In 2021, startup funding will surpass €600 billion worldwide, breaking previous record funding. Today, he has well over 1,000 unicorns around the world, and the number is growing rapidly. Startups play a key role in driving economic growth both globally and regionally, and investors are increasingly interested in supporting promising young companies.
However, Romania does not export new products and services developed by startups to the same level as other European countries. why? It could be due to lack of added value and innovation proposed by Romanian start-ups, or lack of trust among international clients regarding the business ecosystem in the free economy, which is fairly new compared to its European sister companies. there is.
International expansion of a start-up requires global sales capabilities, networking skills and the ability to consider distances, serve quickly and keep clients happy. As a result, many local start-ups choose to open offices in Europe or the UK to gain access to international markets.
So how can Southeastern start-ups become more competitive in the global marketplace?brava angels Board members offer some suggestions for founders interested in scaling their startups.
#1 Validate Locally, Plan Globally
Carmen Sebe, CEO of cloud investment platform SeedBlink and board member of Bravva Angels, said: Sales and ongoing new customer acquisition. Startups are more likely to get funding and thrive if they successfully implement a repeatable sales process and consistent strategy.
One market can be too small for a startup to scale, so expansion is a must. But you can’t do that until you prove the market accepts you.
A solid plan is required before attempting to raise funding for expansion. There are a few questions, such as how many people and where to hire them, what is expected of them and in what time frame, what resources are needed, and where to get them from. you should answer Several companies in his CEE, such as FlowX, Hunch and Kinderpedia, have successfully transitioned from local to regional or global and raised funding last year.
Then, to expand into other markets, founders must: Find a financing partner with local market knowledge or find a VC that covers those countriesInvestors can fund your business, but they can also help you grow. “
#2 Expand where you have the strongest network
Nina Bratfalean, investor, mentor, and board member of Bravva Angels, has this to say about scaling startups: The most common criteria are countries with similar status and growth in the industry you are looking to join.
For example, for an insurtech headquartered in Switzerland and serving SMM, the next logical step in expansion could be Germany. His SMM sector in Germany is actually the backbone of the country’s economy. Another option could be the UK, where the insurance industry is advanced and mature enough to ‘digest’ technological upgrades.
A well-known quote in the VC world, “Your network is your net worth.”, whose value has been statistically proven. So expand where you have the strongest network for both potential clients and investors.
Statistics show that over 30% of deal leads come from former VC colleagues or work acquaintances. 30% are from VCs that initiate contact with entrepreneurs. 20% came from referrals from other investors and 8% came from people in the VC’s existing portfolio of companies. Only 10% come from cold emails from entrepreneurs who don’t have an existing relationship with the VC.
This network-driven lead generation process can pose significant challenges for entrepreneurs from minority backgrounds, including women and minority entrepreneurs. Diversity issues are well documented, but progress over the last few years has been slow, but gradual. “
#3 Build sustainably for long-term impact
Larka Pfizer, Chairman of the Green Revolution Association and Board Member of the Brava Angels: “There is a huge opportunity to stimulate the scaling of green start-ups in Europe. The European market is like a sponge for products and services that prove value, meet demand and create new areas, eager to absorb any opportunity, especially when it comes to sustainability projects.
Authorities say the target of 90% decarbonization by 2050 will not be possible in urban areas unless alternatives such as bicycles, scooters, electrification of public transport, people and logistics are seen as equal partners in the mobility mix. I understood that I could not achieve it.
Sustainability, for the most part, comes along with R&D, technology, agribusiness, mobility, waste and many other directions, but various European directives and normative It also accompanies actions. Therefore, start-ups in this space should seriously investigate the legal directions and restrictions that may arise sooner or later and that may directly affect their business.
We have a unique opportunity not only to create products and services in a highly interactive and dynamic sector, but also to co-create areas of public and European policy to regulate this sector. A lot of courage and creativity has marked the last years of sustainable mobility, and many start-ups have shown that new markets can be created from scratch and expanded globally (e.g. Uber, e-bike, Lime, Bolt) – just to name a few).
#4 Hire a Good Lead Person and Deliver a “Skin in the Game”
Ilinca Paun, Founder and Board Member of Bravva Angels On creating the right setup to scale your startup: “Be brave and lead because there is a lot of new learning involved. It takes a brave and adaptable attitude to
Customers are culturally different and you may expect multiple surprises along the way, sometimes failing on the first try. If we can solve the problem at , we have more opportunities regardless of the country.
So before choosing a market, see the magnitude of the problem and imagine tougher competition than local when it comes to the value proposition. For example, the market model is fairly local, with the potential for maximum regional expansion to CEE. The more advanced European countries are already “filled” with these models. They are usually based on influencer marketing and network effects built on communities with region-specific behaviors.
Flip is a notable example of expansion so far in CEE, Bulgaria and Hungary. They have moved with full control over one side of the market (the supply side) and only need to “hack” the demand of used phone buyers in each country.
Ultimately, B2B startups should avoid working with outsourced distributors from new markets to help them acquire customers. They fail in 90% of cases. Don’t think you’re in the other 10%. Hiring a good lead person is a very efficient way to set it up, so you need to provide an “in-game skin”. (bonus of fairness and success), keeping him/her 100% focused on your business.
This is an opinion piece on how startups can create international setups from the early stages by Bravva Angels, the first business angel investment community dedicated to women-founded startups.