As part of the Scale-Up Europe initiative, more than 170 investors, entrepreneurs, corporates, researchers, and politicians gathered in recent months to discuss, debate, and come up with a number of recommendations on key themes of importance. The Scale-Up Europe initiative, launched by French President Emmanuel Macron, focuses on four core drivers: talent, investment, deeptech, and startup-corporate collaboration.
Despite the hurdles posed by the Covid-19 outbreak, European startups and technology had a good year in 2020. Venture capitalists poured money into innovative new businesses at record levels, and digital transformation of big corporations accelerated. At the same time, government-led startup-friendly policies and a shift in how talented young graduates view entrepreneurship have put Europe in a stronger position than it has ever been to capitalize on digital trends.
However, Europe continues to lag behind the United States and Asia in sectors such as investment and technology development. If the region is ever going to narrow the gap and use technology to expand its economy and achieve its social goals, it will have to ramp up its efforts.
More than 170 European entrepreneurs, investors, researchers, corporations, and politicians gathered in recent months to come up with recommendations on major issues as part of the Scale-Up Europe initiative. The group has released a manifesto as well as a report with proposals for accelerating innovation growth.
“Initiatives such as Scale-Up Europe provide the fundamental support that tech leaders need to scale at pace. Tech Nation is proud to be a founding member, to ensure that the expertise that has powered the UK’s successful tech track record is shared with our European counterparts,” stated Gerard Grech, CEO of Tech Nation, in response to the Scale-Up Europe report.
“Not only is Scale-Up Europe about driving growth, but it’s about driving growth in the right way, building towards a more diverse and sustainable world. Tech Nation Report data shows that impact investing now accounts for 15% of total European VC investment, a 3x increase when compared to a decade ago. But we can go even further. The recommendations set out from the crucial first steps towards building back better globally,” he further added.
Scale-Up Europe has created a roadmap with some key recommendations to help them achieve their goals:
Attract startup talent
To win the global battle for startup talent, backers of Scale-Up Europe believe the continent should create a less fragmented, more open pan-European market. Some EU nations currently have a tech worker visa, but it should be standardized and should include some level of social rights portability.
Necessary funding in late and exit stages
As per the group, Europe continues to fall behind in late-stage investments. They urge for establishing the right balance between favorable regulation for private investors, expertise, and an efficient multiplicator effort for public funds going to the ecosystem in their manifesto.
Develop deeptech scale-ups
To become the world’s deeptech powerhouse, Europe needs to develop proper funding structures that link the scientific and business worlds together, such as a standardized patent transfer network to speed up tech transfers between universities, and between startups and large enterprises.
Establish a pan-European tech mission
A European tech mission, according to Scale-Up Europe, should be established to promote startups, overcome regulatory hurdles, and further the group’s roadmap.
Promote startup-corporate collaboration
The group is urging European authorities to provide a tax credit for European companies that invest in European startups. They are also pushing for the creation of a tech exchange program that would allow employees to seamlessly move between startups and corporations and also for implementation of a Small Business Act for business administrations that would help startups.