Deeper, UAB is the fastest-growing technology company in Lithuania
This year, 11 countries contribute companies to the Fast 50: Poland (19), Croatia (8), Lithuania (6), the Czech Republic (5), Romania (3), Bulgaria, Hungary and Slovakia (2 each), and Bosnia & Herzegovina, Estonia and Latvia (1 each).
The speed of growth among Central Europe’s technology companies continues to accelerate, with average growth between 2013 and 2016 delivered by the companies featuring in the 2017 Deloitte CE Technology Fast 50 ranking hitting a new record of 1,127 per cent.
This is the second consecutive year that the average rate has broken through the 1,000 per cent mark. This not only confounds any suspicions that last year’s exceptional results could not be surpassed – it also highlights the medium-term sustainability of the current tech boom in Central Europe.
Like last year, the top five entrants in the 2017 ranking are again new to the Fast 50. However, in 2016 they all featured in the Rising Stars category, which highlights exceptional businesses that are too young to feature in the main Fast 50 report.
First place in the 2017 ranking goes to Czech online flight-booking business Kiwi.com, last year’s fifth-placed Rising Star (under the name Skypicker.com). After a stunning 2016, its four-year growth rate has leapt from 1,534 per cent in the last ranking to 7,165 per cent, suggesting that its 2021 target of becoming the world-leader in online travel is within its grasp.
The biggest riser, however, is third-placed Prusa Research from the Czech Republic (up to 6,910 per cent from 688 per cent last time), completing an amazing triumvirate of businesses delivering growth of around 7,000 per cent.
Fourth place goes to Polish software-development business TOOPLOOX (2,827 per cent) and fifth to another Polish entrant, technology-driven recruitment company Absolvent.pl (2,437 per cent).
The pace of change at the top of the ranking means that only one company has retained its place in the top 10. This is software company NSoft, once again the only company from Bosnia and Herzegovina to feature in the ranking. It has built on its fifth place last time to come in seventh spot. Significantly, its growth of 1,990 per cent is even faster than the 1,760 per cent it recorded in the 2016 ranking, demonstrating the overall acceleration that we are seeing this year.
The success of Lithuanian companies
So far it has been the most successful year for Lithuanian companies – for the first time in the project history, 6 Lithuanian representatives have entered Deloitte Fast 50 ranking: Deeper, UAB (2nd position), Good One, UAB (8th position), INVENIS, UAB (11th position), TV Games, UAB (13rd position), ADEO WEB, UAB (33rd position) and TeleSoftas, UAB (50th position). Furthermore, CGTrader, UAB won Rising Stars category and the third place in the Big Five category was taken by Pigu, UAB.
Only fractionally behind from the first place in the ranking, on 7,048 per cent, is last year’s Rising Stars winner, Lithuanian smart sports technology business Deeper. Its growth rate has almost doubled from last year’s already outstanding 3,631 per cent. So far this is the highest ranking place that has been taken by Lithuanian company – in 2013 Ruptela, UAB was ranked fifth.
“Last year Deeper was recognized as the fastest growing company in the Rising Stars category and this year we managed to enter Fast 50 ranking. This shows that we are on the right track and that we are making even more ambitious goals each year. It wouldn’t be possible without our strong team of professionals which I am grateful for the results we achieved together”, said Aurelijus Liubinas, Chairman of the Board at Deeper.
8th place was taken by a boutique digital performance agency from Lithuania Good One (1,962 per cent), specialising in the fields of SEO, SEM, digital media planning and delivery, PPC, web analytics and CRO. ““Whatever you are be a Good one” – a famous quote from Abraham Lincoln, which we adopted as our own on day one. Either you do it right, or you don’t do it at all. This motto is at the core of our company and at the core of each and every one of our team – a team of experts who work hard to be the best in their fields. That’s what has kept us growing nine years in a row, and is sure to keep us growing in future”, says Tomas Varnas, CEO at Good one.
Invenis, UAB, which took 10th place at “Rising stars” category in 2016, is Lithuanian publisher and developer of casual and free-to-play mobile games for kids and toddlers that got selected into the main “Fast 50” category and was ranked 11th (1,048 per cent). “The only way to be successful when everything around us is changing so fast is to be flexible and change along with the world. We seek to rapidly understand the needs of our target group and satisfy them before anyone else – it is very rewarding to be the first,” comments Jonas Abromaitis, CEO at Invenis, UAB.
Not far behind is another Lithuanian company – a developer and distributor of its own video-streamed live games TV Žaidimai, UAB (BetGames.TV), with a four-year growth rate of 981 per cent. “A few years ago, BetGames.TV was a start-up with big ambitions – a pioneer in the gambling industry that combined traditional betting with popular lotteries and table games. The company’s success is based on our talented team, which has a great mix of experienced industry professionals and highly creative millennials. We appreciate our shareholders as their trust in the past is what is enabling us now to provide high-quality product. We’re happy to solve new challenges every day. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everybody for all the good vibes and our ongoing forward momentum,” comments Mindaugas Stanelis, CEO at TV Žaidimai, UAB.
33th place was taken by another representative of Lithuania ADEO WEB, UAB (427 per cent), providing successful ecommerce solutions for eight years. „I believe that the team is the most important factor for a successful business. All results come from every team member’s contribution, dedication and ability to work with others. We bring value to every solution we provide – the creation of that value is acknowledged not only by our clients and partners but also by our team. What really matters is how much value we can create in a finite amount of time. Every form of recognition we receive is a victory for each and every member of the ADEO WEB team. Being recognised in the Deloitte Fast 50 means a lot to us. As our business is a business built around recommendations, we see this as a critical enabler for us to take our next steps and become an even more successful company,“ says Paulius Nagys, CEO at ADEO WEB, UAB.
