Endeavor Greece, a global non-profit organization supporting entrepreneurship, presents interesting numbers and results for startups in Greece, in the framework of the increased activity of the previous years and the intense discourse on the issue.
The number of startups has increased significantly in comparison to 2010. In particular, 16 startups were founded in 2010 and this number was ten times higher in 2013. There is a similar increase of funds invested in startups for the same period. In particular, investment in 2013 reached €42 million, 80 times higher versus 2010, raised by 30 companies when it was just €500.000.
The impact of Jeremie funds, invested to several startups through four companies, Elikonos, Odyssey, Open Fund and PJ Tech Catalyst, is of course very significant. The results are obvious in both Greece-based investments that were equal to the 72% of the total and seed investment (69% of total) in 2013, as well as the distribution of funds by sector. In particular, technology companies have raised 50% of the total investment in 2013.
In terms of sectors, financial services hold the second place mainly due to the funds raised by Hellas Direct. Media, agri/food, tourism, education and entertainment follow with lower shares. It is also worth mentioning that certain sectors with many companies have not received any funds, such as e-commerce, health and energy.
Another interesting fact is that 50% of startups founded since 2010 have mobile apps as their core business as a result of the current global trend that has significantly affected this market. Additionally, based on their characteristics and the prospects in Greece, it seems that 25% of companies have high-growth potential that can lead to job creation and added value for the economy.
The increased number of companies relates to the increase of supporting institutions, such as co-working places and incubators as well as competitions, events and other initiatives aiming at the shift towards entrepreneurship and funding of new efforts. The ratio of institutions to startups is approximately 1 to 5 today.
In conclusion, we have been through significant progress with increased number of entrepreneurial efforts and a gradually formed ecosystem to support them. However, it is necessary to proceed with more systematic efforts to expand the smart capital usage to more sectors in which Greece has competitive advantage and offers opportunities for entrepreneurs. Role models need to be promoted and companies that have growth and job creation potential be actively supported.