The 6 Top European Cities for Startups

Today, Rocket Internet-backed startup NestPick released a list of the top six European cities to start a startup.

NestPick provides Airbnb-like functionality for international students looking for medium- and long-term accommodations. Their top six picks are based on their experience in various cities plus research into the political, cultural, and economic factors affecting the local startup scenes. Let’s take a look at the top 6 European cities for startups:

1. Berlin, Germany

top European cities for startups berlin

Population: 3.5 million

On AngelList: 848 Berlin startups, 5,392 Berlin angel investors

Berlin Startup Success stories: SoundCloud, Wooga, Zalando

A McKinsey report quoted by NestPick estimates that Berlin startups will create over 100,000 jobs by 2020.

2. Budapest, Hungary

top European cities for startups budapest

Population: 1.73 million

On AngelList: 168 Budapest startups, 4,646 Budapest angel investors

Success stories: Prezi, Ustream, LogMeIn

“The majority of young Hungarians have a high educational level, the Internet is exceptionally fast all throughout the city, and there are initiatives that offer venture capital from the European Investment Fund to finance innovative startups,” says NestPick.

3. London, UK

top European cities for startups london

Population: 8.31 million

On AngelList: 4,112 London startups, 7,143 London angel investors

London Startup Success stories: Mind Candy, Hailo, Shazam

The UK government has invested £50 million to help the London startup scene thrive (and compete with its rival, Berlin).

4. Barcelona, Spain

top European cities for startups barcelona

Population: 1.62 million

On AngelList: 404 Barcelona startups, 4,985 Barcelona angel investors

Barcelona Startup Success stories: Catchoon, Social & Beyond, Omnidrone (via Wired)

“The Spanish government improved entrepreneurial conditions in terms of tax breaks and funding programs, and will stick to those adjustments in the following years [after the economic crisis],” says NestPick.

5. Amsterdam, Netherlands

top European cities for startups amsterdam

Population: 780,000

On AngelList: 500 Amsterdam startups, 4,935 Amsterdam angel investors

Amsterdam Startup Success stories: Human, The Clockroom, Ace & Tate (via Wired)

According to NestPick, Amsterdam is ranked as the most creative global city and has an entrepreneurship rate that’s 6% higher than the European average.

6. Tallinn, Estonia

top European cities for startups tallinnPopulation: 400,000

On AngelList: 151 Tallinn startups, 4,674 Tallinn angel investors

Estonia Startup Success stories: GrabCad, Erply, Pipedrive (via Wired)

The Wall Street Journal says that “Estonia is the 132nd smallest country in the world by land mass yet it produces more startups per head of population than any other country in Europe.”

Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons


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Written by:
Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact
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