is one of the richest European countries which is why it attracts foreign investors
from all over the world. With a stable political system and economy, Austria
also offers a skilled workforce
which plays an important role in its development so far.
Among the most sought investment industries are banking, trading and information technology which play an important role in the development of the country's economy. The legislation also favors the opening of new companies and foreign investors can benefit from a transparent and flexible company registration process.
For those interested in doing business in Austria
, our local company formation agents
have prepared all the information necessary for them to get started.
Types of companies in Austria
The Company Act
is the main law which provides for the establishment of a business in Austria
. The first step for company formation in Austria
is to choose a legal entity from the ones mentioned below:
- the sole proprietorship or sole trader which is the simplest form of starting a business in Austria;
- the limited liability company which can be private or public and is the most employed type of company;
- the partnership which is suitable for those who want to create small and medium-sized businesses;
- the subsidiary, branch and representative offices which are business forms available for foreign companies interested in entering the Austrian market.
Our company formation agents in Austria
can offer information on the legislation applicable when starting a business
in this country.
The sole trader in Austria
The sole trader
is the simplest form of doing business in Austria
and it can be established by natural persons only. There are no share capital requirements for those who want to set up this business form, however, they will need to register their trade name with the Companies Register in Austria and obtain certain licenses with the authorities.
The limited liability company in Austria
- the private company, shortly known as the GmbH, which must be formed by at least one shareholder who cannot trade the company’s shares on the stock exchange and which requires a minimum share capital of 35,000 euros;
- the public company, shortly known as the AG, which also requires at least one shareholder and a minimum share capital of 70,000 euros; compared to the GmbH, the AG can trade its shares on the stock exchange.
Partnerships in Austria
There are four types of partnerships which can be registered by foreign investors interested in company formation in Austria. These are:
- the general partnership;
- the limited partnership;
- the dormant partnership;
- the civil law partnership.
No matter the type of partnership investors want to set up, at least two founding members are necessary. Also, there are no share capital requirements for this business form.
Setting up a branch office in Austria
The branch office
is one of the options foreign companies can use to create a presence on the Austrian market. The Austrian company
will totally depend on the parent company, which means that all the decisions related to the management of the branch will be taken by the head office. The Austrian branch
will complete the activities of the parent company for which it must obtain the necessary licenses and permits.
Among the advantages of the branch office in Austria, we remind the following:
- it takes very little to be established with the Austrian Trade Register;
- the parent company will be liable for the local branch office’ obligations;
- the requirements for setting up such an establishment are minimum;
- the branch office in Austria can be completely owned by the foreign company.
Our company registration representatives in Austria can help with the registration of a branch office.
Opening a subsidiary in Austria
Another business form available for foreign companies is the subsidiary
. Compared to the branch office, the subsidiary
is an independent entity, usually registered under the form of a limited liability company. As such, it can take its own decisions and will be treated as a local company in the Austrian market.
The Austrian subsidiary offers similar advantages as the branch office.