Firms To Watch: Tax

Boutique firm Glaeser Law Tax Boutique focuses on tax and was set up by Lars Gläser in 2020. It acts as one-stop shop for all tax matters, from both an indirect and direct tax perspective.

Tax in Austria

Binder Grösswang

Displaying a ‘deep knowledge of international tax and corporate income tax‘, Binder Grösswang specialises in a range of areas within tax law, including international tax, cross border acquisitions, accounting, and tax litigation. Christian Wimpissinger, Andreas Hable and Clemens Willvonseder are the trio leading the team. At associate level, Barbara Gangl‘s previous post in Austria’s Federal Tax Court enables her to bring significant tax law expertise to the team, and she has been instrumental in the acceleration of the team’s tax litigation work.

Practice head(s):

Christian Wimpissinger; Andreas Hable; Clemens Willvonseder

Other key lawyers:

Manuela Wenger; Barbara Gangl

Testimonials

‘The team members are always extremely responsive, professional, knowledgeable and solution-oriented. For example, if something does not work or might be sub-optimal from an Austrian tax perspective, they are keen to offer a potential alternative solution. They invest the time to offer alternatives that might work.’

‘I very much enjoy working and collaborating with Christian Wimpissinger and he is my go-to contact. He is incredibly knowledgeable, responsive and business-minded.’

‘They are technically extremely competent and are also recommended for their cutting-edge innovation.’

‘I fully trust Christian Wimpissinger as a reliable, responsive, business and client-oriented professional.’

‘They have a deep knowledge of international tax and corporate income tax and they know how to handle projects efficiently working together with advisors in multiple countries.’

‘Christian Wimpissinger and Manuela Wenger from the tax team are very responsive and have the ability to explain complex tax law matters in words that do not sound all that technical.’

‘With Barbara Gangl our questions were always taken up and answered immediately.’

‘The team is very responsive and their advice is straight to the point.’

Key clients

Egeria

Mutares

The Interpublic Group of Companies (IPG)

Insight Partners

AUVA (Public Accident Insurance)

Pritzker Private Capital, Vertellus

Europcar

DPE (Deutsche Private Equity)

Deezer

Netz Burgenland

BNP Paribas

IBM

Macquarie

Mubadala

Lenzing

Renault Austria

Agilent Technologies

Johnson & Johnson

Mayr-Melnhof

Société Générale

Auto1-Group

Kärntner Beteiligungsverwaltung (Holding Company of the State of Carinthia)

Atos IT Solutions and Services GmbH,

Air Liquide

AXA Gruppe

Compagnie de Saint-Gobain

Danone

Michelin Reifenwerke AG & Co. KGaA,

Sanofi Schneider Electrics,

VINCI

Work highlights

  • Advised Egeria on the acquisition of Isoplus.
  • Advised Insight Partners on the a strategic growth investment into PSPDFKit.
  • Advising ChargePoint Holdings on the acquisition of Has-to-be.

bpv Hügel

bpv Hügel is referred to by one client as being ‘among the absolute leading practices in Austria‘ in the tax space. Gerald Schachner is at the helm, and 'thinks pragmatically and strategically'. Other standout team members include Kornelia Wittmann and Nicolas Wolski. Wittmann focuses on tax audits and litigation, while Wolski concentrates on deal structuring.

Practice head(s):

Gerald Schachner

Other key lawyers:

Nicolas Wolski; Kornelia Wittmann

Testimonials

‘The tax practice at bpv Hügel is among the absolute leading practices in Austria. They handle delicate matters well. The team is focussed, reliable, skilled, experienced, responsive, and solution-oriented. I strongly recommend them.’

‘Gerald Schachner thinks pragmatically and strategically.’

‘Gerald Schachner and Nicolas Wolski are both lawyers and tax advisors at the same time. This gives them the ability to give high value input from a legal, fiscal, and commercial point of view.’

‘Profound expertise in all fields of corporate, commercial and tax law. The ideal one-stop shop for an international corporation’s in-house legal department. Legal advice is always well founded, and also pragmatic and practical.’

‘The team provides an excellent service. The dual qualification of many team members as lawyers and tax advisors creates huge synergies and benefits for clients.’

‘Gerald Schachner has brilliant technical skills combined with experience and practical solutions. Gerald is a market leader in Austria.’

‘The entire team is extremely skilled. It seems that their purpose is to help the client find a practical and commercial solution.’

Key clients

IMMOFINANZ GROUP

European Directories Group

heidelpay group

Piech Foundations

Raiffeisen Holding

BAWAG P.S.K.

