Berlin vs London: these two cities are certainly the most dynamic and attractive in Europe for entrepreneurs. Between the London ecosystem whose cogs work wonderfully and the Berlin digital bubble which seems to know no limit, the two European capitals compete for the honorary title of “favorite destination to create its startup”. Here is a quantitative comparison made by 99designs likely to help entrepreneurs in their quest for Eldorado …
The reputation of Berlin as a “creative city” is well established. Each year, its galleries, museums, festivals and other cultural events (like the Berlinale for example) attract millions of tourists. And within this urban frenzy emerged charismatic districts like that of Bergmannstrasse which perfectly represents the digital dynamism, the creative boiling and the cultural entertainment of the city. It’s hard to be more multicultural than Berlin, as it is estimated that 44% of new businesses are created by foreign entrepreneurs.
The city offers creatives and entrepreneurs incubators, workspaces, and accelerators of many and varied businesses. And it’s not just the private sector: the federal government has also implemented a high-tech support plan to help digital businesses succeed. This environment offers both startups and older companies the ideal conditions for dynamic growth.
In 2010, the city already had nearly 43,000 startups – quite an impressive number considering the population (ratio of 124 startups per 10,000 inhabitants). The number of people working in the digital sector is estimated at 60,000.
According to the Global Startup Ecosystem ranking, in 2015 Berlin was the most effervescent city in the world in terms of startup creation. Here are the numbers:
- Every 20 minutes, a startup is created in Berlin;
- By 2010, the startup ecosystem will have created more than 100,000 job openings.
The UK has regained color since the financial crisis and the high-tech sector has become one of the key drivers of the country’s new economic growth. More than £ 459 million was invested in emerging digital businesses in the first half of 2015 – 66% more than the previous year.
A figure illustrates the grip of the technology sector on the capital in recent years. 5 years ago, the city had only 250 digital companies. Since then, that number has exploded: there are more than 3,000 in London today, employing more than 1.5 million workers. This growth should continue in the years to come. It is therefore not surprising to count the British capital among the four most important startup ecosystems in the world (the first in Europe). London entrepreneurs have easy access to a large pool of affluent consumers, large businesses, investors and ambitious government initiatives.
Like Berlin, London is also renowned for its cultural and artistic effervescence. Dynamism has nonetheless slowed down in recent years, notably due to the ultra-rapid population growth. This has created significant demand for residential and commercial real estate, pushing prices up and pushing the “creative class” ever further.
Thus, the two cities offer many advantages to entrepreneurs: they constitute a privileged scene as much for their cultural and creative aspects as for their access to numerous investments, a qualified workforce and government assistance. London makes starting a business ultra-easy, inexpensive and very fast. Berlin, whose cost of living is much lower (for roughly equivalent wages), offers a judicious location for the start-up of startups.