Open a Branch in Austria

Introduction to setting up a branch in Austria

Austria actively encourages foreign investors, ensuring that they have basically the same requirements as citizens of the country. Numerous procedures involved in the branch formation process are the same as setting up a company, although the timescale is slightly longer due to more complex documentation. The name of the branch must end in ‘Zweigniederlassung Osterreich’ (Branch Austria) or ‘Zweigniederlassung Wien’ (Branch Vienna). Additional regulations and restrictions may be dictated by the Austrian jurisdiction in which the branch is domiciled.

What are the accounting requirements for an Austrian Branch?

The branch company must have an Austrian bank account. Clients must visit Austria in order to set this up, but we can assist you through every step of the procedure.

Registration into the commercial register automatically notifies the tax authorities of a new company, but the Austrian representative must still actively apply for a VAT number within a month of the company’s formation.

VAT returns must be submitted either monthly or quarterly and tax accounts annually. An audit is also required.

What are the formalities regarding Austrian branches?

– A copy of the parent company’s Certificate of Incorporation
– Memorandum and Articles of Association of the parent company
– A copy of the parent company’s Certificate of Good Standing
the parent company’s resolution confirming the decision to form the branch
– A registered office
– At least one managing director of the branch – not required to be an Austrian citizen or resident

In order for the branch to be registered, the documents above must be submitted to the commercial register within one month of the branch being set up.

These documents are required to be officially notarised, apostilled and translated into German by a certified translator.

What office facilities are available when registering a branch?

The minimum requirement for an Austria branch is a registered office – an address to which company correspondence is sent.

However, a physical or virtual office may be preferable for EU VAT application.

A physical office is a permanent office space occupied by the branch, where company business is conducted.

A virtual office provides off-site communication to the branch, enabling you to maintain the business professionalism associated with a physical office.

What we do for you?

We will handle every aspect of the branch formation for you. Using our expert knowledge we can offer a branch formation package in which we take care of branch registration, issue of the certificates of registration, local directors, local representative and place of business in Austria, tax registration, VAT registration, and translation of documents (if required).

Our unique one stop solution for all European formation requirements also offers formation packages to set up multiple branches. The benefits for establishing multiple branches include further increased exposure and global presence, and we can organise everything for you.

A summary of Austrian Corporate Taxes is available here.