Startups · London

London vs. Berlin - which is the better startup city?

David Feldman Data Analyst at Scribd

May 2nd, 2015

I've heard a lot of talk about Berlin of late and how much less expensive it is and also its great access to UX and engineering talent. London is obviously an epicenter of finance, but I hear you they go to berlin weekly. For a new startup, what's a better spot?
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Diane Kaston Director of Retail Business Development at E-commerce Jewelry Start Up

May 4th, 2015

tel aviv, best talent, best city, best weather, tons of startups, tons of talent, everybody speaks english, and a beach!

Paul Travis Multifaceted Online Executor: Product Marketing to Program Mgmt. to Business Development

May 2nd, 2015

David, I think there are a few factors that your individual situation may dictate: access to capital, specific talent needs, ecosystem, and perhaps others.

My point is based on being in the Seattle startup ecosystem for 25 years, which has always played "second fiddle" to Silicon Valley -- except perhaps in startup ecosystem, which is thriving.

So I'd consider weight these conditions based on your situation, relative to London or Berlin -- good luck!

David Crooke Serial entrepreneur and CTO

May 2nd, 2015

Being British, I can't stand London for more than a few days, Berlin is more civilized. However, both are expensive, and there is software industry outside the perimeter. Do you really need to be there?

Anonymous

May 3rd, 2015

Consider Helsinki or Espoo, Finland. We have a good reputation ;) Supercell, Rovio (Angry Birds) etc...

Heidi Dangelmaier disruptive category innovation for female + digital native market | new product + tech + brands + services + media

May 2nd, 2015

In our global community I believe anywhere..  as long as your product has vision, and there is a true market need.

Larissa Lielacher Data Scientist / Co-CEO at Flock Data Analytics

May 4th, 2015

Hey David,

Berlin is considered to be very hot right now. A lot of start-ups, especially those operating in the DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) are based there. Compared to London, life is fairly cheap and from what I've heard, there's great access to talent. From what I know, there are many working spaces and in terms of quality of life, Berlin has a great reputation. 

In terms of access to funding, I would say that London has more opportunities, and that they are more organised.

One thing you should also consider are your target clients. I don't know what kind of product you have, but in my experience, being able to meet potential clients in person makes things a lot easier. 

Depending on your business, you may have clients all over the place and may need to travel. In that case, you should also consider airport proximity and cost of travel. 

Simon Bone Founder At Zoom Labs

June 7th, 2015

the UK has a (recently re-elected) a government that has a very pro-startup attitude - for example if you're looking to have investors they will be able to take advantage of very large tax breaks on their investments using the "Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme" (SEIS

Paul Sheppard Founding Partner

June 8th, 2015

Clearly it will depend on the business model and your client base.  The first question is what is the start up looking to achieve?
Ease of fundraising will depend on the scope of the project.


Anonymous

June 7th, 2015

Does it needed to be on a City like Berlin or London to built a startup consuming customers there?

Andrew Lockley

June 8th, 2015

There's no reason to win your first customers in London. In fact, it's probably best to pick somewhere more typical of the population. London probably has the better startup ecosystem, but Berlin is far cheaper to live in, and thus development costs are likely to be lower.