Which Countries Provide The Best Startup Hubs?
Silicon Valley is widely considered to be the spiritual home of the modern startup. This little patch of land outside of San Francisco is responsible for more startup activity than practically anywhere else, and it’s where generations of entrepreneurs go to make their millions. But you’d be wrong if you thought that it was the only place to start a business. Yes, it’s created some of the most dynamic enterprises of the last thirty years or so, but it’s by no means the final word. Check out these countries that provide excellent startup environments.
London is home to the most prominent startup market in Europe and why I registered a company formation in the city. The reason for this has to do with the concentration of venture capitalists in the city. There are more venture capitalists here than anywhere else, with 30 percent of the global total.
Last year, venture capitalists plowed more than $4 billion into startups, more than four times the amount raised in the whole of Germany. The UK also offers some good tax breaks for individual entrepreneurs, who can pay lower corporate income tax and lower tax on their income so long as they earn less than a particular threshold.
Any drawbacks to starting up in London? Well, just like San Francisco, property prices are sky high. The concentration of super wealthy people has had the effect of pushing home prices for some addresses into the stratosphere. The benefit of the city, however, is the access that you get to high-quality, talented people who can make a massive difference to the overall productivity of your firm.
The German economy is a workhorse in Europe, keeping the region afloat fiscally. Average incomes in the country are high, meaning that startups have access to a potentially lucrative market. Put simply; people in Germany have money to spend. Germany is also an excellent place to go for funding, though not quite as active as the UK.
The central startup hub in the country is in Berlin. The city has become an innovative powerhouse, eclipsing many of the former manufacturing cities of West Germany, like Hamburg and Cologne. There are also numerous “incubators” across the city run by private companies and government. These incubators provide a protective financial and legal environment for companies before they are large enough to stand on their own feet, helping them reach marketable size in one piece.
Spain is usually considered to be a rather laid back country, not particularly focused on creating the next big startup. But things are changing, especially in cosmopolitan Barcelona and Madrid.
Barcelona is currently considered one of Spain’s smartest cities, playing host to more tech companies per capita than practically anywhere else in Europe, except London. Investors are plowing money into the city, hoping that Spanish entrepreneurs will develop the next Google or Facebook.
Spain is also home to a talented population, having a good education system which regularly churns out high-quality graduates ready to work on complicated startup projects.