Last Friday, the government of Austria announced an extensive labour market and entrepreneurial package. Fuelled by the backwards trend in newly founded companies with limited liability (GmbH), the aim is to ease financial difficulties in the beginning stages of founding a business. While in 2006, 12,9 per cent of new companies with limited liability were starting out, this number dropped to 9,1 per cent in 2011. Let’s have a peek inside the package and see what’s in it for Austrian startups:
– The minimum capital stock to found a GmbH will be brought down from 35.000 to 10.000. This means Austria is catching up with other European countries, in the EU an average capital stock of 7.000 and 8.000 euros is required. Austrian economic minister Reinhold Mitterlehner (Austrian People’s Party) hopes that this will contribute to a GmbH increase of 20%, since it lowers the barrier of entry to self employment.
– The tax applicable to an Austrian GmbH (the so-called KÖSt), will be reduced from a minimum 1.750 to 500 euros.
– The next years will see a mobilisation of a total of 110 million euros for Austrian founders, which will help financing companies in the beginning stages who do not posses sufficient bank loans. According to Mitterlehner, shares which are processed through the Förderbank Austria Wirtschaftsservice (aws), can range between 100.000 and one million euros.
– Self-employed will be able to get sickness benefits. If their business consists of less that twenty five employees, they have the possibility to claim 27 euros by day from the 43rd day onwards for up to twenty weeks. In case of voluntarily self insurance, this already applies from the third day onwards.
– And last but not least: new companies will not have to be officially introduced through the daily newspaper Wiener Zeitung anymore. (As one of the numerous tedious bureaucratic hurdles Austrian entrepreneurs are confronted with, an official statement about the newly founded company has to be published in the daily which costs the founders about 70 euros)