Apply now to join the finals of our big Pitch Competition at the EU-Startups Summit in Barcelona!


Editor’s note: Since this article was published, the EU-Startups Summit has been postponed until April 29-30, 2021, due to Coronavirus (COVID-19). New application deadlines for the pitch competition will be announced around October 2020.

Soon, we’re going to host this year’s edition of the EU-Startups Summit in sunny Barcelona. We’ll have inspiring speakers like Glovo CEO Oscar Pierre, Unbabel CEO Vasco Pedro, HolaLuz founder Carlota Pi (and many more!), great networking opportunities, an “Investors on Stage” session, a workshop stage, but most importantly: An exciting Pitch Competition with 15 of Europe’s most promising early-stage startups!

Our goal is to find and showcase Europe’s best seed and pre-seed startups out there! For this year’s pitch competition, we expect a total of about 1,000 applications. So far we already count 615 applications.

The Prize Package: The winning startup team of this year’s Pitch Competition will receive a prize package with a value of roughly €85,000 and gets prominently featured by EU-Startups and other publications. The prize package will include up to €50,000 in AWS Credits, €9,000 in credits for an enterprise package of the social media monitoring tool Senti.One, €8,500 in credits for an explainer video maker account of mysimpleshow, €2,000 in credits for the design platform 99designs, a Spaces coworking membership for 2 people & 1 year (value: €4,800), a 1 year Guru Plan for SEMrush worth €2,200, and a 1 year business subscription for the sales CRM ForceManager (value: €7,800). We’ll announce one additional item for the prize package in the coming days and expect to end up at a prize value of about €85,000.

The Jury: The selected teams will get a lot of valuable feedback from a jury of well-known venture capital investors. Our jury includes Reda Bensaid (Eight Roads), Beatrice Aliprandi (Talis Capital), Borja Breña (Nauta Capital) and Lina Chong (Target Global).

In addition, we’ll have many more VC firms, business angels and startup accelerators among our more than 1,500 attendees. And: A top-notch networking app, which will help you to find the right contacts.

Apply now: If you’d like to pitch your startup with a 3-minute-presentation in front of an interested audience of about 1,500 people (incl. hundreds of investors, startup enthusiasts, media people and an expert jury), you can now apply here! The application deadline is on February 29.

Precondition: Your startup should be in pre-seed or seed stage, not older than 2 years, should have raised no VC funding yet (or less than €500K) and has to be based in Europe.

Timings & Tickets: The EU-Startups Summit will take place on May 28-29, from 10am to 6pm. The finals of the pitch competiton will happen on the main stage on May 29. In the evenings of both event days we’ll have a nice after-party for continued networking. Tickets are available here.

Our Event Sponsors

Shareworks-logoCombining cutting-edge technology with outstanding client service and premier wealth management capabilities, Shareworks by Morgan Stanley is designed to simplify the complexities of equity plan management, while helping employees realise the full potential of their benefits.

Catalonia-Trade-InvestmentCatalonia Trade & Investment is the public agency that works to attract foreign investment to Catalonia, promoting the area as attractive, innovative and competitive business location. Check their offerings and the Catalonia Startup Directory.

Spaces-logoSpaces offers creative working environments with a unique entrepreneurial spirit and a great community. Add an international network of mobile workspaces and a full calendar of business events and networking lunches, and you’ll see just how Spaces keeps you engaged and open to new possibilities. Originating in Amsterdam, Spaces wants to redefine the way work is done.

Berlin-based medical cannabis startup Sanity Group raises €20.1 million Series A funding

Berlin-based medical cannabis startup Sanity Group raises €20.1 million Series A funding

Sanity Group

German startup Sanity Group, one of Europe’s leading medical cannabis and wellness brands, has announced the completion of a €20.1 million Series A funding round.

The round was led by Calyx, a European Cannabis-focused investment fund, and HV Holtzbrinck Ventures, one of Germany’s largest Venture Funds. Among the participants were also Karan Wadhera (managing partner at Casa Verde), TQ Ventures (Scooter Braun’s investment fund) and Cherry Ventures. This investment represents the largest cannabis financing round in Europe to date. 

