Starting up a business in Luxembourg Self-employment is a dream that can be achieved step by step
The Grand Duchy offers many advantages for anyone starting up their own business: a diversified economy, strong foreign trade, an entrepreneurial culture that is developing constantly, a Third Industrial Revolution strategy, and a geographical position at the heart of Europe. Do you want to take advantage of this productive environment and achieve your dream? Let us take you through the procedures you will need to follow, and tell you the success story of Anne Bauler, master seamstress!
1, 2, 3,... the various stages in setting up a business
Before embarking on the administrative procedures, you first need to define your project clearly. The business plan is an essential tool for communicating about your project: it defines the structure and evolution of your business, and serves to 'sell' your business when motivating employees and obtaining funding.
Your business plan also determines the legal form your company will take. Will it be a one-person business or a commercial company? If there are several shareholders or partners, you will also need to decide on rules for management.
The future entrepreneur then has to go through the following formalities and actions:
- Apply to the Ministry of the Economy for a business permit
- Deciding on where the activity is to take place
- Opening a professional bank account
- Company formation and money release certificate
- Affiliation of the company with various bodies (Trade Register, Joint Social Security Centre, Indirect Tax Authority)
Assistance and support from experts throughout the process
Whether you are self-employed or part of a group of entrepreneurs, you will not be left to fend for yourselves. Several services, institutions and associations will provide their support at every stage of setting up your own business. Experts in every field will answer your questions and make sure you meet all the obligations of affiliation. Get in touch with them! To start with, here are the main partners:
- Chamber of Skilled Trades and Crafts : the partner craftsmen trust
- Guichet.lu : THE point of contact for creating and developing your project
- Chamber of Commerce : guidance and advice for all entrepreneurs
- Luxinnovation : promoting innovation in the Grand Duchy and further afield
"When, if not now?" – the success story of seamstress Anne Bauler
Sheltered under the roofs of Bonnevoie in her own house is the sewing workshop run by Anne Bauler. Sewing has always been her favourite pastime: her grandmother had a fabric shop in Diekirch and her mother loved dressmaking, so it is no surprise that Anne Bauler has been sewing accessories such as bags and scarves since she was very young.
One thing led to another and she gained more sewing skills by working under the supervision of seamstresses already established in the Grand Duchy. After studying and working in the fields of law of chemistry, Anne Bauler discovered that it is possible to take the master craftsman examination without having to take the apprenticeship exam. She already had a baccalaureate qualification, but needed to catch up in the craft to be able to make her way towards independence. She attended theory classes at the Chamber of Skilled Trades and Crafts for more than three years and carried out a number of placements in order to clock up the necessary number of hours of practical work in the profession. She eventually obtained the master craftsman's certificate in 2016!
During 2015, during Luxembourg's Presidency of the Council of the EU, Anne Bauler went to Brussels, working as a legal expert. She took advantage of the experience of being in a different country before finally embarking three years later on the procedure to become self-employed. She started at the Chamber of Skilled Trades and Crafts. The "Créer mon entreprise" business creation service helps beginners to follow the necessary procedures and gather the documents needed for the new business' file. A personal development coach helped Anne Bauler structure her ideas and lay down the guidelines for her project. Her business permit was issued three months later.
"When I do something, I put all I've got into it. The safety net of part-time work or unpaid leave only delays the decision to actually become your own boss."
For two months she worked part-time as a civil servant while she went through the procedure for becoming self-employed. In the end she left her job as a civil servant and started her own business in 2018 with a small number of creations. But customers were not forthcoming. She advertised on social media and created a website, but it was above all her friends and family who helped hand out business cards and talked about her to other people. Meanwhile, Anne Bauler continued with her passion and launched her first sewing classes. They were a great success right from the start: individualism, an ecological mindset and the spirit of DIY are more topical than ever.
Today, she still runs sewing classes in her workshop, and occasionally at various cultural centres. She is a member of the team of examiners for the master craftsman's qualification, and teaches technical theory at the Chamber of Skilled Trades and Crafts. As a dressmaker, Anne Bauler produces garments for special occasions, made-to-measure clothes, designs and costumes for theatre productions, outfits for 'cosplayers' - who have even won prizes thanks to her creations - and authentic costumes for 18th-century historical re-enactments. Alongside these very varied activities, she advises on colours and styles in the capacity of a "colour coach".
What she likes most about her work is being able to work creatively and, at the end of it, to hold in her hand something she has made herself. The classes provide an opportunity to talk to others and communicate her passion to them. They also give rise to new ideas, while studying colours is a passion she would like to develop further. Anne Bauler works with ecological and fairtrade materials. As a new entrepreneur, she has learned that she can not and should not do everything herself - help is always at hand.
"Life is too short to wonder what it would have been like if I would have done things differently. Regretting later on something you did not do is worse than having a go and making a mess of it. With a bit of luck and a lot of hard work, you can turn your hobby into your job."