May 2022

Where do Swiss companies relocate? Valais gains new companies but businesses move away from Zurich

45,250 existing businesses relocated their registered addresses within Switzerland in 2021. Of these, 83.6% moved their registered addresses within their original canton, while 6,341 businesses moved to a different canton.

Valais, Thurgau and Appenzell Ausserrhoden recorded the highest net level of inward relocation
The highest level of net inward relocation from other cantons took place in the Canton of Valais (120 companies), followed by Thurgau (87), Appenzell Ausserrhoden (83) and Schwyz (73). A comparison between the tax rates charged on corporate profits in each canton reveals that the rates are low in all of the cantons at the top of this ranking table, except for the Canton of Valais.

The Canton of Valais mainly attracted businesses from Vaud (99), Geneva (59) and Freiburg (20). Thurgau benefited from arrivals from the Cantons of Zurich (122), St. Gallen (86) and Zug (24). The Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden recorded most of its arrivals from St. Gallen (68), Zurich (49) and Zug (23).

Zurich had the highest net level of outward relocation
The highest level of net outward relocation was registered by the Canton of Zurich, at -347 companies, followed by Bern (-83) and Lucerne (-50). In 2018, this canton had been one of the biggest beneficiaries, with a net growth of 89 additional businesses.
Most of the companies moving their headquarters from the Canton of Zurich relocated them to Zug (350), and to Aargau and Schwyz, with 210 each. Companies from the Canton of Bern relocated to Solothurn (60), Zurich (55) and Freiburg (45). From the Canton of Lucerne, most relocating companies moved their businesses to Zug (103), Zurich (79) and Aargau (39).

French-speaking Switzerland
The Canton of Valais reported the largest net growth within the French-speaking area of Switzerland, at 120 businesses, followed by the Cantons of Vaud (23) and Jura (10). Geneva (-23) and Freiburg (-11) reporting a net outflow of companies in this area of Switzerland.

Ticino
Ticino recorded a net inflow of 23 companies. Most of these companies moved into Ticino from Graub√ľnden (56), Zug (39) and Zurich (9).

About the survey process
This survey examined all those companies who were listed in the commercial register and who relocated their business headquarters within Switzerland during 2021.