7,399 Jobs for Hamburg

Business developers present positive annual result / development into one stop agency

Backed by a positive development in 2015, the Hamburg economy welcomes 2016 with cautious optimism, according to a recent business survey by the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce. This evaluation is also reflected by the annual result of HWF Hamburg Business Development Corporation. In 2015, Hamburg business developers created and secured 7,399 jobs (2014: 4,334). With the support from HWF, 106 (2014: 99) companies from home or abroad relocated to Hamburg or expanded their business in Hamburg. 333.18 (2014: 179.20) million euro of investments were thus triggered off. 121 (2014: 75) companies received competent consultancy on their relocation and expansion projects. For two companies, HWF found suitable locations in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region. For the year 2016, the Hamburg Senate has announced plans to accelerate the development of HWF into a one stop agency for investment commenced back in 2015.

7,399 Jobs for Hamburg

One Stop Agency for Investments

Hamburg is a city full of strengths and opportunities. With more than five million inhabitants, its metropolitan area is one of the strongest economic regions in Europe. Its core industries and its port provide the city with a rich educational and scientific landscape and a basis for work and prosperity. High-tech and creative industries coin its future. Business development is crucial to this development in Hamburg, and links it with a vision for the future. Frank Horch, Hamburg Minister of the Economy, Transport, and Innovation: "The HWF has to make offers you cannot refuse. HWF is the key contact, core incubator of ideas, central service provider, and competent helpline for businesses that have settled in Hamburg and consider expansion, and for companies planning to relocate to Hamburg. And that is exactly what we are doing right now: to develop the HWF into a one stop agency that can act quickly, efficiently and for the benefit of the location. First successes can be seen in the annual result of 2015."

Industrial Site Billbrook/Rothenburgsort

The annual press conference of the HWF was held at HWF’s project office in the   industrial area Billbrook / Rothenburgsort. In the frame of the development of Hamburg’s East, the industrial area Billbrook / Rothenburgsort is quintessential to the planning of the Hamburg Senate. The Hamburg Ministry of Economy Transport and Innovation (BWVI) thus commissioned both HWF Hamburg Business Development Corporation and the IBA Hamburg GmbH to draw up a plan of action plan to modernise and revitalise the industrial area Billbrook / Rothenburgsort. The aim is to better exploit the potential of the industrial site in order to create sustainable jobs in the city. Next to securing the business of existing companies, new enterprises with a high added value are to be relocated to the area (www.industriestandort-billbrook.de).

Hamburg in Competition

2015 was a good year for both HWF Hamburg Business Development Corporation and Hamburg’s economy. Surveys and rankings reflected the city’s economic climate and development by high ratings and recognition also on an international level:
•    In August, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) honoured Hamburg’s positive development of recent years in a study entitled "Local Economic Leadership". In the survey, positive mentions of Hamburg, for example, included the city’s leadership in the field of today’s technologies, such as wind energy, and IT, along with the growth of tourism.
• For international investors, Hamburg is the most attractive location in Germany. This is the result of a ranking conducted by fDi Magazine of the Financial Times Group in October. Comparing the number and volume of foreign investment projects for the years 2010 – 2014 based on 100,000 heads, Hamburg was ranked best, followed by Hesse, Berlin, Baden-Württemberg, and Saxony on the ranks two to five.  
• Hamburg is one of those cities that may significantly benefit in the 21st century from the global race for the best human capital and investments. In December 2015, the international real estate consulting firm Jones Lang LaSalle listed the Hanseatic city in its "New World Cities" category as one of three German cities alongside Berlin and Munich.

HWF’s Annual Result

With the result significantly risen compared to the previous year, 2015 was a good year for HWF. Pleased about the annual result, HWF’s managing director Dr. Rolf Strittmatter said: “We were able to improve results in nearly all areas, and particularly in employment. Once again, the Hanseatic City of Hamburg confirmed itself as the economic centre of Northern Europe.”

