Germany

Frankfurt

MEMBERS:
TechQuartier StartHub Hessen

Frankfurt, recognized as one of the world’s leading financial centres and home to numerous exciting fintech startups in its dynamic ecosystem, is not only an economic powerhouse but also a beautiful region.

Dr. Philipp Nimmermann
State Secretary, Ministry for Economic Affairs, Energy, Transport and Housing – State of Hessen
Top 20 European Ecosystem: Bang for Buck
Top 15 European Ecosystem: Performance
Top 30 Global Emerging Ecosystem: Talent & Experience

Highlights

This year the whole world has benefitted from one of the Frankfurt ecosystem’s greatest success stories. BioNTech SE, the German company which along with its partner Pfizer, developed one of the first, highly effective vaccines against Covid-19 was founded by immigrants and is based in the nearby city of Mainz. The company’s immigrant roots and cutting-edge innovation are emblematic of the best of the growing Frankfurt startup scene. A diverse, cosmopolitan city, Frankfurt attracts international talent whose entrepreneurial efforts are supported by a range of government and university programs. The Frankfurt Startup Fund has provided more than 120 local companies with loans of up to €50,000 for startup capital. A new statewide initiative, StartHub Hessen, aims to bring together players in the ecosystem, from companies to investors to mentors. The Frankfurt School of Finance & Management supports and trains local founders through its Centre for Research on Entrepreneurship and Mittelstand (CREAM), while its Blockchain Center is an internationally recognized pioneer in the space. Frankfurt also hosts a number of prominent industry and startup events including the Frankfurt CIO Summit for IT leaders, the International Conference on Green Energy Technologies, SafariFRM, Frankfurt Digital Finance and the Frankfurt Euro Finance Summit, which plays to Frankfurt’s traditional strength as a financial hub. These efforts have paid off with significant recent successes for local companies. Mattress retailer Emma has been one of the fastest growing companies in Europe, while in January 2021, digital insurance platform Clark raised ​a €69M Series ​C round. Drone startup Wingcopter also raised a $22 million Series A to expand internationally.

Ecosystem by the numbers

TOTAL EARLY STAGE FUNDING
$146.6 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$431 m
ECOSYSTEM VALUE
$5.45 b
GLOBAL AVG.
$10.5 bn
MEDIAN SEED ROUND
$882 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$494 k
MEDIAN SERIES A ROUND
$2.3 m
GLOBAL AVG.
$2.7 m
SOFT. ENGINEER SALARY
$61.2 k
GLOBAL AVG.
$42.1 k

Sub-sector Strengths

Fintech

Frankfurt is an international financial hub that is home to outstanding universities and a high concentration of financial and tech talent. The FinTech Digital Hub Frankfurt builds upon these strengths, bringing together talent from the financial and startup sectors. Well known local fintech companies include Clark, Thinksurance, Fincite, United Signals, CrowdDesk and creditshelf.

Cybersecurity

Digital Hub Cybersecurity based in Darmstadt is linked to the Fraunhofer SIT and Germany's National Center for Applied Research ATHENE, Europe's largest cluster for applied cybersecurity. Incubation and funding programs such as StartUpSecure|ATHENE have contributed to growth in the number of startups in the last three years. The city also hosts the European Cyber Security Summit.

Greentech

Frankfurt is home to a prominent hub for Greentech talent and companies. The Green and Sustainable Finance Cluster Germany, co-managed by The Frankfurt School, brings together key players in the sub-sector. Piloted by Commerzbank’s Main Incubator, the Impact Festival, the city’s first large-scale event focused on Sustainability, was launched in 2021.

Reasons to move your startup to Frankfurt

It’s all about collaboration

Frankfurt is tapping into the power of synergy by building bridges with nearby startup clusters and talent pools. For example, neighboring cities Frankfurt and Darmstadt, both home to renowned universities and a strong financial sector, joined forces to create a tech hub to connect technical talent with the banking industry. Frankfurt’s central location in Europe also makes it a logistics hub, with data, people and physical goods streaming through the city continually.

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