European Young Innovators Forum @ European Business Summit 2014: Europe for StartUps, vision 2020

European Young Innovators Forum logo

Written by Kumardev Chatterjee, Founder & President of European Young Innovators Forum

Kumardev Chatterjee

Kumardev Chatterjee, Founder & President of European Young Innovators Forum

Across the globe, there is increasing consensus that now is great time to be an entrepreneur and create a StartUp. Certainly, there are various factors that are fuelling StartUp growth today. Three of the primary factors are less investment in R&D and Innovation from big companies creating a space for innovation and disruption from outside, plunging tech and operational infrastructure costs of starting a business and increasing amounts of risk capital and support  available to help StartUps in those crucial first 18 months.

The picture on-the-ground out of Europe however, though slowly changing, still has much room for growth. In spite of more than 20 years of research and innovation funding, when it comes to global top ten lists, Europe usually merits just around two major StartUp hubs (London, Berlin) and two billion dollar StartUps (Spotify, Zalando). That is how it has been, for a few years now. In contrast, China, a much later entrant into the StartUp scene in general, and with much less history of innovation funding and market access in particular, already boasts nearly similar figures (Beijing and Shanghai, Xiaomi and Jingdong).  

Europe then, clearly has some bridges to cross in creating and sustaining globally competitive innovation ecosystems that routinely generate disruptively innovative companies. Meanwhile with the ascent of China and India in this area, and the continuing pole position of the US, changing the game is getting harder by the year.    

How can we significantly improve European StartUp activity and what does it mean for Europe?

My vision is a Europe that works for StartUps and Entrepreneurs through the full stage of the innovation lifecycle, from ideas to market take-up, powered by the talents, energy, enthusiasm, and innovations of young Europeans and supported by the necessary regulatory frameworks, access to finance and markets and environment for innovation ecosystems.

Europe for StartUps 2020 overarching goals should to create and sustain a vibrant StartUp economy in Europe that generates:

10000 new StartUps a year

2000 new seed stage funded StartUps a year

1000 growth stage funded StartUps a year

4 StartUps a year in Global top ten lists

3 StartUp every two years on average with Billion Dollar exits

250,000 new StartUp jobs per year 

2.5% of the job market covered by StartUp jobs

9.5% of total European GDP from StartUp activity (including exits)

The engagement, employment, volume, momentum and economic weight generated by the appropriate implementation of this vision will not only serve to firmly place Europe in the new and emerging world economic order but also, most importantly, rejuvenate the European narrative of collective peace, sustainable growth and lasting prosperity.

How can we implement a Europe for StartUps? 

Clearly, creating and sustaining a culture of Innovation and Entrepreneurship is crucial to achieving this vision. It is recognised that there are significant barriers to such a culture in Europe today. The main issues include limited market access due to a fragmented legal and regulatory landscape, sustained access to finance and support across all stage of the cycle and lack of skills to name a few. However, the fundamental issue holding back Europe, is the low-risk attitude of both citizens and industry and financial institutions towards innovation, i.e. a fundamental aversion to risk-taking that is proving counter-productive for development of an innovative and entrepreneurial economy. 

There needs to be a sustained two-pronged approach to overcome these issues and achieve this vision:

Fundamentally, we need a significant, ongoing promoting of an entrepreneurial, risk-taking culture for youth. We must change the mindsets of young people, encouraging their participation in the innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem. The focus should be to move them from their comfort zone to embrace the opportunities and challenges of innovation and entrepreneurship through StartUp formations, jobs and engagement in the innovation ecosystem.

This can be achieved by raising awareness on innovation and entrepreneurship amongst youth so they consider it as a serious alternative to traditional careers and embrace risk-taking. Equally important is increasing access for young innovators to skills training and mentors, finances and other resources to help them develop their early-stage ideas.

Simultaneously,  European governments, businesses, society and individuals need to support and reward such risk-taking by creating and sustaining an ecosystem for entrepreneurs that helps StartUps.

The European Parliament and Commission in particular, need to create and have adopted an unified regulatory framework tailored to the needs and conditions of StartUps, that supports the creation of new StartUps from early-stage ideas and their growth, market penetration and scaling-up. 

A Call to Action for a Europe for StartUps 2020

2014 will be a watershed year for innovation and entrepreneurship in Europe. The newly “pro-innovation” Europe is launching an extensive pan-European awareness and engagement campaign to promote entrepreneurship. The European Young Innovators Forum will be an integral partner of this initiative, with its large community of young innovators across Europe. Furthermore, the new EU Innovation programme Horizon 2020, with 80 billion EUR in funding over  the next 7 years, will serve to bolster a more entrepreneurial Europe. Particularly noteworthy is the approximately 2.8 billion EUR dedicated to funding innovative SMEs. 

EYIF will be at the heart of this mindset change in Europe. We will be conducting multiple activities and events across Europe where we will engage with more than 1500 young entrepreneurs and innovators, and mentor over 700 of them. For this, we will partner with the European Commission, European Parliament, US Department of State and strategic corporate partners to drive change through youth empowerment. The ICT Roadshow, the InnoTour USA, the Innovation Convention, the European Youth Event, the InnoApps competition, events at our Regional Innovation Hubs, and of course the 3rd annual Young Innovators Unconvention, will be EYIF’s cornerstone activities for 2014 to drive the development of an entrepreneurial culture. 

