Early-Stage Investment opportunities in the Vienna Region


If you are looking for Early-Stage Investment and jump-start programs for your company, the Vienna Region is THE ideal location for you. Startups from all over the world appreciate the wide-ranging support in starting a business, gaining prominence, or finding investors.

What is an Early-Stage Investment?

Early-Stage Investment is the very first initial investment which a company – or at that stage, an idea – requires to get up and running. It is the money required to do market research, product design, or proof of concept to show that the product will actually work as anticipated or will be in demand.

It might also be used to hire staff or rent office space for initial business outlines – the very basics a company needs to get off the ground. Therefore it is also called seed capital. Most entrepreneurs do not have the funds that are necessary to turn their idea into an operational product or business.

This is where funding programs and investment support come in to help. Early-stage investors take quite a big risk, hoping that the business will develop successfully and become profitable. They often have experience and contacts within the industry,  which the start-up can take advantage of. Hence, they might provide both capital and specialized knowledge. Once the business concept has proven viable, the investors move into further rounds of funding.

Early-Stage Investment opportunities in the Vienna Region

The phases of Early-Stage Investment

Each company and its processes are unique, thus there are different ways of describing its stages. Here is a common classification of early-stage investment and phases a start-up goes through.

Pre-seed Phase

The stage where entrepreneurs start developing and refining their idea and begin to work on a prototype or set up a concept for their company. Most entrepreneurs still rely on their own funds in this phase, some will seek guidance from founders or investors and a few will already receive early-stage funds.

Seed Stage

Seed capital is provided to help an entrepreneur start a business. Ideally, it is a seed that will later on flourish into a blossoming business. This investment can fund the costs of product design, prototypes, market research, business plans, or initial hiring. The goal is to secure enough funding to create a clear company outline that will prove to future investors you have the capacity to grow and succeed.

Start-up Funding

After the initial seed stage has proven that the company is viable, start-up funding is used to help develop products and start marketing them. Market research, building a brand name and corporate identity are important to establish the presence of the new enterprise. A long-term business plan is generated to help the company expand across different markets and create lasting revenue.

Early growth funding

Once a company has developed a substantial customer base and created a stable income, further funding is used to boost manufacturing and sales. The company can scale up and expand across different markets.

Programs and benefits in the Vienna Region

The Vienna Region is an innovative and modern place – the ideal location to create a new business. Situated in the heart of Europe, both national and international companies appreciate its excellent infrastructure, connectivity, and networking opportunities. Major capitals like Vienna, Bratislava, Munich, Prag, Bukarest or Budapest are easily accessible by road, railroad, or air. The Vienna Region is a hub for research and development, digitalization, and innovation. Sustainability and climate protection are valued highly. There is pioneering work in the expansion of smart cities. Yet, industrial properties are available at a comparatively low price.

The above-mentioned benefits have already made the Vienna Region an attractive market – but there is even more in store for start-ups. There are several jump-start programs as well as accelerators young entrepreneurs can participate in. They offer support with early-stage investment, setting up shop, and gaining prominence. Financing is one of the most important issues when creating a new company. Austria offers an extensive system of public funding. Forbes Magazine has even named the Vienna Region the best place to start a business.

Funding for start-ups in Austria

Being a worldwide and the world’s largest network for start-ups, Impact Hub Vienna provides support and programs for start-ups. They have a worldwide network and community for the exchange of innovative ideas.

Austrian Startups is a neutral and independent platform that helps start-ups all over Austria and beyond the borders to connect and expand their business.

The Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) and Austria Wirtschaftsservice GmbH (aws) are two important funding sources in Austria. They offer non-repayable grants, guarantees, or subsidized loans.

In the heart of Vienna’s city center, the accelerator weXelerate offers the biggest open innovation hub within Austria. According to their specific needs, start-ups can choose between three different programs, each of which has a different focus.

The Vienna Business Agency handles the funding activities of the City of Vienna which encompass consulting and various services.

Early-Stage Investment opportunities in the Vienna Region

Startups in Lower Austria can expand and innovate in the IST Cube in Klosterneuburg. Support and coaching is offered to start-ups focusing on deep tech solutions in science, engineering, and technology. Both early stage and later stage start-ups are welcomed.The start-up accelerator Südhub offers financial support and 1-to-1 coaching as well as various workshops in Burgenland. The program focuses on the start-up’s individual needs, providing consulting, expert advice and office infrastructure.

An excellent location for start-ups

According to the Austrian Startup Monitor study more than 2000 start-ups have been founded in Austria in the past 10 years. Most start-ups focus on new technologies and innovation trends like artificial intelligence (AI), big data, green technology, etc. With their innovative new products and services, start-ups are vital for economic growth and structural development. Austria supports that with public and private initiatives and has become a vibrant and fertile start-up scene. Some of the start-ups that have been most successful in the last 10 years have started their journey in the Vienna Region. Great examples of these successes are Shpock, GoStudent or Lithoz.

So, if you are looking for the ideal location for your new business location, production facility or entirely new company, the Vienna Region is the perfect place to be!

Portraits | Vienna Region

Let me give you five reasons why you should set up your headquarters in the Vienna Region:

  • it is part of the 4th richest country of the European Union
  • a high quality of life at affordable prices 
  • Excellent, highly-developed infrastructure
  • highly qualified workforce
  • outstanding spending capacity of customers
  • home to many international companies, universities as well as research facilities
  • direct access to South East and Eastern Europe 
  • high level of personal security, political stability and legal certainty
  • an international as well as cosmopolitan region due to a population with migration background

What a founder-friendly location needs is a focus on the global market. Austria’s location in particular makes it an ideal hub for the international start-up scene in Central and Eastern Europe. 

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