In addition to the settlement of new companies, the support of existing companies is a core task of economic development. The Service Center Economy of the City of Bonn is a central point of contact in this regard. With a wide range of services, it supports small, medium-sized and large companies from the service, production, trade and commerce sectors in all operational matters relating to their economic development. In addition, it is increasingly involved in strategically important projects, such as the regional and inter-communal development of industrial sites.
The wide-ranging services provided by the corporate support unit extend, for example, from support in solving problems relating to environmental and commercial law, through preliminary clarification of issues relating to building law, to support for companies in improving the conditions under which they operate. It bundles and coordinates administrative processes and, if desired, accompanies the company through to the implementation of a measure, thus offering service from a single source. Services also include the provision of commercial properties and real estate services (see Chapter II.7).
In 2020, the Economic Development Office carried out 452 business support measures and consultations for existing Bonn companies. In addition, participation in citizens' meetings, discussions with chambers of commerce or political committees on current challenges are also fixed components of the work. The services are supplemented by the subsidy consulting service, which informs companies about publicly available subsidies for business investments and operating resources. In addition to the business support measures and consulting services, the Economic Development Office also supported a total of 204 settlement and investment projects in 2020. In the process, it advised and accompanied foreign companies in their search for commercial real estate in the context of a possible settlement.
Commercial property marketing
The marketing of municipal commercial space and the brokerage of private commercial real estate is an essential area of the qualification of existing businesses and the attraction of new ones. However, due to a lack of available municipal commercial space, the city was unable to sell any commercial properties to companies in 2020. The focus here was on finding private sites. In order to be able to offer commercial properties to companies willing to relocate in the future, one focus of the work is currently on the development and qualification of existing commercial properties. Due to the shortage of commercial land, the business development department will apply even stricter criteria when awarding plots of land in the future.
In 2020, the corporate support unit provided support in the context of approval processes, in particular to companies from the service sector, the construction industry and the automotive supply industry. For example, support was provided for intended uses with relevance to building and planning law, and complex construction projects were also supported with regard to their approvability.
Climate-friendly industrial park Beuel-Ost
In one of the largest and oldest developed commercial areas in the Federal City of Bonn, the Beuel-Ost area, the City of Bonn, together with the engineering firm Gertec and the WILA - Wissenschaftsladen Bonn, started a model project in mid-2021. Together with interested local companies, the project identifies how the area can be further developed in a climate-friendly manner.
Key elements are potential checks and the initiation of measures for a higher location quality, a better open space structure, optimized energy consumption and better utilization of energy generation.
These sample projects illustrate the range of services provided by the company support:
- Support for the expansion projects of companies in the health care, automotive supply, auto body, building cleaning, and construction industries.
- Regular mailings to Bonn-based companies regarding state and federal incentives related to the Covid 19 pandemic.
- Overseeing capital projects for a manufacturing company as well as a Bonn project developer.
- Assisting private property owners to develop and market underutilized commercial space.