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The ten keys that will mark the Spanish entrepreneurial ecosystem in 2021

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The ten keys that will mark the Spanish entrepreneurial ecosystem in 2021

Among the keys of this year for the actors of the entrepreneurial ecosystem, digitization, open innovation, connection and internationalization, rural entrepreneurship or engagement in the health sector stand out, among others, according to South Summit

BY RRHHDigital, 12:15 – 13 January 2021

The new year is always synonymous with new goals, also for the players who make up the entrepreneurial ecosystem (startups, investors and companies). After 2020 marked by the consequences of the pandemic, this year opens with a thread of hope in the face of the expected success of the vaccine, as well as in a climate of economic uncertainty.

2020 has left an entrepreneurial ecosystem with many losses, but also many successes for Spanish “starters”. The worst, how could it be otherwise, has been taken by startups in the tourism, travel and events industry. Even so, according to figures from the Observatorio de la Fundacin Innovacin Bankinter and El Referente, in 2020 the second best figure in the history of Spain was achieved in terms of investment, reaching 1,101,786 million euros, a figure slightly lower than the total of 2018, which closed with 1,227,090 million euros.

Among those startups that have been successful in raising funds are South Summit finalists like Elma, with a round of 3 million euros, or Streamloots, with a round of 4.7 million with the entry of the CEOs of Shopify and Yelp. As a positive part, the growth of projects in the healthcare, e-commerce or logistics sector also stands out.

Faced with this panorama, the entrepreneurial ecosystem must more than ever anticipate and know how to adapt to market needs. For this reason, South Summit, as a global platform for innovation and high value-added connections between the main players in the global innovation ecosystem, has analyzed the main trends to be taken into account in this 2021:

Digitization: The pandemic has led to the consolidation of remote working formulas, virtual events, online meetings and, finally, it has revealed that we live in the digital age. Therefore, actors who are not already in this era or who are making a significant effort to join it will hardly have a successful future. Employment this year will also be based on demand for professional digitization experts. According to data from the Entrepreneurship Map 2020, carried out by South Summit, 66% of startups want to hire new professionals in their teams this new year, due, in large part, to the new digital employment needs demanded by the current market. Open Innovation: this commercial strategy based on collaboration between companies and startups allows a win-win for both players. A way to bring innovation to life for large companies and give them the agility they need to adapt easily and quickly to changes, which will remain essential this year, as the future of innovation passes, more than ever. , to collaboration. Legal framework: entrepreneurs stress that there is still a lot to do in terms of regulation to facilitate the creation of new projects and their sustainability. In fact, according to data from the Entrepreneurship Map 2020, among its biggest demands are better tax regulations for startups (67%) and access to finance (74%). Rural entrepreneurship: 30% of the Spanish territory concentrates 90% of the population, according to government data. A figure which shows that cities are disappearing and, with them, the great opportunities they offer to undertake. However, the telework modality adopted last year by many companies offers a new horizon for the revival of life and the economy in rural areas, which could also translate into new business opportunities. A situation that empowers rural entrepreneurship, which also faces the challenge of visibility, the support of all stakeholders and the elimination of the digital divide. Health, above all other sectors: according to data from the Entrepreneurship Map 2020, one of the sectors that has progressed the most this year and in which the most is invested is health, how could it be otherwise. In Spain, 40% of start-ups choose to create projects focused on this area; and investment in startups in the sector increased by 78%. Despite this, other sectors will also play a major role in this new year, such as security, AI, as well as infrastructure and mobility, mainly due to the boom in e-commerce. Bet not: in Silicon Valley or in other recognized ecosystems, there is no more talent than in Spain, it must be believed. Making Spain an entrepreneurial nation is a national commitment that involves the whole of society. Entrepreneurship must therefore be supported and the foundations of this ecosystem must be consolidated: the existence of a consolidated market, policies that encourage entrepreneurship, access to financing, the presence of accelerators and the promotion of ‘an entrepreneurial culture and human capital. In fact, our country is the only one in Europe to have two cities (Barcelona and Madrid) as major innovation hubs, as a study by CB Insights shows. In an effort to support entrepreneurship, South Summit opened the registration period for its startup competition last November. Projects that wish to participate in the South Summit 2021 and be among the 100 most innovative startups in the world can be presented until the end of April via the meeting website. https://www.southsummit.co/en/register. Connection and internationalization: A successful entrepreneurial ecosystem requires the connection of its players, both nationally and internationally. Connection is essential for exchanging knowledge, listening to experts, sharing experiences, finding partners, finding financing or growing a business by giving it visibility in other markets. Platforms like South Summit promote, at a global level, this interaction between entrepreneurs, investors and companies in an active search for innovation, not anymore thanks to its new digital tool 365 which allows contacts throughout the year. Entrepreneurship education: the entrepreneur is not born, he is made. Therefore, it is important to have an entrepreneurial training from the first years of teaching, focusing on skills such as social relations, the ability to cope with failure as an opportunity, the promotion of entrepreneurship and creativity to promote disruptive mindsets. Thus, the Spanish education system is faced with the challenge of reconversion and adaptation to new times and modes of teaching and learning in this constantly changing digital world. More investment: In the first four months of 2020, Spanish startups raised 200 million euros, almost 150 million less than in 2019, according to the report The evolution of investment in Spain 2019 / 2020 produced by StartupsReal. Although there is funding for innovation and a strong commitment to talent, Spain’s investment portfolio is still far removed from other European countries like the UK, especially in some specific sectors such as technology. More women: The integration of women in the ecosystem remains an open question. Only 18% of Spanish women are encouraged to start their own startups, according to data from the latest Entrepreneurship Map. Despite everything, 2020 was the year of the sectoral democratization of startups founded by women in Spain: startups have gone from creating businesses in traditionally female sectors, such as fashion or retail, to betting on Fintech, health and education.

Internalize these 10 keys and work to make them a reality, allowing the Spanish entrepreneurial ecosystem to emerge stronger in 2021, which is seen as a year of economic uncertainty, as well as an opportunity for creation and expansion. new forms of business.

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