Investment in Europe startups Outperforms US


Mar 13, 2023 | 3 min read

Investment in Europe startups Outperforms US

Get ready to pack your bags and head to London, Berlin, Stockholm, or Madrid, because European tech startups are on the rise! According to a new report by European-focused venture capital firm Atomico, European venture capital investments have outperformed those in the U.S. for the past two decades. That's right - Europe is the place to be for fast-growing tech startups!

The report, based on data from investment firm Cambridge Associates, shows that in the year leading up to June 2021, a normalized index of pooled European venture capital fund returns outperformed its U.S. counterpart by about two points. Over both three-year and five-year time periods, Europe was ahead by about five points. And over a decade, Europe was still ahead by three points. The word is out, and investors from all over the world are pouring into European tech firms.

In fact, European startups are on track to exceed $100 billion in total venture capital investment this year, more than double the total such companies raised in 2020, according to Atomico. The report estimates that when the final figure is known, which may not occur until well into the first quarter of next year, as much as $121 billion will have been pumped into Europe’s startups. Europe is producing a record number of unicorns, startups that grow to be worth more than $1 billion, with 98 created in 2021 alone. Europe also now has 26 so-called decacorns—tech companies worth more than $10 billion—including Spotify and Adyen, the fast-growing payments technology company that is now publicly traded on the Euronext stock exchange.

The overall value of Europe’s technology ecosystem is soaring, too, according to the venture firm. It estimates the total ecosystem value, including both publicly listed and private companies, now exceeds $3 trillion, three times its estimate in 2018 when Europe crossed the $1 trillion valuation mark for the first time. Europe is creating value from tech faster than ever, says Tom Wehmeier, a partner at Atomico.

But it's not just about the numbers. The European tech scene is thriving, with more and more institutions participating in European technology funding deals. Europe is attracting “a new set of investors as potential returns from VC-backed businesses become more attractive,” says Sonya Iovieno, head of venture and growth for the U.K. branch of Silicon Valley Bank.

So what are you waiting for? Join the excitement and innovation of the European tech scene! With a record number of unicorns and decacorns, and an overall ecosystem value that is soaring, Europe is the place to be for fast-growing tech startups.