The news is the Scaleup Dragon has definitely awoken. Since 2014 investments in tech scaleup in China has moved by order of magnitude. Though it is not yet at the US levels, China managed to distance Europe consistently pouring in the ecosystem large amounts of capital. The net result is China producing larger tech companies and approaching the US.
If we look at the numbers of the European startup ecosystem we, finally, spotted a sustained growth pattern. The efforts put in place in the last few years to support the startup ecosystems in Europe seem to finally pay off. The number of European scaleups have been growing consistently by 20% year after year on an average (+13% in 2018). This means Europe added about 1,400 new scaleups in 2018.
2019 is reportedly the year of well anticipated tech IPOs. Is this a resurge of what used to be the norm, or just a timing coincidence? Are IPOs a way for scaling up tech companies or just an exit for investors? To address these questions we analyzed the funding path of over 40 thousand tech scaleups across US, Europe, China, and Israel.
The Spanish ecosystem ranks 5th in Europe in terms of the number of scaleups, and 6th in the capital raised. As a consolation prize, it ranks first among the Southern European countries. The gap with the UK, France, and Germany is simply too broad to be bridged. But the preliminary numbers of 2018 shows that Spain is also going slower than the most immediate comparables, Switzerland and Sweden. In particular regarding the capital invested where Spain is still lagging behind the most advanced ecosystems. What’s needed to make a substantial step forward?
Italy moves too slow and it needs to accelerate significantly. This was the main diagnosis emerging from our last year report. One year later, the scenario has not changed. Italy still ranks 11th in the European Scaleup Europe ranking. And the gap from the top has become even wider. Moving slow in the world of technology equates at not moving at all. And, if you are late, it is difficult to catch up with the opponents that are ahead of you if you don’t start running.