The new COVID-19 aid package is designed to support companies in overcoming the effects of the crisis and to promote future-oriented, sustainable innovation and investment.
The City of Vienna is launching a new 23-million-euro intensive COVID-19 aid package for Viennese companies and conference tourism via the Vienna Business Agency and WienTourismus. With its last three COVID-19 aid packages, Vienna provided around 450 million euros in funding to labour, economic, health, social and cultural initiatives. Tourism and the economy have so far received some 160 million euros from this source. With the new, fourth Vienna funding package, the city aims to support Viennese entrepreneurs during the crisis and promote future-oriented investment and innovation.
OPB funding and neighbourhood revival: a focus on Vienna’s quality of life
OPBs right across Austria have been severely affected by the pandemic. Constituting a majority at around 60% of Viennese companies, these businesses play a significant role in Vienna’s high quality of life. “The approximately 65,000 Viennese OPBs in our city are the backbone of our business location. Whether they are craftspeople, tradespeople, creative professionals or personal trainers, we need them all – they are responsible for Vienna’s high quality of life”, declares City Councillor for Economy, Peter Hanke. The OPB funding will support Viennese entrepreneurs who have been obliged to explore new fields of business or make significant changes to their business models as a result of the coronavirus, with funding amounts of up to €7,000 available. A total of 10 million euros has been allocated to this funding package. This entirely new funding programme, which is also a flagship project for Vienna’s coalition government (comprising the Social Democrats and the New Austria and Liberal Forum) in the economic sector, opens on 1 April 2021.
Vienna’s government programme for the period up to 2025 emphasises the revival of ground-floor commercial premises and the activation of currently vacant properties. These spaces play a key role in helping people to feel at home in their neighbourhoods. To make it easier for companies to use the vacant premises, existing funding options will be significantly simplified and improved through measures such as increasing the funding amount to up to €25,000 per project. Now, for the first time, funding is also available for temporary usage, dispensing with the previous requirement of a minimum three-year lease. The funds available will be significantly increased with an estimated total of 4 million euros allocated by the Vienna Business Agency for this initiative. The Business Revival Now funding programme opens on 1 March.
Special funding to cover the broad spectrum of Viennese businesses
The city is intending to relaunch several of the funding programmes that successfully sustained Viennese companies and entrepreneurs during the crisis year 2020. The Creatives for Vienna II programme, for example, is lined up and ready to go for its second run, focussing on Vienna’s creative scene. In 2021, this initiative will focus on creative solutions for the city, in particular for the urban community. The maximum funding amount per project is €7,000. A total of one million euros is available for creative industries projects. This initiative launches on 1 March.
Innovate4Vienna II will open on 1 April. This funding initiative is a relaunch of a previously successful programme, and will once again support innovative projects from companies leading the way forward out of the pandemic and into the future. Four million euros have been allocated to this funding programme.
Vienna, 10 February, 2021