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Amsterdam-Delta enters top three best startup ecosystems in Europe

Rutger Huizenga

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Every year the Startup Genome publishes the global startup ecosystem report. More than 1 million companies in 300 tech ecosystems are analysed to provide a thorough insight into which startup ecosystems in the world perform best. The report is an important indicator of the Netherlands' and Techleap.nl's ambition to place the Netherlands in the global top 5 startup countries and in the number one position in Europe. The index is based on figures from 2019, the effect of the corona pandemic on startups worldwide and in the Netherlands is not included.

Connectedness 🔀

According to Genome, Amsterdam-Delta owes its place in the European top three mainly to the high degree of social and logistical ties with the rest of the world, the increasingly mature investment climate and the extent to which Dutch start-ups are tapping into markets worldwide. The growth of companies such as payment company Adyen also contributes to the high ranking. Adyen's market value in June 2020 was according to Genome over $30 billion.

In addition, Genome is impressed by the strong Dutch performance in Agtech & New Food and Life Sciences. Examples include Picknick, the online grocery platform that raised a $275 million investment in 2019, and the Vegetarian Butcher, a meat replacement startup with 2,600 outlets in 13 countries that was acquired by Unilever in 2018.

Points of improvement 🚩

Series A+ funding in terms of numbers and size compared to our EU counterparts remains a challenge. Although the Netherlands invested a record $1.4 billion in startups in 2019, the median Series A round was only $2.4 million. That is more than 10 per cent below the global average. The Amsterdam-Delta ecosystem also scored very poorly on Knowledge, defined as the impact of publications and research and the volume of patents in the ecosystem. There is a great opportunity for improvement here. The number of successful exits also lags behind the number on the European list, Stockholm. Number one in Europe, London, scores better on VC activity and overall performance.

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Recovery of the Netherlands 🦾

Mona Keijzer, State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate: "This Genome Ranking shows that we are succeeding in making the Netherlands increasingly attractive to technology companies. The number of investors is increasing and we are among the four best-connected startup hubs in the world. More and more startups are working from the Netherlands to find solutions to global challenges, creating jobs and income here. This puts us in the top three in Europe. At the same time, COVID-19 has hit our startups hard. That is why I will continue my efforts to keep our country a good home base for startups. In this way, they can grow and continue to contribute to job growth and the recovery of the Dutch economy". 

Special Envoy of Techleap.nl, Constantijn van Oranje: "This success is the result of the efforts of all the people and institutions that are committed to the tech ecosystem in the Netherlands. First and foremost the entrepreneurs themselves, but also the investors, policymakers, incubators, universities, colleges and knowledge centres.  Tech kept us going when the whole world came to a standstill through the corona. It allowed us to work from home, get an education, get groceries delivered, and quickly produce medical devices when we needed them. We now desperately need this flexibility and innovative power in the recovery of the Netherlands. Now we have to continue to ensure that what we have built up in 10 years is not wiped out by Covid19. Now we have to make sure that we continue to invest in technology companies and in an ecosystem that is able to generate, attract and retain the best companies, talents, technology and investors".

3 Key Takeaways from The Startup Genome Report 2020

The report provides hours of interesting insights and analysis but we appreciate you don’t all have time for that. So here are 3 key takeaways we found whilst going through the report that we think have a large impact on the Dutch Startup Ecosystem.

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