For tax purposes, proceeds from a crowdfunding campaign are treated in the same way as other income in Switzerland and in Austria:
- The sales of products, works, or services needs to be listed as taxable income and is subject to VAT in case of persons liable to pay VAT* (sales tax).
- The platform fee needs to be listed as expenses relevant for tax purposes and is subject to VAT in case of persons liable to pay VAT (input tax).
- Donations which are made without expecting anything in return are VAT-exempt (a symbolic thank-you gift is still permitted).
- To what extent donations are subject to gift, income or profit tax (Switzerland), on the one hand, and income and corporate tax (Austria), on the other hand, is defined on a case-by-case basis and depends on the individual facts of each case; please note the applicable exemption limits and tax exemption scenarios.
*In Switzerland, natural and legal persons with annual turnover of CHF 100,000 or more (or 150,000 or more in case of sports and cultural associations) are liable to VAT. Persons are considered small business owners in Austria with an annual turnover of up to EUR 35,000 and are consequently exempt from VAT. Additional VAT benefits may apply for non-profit institutions.
This means it is possible that parts of the campaign income is taxable while other parts are not.
Please get in touch with your tax consultant for any further information and detailed analysis of your campaign’s tax implications as we are not able to provide any such services. This is especially important for project initiators domiciled outside of Switzerland and Austria.