Frankfurt / Main (AP) - Paris has overtaken Berlin as a founding metropolis, according to a study. In the first half of 2019, start-ups from the French capital raised around 2.2 billion euros from investors.
Thus, they moved past growth companies from Berlin, which collected 2.0 billion euros, as a recent analysis of the consulting firm EY shows. With the number of rounds of financing Paris had its nose even more clearly ahead of Berlin (129). The undisputed leader in Europe, however, was London.
Strong support for start-ups in France is having an effect, said EY partner Peter Lennartz. The government has a clear objective of making France Europe's leading start-up location by reducing bureaucratic hurdles for young entrepreneurs and bringing the state to investors and founders. For example, President Emmanuel Macron declared in 2017 that he wanted to make France a state-of-the-art start-up nation. He also promoted investments in domestic start-ups for large French companies.
Growth companies often rely on investors' money to expand, as they usually do not start making a profit at the beginning. Funds and large companies are putting venture capital into auspicious companies in the hope that their business ideas will prevail and deliver lucrative profits.
By 2018, Berlin had already invested just 2.6 billion euros in start-up investments, ahead of Paris (2.5 billion). But the French capital had caught up quickly there. In 2017, she was still well behind Berlin.
Although founders in Germany have become more in the focus of politics, they are often struggling with lavish cash injections. The development bank KfW estimates the financing gap in the early growth phase at up to 600 million euros per year. The Federal Government wants to promote the founding culture with state-supported venture capital funds. It also launched a platform for start-ups with KfW to network founders and investors, improve advice and facilitate financing.
London remains the undisputed number one in Europe. There founders collected 5.7 billion euros and were also in the number of rounds of financing with 323 clearly ahead. "The Brexit chaos does not seem to affect the London start-up scene," Lennartz said. Every third euro of venture capital flowed into start-ups in the first half of the year. The British Internet satellite start-up OneWeb got in the period, the largest injection of cash in Europe (1.1 billion euros). The Berlin travel platform GetYourGuide (428 million) was in fifth place, followed by the smartphone bank N26 by far (266 million).
Overall, European start-ups received the record sum of 16.9 billion euros in the first half of the year, 62 percent more than in the same period of the previous year. There is an enormous amount of capital in the market that needs to be invested. "Investors are focusing on more mature business models and companies that have proven that they can achieve their goals," said Lennartz. The prospect of a successful IPO or resale increases the willingness to invest large sums on the home straight.
In the second half of the year, the boom continued. Especially in Germany there was a strong third quarter - so hope for Berlin.