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© Virnect Europe GesmbH
  • Success story

Virnect Europe GesmbH – The Vienna business location offers the best prerequisites for an extended reality startup from Seoul

The South Korean startup Virnect selected Vienna to be the location of its European headquarters and research centre. The underlying reason is the proximity to renowned universities such as the Vienna University of Technology and Graz University of Technology, especially in the field of computer vision. In turn, this provides the best prerequisites for research partnerships.  

 

 

A modern infrastructure and favourable conditions for international business location projects, especially compared to other large European cities, made the difference for us. Vienna is one of the most liveable cities in the world. As an employer, this naturally helps us to attract international employees. The Vienna business location also boasts optimal prerequisites for research partnerships thanks to the proximity to renowned universities such as the Vienna University of Technology and Graz University of Technology, especially in the field of computer vision which is so crucial to us.

 

Markus Meirhofer Virnect Business Development Manager
© Virnect Europe GesmbH

Questions posed to Markus Meirhofer, Virnect Business Development Manager 

What specific services does Virnect offers its customers in the development of extended reality applications and solutions? 

We are in the finally stages of launching our first proprietary product here at our site in Vienna, namely an AR content creation platform. This service enables real-time recognition and tracking of objects directly in the browser with the help of augmented reality but without the need for an App. We are convinced that it is the simplest platform on the market to use in creating AR contents. Our technology can recognise and track objects such as images or QR codes, making it possible to experience fascinating AR contents everywhere and at any time. This opens up a diverse range of applications, especially in the entertainment industry and in advertising, but our technology can also be deployed in the field of education.  

Why did Virnect choose Austria for its first major step in Europe?  

A modern infrastructure and favourable conditions for international business location projects, especially compared to other large European cities, made the difference for us. Vienna is one of the most liveable cities in the world. As an employer, this naturally helps us to attract international employees. The Vienna business location also boasts optimal prerequisites for research partnerships thanks to the proximity to renowned universities such as the Vienna University of Technology and Graz University of Technology, especially in the field of computer vision which is so crucial to us. 

What role does Virnect’s Austrian subsidiary play in a European context and what hopes does the company have for the Austrian market? 

The location in Vienna is of pivotal importance as our hub for the development and marketing of our AR content creation platform. Our objective is to strongly expand the number of employees in Vienna and to further press ahead with our expansion plans from here. We are searching for interested developers of every kind and seniority level. Our target customers are spread around the world, and there are also prominent potential users in Austria as well. We are also continually on the lookout for local cooperation partners in the fields of digital and creative media in order to extend our foothold on the Austrian market. In the academic field, we also plan to work together with the Vienna University of Technology on forward-looking projects.  

What do you consider to be the most important framework conditions and strengths of the Austrian business location for your type of company and what is Austria’s unique selling proposition? 

It involves a combination of several factors. In addition to the widely known conditions prevailing in Austria, we also find the financial support of our R&D activities based on public sector funding programmes and the research tax credit to be quite remarkable. 

I would also like to emphasize the high level of personal security and the outstanding social conditions enjoyed by our employees.  

How would you rate the business environment in Austria for companies in future-oriented sectors? What experiences have you had so far? 

There are many options we can take advantage of, especially when it comes to research funding. The application for and payment of the research tax credit worked out smoothly. 

How are the cooperation and networking possibilities in the business location of Austria for IT companies and startups such as Virnect? To what extent do you benefit from a stimulating environment?  

There are several interesting events in this field which are worth going to. Furthermore, in most cases Austrian companies are very open-minded when it comes to startups and are ready to cooperate, which in turn makes networking with local players quite easy. 

The year 2022 started with a successful Series B round of financing in which Virnect raised USD 30 million, the largest ever in Korea’s extended reality (XR) sector. To what extent will the concluded financing impact Virnect’s activities in Austria? 

This round of financing gives us the possibility to invest even more in our facility and employees in Vienna. Our new office at the Austria Campus near Praterstern featuring 600 m² of space now boasts its own research laboratory. In turn, this will allow us to further enhance our core competencies in software development and computer vision and thus provide our customers with even better AR experiences. 

What are the next steps Virnect will take in Austria? Can you already tell us anything about this now?  

At present our focus is on the launch of the AR content creation platform in the fall of 2022 and the accompanying growth.  

Where does Virnect want to be five years down the road as a company operating in Europe?  

We have a clearly defined objective for our site in Vienna and the entire company i.e., we want to be positioned in the eyes of our customers as a trailblazer in the sector in terms of our products.  

Do you have any wishes with respect to the Austrian business location or Austrian Business Agency? 

A greater degree of digitalisation when it comes to bureaucratic matters.  

How has ABA supported you? 

ABA provided optimal support in every respect, whether on legal issues or in establishing contacts. It has been a very pleasant and competent collaboration!  

And finally, one last question: what do you personally value the most about Austria? 

I particularly appreciate the natural diversity, the high level of personal security and quality of life as well as the sporting opportunities in Vienna and its surroundings. 

 

Virnect Europe GesmbH

Virnect was founded in Korea in 2016 and focuses on user-friendly augmented reality software solutions for industry. The site established in Vienna in mid-2020 is Virnect’s first international bridgehead and is designed to serve as a competence centre for basic research and development into augmented reality. The company is also pressing ahead with its further international expansion within Europe from its base in Vienna. 

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