Hannes Richter

Austrian Businesses in Georgia

Hannes Richter

As the capital and as an international city with a prime location in the Southeastern United States, Atlanta remains an attractive site for Austrian firms wishing to establish their business headquarters or subsidiaries in North America. Because of its strength in the number of Austrian businesses represented, the Austrian Trade Commission selected Atlanta as one of its major locations, assisting Austrian investors with entry into the U.S. market. In September 2009, the Austrian Trade Commission hosted the 2009 Austria Connect Conference for Austrian subsidiaries located throughout the U.S.

Over two hundred years ago, the “Georgia Salzburgers,” the oldest colony of Austrian families to have settled in America, started a long tradition of Austrian contribution to business and culture in Georgia. The first Governor of Georgia, John Adams Treutlen, was from New Ebenezer, the first Austrian settlement in the U.S. Their descendants have been absorbed into the mainstream of economic life, and native Austrians from abroad have established businesses supporting the economic life of Georgia’s society.

View of downtown Atlanta, Georgia
View of downtown Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia

For many years Atlanta and the city of Salzburg have been “Sister Cities.” During that time strong academic partnerships between the universities of Georgia and Salzburg, Linz and Vienna were formed.

Austrian companies in Atlanta and throughout Georgia have distinguished themselves as strong contributors in helping to shape the state’s global economic future. The port of Savannah ranked 10th among U.S. ports receiving goods from Austria in 2008, including machinery, vehicles and medical instruments. As the home of nineteen Austrian companies producing high quality services, Georgia continues its tradition of close ties with Austria.

Georgia’s companies are also strongly represented in Austria, ranking 7th among all U.S. states in total exports to Austria in 2008. After the end of the Cold War, many of the large U.S. companies in Atlanta, including Coca Cola, United Parcel, and others, decided to establish their European headquarters in Austria. This became a valuable corporate gateway to some fifty emerging markets of Central and Eastern Europe, all coordinated from Vienna.