Dogado

BUWOG

Ring International Holding

RZB (Raiffeisen Zentralbank AG)

BP Plc and BP Europe SE

OMV Aktiengesellschaft

RWA Raiffeisen Ware Austria AG

Acquinex

F.A. Food Art Enterprises Limited

SDN Beteiligungs GmbH

AOP Orphan Pharmaceuticals

Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield

Work highlights

  • Advised Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield on the corporate restructuring of its shareholdings in two large Austrian shopping centres.
  • Advised IMMOFINANZ as the target of two simultaneous takeover offers.
  • Representing a tax accounting firm and its managing director in criminal tax proceedings in connection with alleged VAT offences.

Cerha Hempel

The deep bench at Cerha Hempel comprises ‘brilliant specialists with extensive knowledge and in-depth experience' and covers all important areas of tax law, from reorganisations, to wage taxes and VAT, as well as many others. Heading up the team are Johannes Prinz and Benjamin Twardosz. Elsewhere Christoph Schimmer, who joined from DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach Rechtsanwälte GmbH in January 2022, has experience advising on the tax aspects of M&A deals and on corporate tax law issues. Prinz is particularly prolific in the banking and energy sectors, and also acts in contentious matters.

Practice head(s):

Johannes Prinz; Benjamin Twardosz

Other key lawyers:

Christoph Schimmer; Peter Knobl

Testimonials

‘The strengths are mainly the ability to quickly understand the needs of a company in terms of taxation of financial products, to respond in a timely manner to questions asked, and to provide a detailed analysis of the problems encountered.’

‘It is an excellent team. It has brilliant specialists with extensive knowledge and in-depth experience. The team is very dedicated and committed to producing the best results.’

‘I have been working with Christoph Schimmer. He understands the business needs of the client and his advice is always on point and on time. I find him to be a highly competent professional who demonstrates excellent knowledge.’

‘Very competent, very responsive. They understand the needs of the client. They employ successful tactics.’

‘High level expertise, excellent communication, very competent, structured and calm.’

‘The advice provided is clear, concise and packaged in a way that is user-friendly for a commercial organisation.’

‘Personable, attentive and value-adding responses to legal queries.’

Key clients

Deutsche Beteiligungs AG

Ground Truth Solutions

Deutsche Telekom AG

Polar Capital Funds Plc

MFS Meridian Funds SICAV

Dutch Infrastructure Fund (DIF)

William Hill

Work highlights

  • Advised Deutsche Beteiligungs on several tax structuring matters, in particular in relation to M&A transactions.
  • Advising multiple UCITS umbrella funds on the Austrian supplement for UCITS’ prospectuses and related issues.
  • Representing the former managing director of an Austrian stock corporation in financial criminal proceedings.

Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwälte GmbH & Co KG

The large group at Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwälte GmbH & Co KG is noted for its vast network and its co-operation with the firm’s many international offices. Practitioners are lauded for their ability to advice ‘with a clear understanding of the client’s business and risk profile‘. The practice has recently built upon its work in the financial technology space, and team leader Niklas Schmidt has significant cryptocurrency prowess. Another important practitioner in the team is Eva Stadler, whose diverse workload includes advising clients on the tax elements of restructurings.

Practice head(s):

Niklas Schmidt

Other key lawyers:

Eva Stadler; Melanie Dimitrov

Testimonials

‘The team is very client focused and provides high quality advice.’

‘Very responsive, practical advice.’

‘The team is able to respond fast and to the point with a clear understanding of the client’s business and risk profile.’

‘Melanie Dimitrov is particularly client-minded and commercial in her advice with an excellent understanding of the law. She is able to communicate clearly and concisely to respond to the exact question at hand.’

‘Excellently connected and very responsive.’

‘Very experienced and constructive team. Very quick to return answers and reliable.’

‘Very pleasant way of working. Friendly, quick, efficient and responsive to client needs.’

Key clients

Raiffeisen Bank International and other Austrian banks

Agrofert

Work highlights

  • Advised Raiffeisen Bank International on the sale of its Bulgarian business to KBC Bank.
  • Advised Agrofert on real estate transfer tax issues in relation to its binding offer for Borealis’ nitrogen business.
  • Assisted the claimant with a HKIAC arbitration as an independent tax expert.

Aigner Buzanich Rechtsanwälte

Boutique firm Aigner Buzanich Rechtsanwälte‘s broad offering spans corporate tax planning, tax restructuring and transfer taxes. Its client base runs the gamut from small local business to multinationals. Herbert Buzanich and Hans-Jorgen Aigner co-lead the team, and are experienced practitioners who count the Covid-19 federal financing agency in Austria as a key client.

Practice head(s):

Herbert Buzanich; Hans-Jörgen Aigner

Key clients

COVID-19 Finanzierungsagentur des Bundes GmbH

Stark group

Work highlights

  • Advising COVID-19 Finanzierungsagentur des Bundes on all tax issues.
  • Advised the Stark group on the Austrian tax aspects of the acquisition of Austrian-based seller and distributor of heavy building materials Dach & Wand Handels from Swisspearl Group.