We call upon all minded individuals, businesses and governments to take action jointly with us to implement this vision for Europe starting now in 2014.

About the Author

Kumardev Chatterjee is the Founder and President of the European Young Innovators Forum (EYIF http://www.eyif.eu). He leads the management of EYIF’s broad community of young innovators, entrepreneurs, startups and SMEs.He represents EYIF on various Expert Groups and Stakeholder Committees of the European Commission in the areas of Innovation, Entrepreneurship and ICT, in particular, web-entrepreneurship (DG Connect) and Digital Entrepreneurship (DG Enterprise and Industry). He holds a MSc. in Computer Science, from University College London (UCL), as a British Chevening Science Scholar.  Kumardev is a European Commission recognised, independent Expert and has been both published and quoted by the world’s leading media and institutions including the New York Times, the World Economic Forum, the European Commission and Microsoft.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

5 creative alternatives to plastic packaging

UN chief condemns student abductions in north-west Cameroon

How the gender commuting gap could be harming women’s careers

These 11 companies are leading the way to a circular economy

Here’s how we get businesses to harmonize on climate change

A Sting Exclusive: “Regional Policy: a fully-fledged investment policy”, Commissioner Cretu reveals live from European Business Summit 2015

How the mobile industry is driving climate progress on the scale of a major economy

These countries are leading the way in green finance

Movius @ MWC14: Discussing novel Communications Applications over a “CAFÉ”

International Day of the Midwife: 5 things you should know

UN Security Council welcomes results of Mali’s presidential elections

UNICEF warns of ‘lost generation’ of Rohingya youth, one year after Myanmar exodus

Residents and visitors to this Dutch neighborhood could share a pool of cars and bikes

Rising insecurity in Central Africa Republic threatens wider region, Security Council told

Medical education during COVID-19 pandemic

Horn of Africa: UN chief welcomes Djibouti agreement between Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia

Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate deal is bad for US business. Here’s why.

Mental distress during the pandemic: is there a way out?

Social, cultural diversity ‘an enormous richness, not a threat’ Guterres declares calling on investment for a harmonious future

Commission reaches agreement with collaborative economy platforms to publish key data on tourism accommodation

European Commission presents comprehensive approach for the modernisation of the World Trade Organisation

Migration crisis, a human crisis after all

EU consumers will soon be able to defend their rights collectively

A Sting Exclusive: “Climate Change needs to be demystified”, Anneli Jättenmäki Vice President of European Parliament underscores from Brussels

Commission statement on the European Remembrance Day for Victims of Terrorism

Ηealth’s foundation is falling apart: what can we do about it?

MWC19 Wrap Up, in association with The European Sting, GSMA’s Brussels Media Partner for the 6th Consecutive Year

Does hosting a World Cup make economic sense?

Cyprus tragedy reveals Eurozone’s arbitrary functioning

5 inventions that could transform the health of our ocean

Yemen: ‘A great first step’ UN declares as aid team accesses grain silo which can feed millions

It’s time to end our ‘separate but unequal’ approach to mental health

Education remains an impossible dream for many refugees and migrants

iSting: Change Europe with your Writing

Now doctors can manipulate genetics to modify babies, is it ethical?

One more country to test the EU project: Kaczynski’s Poland

4 ways leaders are driving innovation in the public sector and revolutionising governance

10 of Albert Einstein’s best quotes

Will Boris Johnson’s victory lead to a no-deal Brexit or is there still time?

How 2020 taught businesses to place empathy before profit

Coronavirus COVID-19 wipes $50 billion off global exports in February alone, as IMF pledges support for vulnerable nations

Korea should improve the quality of employment for older workers

These companies can recycle nearly anything, from cigarette butts to fax machines

Cancer research put at risk by General Data Protection Regulation? The possible dangers of a data privacy EU mania

75 years after Auschwitz liberation, antisemitism still threatens ‘foundations of democratic societies’

This new form of currency could transform the way we see money

The Japanese have a word to help them be less wasteful – ‘mottainai’

Look no hands: self-driving vehicles’ public trust problem

Why Eurozone can afford spending for growth

Lack of involvement, or lack of opportunities?

3 reasons why responsibly-deployed technology is key to the COVID recovery

As Saudi women take the wheel, UN chief hopes end of driving ban creates more opportunities for kingdom’s women and girls

This is what the world’s CEOs think about the global outlook

EU Budget 2019: no deal before the end of the conciliation period

Sudan Partnership Conference: EU mobilises more support for Sudan’s transition

MWC 2016 LIVE: T-Mobile US reveals 5G trial plans

Parliament cuts own spending to facilitate agreement on EU budget

Foreign Affairs Council (Trade) of 22/05/2018: EU relations with key trading partners

EU mobilises €21 million to support Palestine refugees via the UN Relief and Works Agency

These photos show some of the world’s smallest things massively magnified

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s