How did we found our company in Vienna?
I know that – according to studies and experts – the catchiest titles are the `how to do` types, and I hesitated a lot about the one you can see up there. But to be frank, I am not going to tell you here how to do it, because there are countless dedicated websites online which talks about nothing else (just google “founding company in Vienna” for instance). So, I aim to share with you what it was like.
I was born and raised in Eastern Europe, where founding a company rather considered as a kamikaze action. Now, I can hear many Hungarians gasp and resent, emphasizing Hungary is in the heart of Europe and definitely not in the East. Well, everything is a matter of point of view. The process over there is complicated, over-regulated, and expensive, and there is no way that you can do it without relevant experts, such as lawyers and accountants. Regulations change at a pace that leaves you no room to rest or to even catch up. All these give the feeling that you have no control over the procedure and you are simple defenseless against the authorities. That`s what I expected here, too.
I could not have been more wrong.
Naturally, I did start with Google, then the next step was an appointment with a tax advisor who explained that founding a company was easy when you have a lawyer and an accountant and without those costly professionals was very complicated to do it. All right then, this was not what I knew and hoped for. So, once again, I turned to my best friend (as my IT friend calls Google) and found the website of WKO, short for Chamber of Commerce Vienna. They offer start-up services or Gründerservice as you would say in German. You don’t even need to learn this word, since their website is available in English.
I contacted them via email and within 24 hours I received an answer including a phone number to arrange a face-to-face meeting. It turned out that this personal meeting was a free of charge consultation prior to registering a company. There, my designated consultant explained each step I should have taken, the cost and exemption of fee I could expect. When I left the meeting after over an hour, I had a written list of duties, addresses of authorities and even samples of forms to submit.
I was simply shocked. The support I was given, the advices and the overall treatment…just amazing.
Of course, I mentioned my complete surprise to my consultant and her answer just blew my mind: “We are here to help, since it is our interest as well to make sure you succeed”. Now, that was what I had never heard before.”
Armed with confidence and a step-by-step guide, TACO was founded within minutes and the whole process just makes me smile whenever I think of it. Thanks a lot WKO!