Barcelona ranks 5th as a startup hub in the European Union in 2022

31 May 2022

  • According to the ranking by StartupBlink, Barcelona stands only behind Paris, Berlin, Stockholm, and Amsterdam.
  • StartupBlink considers parameters such as the number of startups in each city, their quality, and the business climate.
  • According to ACCIO-Catalonia Trade & Investment, there are currently 1,900 startups in Catalonia (2021), 11.4% more than in 2020.

Barcelona is the 5th startup hub in the European Union according to the ranking made public this Tuesday by StartupBlink, one of the most prestigious international consulting firms that specialize in the analysis of startup ecosystems. The capital of Catalonia stands only behind Paris, Berlin, Stockholm, and Amsterdam.

To draw up this ranking, StartupBlink considers parameters such as the number of startups in each ecosystem, their quality, and the business climate. It also analyzes indicators such as the number of coworking spaces and accelerators, the number of exits and unicorns, the momentum generated by major startups, and a set of regional business and economic indicators.

The Director General of Innovation and Entrepreneurship of the Department of Business and Labor, Lluís Juncà, stated: "These data demonstrate the strong position of Catalonia among the main ecosystems of European startups". Juncà added: “The most important thing is that startups in Catalonia grow in quantity and quality, with a more intensive use of cutting-edge tecnologies. Their proposals are focused on responding to global challenges in health or emergency climate change”.

In fact, according to ACCIÓ-Catalonia Trade & Investment, there are currently 1,900 startups in Catalonia (2021), 11.4% more than in 2020 and 26.4% more than in 2019, before the pandemic. The report points out that Catalan startups employ 19,300 people and that 26% of workers are foreigners, 17% in the case of the founders.

According to these data, 47% of Catalan startups work with technologies linked to deep tech, that is, those based on a scientific discovery or an innovation in engineering.

By technologies, the use by Catalan startups of artificial intelligence and big data (36% of the total), cloud and edge computing (14%), and automation (10%), stand out. the Internet of Things and sensors (9%), connectivity (4%), augmented and virtual reality (4%), bioengineering (3%), and blockchain (3%).

By sectors, startups in Catalonia are mainly dedicated to health (16% of the total), business-software solutions (13%), and ICT (7%). Also noteworthy are the companies that work in the fields of travel and leisure (6%), fintech (5%), food tech (5%), and energy (5%).

In terms of financing, Catalan startups raised an investment of 1,479 million euros in 2021, according to ACCIÓ-Catalonia Trade & Investment data based on the international Dealroom database. This is 246% more than the volume of investment captured in 2020 and is the highest figure in the historical series.

Discover more than 1,900 startups at the Barcelona & Catalonia Startup Hub

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