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The foundation is mostly used for long term protection of family assets. It consists of an asset fund with its own legal personality, the intentions of the founder being laid down in the foundation deed and the foundation´s articles.
In a trust, a trustee is given assets, objects or rights, which he then administers in his own name as the legal owner. In distinction to foundations, trusts do not have their own legal personality.
The trust enterprise or trust reg. is similar to the foundation in that it is consists of independent assets which acquire legal personality through statutory provisions. It can be established with or without founder’s rights.
The establishment (“Anstalt”) is an enterprise with legal personality, set up independently and organized under civil law. The establishment is subject to preferential tax treatment and is flexible concerning the statutory provisions and organizational structure. It can be used for commercial activities as well as only asset management.
The company limited by shares is he most renowned company form. It can perform any form of commercial activity within current legislation. It is most commonly used for international trade, financial or real estate activities.
A limited liability company is an enterprise with own legal personality. It is the most commonly used company form in Europe.