Sanity Group, founded in 2018, is unlocking the potential of cannabinoids to develop innovative cannabinoid-based pharmaceuticals and wellbeing products. The company was created by German entrepreneurs and cannabis advocates Finn Hänsel and Fabian Friede, and aspires to become a market leader in the fast-growing German and European cannabis markets. It’s fully licensed and is currently operational with two business units, Sanatio Pharma, a medical cannabis company devoted to the development of new therapies and pharmaceuticals, and wellness brand, VAAY.  

“Sanity Group is not only investing in the wholesale of medical cannabis but also in research, internationalization, drug approval, alternative dosage forms and the use of cannabinoids for wellness products, including cosmetics,” says Managing Director Finn Hänsel. “Our aim is to become number one in Europe, a market that some believe could surpass North America in size and volume, depending on the progress of legalization across the European continent.”   

The lead investors were joined by existing investors Atlantic Food Labs and several angel investors, including the founders of the well-known German advertising agency HEIMAT. The funds will be used to drive forward strategic projects to give people better access to medical and medically-related cannabis products.  

“Sanity Group has quickly established itself at the forefront of innovation in Germany, the fastest growing cannabis market in Europe,” says Karan Wadhera, Managing Partner, Casa Verde Capital. “With a strong penetration into pharmacies across Germany, a multitude of THC and CBD formulations serving the medical cannabis segment, an array of well-being products already in market, and an assembled team of world-class scientific and operational experts, we believe the company is well-positioned to become a global leader in both the medical cannabis and wellness categories.”  

Dealroom, Europe’s top startup research platform, raises €2.75 million Series A

Dealroom, Europe’s top startup research platform, raises €2.75 million Series A

Dealroom founders

Well-known research platform Dealroom has this morning announced raising €2.75 million Series A funding, co-led by Shoe Investments and Knight Venture Capital. The funding will support the company’s continued international expansion in Europe and beyond, including making key hires in these markets. 

If you work in the startup world or investment sector, then Dealroom will already be on your radar. Founded in 2013, Dealroom is an Amsterdam-based data and software platform, which shows worldwide intelligence about startups, innovation and venture capital investment. Dealroom is used by every player in the startup and tech industry to search and compare the performance characteristics of innovative companies, pull reports and track industry trends. Its reports have become the reference in the European startup landscape, having been featured in major publications such as the Economist, the Financial Times, the BBC, The New York Times and the Washington Post. Today, Dealroom has built up a community of 30,000 registered and active users, and is trusted by hundreds of paying customers including world-class corporates (Google, Stripe, EY, Deloitte, Amazon) and top-tier venture capital firms (Sequoia, Insight Partners, LocalGlobe, Accel Partners).

The Dealroom platform is run using a combination of manual research and automated tools, which incorporate AI, natural language processing, data science and APIs. Working together, these elements identify and process relevant company information and insights in real-time. Polished with expertise from external players like governments, hubs and VCs, Dealroom has created a data management network and interface that provides invaluable insights to anyone working in the industry. 

“We spent the first six years honing our methodology, technology and relationships to establish Dealroom as the number one resource for data and research on European technology,” said Yoram Wijngaarde, founder and CEO of Dealroom. “Now that we are well established, we are thrilled to use this funding to make some key hires, expand our data capabilities, forge new partnerships and continue to build communities with local governments and other key players in the ecosystem.” 

In addition to its daily users, such as founders and VCs looking to compare startups across Europe, Dealroom provides governments and 15 European hubs with fully managed white-labelled solutions to understand, access and communicate intelligence and data about their ecosystem. Today, several European ecosystems including the UK (Tech Nation), France (La French Tech), Berlin (Senate), Netherlands (TechLeap), Amsterdam (StartupAmsterdam) and over a dozen other hubs across Europe are working with Dealroom in this way. 

