The Best Cities to Start a Business in Denmark

Last updated: 25 January 2023 Views: 2295
The Best Cities to Start a Business in Denmark

The latest in a series of reports from the World Bank ranked Denmark as the No. 1 location in Europe (and No. 4 in the world) for ease of doing business, and this tranquil Scandinavian country has a supremely welcoming attitude to entrepreneurs arriving from overseas to start a new business.

When we think of Scandinavian countries, it is often their robust state-run social support systems that come to mind. The Danish pay a high rate of tax and benefit from great education, childcare, healthcare and unemployment services in return, enjoying a high quality of life and plentiful vacation days.

However, Denmark is also a historic centre of trade (with a strong seafaring heritage,) and an excellent location for creating and running a business. Some of the appeal of Denmark to entrepreneurs includes the fact that Denmark has a friendly approach to people from overseas wishing to start a business in their country, with a simplified process of regulation and double-taxation treaties ensuring that operating in the country is as seamless as possible for foreign nationals. Anyone with residency or a work permit in Denmark will enjoy the same benefits as Danish citizens do, including free medical care.

For entrepreneurs who need to employ a team, Denmark has a flexible and well-educated labour force, the large majority of whom speak English as a second language. The Danish workforce is among the most productive in Europe, all while enjoying shorter working days and high standards of living.

Related article: The best country to start a business in Europe

Foreign entrepreneurs also have access to both private and public sector support, including investment funds, research centres and incubators. People setting up a business in Denmark can give their enterprise the best chance of success through the Startup Denmark program, which is designed to give business people access to a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem. Sustainable energy, cleantech, life science, design and ICT are all well represented in the Danish economy, and the country is known for its leading tech research and innovative talent pool. The Startup Denmark programme acts as a gateway to Denmark's booming entrepreneurial ecosystem, in which businesses can grow. 

Across Denmark’s wide variety of landscapes and areas of natural beauty are a selection of fantastic cities, all of which have advantages to entrepreneurs who wish to start their business in this happy and spirited country.

Copenhagen

Copenhagen is a unique city, characterised by its canals, cycling culture and maritime history. Amongst its many attractions is the ease of doing business and thriving startup culture, making this a fantastic location for budding entrepreneurs.

● Copenhagen is one of the globe’s leading smart cities, offering great opportunities for smart city tech startups, including government investment and the chance to tender for contracts with Denmark’s public sector.
● The city has a supportive atmosphere and provides a wide range of help to businesses, with the Copenhagen Business Hub offering training and counselling to entrepreneurs.
● Copenhagen is 15-20% cheaper than setting up a business in neighbouring Sweden’s capital Stockholm, with lower wage, property and social security costs for businesses.
● Across Greater Copenhagen there are 14 universities, 15 science parks and 12,000 researchers, creating a rich knowledge base and plenty of expertise.
● The country as a whole has a global reputation for groundbreaking research and development, and is a leading test market for smart grid, cleantech and smart city solutions.
● Copenhagen is extremely well placed logistically, with links to continental Europe, the Baltic countries and wider Scandinavia. It also has excellent transport links, with Copenhagen Airport voted the best in Northern Europe.

Aarhus

Located on the Jutland peninsula’s east coast, Aarhus is particularly well known for art and culture, with world-class museums and striking architecture and design. Benefiting from an iconic harbour, vibrant food scene and some of the country’s best festivals, Aarhus mixes youthful energy with hundreds of years of heritage and history. For business people, the advantages of Aarhus include:

● It is the second-largest city in Denmark, with the city and its surrounding area home to 1.2 million people.
● Aarhus has an international container port which handles nearly 60% of Demark’s container traffic.
● The city is a location for various global brands, including IBM, Lego, Uber, and Arla.
● Aarhus is, like most major Scandinavian cities, very well connected through efficient and well-run public transport routes.
● Aarhus enjoys the highest start-up survival rate in Denmark.

Odense

With its name deriving from a phrase meaning “Odin's sanctuary”, Odense is one of Denmark's oldest cities, the birthplace of Hans Christian Andersen and promises a fairy tale experience to visitors tempted by its history and charm. The city's central location in Denmark also makes it an important commercial centre, and it has evolved from a traditional industrial city into a modern “Industry 5.0” ecosystem.

● Employing 3900 people and containing 133 companies, Odense has a thriving robotics and industrial automation sector.
● The airport in Odense is also home to the Danish drone centre, which is at the forefront of drone research in Europe.
● Odense is also a great location for businesses within Health Technologies.
● The city has world-leading digital infrastructure, with Facebook choosing to locate a new hyperscale data centre in the region.
● Over the next five years, it is projected that investments of 1.6 million euros per day will be made into real estate and infrastructure in Odense.

Wherever you choose to start a business in Denmark, we can help you through every stage including registering a business address and business banking, with our fully inclusive company formation services. Please feel free to call us on 0033 (0)1 53 57 49 10 or email us from our contact page and we’d be happy to help you.

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