Baltics Have Outperformed Nordics in Terms of per Capita Startup Funding
Dec 09

Baltics are reported to have more than 2000 active startups in total in 2019, despite the small size of the region having around only 6 million inhabitants. The total amount raised by Baltic startups in 2018 is 597.17M eur with Mobility, Blockchain, Fintech, SaaS and Fashion being the most active verticals. Year 2018 brought Estonia the fourth unicorn – Bolt (ex-Taxify), whereas end of 2019 has brought Lithuania it’s first one – Vinted that just raised 128M in late November.

Baltics are clear front-runners in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) in terms of capital raised as close to half of the total funding raised in CEE is by Baltics based startups. Whereas, looking at startup capital raised per capita, in 2018 Baltics have caught up with the Nordics.

This is the second time Startup Wise Guys accelerator in collaboration with EIT Digital launches Baltic Startup Scene Report – a comprehensive overview of ecosystem and trends in the Baltic countries.

Full report is available for download via:

Report provides insights into the growth of funding over the past six years, biggest deals, most active local and foreign VC funds, curated startups to watch lists in B2B Saas, Fintech, Cyber, Proptech, Hardware, and Mobility, corporate innovation cases and more.

Key highlights:

  • Baltics have caught up with Nordics in terms of startup funding raised per capita, namely, 99.03 eur vs 85.05 eur. In 2017 as reported by previous Baltic Startup Scene Report Estonia was an outlier in terms of raised investment per capita in 2017 – 208 eur, however, Baltic average performance was only 57.56 eur vs 80.71 eur for Nordic countries.
  • While Baltics are often associated with Fintech, it is Mobility sector that has seen the largest funding attracted in 2018/2019. In comparison – in 2017 it was Fintech startups such as Transferwise, Monese, CreamFinance dominating the list of the top deals.
  • Baltics continue to be an attractive destination for non-EU startup founders mostly from Ukraine, Belarus, Russia and Turkey. There have been more than 621 startup visa applications by startup founders that are willing to come to the Baltics since the establishment of startup visa regimes in 2017. Out of those 263 in 2018 and 239 in the first two quarters of 2019.

This report is created as a collection, comparison, and analysis of publicly available information, combined with data and insights from 25+ stakeholders from the Baltic startup ecosystem (startup organizations, VC funds, Business angel associations, and individual investors, accelerators, startups, support organizations, governmental entities, and opinion leaders). Data about Baltic countries has been benchmarked against other regions, cities and countries to give a different and more comprehensive angle.