Schindler Attorneys

Schindler Attorneys ‘has very deep knowledge of Austrian tax matters’, especially when it comes to issues surrounding the tax elements of M&A deals. Practice head and firm co-founder Clemens Schindler leads from the front with ‘outstanding know-how’ in M&A, private equity and reorganisations. The group’s clients include leading private equity funds, as well as large European and US companies. Large multinationals benefit from Maja Mayrhuber‘s previous experience as an international tax adviser.

Practice head(s):

Clemens Schindler

Other key lawyers:

Maja Petrovic; Maja Mayrhuber; Daniel Kropf

Testimonials

‘The firm has very deep knowledge of Austrian tax matters.’

‘Clemens Schindler is a very good attorney who is always looking to help the client with the issues brought to him.’

‘Daniel Kropf has very good knowledge of tax matters.’

‘Maja Mayrhuber provides very comprehensive and practical advice.’

‘Clemens Schindler has outstanding know-how. He is straight-up with clients.’

‘Clemens Schindler has broad know-how and entrepreneurial thinking. Very good international connections.’

‘Maja Petrovic is very enthusiastic and engaged.’

Key clients

Acer Europe

ACTS Group

AIG (listed)

Americá Móvil (listed)

Aptean

Ardian

Ares

AYKA Solutions GmbH

Be Charge

BTG Pactual

Christof Group

Eldorado Brasil

Elvaston

Evoco

ERSTE Asset Management

Frey Group

FUJIFILM (listed)

Idwell

IIASA

Iochpe Maxion (listed)

J&F (listed)

Konica Minolta (listed)

Kühne+Nagel (listed)

OAS Group

Paragon

Seaworthy GmbH

SKS365

Sotreq

WEKA

Work highlights

  • Representing the Acer Group in tax litigation proceedings.
  • Advising Kühne + Nagel International on a tax refund issue.
  • Advised Refurbed on the implementation of an EU-wide home office policy.

CMS Reich-Rohrwig Hainz Rechtsanwälte GmbH

Standout recent work for the team at CMS Reich-Rohrwig Hainz Rechtsanwälte GmbH includes assisting private clients and family businesses with tax issues, as well as advising clients on restructuring issues. Practice head Sibylle Novak‘s extensive tax practice includes advising on tax optimisation matters in the context of transactions. At associate level, Thomas Aspalter is a key name to note with regard to corporate transactions which overlap with tax law. More widely, the group has a niche expertise in excise taxes and customs.

Practice head(s):

Sibylle Novak

Other key lawyers:

Thomas Aspalter

Key clients

Greiner AG

Astara

Siemens Austria

Arena Hospitality Group (AHG)

Worldline SA

Quantum Immobilien KVG

Plastic Omnium

Oesterreichische Nationalbank (OeNB)

Poseidon Group and Mitiska REIM

FINEXX

Work highlights

  • Advising Spanish mobility provider Astara on tax matters in connection with its market entry into Austria.
  • Advised Austrian plastics and foam specialist Greiner on the successful sale of its extrusion division.
  • Advising Siemens Austria on the sale of the Austrian facility management business Siemens Gebäudemanagement und -Services by Apleona.

DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach Rechtsanwälte GmbH

DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach Rechtsanwälte GmbH‘s tax practice is characterised by its planning work and its multijurisdictional transactional work, as the group leverages the firm’s global network to work on a range of cross-border matters. Practice head Dimitar Hristov, who is also qualified as a tax advisor, has deep knowledge of Eastern European markets on the transactional side, which is emblematic of the group’s overall strong focus on the CEE markets.

Practice head(s):

Dimitar Hristov

Key clients

Quadrium Ventures GmbH and Soneva Business Development GmbH

Utopia Music AG

ATOS IT Solutions and Services GmbH

BRF GmbH

Banco Santander SA & Santander Consumer Bank GmbH

Uluslararasi Nakliyeciler Dernegi (UND)

Work highlights

  • Representing Uluslararasi Nakliyeciler Dernegi in a tax dispute involving EU law.
  • Advised Quadrium Ventures and Soneva Business Development on tax structuring issues in relation to an M&A deal.
  • Advising ATOS IT Solutions and Services on a post-acquisition reorganisation.

DORDA Rechtsanwälte GmbH

Utilising its ‘formidable network in Austria and abroad‘, the team at DORDA Rechtsanwälte GmbH handles matters spanning international tax structuring, transactional tax advice, and tax litigation. Department head Paul Doralt has particular nous in M&A and corporate tax law, and often works on complex international tax law issues. Elsewhere, associate Katharina Binder ‘stands out for her client handling‘ and often assists multinational clients with cross-border reorganisations.

