The main difference between the two is that a non-profit GmbH pursues a non-profit, charitable or ecclesiastical corporate purpose, whereas a GmbH has primarily economic interests. A non-profit GmbH must use 75 percent of its profits for the charitable purpose for which it was founded, such as animal welfare, environmental protection, consumer protection or monument conservation. A GmbH, on the other hand, is focused on generating profits for its shareholders.

The decision between founding a GmbH or a non-profit GmbH therefore depends on the purpose of your company.