This commission took me to the heart of Lower Austria to Heini Staudinger´s shoe production company ‘Waldviertler’. Heini is very successful with this company but got into the news recently because of how he financed it. Heini used fund raising (not legal in Austria) to build his company, logically the banks weren´t too happy about this but Heini is a fighter for the good and I hope he walks out as a winner (to me he already has)!
The most recent action of his was introducing the ‘Formula Z’ where the Z stands for the german word Zukunft – future. The idea is simple: He wanted to pay his single mother employees €100 more per month. But after taxes they would only get €52. So he got inspired by Dieter Mateschitz (founder of Red Bull) who uses his racing team as a marketing tool to save taxes (amongst other things). A little loophole makes it possible that he pays the mother’s kids €1000 per year without the need of paying taxes. It´s a little more complicated than that but it´s genius and a wonderful, legal and joyful way (the ‘racing events’ are more like little fairs in the village) to support his employees!