In 2015, HWF brought 106 companies (2014: 99) to Hamburg or supported the expansion of business. In detail, 62 (61) new settlements and 44 (38) extensions of business were supported. Furthermore, 121 (75) companies were advised on settlement and expansion projects. For two companies, HWF found suitable locations in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region.

Number of Project20142015Per Cent

More important than the number of projects, however, is the number of jobs newly created or secured. Their figure rose from 2014’s 4,334 jobs to 7,399 jobs in 2015, reflecting an increase of 71 per cent. Last year, 1,514 (852) jobs were newly created, and 5,885 (3,482) jobs were secured.

Jobs20142015Per Cent
Jobs secured3.4825.885169
New Jobs8521.514178

2015 also made it clear that the largest potential for the creation of new jobs lies within the expansion of companies already active in Hamburg. At local companies, 1,205 (500) jobs were newly created. New acquisitions only brought along 309 (352) new jobs.

The projects were linked to investments totalling 333.18 million euro (2014: 179.20). Furthermore, 121 (75) companies were advised on settlement and expansion projects. For two companies, HWF found suitable locations in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region of Hamburg.

Investments20142015Per Cent
Total179.20 mio. EUR333.18 mio. EUR185

Comparing HWF activities by sectors, logistics (18), maritime industries (11), and MITT (9) dominated in 2015. However, more than half (63) of the total of 106 projects were not linked to Hamburg’s clusters. Most often, they were trading companies.


Top HWF source markets20152014

Further source countries for settlements include France, Great Britain, Netherlands, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Norway, Philippines, Sweden, Taiwan, Tunisia, and Belarus.

In 2015, the HWF handled 62 (61) projects from 23 (20) countries. When comparing the number of newly created jobs (309) to the number of acquisition, the average totals 4.98. Overall, international investments saw more than 300 firms from 49 countries set up in Hamburg in 2015. In most cases, they were commercial enterprises or start-ups, particularly by financial investments in the property sector. 1.54 jobs per company were created in this context. HWF, however, focuses on attracting companies that become operational in Hamburg and create jobs.

A striking feature of 2015 was the slump of HWF’s China projects, with figures declining from 20 (2014) to twelve last year. This is due to the fact that even though many Chinese enterprises still sought HWF’s comprehensive consultancy, they then contacted other specialists, for instance lawyers, to handle their visa application. In 2015, a total of 43 companies from China and Hong Kong relocated to Hamburg. All these settlements were initiated by HWF’s marketing activities. Despite the Russian crisis, the number of settlements was thus being maintained on a good and stable level.


In the year 2015, the HWF particularly supported many Hamburg companies in their expansion projects. The positive development of companies in HWF’s stock of clients is partly due to the fact that long-time pending projects were finally being completed. In addition, HWF’s efforts in follow-up assistance of newly acquired companies also paid off.

Selected Case Studies

Also in 2015, interesting settlements or expansions took place in Hamburg.


Industrial Commercial Bank of China (ICBC)
Previously operating its northern German operations from its European headquarters in Frankfurt, ICBC opened its Hamburg branch in March 2015 at a prominent location on Jungfernstieg. Initially equipped with a staff of three and 10-15 employees in view for the future, ICBC covers both consumer and commercial banking.

Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Company Limited (ZPMC)
ZPMC is the world’s largest manufacturer of steel structures and container bridges, with the latter holding a global market share of 75 per cent. Its products are being used in all major German ports, including Hamburg. In addition, the group has been expanding its business activities to offshore facilities, specialised shipbuilding, and related services. The acquisition of the European Purchase Center (EPC) with its official opening on 1 June 2015 was thus of prominent importance for Hamburg. 20 jobs have been created in the short term. In medium term, the workforce will rise to 100 staff.

Airbus Business Accelerator
To accelerate the market-readiness of innovations is one of the key objectives of the second "BizLab Aerospace Accelerator" opened by Airbus in Hamburg in 2015. There, start-ups and projects are being supported at an early stage in the form of a six-month programme. For this purpose, the Airbus BizLab provides coaches, mentors and experts from technology, law, finance, marketing and communications. It also offers prototyping and facilitates market access. A screening committee selects the most promising ideas.

