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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

The fastest growing tech hubs in Europe

Much has been made of the success of Silicon Valley over the years.

The Bay Area region which plays host to the likes of Facebook, Netflix and the trillion dollar-valued Amazon has made itself become synonymous with technological development.

And whilst Silicon Valley, a region in the southern part of San Francisco Bay, may serve as a global centre for high technology, innovation, venture capital and social media, Europe has fast growing tech hubs too.

Here they are, in no particular order.

Portugal

The list of companies moving here read’s like a who’s who of some of the world’s biggest enterprises.

Google are opening a technology centre in Oeiras, a town just outside Lisbon, which could be beneficial for the local economy.

Mercedes-Benz, who have just launched a Mercedes Maybach S-600s to underpin their status as one of the most innovative automobile marques in the world, opened up a digital tech hub back in Portugal in May 2017 and Volkswagen are planning to follow suit.

In April, the German company announced that they are investing in a software development centre in Lisbon, to enhance the digitalization of their operations – online casino Betway were recently granted a license to operate in Portugal too.

Berlin

Berlin is very much a socialist city, with strong beliefs in people power.

This is reflected in everything from fan culture at football matches to policies that guard against poverty and homelessness.

It is also, though, an innovative city.

Seven tech-based multinational corporations have bases in Berlin, including Google, who have just created a powerful app to convert handwriting to text, Facebook and Apple.

Several promising startup companies are also located in the city surrounded by the state of Brandenburg.

One of them is Soundcloud which, since being founded in 2008, has become a major platform for music and podcasts.

Zalando, founded in the same year, have become an online shop that sells fashion and lifestyle products to customers across 17 different markets within Europe.

London

Much like England’s industrial revolution between 1700 and 1900 that is now being taught at most English schools, the western world is now undergoing a technological revolution that could be taught in 200 years.

London has always been a driving force behind industrial and technological advances. 

After all, the city built the prestigious tower of London in 1066, the world’s first underground railway in 1863 and the world’s tallest Ferris Wheel in 2000.

It has since been a hub of mechanisation that has changed our way of life at an alarming rate.

Deliveroo, for example, allows people to order takeaways via an app, while GoCardless allows people and MNCs a secure way to collect direct debit payments.

Amsterdam

Widely known for stylish football, a colourful nightlife and marijuana-dispensing coffee shops, Amsterdam is a tolerant, progressive city.

It is now also becoming recognized as a hub for thriving tech and ICT.

Many international professionals choose to base themselves in Amsterdam, home to a vastly innovative tech scene and an excellent digital intrastrcture, with the Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX) being one of the world’s largest data transport hubs.

Amsterdam’s three motto(s) are Heldhaftig (Valiant), Vastberaden (Steadfast) and Barmhartig (Compassionate), words created by Queen Wilhelmina in 1941 to remember the roles of the city’s non-Jewish citizens who protested against the persecution of Jews during the Nazi regime.

In a current western world threatened somewhat by far right propaganda, those words are relevant once again – and Amsterdam’s cultural values represent a shining beacon for internationalism, which underpins their technological progress.

Dublin

A city known for Guinness and beautifully lit bridges as well as impassioned political and cultural debate, Dublin is now also widely recognized as one of Europe’s primary tech hubs.

Travel north and one will find MNCs Siemens and Fujitsu, venture south and one can see the likes of Huawei, Microsoft, Dell, Sage and Vodafone.

Remain at the heart of the city, though and there are swathes of business activity, as corporations such as Wrike and Qualtrics re-invent the genre of business software.

Google, meanwhile, are the city’s largest private sector employer, giving jobs to over 6,000 people.

Interestingly, Ireland’s traditional motto is “Obedientia Civium Urbis Felicitas” which means “The Obedience of the citizens produces a happy city”.

And yet, one might argue that it is not obedience that has made Dublin one of Europe’s primary tech or data hubs: rather, it is the will to embrace change.