Release Startup Heatmap Europe 2022

Release Startup Heatmap Europe 2022

For the 7th consecutive year, the Startup Heatmap Report ranks the Top 50 most popular startup hubs in Europe. The study is based on a sample of more than 24,000 pre-selected founders equally distributed over Europe’s regions ranging from Iceland to Istanbul.

Top 10

The 100 pages report gives a detailed view of the state of European tech hubs from Aarhus to London. It features insights about investments, internationalization patterns and founder sentiments.

For example, it shows that 75% of Europe’s founders are very or extremely optimistic about the development of their local ecosystem and 57% would still prefer Europe over the US as a starting location if they could choose freely.

Berlin startups have created the most remote jobs in the EU overall, while Madrid shows the highest percentage of job offers that allow for remote applications.

Despite the pandemic the importance of migratory founders in 2021 has sharply increased from 27% to 37% of founders being foreign-born. In international comparison the UK still benefits the most from founder migration with a net surplus of 36% more founders than if there was no migration.

Yet, Berlin has beaten the UK capital in terms of city-level popularity for the 2nd year in a row. With 37.36% of all founders in the annual survey choosing Berlin as a place they would like to startup, it maintains a 4% point lead over the UK. On 3rd rank follows Barcelona with 20%.

The report shows many insights of developments in smaller hubs too:

  • 2021 created 12 ‘unicorn’ ecosystems in Europe where startups cumulatively raised more than 1bn € in a year: London, Berlin, Stockholm, Tel Aviv, Munich, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Madrid, Copenhagen, Dublin, and Helsinki
  • Based on the cost of a senior developer investments in Berlin, Paris and Stockholm proved to be worth more on average than in all other hubs.
  • In terms of job creation per million € investment Hamburg, Duesseldorf and Warsaw lead the European ranking
  • The long-term investment growth based on the increase of the 3-year average was highest in Prague, Bucharest, Minsk and Utrecht.
  • Vienna and Lisbon are the cities with the highest shares of female entrepreneurs in the categories of small and large cities respectively
  • Nottingham, St. Gallen, Lund have the most productive entrepreneurial universities for their small size.
  • In terms of growth of ecosystem activity measured by the increase of the number of meetup participants Manchester, Istanbul and Zurich are Europe’s leaders.


With such a wealth in information the Startup Heatmap Report by DEEP Ecosystems and the European startup initiative proves to be a resource for policy makers and practitioners who want to learn how to grow their local innovation hubs. If you are interested to make use of the data for your innovation strategy, contact DEEP ecosystems via this link.