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A newly released report on corporate venturing in Europe makes a case that European corporations are underestimating the success of European scale-up companies and missing out on the potential for significant returns and a major source of competitiveness, innovation and growth in Europe.


The report, co-authored by Global Corporate Venturing, IESE Business School and Tech Tour, further argues that innovation and digital disruption is becoming fully entrenched in the corporate landscape and corporations are increasingly having to become flexible to collaborate with start-ups and stay ahead of their competitors.


William Stevens, Group Managing Director of Tech Tour says that, “Europe has a strong potential for increasing investment and valuations. There are many great deep tech companies seeking more investment and partnership, and an increasing number of success stories are starting to emerge. Already today approximately 20% of global “unicorn” companies were founded in Europe”.

The Tech Tour Growth 50, a list compiled by Tech Tour, reveals Europe’s fastest growing equity backed tech companies on a yearly basis, and demonstrates not only the potential to be found in Europe but the sectors in which Europe has a clear competitive advantage compared to the USA and Asia, with major success stories emerging in B2B software and services, particularly in fintech, security and IoT.


Further evidence to point to this growth potential is underlined in global figures for corporate venturing, with corporate venture investment now representing 2/3 of venture capital globally. “We’re seeing a major shift in active corporate investors globally. 75% of fortune 500 companies are now active in corporate venturing, and 41% have their own venture capital unit. Corporate venture investment also continues to grow across all industries, with $83 billion invested in 2016 globally. However, the EU remains much less active compared to the USA and Asia”, says James Mawson, Founder and Editor of Global Corporate Venturing.


Corporations can leverage this potential however by building a venture strategy with clear commitment from top management, and by clearly stating why they are searching for innovation, which fields they are considering, and how they plan to create value. “Clear innovation strategies separate winners from the also-rans”, says Julia Prats, Head of the Entrepreneurship Department at the IESE Business School, “Corporations must be able to attract a high number of start-ups to their venturing strategies, and as we move towards a hybrid model in which innovation is combining the best features of the corporate and start-up world, we start to provide solutions for complex problems we face in businesses and society at large”.


Read the full report here: The Case for Scaling Corporate Venture Investment in Tech in Europe


About Global Corporate Venturing

Global Corporate Venturing is a global, multimedia ‘insights as a service’ group dedicated to serving venture investors, such as corporations, universities and governments, directing funding to entrepreneurs in the innovation economy. For more information, please visit or contact James Mawson, Founder & Editor-in-Chief,


About IESE Business School

For over fifty years, IESE, the graduate business school of the University of Navarra has been at the forefront of management education, developing and inspiring business leaders who strive to make a deep, positive and lasting impact on the people, companies and society they serve. For more information, please visit or contact Julia Prats, Head of Entrepreneurship Department,


About Tech Tour

Founded in 1998, Tech Tour is a Community that facilitates investment into world class entrepreneurs through events and an online matching platform between growing and emerging innovative companies and investors across borders, regions, sectors and stages. The Tech Tour Growth Forum is a leading independent European event. For more information, please visit or contact William Stevens, Group Managing Director,