Publication of the first European Startup Monitor (ESM)



By: Carmen Hennig

The European Startup Monitor (ESM), initiated by the German Startups Association, creates transparency for the European startup ecosystem and underlines the growing influence of these young enterprises on the European economy.

For the first time, the ESM supplies valid data from all EU-countriesand Israel. The ESM represents over 2,300 startups with more than 31,000 employees. It provides a comprehensive long-needed overview of important characteristics, potentials and challenges in the European startup landscape. GüntherOettinger, the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, stresses: “The European Startup Monitor will allow for a systematic overview of where innovation and growth happens in the digital economy, and how policies should be shaped to help.”The ESM has been published with the support of KPMG, Telefónica und Google.


Profile of founders and employees


On average, European startups are 2.5 years old. One of the most surprising findings of the study is the low proportion of female founders, amounting only to 14.7%.

A further interesting finding is the internationality of both founders and employees: 11.9% of the founders are from countries other than the location of their startup. Almost one third of employees come from abroad.The country with the highest share of both international founders and international employees is the United Kingdom.




Markets and Internationalization




European Startups are operating in an international environment. 21.2% have entered other European markets while further 29.8% have entered international markets. 8 out of 10 startups plan a further internationalization in the next 12 months.

Financing sources: European founders depend on own savings, family & friends

The study finds that the major capital sourceis own savings of the founders (69.1 %), followed by support from family and friends (25.1 %). Only as third source of capital, founders rely on governmental funding programs and subsidies (21.9 %).To generate fast growth, venture capital and other forms of private investments should be supported by a suitable political framework.


Startups as job engines

On average, startups create 12.9 jobs after 2.5 years (including founders). Germany leads the way with 17.4 jobs, followed by the United Kingdom (14.1 jobs) and France (11.5 jobs). These figures prove the significantimpact, which European startups have developed on the European labor market.



Expectations on politics


For further information and all findings of the study please visit