Diederik Ingen Housz, Managing Partner at Knight Venture Capital, said, “Following our initial investment in December 2017, we watched Dealroom execute on its plans with great precision and were keen to continue supporting the company in its next growth phase,” 

Ronald van der Heijde, Managing Director at Shoe Investments, also commented, “We have been watching the value Dealroom brings to VCs and corporates looking for the world’s most promising companies, governments who need to make sense of the data about their ecosystem, and founders and entrepreneurs in Europe who need local and private support. We look forward to working with Dealroom as it continues to scale”

Paris-based CybelAngel raises €32.9 million Series B to help companies manage digital risk

Paris-based CybelAngel raises €32.9 million Series B to help companies manage digital risk


French startup CybelAngel, a digital risk management startup, has today announced closing a €32.9 million Series B funding round, from a consortium of European VCs and successful US based entrepreneurs. This new funding brings its total raised to around €47.6 million, and will be used for global expansion, partnerships and product development. 

CybelAngel, founded in 2013, helps companies manage digital risk in real time. Its platform detects over one billion documents per day and uses artificial intelligence to assess the sensitivity of the information it finds. All of this information is compiled into relevant, actionable reports for enterprises, allowing them to quickly and easily strategise effective remediation and takedown. The wider effect is the empowerment of companies to protect their intellectual property, brand, and reputation – at the same time as following global regulatory requirements.

The demand for this kind of service is growing, as enterprise data is now shared on more third-party platforms than ever before. Whether it be on the cloud, on connected or IoT devices, or among external contractors and vendors, the threat of critical data leaks beyond a company’s firewall grows every day. In fact, the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2019 ranks data theft and cyber attacks among its top five global risks, making due diligence on company data protection an essential part of today’s companies activities. For this reason, CybelAngel is working closely with major global Fortune 500 customers across both Europe and North America.

This round was led by Prime Ventures, alongside TempoCap, with participation from Bpifrance and Open CNP. CybelAngel’s new investors include angel investors Olivier Pomel and Alexis Le-Quoc (Datadog), Renaud Deraison (Tenable), Lou Shipley (formerly Black Duck Software), and Stephan Dietrich (Neolane, acquired by Adobe).

Damien Henault, partner at TempoCap said, “CybelAngel’s platform, based on a unique combination of AI and human expertise, represents a real paradigm shift in the industry and we’re proud to invest in a cybersecurity firm that is truly disruptive and innovating at scale. We look forward to supporting their success over the coming years”.         

In conjunction with the round, CybelAngel also announced that Pieter Welten, Partner at Prime Ventures, has joined the company’s Board of Directors. “CybelAngel’s technology is a must-have in every CIO’s cybersecurity posture. Their solution has already been successful at saving customers billions of dollars’ worth of potential damage from data leaks. We see an expansive global opportunity in CybelAngel, and we are excited to help them grow,” said Welten.

London-based Unmind raises €9.1 million to improve employee mental health

London-based Unmind raises €9.1 million to improve employee mental health


UK startup Unmind, the workplace mental health platform, has announced it has raised €9.1 million  in a Series A funding round. This mental health platform is growing fast, at a time when employee wellbeing is an increasing focus of both small and large companies, already supporting employees in more than 50 countries.

Unmind, founded in 2016, is built on the belief that everyone has the right to a healthy mind. Its workplace mental health platform empowers employees to proactively measure and manage their mental wellbeing through scientifically-backed assessments, tools, training, and signposting. It also gives organisations tools too, compiling aggregated and anonymous data about their employees, allowing them to make informed decisions about their wider mental health strategy. Its digital content has been created with the help of top clinicians, academics, and authors, and covers topics like optimising sleep, overcoming burnout, and positive body image. Whats more, the startup has already garnered global recognition, being used by major brands like Just Eat, ASOS, William Hill, British Airways, and The John Lewis Partnership, with over 350,000 people having access to its services. 

This funding round was Led by Berlin-based Project A, with the continued support of Felix Capital, the funding, and will support company growth, and its commitment to measurably improve the mental health of employees in workplaces around the world. 

