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Starting a business in Austria is now easier

4. July 2013

The minimum start-up capital has been reduced recently, facilitating growth in start-ups and strengthening Austria as a location for doing business.

Good ideas shouldn’t fail because of high entry requirements and red tape. Since the GmbH (limited liability companies) reform came into effect on 1st July 2013, one of the major obstacles for business start-ups has been significantly reduced. Previously the minimum start-up capital required to found a GmbH in Austria amounted to EUR 35,000 – a negative record (EU average is EUR 8,000). As of 1st July 2013, the following changes have been implemented, leading to an overall reduction in start-up costs:

  • Reducing the minimum start-up capital from EUR 35,000 to EUR 10,000; whereby at least EUR 5,000 must be paid in cash
  • Abolition of the requirement to announce the company in the “Wiener Zeitung” (official gazette), leading to savings of around EUR 150 for the announcement
  • Reducing the minimum corporation tax from EUR 1,750 to EUR 500 per year
  • Reducing the legal costs and notary fees related to starting a GmbH by around 50%
  • Reducing the capital duty

The reform, which is expected to lead to an extra 1,000 new GmbHs being set up each year and create a range of new jobs, will benefit young companies in particular. The next key step should clear the way for urgently needed alternative forms of financing.