Catalunya: a promised land for Startups

Partager

There are hundred reasons for being an entrepreneur. Why choose one city over another when launching your startup? Some cities offer a greater ecosystem in terms of government support, access to a pool of talent and to investment.

The top 5 tech and innovation hubs in Europe are:

  1. London
  2. Berlin
  3. Paris
  4. Barcelona
  5. Stockholm

Barcelona is Europe’s 4th best innovation hub and place to set up a startup. The city has a strong and unique identity which attracts both customers and investors.

Why is Barcelona so attractive to entrepreneurs ? Why is the city an international hub for growing startups?

Government support

The Spanish government has set up measures and initiatives that facilitate the administrative process when launching a startup.

The program Ley de Emprendedores (“Entrepreneurs’ law”) helps entrepreneurs to secure visas and set up legal entities in Spain. The Spanish Government has created initiatives for foreign companies willing to start a business in Catalunya:

  • Subventions, mentoring sessions, workshops and meetings with large enterprises.
  • Government organizations like Accio provide free consulting and resources.

Moreover, it is simple to find actors to help untangle juridical processes (a lawyer specialized in startup issues) and to open an account at the bank at low cost with great advice and offering good customer relations.

Talent

Barcelona attracts lots of experienced and innovative individuals from all over Europe. More precisely, there is an important pool of talent in programming and design.

Access to venture capital

Startups have to raise funds. Barcelona has succeeded in attracting very active investors, eager to invest in local startups. In 2017, more than 450 millions euros of venture capital was invested in startups, some of these investors were: Abac Capital, Active Venture Partners, Ariol Capital, Caixa Capital Risc, Flint Capital, Galdana Ventures, Idodi Venture Capital, Intelectium.

Networking opportunities

Barcelona holds every day hundreds of events such as workshops, conferences covering a wide range of subjects: big data, robotics, growth hacking... This creates synergies and offers entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn from experts, make connections and get inspired.

If you are interested in, Meetup is the most effective tool to find events.

Success Story: Wallapop

Wallapop is a Spanish startup born in 2013 in Barcelona, from the need to buy and sell products through an application on our Smartphones. It was created by three Spanish entrepreneurs Gerard Olivé, Agustín Gómez and Miguel Vicente.

Wallapop has managed to impose its leadership on the market against other similar sites like Segundamano to become the prefered application for second hand products in Spain. The startup has grown very quickly from 0 to 100 million in value in less than 24 months.

The strength of Wallapop lies on its original user experience, with a powerful geolocation tool that displays objects of any kind, for sale close to where you are and an integrated messaging service allowing to connect easily to set up an appointment and to exchange about the product.