Investment grant for Berlin companies: the InvestitionsBONUS restart programme

The Berlin InvestitionsBONUS is a funding scheme initiated by the State of Berlin that offers small and medium-sized enterprises and full-time freelancers and sole traders with their registered office in Berlin an investment grant. The restart programme is essentially open to any sector but is predominantly aimed at those industries that were particularly hard hit by the pandemic, such as retail, gastronomy, tourism, and service and artisan enterprises. This programme closes the previous gap in funding.


Who can apply for the Berlin InvestitionsBONUS?

The funding is aimed at:

  • small and medium-sized enterprises,
  • large companies,
  • solo self-employed and
  • freelancers,

who are based in Berlin with a company headquarters or an operating facility and would like to carry out the future investments to be applied for in the capital.

Solo self-employed persons and freelancers must derive at least 51% of their income from self-employment and pay tax on it in Berlin.

The program is generally open to all sectors. The focus is on the following industries, among others:

  • Gastronomy,
  •  Retail;
  • Hotels;
  • Service and artisan enterprises.

What does the Berlin funding scheme for investment grants cover?

As part of the Berlin InvestitionsBONUS, investments are supported that ensure the future viability of the company. Eligible companies and individuals receive grants for exclusively external expenditures. In addition, a sustainability bonus can be granted for particularly sustainable investments.

For large companies, the criteria of the sustainability bonus are decisive for funding.

Specifically, funding can be applied for the following investments:

  • Capitalizable costs of assets (including plant, machinery, operating and office equipment).
  • Mobile assets that are used within Berlin
  • Intangible assets (including software licenses, patents, operating licenses, patented & unpatented technical knowledge)
  • Rented or leased mobile assets, provided that these are capitalized by the applicant at the time the contract is concluded
  • Takeover of an establishment that has been closed or is threatened with closure: eligible acquisition costs of tangible fixed assets up to the amount of the market price (subsidization of book values)
  • Rental costs for software used in the permanent establishment (so-called software as a service) in the de minimis aid scheme

All subsidized assets must remain in the subsidized facility for at least two or three years, and 5 years for large companies, after the completion of the investment project.

The subsidy cannot be applied for:

  • internal and operational personnel and administrative expenses and cash payments,
  • assets acquired from interconnected companies,
  • services and measures already supported by other EU support programs,
  • investments for replacement and supplementary purchases,
  • acquisition and production costs of cars, trucks and other transport vehicles registered in road traffic and primarily used for transport purposes,
  • the acquisition costs of used assets (exceptions: SMEs in the start-up phase / takeover of an establishment that has been shut down or is threatened with shutdown),
  • Capitalizable financing costs (e.g. interest portion of hire-purchase agreements),
  • Costs for the production or acquisition of immovable assets such as land, real estate and construction measures, as well as
  • mobile assets used outside Berlin (e.g. smartphones).

How much funding is available?

The Berlin InvestitionsBONUS funding program consists of basic funding and optional sustainability funding. These are non-repayable grants.  

1. basic grant

The basic grant provides subsidies of a maximum of 30 percent of the eligible investment costs of the project applied for.

The specific amount of funding is determined by the selected aid scheme - the legal framework from which the funding comes.
The decisive factor here is how much funding you have already received from the respective subsidy regime. The basis for assessment is also the type of company (whether SME or large company).

Overview of the three possible streams within Basic Funding

De Minimis Aid Regulation

aid regulations from GRW coordination framework according
to General Block Exemption Regulation

SMEs / solo self-employed / freelancers and JVs

Basic grant: 30 % of the eligible costs

(if applicable, additional sustainability bonus of 5 % of eligible costs for particularly sustainable investments)

Max. 200 TEUR

Commitment period: 2 years after completion of the investment project in the Berlin assisted area

In the case of large companies, the basic subsidy is only possible if the sustainability bonus can also be granted.

SMEs, solo self-employed and freelancers.

Basic funding:

Small businesses 15% of eligible costs.

Medium-sized companies: 5 % of eligible costs

(if applicable, additional sustainability bonus of 5 % of eligible costs for particularly sustainable investments)

Commitment period: 3 years after completion of the investment project in the Berlin assisted area

Large companies only if in assisted area C:

Basic subsidy of 5%, but only if 5% sustainability bonus can also be granted

Max. EUR 7.5 million

Commitment period:

5 years after completion of the investment project in the Berlin assisted area C.

Sustainability bonus

An increased grant of five percentage points can be paid for particularly sustainable investments. When submitting the application, it must be demonstrated to what extent the investment project meets the sustainability criteria. At least three of the following questions on the sustainability of the planned investment must be answered positively. In the case of large companies, this is decisive for funding, so it is also mandatory that the information be substantiated/proven.

    Will the project increase energy or resource efficiency?
    Does the project adapt to climate change?
    Does the project contribute to climate protection?
    Does the project reduce plastic consumption?
    Does the project use fewer chemicals or pollutants?
    Does the project take recycling aspects into account?
    Does the project promote biodiversity and natural habitats?
    Does the project lead to conservation of land and soil?
    Does the project protect healthy ecosystems?
    Does the project source regional raw materials/products?
    Does the project strengthen fair trade?
    Does the project contribute to accident reduction and/or accessibility?
    Does the project contribute to noise reduction?

Combine the Berliner InvestitionsBONUS with other funding schemes

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[Translate to English:] Team aus Gründern berät sich

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