Dr. Nick Taylor, Co-founder of Unmind and Clinical Psychologist comments, “At Unmind, we believe that looking after our health means caring for the whole human, and by weaving work and wellbeing into one, we can build organisations where everyone can fulfill their potential. This funding will help us to meet growing international demand, offer new services to our users, and further realise our vision of a world where mental health is universally understood, nurtured, and celebrated.”  

Antoine Nussenbaum, Partner and Co-Founder, Felix Capital comments, “Over the years we’ve seen an enormous shift in how we think and talk about mental health – but little has been done in terms of practical solutions. Unmind continues to demonstrate how their technology is being used to help organisations and their employees measure, manage, and improve their mental wellbeing.”

Thies Sander, Founding Partner, Project A comments, “Unmind is a world-leader in digital mental health and continues to innovate across all verticals and geographies in a highly competitive space. Across the globe, we are seeing a continued, positive shift in the way that society and the workplace think about mental health. This is driving greater demand for innovative solutions to a growing problem and we believe that Unmind is best-placed to meet this considerable opportunity”.

Oxford VR secures €11.9 million to expand its virtual reality therapy across the US

Oxford VR secures €11.9 million to expand its virtual reality therapy across the US

oxford vr

UK-based Oxford VR has today announced the closure of a landmark €11.9 million Series A funding round led by Optum Ventures and supported by Luminous Ventures. Existing investors including Oxford Sciences Innovation, Oxford University Innovation and GT Healthcare Capital Partners have also participated. The funds will be used to accelerate US expansion of its virtual reality therapy solution and to continue to expand its treatment pipeline. 

Founded in 2017, Oxford VR has been on our radar recently and was included in our list of 10 European VR startups to watch in 2019 and beyond, and our article 10 UK-based startups to watch in 2019 and beyond. As a spinout from Oxford University’s Department of Psychiatry, the startup has a wealth of evidence-based data behind it. Building on two decades of research by Professor Daniel Freeman, the startup uses virtual reality to create powerful, automated psychological treatments that revolutionise the way people experience therapy. 

Oxford VR’s first clinical trial was for fear of heights (published in The Lancet Psychiatry) and shows how automated virtual reality therapy can yield large benefits, as well as help overloaded mental health providers expand their treatment reach and standardise clinical excellence. With mental health disorders on the rise in every country around the world, sustaining low patient engagement rates and high cost of care, virtual reality therapy could be part of the answer in addressing these challenges.

CEO Barnaby Perks said: “We are tremendously excited to close this investment round and to be working with Optum Ventures to drive our next level of growth. We would not be at this exciting tipping point without the collective efforts of the team at OVR, in particular Katie Bedborough, our CFO & COO. Together with Optum Ventures and Luminous Ventures, and with the continued support from our existing investors, we can expand our clinical leadership footprint and accelerate our pipeline of automated VR therapy treatments.” 

Izzy Fox, Principal of Luminous Ventures said: “Oxford VR has taken world-class science from Oxford University and applied cutting-edge immersive technology to create a transformational mental health solution which can deliver significant value for overloaded healthcare programs globally. Immersive therapy is accessible, engaging and effective, and has demonstrated exceptional clinical outcomes and we are thrilled to be partnering with the Oxford VR team.”

Along with this investment, Ash Patel, Principal at Optum Ventures is joining the Oxford VR Board of Directors. “Oxford VR has taken a technology-led approach to create evidence-based solutions that will make treatment more accessible to patients who need it. We believe Oxford VR’s solutions will benefit those who need access to high quality, effective cognitive behavioural therapy,” says Patel.

As part of its expansion in the US, the startup OVR has established a strategic partnership with the National Mental Health Innovation Centre (NMHIC), where its multiple pilots are aiming to advance mental health outcomes in the US. And it doesn’t stop there, with the startup also looking to the East. Having partnered with AXA Hong Kong and The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), the company is also running a first-of-its-kind pilot to test virtual reality’s potential to support better mental health outcomes in Asia.