According to a recent report on Greece’s startup ecosystem by management consultants, Found. ation, venture capital, and venture debt have continued to grow, although its angel scene remains low-key. Oddly enough, 2020 was a banner year, with the sale of InstaShop to Delivery Hero valuing the company at $360 million, making it the largest exit for a Greek-founded startup with operations in Greece. The pandemic has meant Greek investors and startups realize that if they can work from anywhere and hire from anywhere, Greece is not the wrong place to be.
And the Greek VC market benefits as the diaspora returns from the megacities of the West. The nation’s startup ecosystem is also attracting more outside investors, who see low capital costs, an educated workforce, and the move to remote working/hiring. Bessemer Venture Partners, Insight Venture Partners, and FJ labs are all backing Greek startups, and Microsoft completed its first acquisition in the country.
Greek startups and investors also collaborate with near neighbors in Cyprus, Romania, Albania, and Bulgaria. Investors in our survey said they were excited by sectors such as infrastructure, agtech, cybersecurity, proptech, efficient software, renewable tech, and platforms aimed at helping the recovery of blue-collar jobs.
Did they see green shoots after the worst of the pandemic? Yes, but still small.
Investors are spreading their wings outside of Greece “as location becomes irrelevant and work-from-anywhere the new standard” although “the local ecosystem is always a priority.”
Here’s who we spoke with:
- Panos Papadopoulos, partner, Marathon Venture Capital
- Dimitris Kalavros-Gousiou, founding partner, Velocity Partners
- Aristos Doxiadis, partner, Big Pi Ventures
- Pavlos Pavlakis, principal, VentureFriends
- Yorgos Mousmoulas, partner, Metavallon
- Myrto Papathanou, founding partner, Metavallon
- George Dimopoulos, founding partner, VentureFriends
- George Karantonis, partner, Metavallon
- Katerina Pramatari, founding partner, Uni.Fund
- Apostolos Apostolakis, Partner, VentureFriends
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