Enterprise births

A total of 24 077 new enterprises with 56 696 employed persons were created in 2012, equalling to a birth rate of 5.9%. There was neither an increase nor a decrease in the rate of new enterprises born compared with the previous year (2011), where the birth rate amounted to 5.9%.

In 2012, newly born enterprises created an average of 2.4 jobs (for self-employed persons and employees). The highest number of employed persons per enterprise birth was found in the economic branches "Mining and quarrying" (4.1), “Manufacturing” (3.8) and “Administrative and support service activities” (3.3).

Regarding the birth rate by different economic branches, the 2012 rate was – as expected – highest (6.0%) in the services sector (sections G-S, NACE Rev.2, excluding 64.2 "Management activities of holding companies") whereas it was below average (5.5%) in industry and construction (sections B-F). At NACE Rev.2 section level, high birth rates were recorded in the economic branches of "Administrative and support service activities" (9.0%), “Accommodation and food service activities” (7.8%) as well as in “Construction” (7.4%). The lowest birth rates were recorded in “Mining and quarrying" (1.8%) and in "Human health and social work activities" (2.5%). Measured in absolute counts, the activities „Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles” (5 172), “Accommodation and food service activities” (4 934) and “Professional, scientific and technical activities” (3 711) had the highest number of births in 2012.

An analysis of enterprise births by legal form showed that the majority (around 65.7%) of enterprises born in 2012 were sole proprietorships (15 830). 4 184 births (17.4%) were limited liability companies, while new enterprises in the form of partnerships and other legal forms (4 063 or 16.9%) were less frequently established. With 7.3%, the birth rate was highest among partnerships and other legal forms (vs. limited liability companies: 5.9%, sole proprietorships: 5.0%). With regard to the jobs created per newly born enterprise, an equal number was created per enterprise on average by limited liability companies (3.7) and by partnerships and other legal forms (3.5). Sole proprietorships recorded an average of 1.7 jobs per newly created enterprise.

The results by employee size classes reflect the predominantly small business structure of the Austrian economy: more than half (50.9%) of all enterprises born in 2012 had no employees. A further 42.7% (of new enterprises) had from 1 to 4 employees at the time of birth; only 4.1% and 2.3% were created with between 5 and 9 or with more than 10 employees, respectively. Active enterprises had mainly between 0 employees (40.2%), followed by those with 1 to 4 employees (38.8%).

Vienna was 2012 in relation to the other provinces the province with the largest number of enterprise births (27.0%). The second largest enterprise birth activities were in Lower Austria (16.0%) followed by Upper Austria (14.3%). Highest birth rates were recorded for Carinthia (6.3%), Vienna (6.2%), Burgenland (6.2%), Upper Austria (6.1%) and Styria (6.0%). NUTS3-Regions with high birth rates are: Vienna (27.0%), Linz-Wels (6.4%), Graz (5.4%) and Salzburg und Umgebung (4.9%).

The results by gender of the owner (regarding sole proprietorships only) show: 63.4% of the new sole proprietorships are owned by men. The birth rate by enterprises owned by women was with 6.7% higher than the one of the men (5.5%).

Development of enterprise births over time (2004 to 2012) 

From 2004 to 2012 the number of new enterprises declined by 11.8%. The fewest enterprise births were recorded in 2012 (24 077) whereas 2005 showed the highest number of enterprise births (28 496). Regarding the development in this eight-year observation period by economic activity, the number of births was growing in the following branches: “Accommodation and food service activities” (+14.5%) and “Other service activities” (+13.5%). In the economic sector “Arts, entertainment and recreation” enterprise births declined most (-46.9%).

An evaluation of the development of births by legal form illustrates that enterprises created as sole proprietorships declined over this time period (-20.7%), whereas the number of newly created limited liability companies or partnerships (and other legal forms) increased (+21.2 and +4.5%).

Observing the trends of enterprise births by employee size class it is shown that births with no employees, 5 to 9 and 10 and more employees declined by 24.3%, 15.1% and 9.0% over time. Those that had from 1 to 4 employees grew considerably (+10.2%).

Compared to other provinces, Lower Austria (+138.3%) and Upper Austria (+88.2%) as well as Carinthia (+30.0) recorded the highest increase in the number of births over the eight-year observation period.

The results by gender over time show that the number of newly born sole proprietorships owned by men decreased by -25.1%. In contrast, those created by women decreased just by -11.7% over the time period from 2004 to 2012.

Enterprise births 2004-2012
Enterprise births 2004-2012 by legal forms
Enterprise births 2004-2012 by employee size classes
Enterprise births 2004-2012 by provinces
Enterprise births 2004-2012 by NUTS3-Region
Enterprise births 2004-2012 by gender of the sole proprietor


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