Practice head(s):

Paul Doralt

Other key lawyers:

Katharina Binder; Stanislav Nekrasov

Testimonials

‘Extensive experience, and able to advise clients on the most complex cross-border tax matters. Formidable network in Austria and abroad. Great client communication, and technically excellent.’

‘Paul Doralt is one of the top tax advisors in Austria. He has a special gift of making clients feel safe and in good hands. I would always turn to him for the most complex and important tax matters.’

‘Katharina Binder stands out for her client handling.’

Key clients

AirBnb

Kathrein Bank

Faber-Castel

Odebrecht Oil & Gas

Bank Julius Bär

UBS

Citibank

BAWAG

Goldman Sachs

Bundesimmobiliengesellschaft (BIG)

Castlelake

ZKB

Kreisel Electric

Alberta Investment Management Corporation

SapuraNoClarios

Cooper Machinery

Sazka

Bank Gutmann

Work highlights

  • Advising Odebrecht Oil & Gas on cross-border leasing structures for deep-water oil platforms.
  • Advised Citibank on cross-border leasing structures for locomotives of the Austrian Federal Railways.
  • Advised Alberta Investment Management Corporation on the structuring of a cross-border investment in an Austrian solar power fund.

Schoenherr (Schönherr Rechtsanwälte)

Schoenherr (Schönherr Rechtsanwälte)‘s tax work runs the gamut, from providing transactional tax advice to representing clients in front of tax authorities, with whom the group share strong ties. The team, which ‘is always actively working towards practical solutions‘ is headed by tax adviser Roman Perner and Marco Thorbauer, who was promoted to counsel in 2022. Another key team member is associate Tobias Hayden, whose fields of activity include tax planning, international tax law, and M&A transactions.

Practice head(s):

Roman Perner; Marco Thorbauer

Other key lawyers:

Tobias Hayden; Philipp Statzinger; Clemens Grassinger

Testimonials

‘Marco Thorbauer and Clemens Grassinger always deliver good results and alternatives you would not think of.’

‘The team is always actively working towards practical solutions.’

‘Marco Thorbauer presents solutions in a very client-friendly way. He is always available and has the ability to filter all relevant facts and immediately process them into solutions.’

‘The dynamic team stands out for its highly professional advice.’

‘Marco Thorbauer not only provides constant advice at a highly professional level, but provides it in a practical and solution-oriented manner.’

Key clients

Energie Graz

Energie Steiermark

Erste Group Bank

EVN

Global Payments Inc.

illwerke vkw

Innsbrucker Kommunalbetriebe

KELAG

Left Lane Capital

Mouro Capital

P&I Personal & Informatik

Playbrush

Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI)

SiteLog GmbH

Slate Asset Management

Xerox Inc.

ZECH Bau Austria GmbH

Work highlights

  • Advised Slate Asset Management on the acquisition of a portfolio of essential real estate assets in Austria and Slovakia.
  • Advised Mouro Capital on tax issues relating to a €16m Series B round of funding for byrd technologies to outsource and control all logistics.
  • Advised Energie Graz, Energie Steiermark, EVN, illwerke vkw, Innsbrucker Kommunalbetriebe, Kelag and Linz on the foundation of a joint venture in the e-mobility sector.

Taylor Wessing enwc Rechtsanwälte GmbH

Taylor Wessing enwc Rechtsanwälte GmbH is particularly strong in relation to tax litigation, and clients benefit from the cross-practice approach of the firm. A large part of practice head Michaela Petritz-Klar‘s work is the representation of clients in tax audit and appeal proceedings, but she is also described by one client as ‘one of the most skilled experts on the market when it comes to large-scale transactions and intricate tax structuring‘.

Practice head(s):

Michaela Petritz-Klar

Testimonials

‘Very competent and fast completion.’

‘Michaela Petritz-Klar was very service-oriented and competent. She immediately generated the necessary trust in her skills.’

‘What sets Michaela Petriz-Klar apart is that she is both a tax lawyer and tax advisor. She is one of the most skilled experts on the market when it comes to large-scale transactions and intricate tax structuring. Her military precision saves you a lot of headaches in the future.’

‘Michaela Petriz-Klar is a brilliant, seasoned tax lawyer with a special skillset that more than exceeds the industry standard.’

‘Quick responses to calls. Prompt appointments.’

‘Excellent cooperation with both partners and specialists in our case.’

Key clients

The Change Group

SET Ventures

Emerald Technology Ventures

Work highlights

  • Representing the Change Group in litigation proceedings against the funding agency set up by the Austrian Republic for granting Covid-19-related aid.
  • Advising Emerald Technology Ventures, as lead investor, on Austrian corporate and tax issues relating to its first investment and transaction in Austria in the course of a Series A investment round in enspired, an Austrian start-up.
  • Advised Set Ventures, as lead investor, on Austrian tax issues relating to its first Austrian investment and transaction on the Austrian market as part of a series A investment round in Easelink.