Presented is a case study on the implementation of open and inquiry-type experimentation in early German secondary chemistry education. The teaching strategy discussed follows the learning company approach. Originally adopted from vocational education, the learning company method is used to redirect lab-oriented classroom practice towards a more cooperative mode of learning and instruction. In our interpretation of this method for chemistry education, an additional methodological element was implemented in order to create an atmosphere allowing a different style of experimentation. Our interpretation of the learning company idea seeks to motivate students to perform self-regulated and self-organized experiments within the sought after cooperative mode. This paper describes an example using the phenomena of chemical reactions as developed within a project of Participatory Action Research. It also provides insight into both teacher and student feedback, concluding by relating our findings to other examples using the learning company approach in chemistry education.