A Few Successful European Startup Unicorns
Aileen Lee, founder of Cowboy Ventures, coined the term “unicorn” in 2003. A unicorn is a term to indicate that a privately held start-up company is valued at over $1 billion. These startups belong to several industries including fintech, e-commerce, healthcare, HRtech and more.
In 2019, Europe was said to have 12% of the overall unicorns in the world
The pace at which tech startups are mushrooming the world over indicates that there is scope for more innovation across the B2C and B2B marketplace. Let’s dip into a few European based tech unicorns that have achieved unicorn status early in their journey:
Bolt (earlier named Taxify) is an Estonian transportation platform with its headquarters in Tallinn, Estonia. Bolt deals in food delivery services, micro mobility and ride-hailing. Since its inception in 2013 Bolt has faced many challenges but rose above them and achieved several milestones, be it the first transportation app in the world to allow customers to pay for their trips via mobile or being Europe’s Fastest Growing Companies 2020 published by the Financial Times. The most recent valuation of Bolt is said to be €1.7billion.
Cabify is a company that provides transportation solutions. Cabify was founded in 2011 and has its headquarters in Madrid, Spain. The company provides vehicles for hire via its smartphone app which is available both on Android as well as iOS. With Cabify the customers can select their location, vehicle type and book a ride. The app provides an option for digital payments via credit cards. The company is now valued at $1.4 billion.
Celonis is a SaaS model company that deals in big data analytics and process mining technology. It was founded in 2011 and has its headquarters in Munich, Germany. It is known to be one of the leading companies in business transformation software. It offers intelligent business cloud to empower businesses to optimise their operational process flows and function seamlessly. Celonis acquired Banyas last year to to give it a way to connect to internal ERP systems more easily. The company is now valued at around $2.5billion.
Deezer is a diverse global music streaming company. It was founded in 2006 and has its headquarters in Paris, Ile-de-France, France. Deezer is the only music streaming service with Flow, which comprises of a unique mix of all your old and new favourites in one stream. It is based on a proprietary algorithm that enables the feature of back-to-back customised fresh discoveries for you. It lets you stream music on any device be it mobile, television, tablet etc. The most recent valuation of Deezer is at $1.4 billion.
Graphcore is a UK based company that develops semiconductors. Graphcore has created a new processor, Intelligence Processing Unit (IPU), which act as accelerators for Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning technology. Graphcore got its unicorn title in 2018 and has also been listed amongst 15 british tech unicorns that have shown outstanding growth. The valuation of Graphcore is $2.0 billion.
BenevolentAI, is a biotech business founded in 2013 in London with the aim of harnessing AI and ML technology mine research papers to speed up the scientific discovery and enhance drug discovery and development process. BenevolentAI has been successful in its vision and is now one of the biggest private AI based company in Europe. It gained its unicorn states in 2015 and today valued at more than $1.8 billion.
Synk is an open source server less security tool. The company is based out of London, UK. It was founded in 2015 and aims at helping the developers secure use of open source code by integrating the existing workflow of a developer. It offers cyber security by continuously monitoring the applications and identifies the threats and fixes them to protect the sensitive information from hackers. After an investment received in Jan, 2020, Sync is now valued at more than $1 billion.
Deliveroo was founded in 2013 and starting from just 5 employees it now employees more than 2000 employees. Owing to its proprietary technology it acquired its unicorn status last year and is valued at more than $2billion. Deliveroo is an end to end food delivery service that delivers restaurant food through a technology that allows it to predict the time taken to prepare a meal and efficient ways of delivering it. Companies like Amazon have invested in Deliveroo, encouraging it to create new products.
Wefox is a Berlin-based insurtech company. It is a digital platform that connects brokers, insurance agencies, and customers under one platform to facilitate simple and tailor-made consultations. Wefox Group also owns ONE, which is an insurance app that aims at protecting the data by identifying the risks through AI and IoT devises. WeFox is valued at $1.7 billion and is known to be the first European insurtech unicorn.
Babylon Health is a London based health service provider that has developed Babylon, a healthcare application that lets a patient consult a doctor remotely. The app uses Artificial Intelligence to let the users consult the health professionals by using a video consultation option or via a text message. Babylon Health achieved its unicorn status last year and its current valuation is more than $2 billion.