According to the recent Global Accelerator Report, Europe is on par with North America in terms of accelerators and support services to startups, with 113 accelerators against 111 in North America. Those accelerators support a similar number of startups (2968 vs 2574).
Yet when it comes to output, the EU performance is not satisfactory. In 2015 there have been 33 exits from European accelerators, against 193 in US.
Accelerators are just an example. There is no doubt that European support services to startups remain too fragmented and in some cases even redundant. Should every city have independent incubators? Has Europe gone crazy for accelerators? There could be both efficiency and effectiveness gains from greater synergy.
- a comprehensive map or census of support services.
- a “federation roadmap” for those services to better work together.
Regarding the first point, what are good examples of “mapping” exercises, such as the mentioned Global Accelerator report? What other support services are there that must be considered?
Regarding the second point, are there inspiring examples of federation of services? I personally know for instance the Climate Information Brokers initiative, which brings together 150 key players in the field of Climate Change in order to reduce redundancy and improve the effectiveness of their services. Could this provide a blueprint for startup support?
And when it comes to collaboration, how do we deal with “Not Invented Here” syndrome and turf wars? How do we ensure that public and private investment in support services is not creating a bubble?