The company suffix Compagnie , Co. or Cie. abbreviated, is a reference in commercial law to the legal form of partnerships with more than two partners. The abbreviation is usually added at the end of a name after an ampersand ( & Co. ). The Maria Mustermann, Max Mustermann & Co. Steuerberater GbR consists of Maria and Max Mustermann as well as other shareholders.
The abbreviation Cie. was used in the entire German-speaking area until the 19th century . Today the abbreviation Co. is common in Germany and Austria . In Switzerland and France, Cie. still in use today. For the sake of tradition, Cie. but continued in some companies, such as the private bank Sal. Oppenheim jr. & Cie. KGaA or the household appliance manufacturer Miele & Cie. KG .
The additions Co. or Cie. have been required by law since the Commercial Law Reform Act of June 22, 1998 as a reference to the specific legal form.
The GmbH & Co. KG is a special form of the limited partnership . In this legal form, instead of a natural person, a corporation and thus a legal person acts as a general partner : the company with limited liability (GmbH). The legal form is a partnership in which nobody is liable with all of their assets. A GmbH & Co. KG must therefore in accordance with (2) of the German Commercial Code (HGB) must be marked as such in order to inform business partners of the limitation of liability.
- Overview of the legal forms of companies in Germany Startup Guide, 1 & 1 Ionos , January 29, 2019
- Law on the new regulation of commercial and company law and on the amendment of other commercial and company law provisions (Commercial Law Reform Act - HRefG) of June 22, 1998, Federal Law Gazette I p. 1474
- R. Morche: Important changes in the HGB regarding the company name regulations and the types of merchants from July 1, 1998 January 13, 1999
- Draft of a law for the new regulation of the commercial and company law and for the amendment of other commercial and company law provisions (Commercial Law Reform Act - HRefG) BT-Drs. 13/8444 of August 29, 1997, p. 38
- Florian Jacoby : The commercial law company Bielefeld University , no year, slide 535