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New online platform brings startups and investors together

3. September 2014

The new contact platform EQUITYFINDER.AT enables both startups and small and medium-sized enterprises to gain simple access to risk capital, business angels, crowdfunding or other alternative forms of financing.

This online service is now available free of charge. “Equity capital requirements of banks have become stricter. In particular, young companies growing at disproportionately high rates often face the problem of how to raise sufficient capital to implement their business ideas. For this reason, we want to facilitate the financing of new products and services with alternative forms of financing”, says Reinhold Mitterlehner, Federal Minister of Economy, Family and Youth in explaining the underlying reason for the initiative. “In this way we also meet the objectives encompassed in our new business location strategy, because startups and SMEs along the entire value chain work closely together with flagship companies.”

The number of SMEs resorting to alternative financing forms has almost doubled from five percent in the year 2011 to a share of nine percent in 2013. In a survey by the federal funding bank aws, 28 percent of the companies stated their wish to make use of alternative forms of financing in the future. The aws Equity Finder targets precisely these companies, and at the same time increases awareness of these alternative methods of financing.

Startup campaign is underway

The aws Equity Finder is a further measure within the framework of the start-up campaign being implemented at the initiative of the Federal Ministry of Economy, Family and Youth. In this context the aws Start-Up Fund offers risk capital to finance firms with high growth potential in their early development and growth phases. The aws Business Angel Fund is a co-financing program for equity investments of business angels. On balance, the aws is making EUR 100 million available each year to domestic startups. The offering also includes aws guarantees to mobilize risk capital, and is complemented by tried and tested instruments such as seed financing to support the very early phases of high-tech companies. In addition, startups can also take advantage of the aws Impulse Funding Initiative supporting creative industries, the Cleantech and Venture Capital Initiative as well as the aws Business Angels Exchange.

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