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Where Your Profits Grow Sky High.

Vienna: 360° Support for Life Sciences

In the heart of Europe, you will not only encounter the best possible quality of life but also an excellently functioning ecosystem supporting your startup. Vienna stands out in international comparison thanks to its ideal mixture of funding instruments for young companies and tax incentives for research and development. The recent increase in the research tax credit to 14 percent makes Austria even more attractive than it used to be. Furthermore, founding teams benefit from cost-free consulting, top notch office and laboratory space, prominent accelerators and a well-functioning network of development partners, key customers and investors. Companies can also turn to an outstanding talent pool in all specialized areas and qualification levels. On the one hand, this is due to the practice-oriented school system which is often envied in Europe. On the other hand, Vienna is home to more students than any other large city in German-speaking Europe. The international airport, renowned basic research and globally recognized clinical expertise, especially at the Medical University of Vienna, also contribute to Vienna’s being the home of more than 430 life sciences companies. With more than 22,000 employees, they generate annual revenue of close to EUR 10 billion. Vienna has played a strategically important role regarding the growing markets in Central and Eastern Europe, especially in the pharmaceutical sector.  In any case, the performance of the life sciences industry in Vienna is impressive and the sector continues to expand dynamically, as demonstrated by the approximately ten new startups each year. The success stories in the life sciences sectors are incredibly diverse.

Here are ten exemplary highlights from the past year:

  • The groundbreaking ceremony took place for Boehringer Ingelheim’s new EUR 700 million facility in Vienna
  • APEIRON Biologics given market approval for its cancer immunotherapy in the EU
  • mySugr will be an important component in Roche’s new digital diabetes management
  • Ottobock celebrates the 20th anniversary of C-leg, a high-tech knee prosthesis produced in Vienna to fulfil global demand
  • Arsanis concludes Series D financing amounting to EUR 45.5 million
  • Hookipa Biotech receives EUR 60 million in Series C financing
  • Themis Bioscience achieves important milestones in developing vaccine candidates for Chikungunya and Zika
  • IMP moves into new research building at the Vienna BioCenter, EUR 52 million invested by Boehringer Ingelheim
  • The University of Applied Sciences FH Campus Wien opens up a unique innovation center including an operating room and nursing care unit for research and training
  • Viennese startups win broad range of prizes at the “Best of Biotech” business plan competition: Macro Array Diagnostics, Image Biopsy Lab and MorphoMed are among the winners.

The Austrian Life Sciences Directory and the Technology Platform of the Vienna Business Agency also offer the opportunity to initiate a targeted search for potential partners and outstanding new technologies. In any case, a glance at the new Healthcare & Life Sciences Review Austria is also worthwhile in order to find out more about this sector.

Discover innovation accelerators

Austria assists companies in achieving milestones in diverse ways, as mentioned above. The online platform Förderpilot will provide you with a quick overview of support programs so that you can target the pinpoint the right funding agency for your needs to accelerate your path to success. High-tech startups will particularly profit from aws PreSeed and aws Seedfinancing – vehicles allowing Austria to invest EUR 1 million in promising business concepts. The funding instruments bundled in the offering of the Austrian Research Promotion Agency FFG are particularly tailored to application-oriented R&D projects in the field of life sciences.  

Startup labs for research

The Vienna Biocenter is one of the life sciences hotspots. A total of 40 research programs were funded over the last ten years to the amount of EUR 70 million. The Vienna Business Agency is currently working in the Vienna Biocenter to develop startup labs for founding teams and young companies. 72 flexible laboratory workplaces and 32 office workplaces are being established on an area of more than 1,000 m². The underlying objective is to facilitate the launch of startups in the business world on the basis of a jointly used infrastructure.  

Vienna Business Agency inaugurates a new funding offering

The Vienna Business Agency has completely revised and repositioned its funding offering. Simplified processes and inquiries within the context of electronic applications make the funding program even more user-friendly. As a result, Viennese entrepreneurs save up to 25 percent of time usually involved in submitting applications. Moreover, company founders are permitted to file applications within the context of all funding initiatives, thus facilitating the founding of companies in Vienna.   

The funding competition “FemPower IKT 2018“ is currently underway. It is designed to support ICT research projects with up to EUR 500,000 each. The pre-requisite for funding is the eligible project is managed by a woman or implemented by a primarily female team, or gender mainstreaming is one of its core aspects. The entire new funding offering will be presented in the Vienna City Hall at the  Funding Day for Vienna Business to be held on January 30, 2018.

LISAvienna lends a helping hand

As the Viennese life sciences platform, LISAvienna offers consulting services to life sciences companies free of charge on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy. You will get valuable tips from technology experts concerning funding, laboratory space and potentially important network partners. Take advantage of fifteen years of know-how and a broad-based, specialist pool of contacts. As the owners of LISAvienna, aws and the Vienna Business Agency ensure that interest parties profit from this information, not only in Austria but across the globe. There is also the possibility to uncomplicatedly begin a dialogue at numerous trade fairs and international partnering events. This year’s highlights include Arab Health in Dubai, BIO-Europe Spring in Amsterdam as well as HIMSS and the BIO International Convention in the USA. There LISAvienna will supply the necessary knowledge to a professional audience in collaboration with Austrian Business Agency, the Federal Economic Chamber and experts from other public bodies.

For more information visit or follow LISAvienna on Twitter under @lifesciencevie.

Peter Halwachs

CEO LISAvienna

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