Austria Wirtschaftsservice Gesellschaft mbH (aws) is the Austrian federal promotional institution. It assists companies (mainly SMEs and Start-ups) in their implementation of innovative or growth-oriented projects by issuing individual guarantees, granting loans and awarding grants. In addition, aws provides among others, leasing guarantees, advisory services as well as equity and quasi-equity products.
aws was founded in 1954 and is 100% held by the federal government. It is supervised on the national level and does not have a banking license.
aws’ predecessor institution Bürges was the very first financial institution to use an EIF counter-guarantee in 1998 and today, aws intermediates COSME and InnovFin and will do so with InvestEU in the very near future.
As of end-2021 aws had an outstanding guarantee volume of almost bEUR 4.8 (which is nearly 4 times its pre-covid volume) and supported more than 21k SMEs. It has between 350 and 400 employees.
|AECM accession year||1995|
|Legal form||Limited company|
|Geographical and sectoral coverage||National|
All sectors except for agriculture and tourism
|Products||Credit guarantees, Leasing guarantees, Mezzanine financing guarantees, Subsidised loans, Advisory services, Mezzanine financing, Mediation services, Venture capital, Grants, SME investment support|
|Counter-guarantee||National and EU (COSME, InnovFin)|
Vienna/Brussels, 2nd September 2022