Germany

Berlin

Berlin is proud to be playing a role in fostering creativity and innovation. Together with other hubs worldwide, Berlin has always been open for thinkers and doers who work on making cities and society future proof. The Berlin Startup ecosystem welcomes you.

Mr. Christian Rickerts
Permanent Secretary of State, Berlin

Highlights

Berlin may be down a few places in this year’s ranking, but despite this temporary blip, the city remains one of Europe’s hottest startup scenes. In 2019, German startups received a total of US$6.9 billion in investment, an all-time high. 60% of that went to Berlin-based startups, for a total of US$4.1 billion in funding. While this year’s numbers may appear down from these highs, recent, large exits are likely not yet reflected in the data. Supply chain solutions provider Forto raised a hefty US$240 million in June 2021, and Choco raised US$100 million in Series B funding in July. Whatever the final tally of investment flowing into the city, Berlin retains its supportive culture and many startup support initiatives. Pre-seed startup accelerator the Founder Institute helps founders from idea through to the early company stage. Silicon Allee, through its Berlin Founders Fund, offers founders over US$28,000 in no-equity funding to develop their ideas over the course of a 1-year residency. Incubator Project Flying Elephant is also active in Berlin. Bitkom, Germany’s digital association, represents more than 2,000 companies, including more than 500 startups and virtually all global players. It advocates for the digitization of the economy and society, and for faster rollout of digital infrastructure. WomenTech Network promotes ​gender diversity in tech and connects talent with top companies. Women Techmakers Berlin helps women learn new skills, meet fellow developers, and access coaching.

Ecosystem by the numbers

TOTAL EARLY STAGE FUNDING
$2.3 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$548 m
ECOSYSTEM VALUE
$36.9 bn
GLOBAL AVG.
$13.68 bn
MEDIAN SEED ROUND
$1000 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$480 k
MEDIAN SERIES A ROUND
$6.6 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$3 m
SOFT. ENGINEER SALARY
$69 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$44 k

Sub-sector Strengths

Fintech

Axel Springer Plug And Play Accelerator, which has supported more than 100 startups so far, offers entrepreneurs experienced mentors, a wide network of contacts, workshops, and office space. fintexx, a community for women in finance, provides networking opportunities and aims to raise the visibility of women in the sub-sector. Commission-free broker Trade Republic raised US$900 million at a valuation of over US$5 billion in May 2021. Digital insurance startup Wefox raised US$650 million with a valuation of US$3 billion in June 2021.

AI, Big Data & Analytics

In June 2021 Science & Startups, an alliance of startup services from four Berlin universities, announced it had received US$8.2 from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the state of Berlin to fund AI spin-offs. The KI Association connects AI and Deep Tech companies with business and politics and promotes the ethical development of AI. The Big-Data.AI-Summit, Europe's leading conference on applications of AI and big data in business, is hosted in Berlin.

Reasons to move your startup to Berlin

Business Infrastructure

Berlin’s new international airport makes the city quick and easy to reach from across Europe and the world. Berlin also boasts an excellent public transportation system. Office space is plentiful and rents are still lower than in most European capitals, which helps attract young talent to the city. Early-stage companies can take advantage of the city’s many co-working spaces.

Hassle-free Relocation

Berlin makes it simple for overseas talent to relocate to the city, with both Berlin Investment Bank and Berlin Partners helping entrepreneurs and companies by offering funding programs for startups and offering guidance to founders. Municipal services for registering a business and other processes are available in English to simplify setting up a startup for non-German speakers.

Startup Community

Startup Genome
Partners

Factory Berlin
Finleap
Gruenderszene
Microsoft Ventures
Project A Ventures

Get connected

Are you interested in diving deeper into this ecosystem? Drop us a message. Our Ambassadors and Partners can plug you in.