News Title

The Central Eastern European (CEE) startup ecosystem stands as a testament to the region's burgeoning innovation and entrepreneurial spirit, with a combined enterprise value soaring to an impressive €213 billion in 2023, marking a remarkable 2.4x growth since 2019.  

Key Takeaways 

Venturing into the heart of this thriving ecosystem, the latest Dealroom report - Central and Eastern European startups 2024 uncovers a dynamic landscape shaped by the relentless pursuit of innovation and fueled by the vision of pioneering founders. With over 26,000 startups, the CEE region serves as a hotbed of creativity and ingenuity, attracting attention from investors worldwide.  

 

However, beneath the surface of this remarkable growth lies a tale of both opportunity and challenge. While startups and scale-ups backed by venture capitalists have experienced exponential growth, adding €21 billion in value over the past five years, access to capital remains a persistent hurdle for many aspiring entrepreneurs. Despite the presence of over 7,000 VC-backed startups, concentrated primarily in Estonia, Lithuania, and Poland, securing funding continues to pose a significant challenge for startups across the region.  

 

 

Most promising sectors 

Yet, amidst these challenges, there are signs of resilience and progress. Funding into burgeoning sectors such as Climate Tech and Artificial Intelligence (AI) is rising, with AI startups alone accounting for 15% of total CEE VC investment over the last five years. In Q1 2024, AI startups captured 45% of CEE VC investment volume, signaling a growing appetite for cutting-edge innovation within the region.