Skip to content

Daniel Ek announces 1€ billion for ground-breaking European startups on the Node by Slush stage

There’s a lot to be proud of in the European startup ecosystem, as presented in Slush’s whitepaper “Entrepreneurship Redefined”. In the past decade, Europe truly came of age, with companies like Spotify, Adyen, and Supercell leading the way. To date, we have seen over 170 European tech companies scale to a valuation of over $1B and got to witness soaring levels of investment year after year. In addition, top investors from Asia and the US increasingly participate in European rounds and seem to be here to stay. These are clear signs of a vibrant ecosystem – but we need more ambition.

Today, that ambition got a boost of confidence (and capital!) after Daniel Ek, the Founder of Spotify announced that he will devote one billion euros of his personal resources to generate more European ground-breaking supercompanies over the next decade. He will do this by funding moonshots — for example, some of the deep technology necessary to make a significant positive dent and work with scientists, entrepreneurs, investors and governments to do so.

“Despite the ingredients we already have here in Europe, we are still not realizing our full potential. Our thinking can be too short-term, and we tend to be hesitant to take the risks involved in sticking it out on our own and embracing the unknown. Time and again we see our brilliant entrepreneurs handing over their companies to the largest bidder before their ideas have even been fully realized– indeed before they have time to evolve into something even more promising. Too often we see all the well-educated talent I’ve spoken about in a mass exodus to the U.S”, tells Ek to the audience of European founders, operators and ecosystem builders.

However – Europe needs more super companies that raise the bar and can act as inspiration.

“It is up to the entrepreneurial spirit in each of us to do our part to raise the ambition and get the snowball to roll faster. We all know that one of the greatest challenges is access to capital. That is why I am sharing today that I will devote one billion euros of my personal resources to enabling the ecosystem of builders to achieve this European Dream over the next decade.”

“I believe all the ingredients are there, we just have to put it together and then nourish it. We are already seeing an ecosystem grow up around the European startup community, offering new sources of capital and guidance. Entrepreneurship is at the very center of this”, tells Ek to European founders on the Node by Slush virtual stage.  “I hope that you will believe in what you are building and dare to take it all the way. Even if the road to that destination is not always easy.”

Ek continues by saying, that if you are an entrepreneur or scientist working on a big problem, he believes Europe will, even more than it already is, become an amazing place for you to build your company and to have impact.

And we at Slush wholeheartedly support this development.

Thank you Daniel for joining Node by Slush’s stage with David Rowan – we are excited to follow and support the journey on making the European Dream happen.

Read our predictions for the future of European tech here.
Read our whitepaper Entrepreneurship Redefined here.