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EU Venture Capital Plan to ‘Lure’ Strong Startups

Jyrki Katainen, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness; Elżbieta Bieńkowska, Member of the EC in charge of Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs; Carlos Moedas, Member of the EC in charge of Research, Science and Innovation. Photo Source: @jyrkikatainen

Jyrki Katainen, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness; Elżbieta Bieńkowska, Member of the EC in charge of Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs; Carlos Moedas, Member of the EC in charge of Research, Science and Innovation. Photo Source: @jyrkikatainen

The EU announced on Tuesday, the launch of a 2.1-billion-euro venture plan to boost investment in Europe’s innovative startups, while aiming at the same time to keep these high-potential players closer to home, narrowing the gap with competitors, the US and China.

With a goal to attract more investors, the EU has agreed to a new plan that aims to double the amount of venture investment and at the same time generate an additional 6.5 billion euros from the initial sum of 410 million euros of public funds.

Some 1,500 startups and scaleups are expected to gain access across the EU.

The European Commission and the European Investment Fund (EIF) announced six private funds – Aberdeen Standard Investments, Axon Partners Group, Isomer Capital, LGT, Lombard Odier Asset Management and Schroder Adveq – which, backed by the EU, will work towards raising up to 2.1 billion euros.

“In venture capital, size matters. With VentureEU, Europe’s many innovative entrepreneurs will soon get the investment they need to innovate and grow into global success stories. This means more jobs and growth in Europe,” said Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness.

Indicatively, only 26 EU companies reached “unicorn” status (market valuation of over 1 billion dollars) at the end of 2017 compared to 109 in the US and 59 in China.

VentureEU is set to provide new sources of financing, offering Europe’s innovators the chance to evolve into world-leading companies.

Meanwhile, the European Commission is working towards a single EU VAT area. In this direction it tabled a proposal for targeted measures to aid SMEs operating cross-border in the EU while new rules have also been agreed at EU level aiming to simplify VAT obligations for thousands of SMEs that sell goods online across the Union.

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