Telesoftas, UAB, which provides consulting and software development services for clients around the globe, took the 50th place (310 per cent). „It might sound simple, but I believe we have created our success by striving for happiness. Bringing together the best specialists with the market’s strongest technical background is no longer enough. Over the last 14 years, instead of putting financial goals at the forefront, we have consistently invested in creating an environment where all this cumulative excellence, creativity and initiative can thrive. I am very happy that we have proved how putting people at the core of the company’s goals is enabling us to provide excellent client service, to continuously innovate, and consequently to grow,“ comments Algirdas Stonys, CEO at TeleSoftas.
“The fastest growing Lithuanian companies do not cease to amaze ‒ this year, according to the number of companies ranked in the Fast 50, Lithuania clearly stands out and is leading among Central European countries. Most of these companies achieved impressive growth performance by presenting products or services in international markets. This proves once again that, having a good idea and an ambitious team, a small local market may be an additional incentive to move faster and more decisively in the international sphere in which Lithuanian talents can be ‒ and are ‒ competitive,” said Marius Stalenis, Director at Deloitte verslo konsultacijos, UAB.
Companies up to three years’ old are ineligible for the main Fast 50 ranking. The Rising Stars category exists to mark those younger businesses with such strong growth that they are likely to feature in the Fast 50 in years to come. Indeed, the fact that the top five in the main 2017 ranking were Rising Stars a year ago proves the value of this approach.
This year’s Rising Star is Lithuanian 3D-model marketplaces CGTrader, with a four-year growth rate of 3,329 per cent. According to Dalia Lašaitė, CEO at CGTrader, CGTrader was born with the notion that the market lacks a democratic place for 3D artists to sell their digital artwork. We are certain that rewarding the artists fairly is the key factor that has enabled CGTrader to attract so many designers and quality 3D models to the platform in such a short time. As stock 3D models cost only a fraction of what is normally spent on creating 3D content, CGTrader’s value proposition has strongly resonated with the market and fueled the company’s growth. With the development of technologies such as spatial computing, augmented and virtual reality and WebGL, it is becoming essential to make 3D content creation more efficient. CGTrader has a significant role to play and huge potential to grow further. Adhering to the market needs is a challenge, but we have an ambitious team that is not afraid of ambiguity, and we have already achieved some “impossible” goals.
Second is Q, a digital solutions provider from Croatia (2,246 per cent). And third is Polish translation pioneer Dogadamycie.pl, with a 1,532 per cent growth rate.
The Big Five category is for fast-growing larger companies whose scale makes it difficult for them to compete in revenue growth with the smaller businesses in the Fast 50. This year’s winner is Czech online and real-world fashion retailer, ZOOT, with a four-year growth rate of 820 per cent. Not far behind is Bulgarian publisher and ad-monetisation business Titan Gate (802 per cent).
The third is Lithuanian online retailer Pigu, UAB (208 per cent), matching its position of last year but with a significantly faster growth rate. „Our success is based on client orientation. We are always searching for the best solutions that allow us to offer our clients wider choice, faster delivery, better customer service, easier return processes, a wider choice of payment methods and more. We see that Baltic people are increasingly making daily household purchases on the internet. Our goal is therefore to offer the entire range of products they need to make shopping quick and easy, even by phone. We must therefore be one step ahead, being ready to satisfy our clients’ needs even before they emerge. Recognition in the Deloitte Fast 50 shows that we are on the right track. This is inspiring us to move forward, to work even harder and to do better,“ comments Dainius Liulys, CEO at Pigu, UAB.
The second annual winner of our Most Disruptive Innovation (MDI) award is Serbia-based heating, ventilation and air-con innovator DADANCO Europe. The award marks those businesses that might not have made the ranking but are pioneering highly disruptive new ideas or technologies – DADANCO certainly fits the bill. So does Romanian robotic process automation company, UiPath, which becomes the first business ever to win a special distinction in this category.
Other Baltic States
This year technology companies from Estonia and Latvia (1 each) made the Fast 50 list. Representatives from Latvia, software developers EazyOne SIA, were ranked 18th (731 per cent) and Scoro Software OÜ, an end-to-end work management software solution for professional and creative services that helps to streamline work and eliminate routine tasks, were placed 42nd (353 per cent).
A global outlook
According to Agnieszka Zielińska, Technology Fast 50 programme leader Deloitte Central Europe, “One of the most pleasing aspects of this year’s ranking is the number of companies in it that have ambitions to grow outside our region. The overall winner, Kiwi.com, heads that list with its objectives of becoming a world leader – and many others have similar ambitions, with clients, customers, offices and employees already in markets across Western Europe and North America.
“The truly amazing thing is the incredible youth of so many of these businesses. This year, 68 per cent in the main ranking are first-time entrants, and the most common year of foundation was just 2012. No one knows what the future holds, but the impetus is clearly with this dynamic new generation of entrepreneurial businesses, right across Central Europe’s tech sector.”
In 2017, the Fast 50 was once again dominated by companies from the IT & Digital Solutions sector (39). There were 10 entrants from the Internet, Media and Telecom sector, and just one from Clean Tech & Energy (down from three in 2016). There were no entrants from Biotech, Nanotech & Medtech.