Carnival Maritime
Under the name of Carnival Maritime, Europe's leading cruise company Costa Group set up at HafenCity Hamburg an ultramodern, digitised unit, handling the technical and nautical operation of vessels by its cruise brands AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, and Costa Asia. The fleet currently consists of 25 ships. In Hamburg, Carnival Maritime bundles the expertise of Costa Group in the fields of marine, technology and health, environmental protection and security. Together with the specialist service departments, the Fleet Operations Center (FOC) monitors all nautical and technical aspects of vessels in operation worldwide. The business unit was founded in 2015 and currently employs 150 specialists.

Hamburg also experienced significant growth in the important digital market: The Canadian Internet company Hootsuite (Link: https://hootsuite.de) expanded and opened a new branch in Hamburg in early 2015. Hootsuite allows users to manage all social media campaigns from one dashboard. The service is primarily aimed at businesses.

After global players such as Facebook, Google, and Twitter, yet another IT company has thus chosen Hamburg for headquarters. By the end of 2015, the team responsible for the D-A-CH region comprised 15 employees throughout Europe. The team in Hamburg will continue to grow in 2016.

Expanding Companies

Diehl Comfort Modules
Like Diehl Services Modules, Diehl Comfort Module is a business unit of Diehl Aerosystems. The cabin outfitter is a specialist manufacturer of washrooms, showers, and toilets aboard of aircraft. Diehl Service Modules designs and manufactures onboard galleys. As first tier supplier for avionics solutions and cabin integration, Diehl is a leading partner of the international aviation industry. In the Hamburg metro region, the group is present with several locations, with some of them to be merged in future. This optimisation will allow Diehl to exploit synergies and to create a stronger and more competitive business unit for cabin elements in Hamburg.

Developed by the investor Goodman, the new production and logistics centre (13,000 m² incl. communal areas) at Genter Ufer in Hamburg-Waltershof will be receiving parts manufactured by Diehl Comfort Modules and Diehl Service Modules in early 2016.  Ideally located in close proximity to Airbus’ plant in Hamburg-Finkenwerder, the centre will be employing more than 300 people. HWF supported Diehl in the search of a suitable location. In the course of its location search, Diehl preferred Waltershof to a civic property in the industrial area of Hausbruch.

Marker oHG – The Fresh Company
The family-run company Marker oHG – The Fresh Company is specialised in the trade of fruit and vegetables and a complementary product ranges. The supply of restaurants, hotels and communal catering throughout Northern Germany with regional products forms the core business. In addition, exotic and organic produce, as well as rare and seed fast vegetables are sold. HWF helped the company to find larger premises at Amandus Stubbe-Strasse. 30 new jobs were thus created at short notice, and 155 jobs saved.

DWENGER Lasertechnik
Dwenger specialises in laser cutting, laser / robotic welding and the production of sheet metal parts and assemblies. Right next to the main building at Dwengerkamp 9, Dwenger Group build a 1,700 m2 large production facility for surface finishing of sheet metal parts and thereby extended its assembly line. The HWF mediated the extension of the site.


The HWF is optimistic about the year 2016, and confident to reach and surpass 2015’s high level in regard to expanding business in Hamburg. HWF thus sees its main task not to generate demand, but to create the space for expansion. Given the current competition for land between commercial, public and residential needs, this very challenging task can only be solved in co-operation with the Hamburg Senate and Hamburg’s district administrations. The HWF will therefore prepare proposals on how to achieve the Senate’s objective to optimise the development and allocation of urban commercial plots in order to promote economic growth.

In regard to international settlements, HWF will flexibly to changing market conditions in regard to source markets. Regional conflicts in the Middle East as well as the decline in industrial production in China raise fears of damages to the global economy. In 2016, the HWF will thus specifically address companies with German headquarters in Hamburg, but European headquarters elsewhere, to relocate these central functions also to Hamburg.