In this paper the export activities of the East German manufacturing industry are studied where exports are defined in a broad sense including both sales abroad and in West Germany. Survey data for 1998 and 1999 are used to reveal the relationship between technical as well as institutional characteristics of the companies and their exports. The following questions are discussed: Which companies participate in the export activities? What are the main regions of their business? Which in-house factors influence the export activities? What are the financial outcomes for the companies engaged in exports? Hypotheses are built on the basis of the market transaction costs theory. Bivariate and multivariate approaches are applied. The data are taken from the “Establishment Panel” of the Institute for Employment Research at the Federal Employment Services (IAB) in Nuremberg (Germany).