the provision of an affordable, flexible and independently organized pension and social security fund for founders and freelancers. Fight against excessively burdensome contribution rates and minimum contributions demanded of freelancers and founders by the social scuritiy system as well as by private health inscurance companies.
- Improve access for founders and freelancers to business banking accounts and credit.
- Fight against unnecessary bureaucracy and compulsory payments levied against founders and freelancers, which cost time and money.
- Ensure that the impact of proposed legislation and administrative decisions which affect founders and freelancers are better understood and are taken into account by policy and decision makers. Using the model of “gender mainstreaming”, we will develop the notion of “freelancer mainstreaming”. We will publicize specimen calculations, case studies and make individuals available for interviews so they can explain their stories.
- Raise awareness of the special circumstances that affect female entrepreneurs (such as becoming self-employed after childbirth), those who start a business from unemployment, low-income as well as part-time self-employed workers, and independent migrants.
- Support scientific research and studies on topics that relate to founders and freelancers, and/or promise to generate new insights for and about this group. This can be achieved by contributing input and promoting such studies, publishing the results of research, and also commissioning and conducting our own surveys and reports.
- Negotiate benefits and advantages for members through framework agreements and group rates with other organizations and businesses. Membership should have benefits and appeals beyond political advocacy. Only when we develop a sufficiently large membership base can we be taken seriously by other parties and become effective in our actions.
- Finance and undertake important legal actions, such as test cases, to achieve the clarification of fundamental legal and administrative issues and establish precedents that benefit founders and freelancers.
- Launch targeted information and education campaigns and the mobilization of members to raise public awareness of issues affecting founders and freelancers, especially on proposed legislative changes that affect this group.
- Cooperate with other associations and organizations which act in the interest of our members and speak collectively in discussions with decision makers in business, politics and other civic groups.
- Promote the exchange of knowledge and experience between founders and freelancers across trade and industry boundaries.