September 6, 2019

These were the biggest European tech startup news stories this week

From startup investing by Serena Williams and Usain Bolt to mega-bucks into blockchain, it was another big week for European startup news. Here's the news you need to know.

Want to keep up to date about European startup news? Want to be in the know about controversies, deals, acquisitions, reports and other interesting tech tidbits from across the continent. Look no further!

Here is all the news about startups in Europe this week, brought to you by our pan-European team of Sifted journalists. If you want the news (and so much more) in your inbox three times a week, sign up to our newsletter here.

Fintech focus

? London crypto giant, backed by Richard Branson, tells Sifted they are eyeing a $50m venture arm.


? €21m to fight crime in crypto. London-based Elliptic is one of an emerging group of startups with a focus on identifying illicit activity in the cryptoworld. It just landed one of the biggest blockchain raises in Europe to date.

?? Revolut is hiring 400 people in Porto. Having reached 7 million customers this month, Revolut is on a hiring spree. More specifically, it is looking to pump up its customer support operation.

? UK fintech bags record-breaking £6m crowdfund. Digital wallet firm Curve closed a £6m public raise in record time with a record number of investors, on Tuesday. The firm raised a $55m Series B last month.

Community News

?️ Bigger than Station F. Helsinki looks set to usurp Paris as the home of Europe’s biggest startup campus. Maria 01, owned by the people behind the Nordic’s biggest startup conference Slush, has kicked off a major development plan that will increase the space available from 10,000 to 70,000 square metres (more than twice Station F’s 34,000!).

? Stockholm eyes the world record for the biggest female hackathon.

Big money

? Celeb investor alert. Serena Williams and Usain Bolt have added some star glamour to a $5m raise for Let’s Do This, an online marketplace for endurance events that has been dubbed the ‘Netflix of fitness’. The company lists 30,000 races and takes a cut on bookings.

?️ Personalised stationery firm Papier closed an $11m (£9.1m) funding round, led by Monica Vinader backer Beringea.

?? Spanish solar panels getting hot. Madrid-based solar panel startup has raised €100m to carry out several large-scale solar energy projects. It was founded just last year.

?Neura raises $16m. This Israeli startup looks into data from all sorts of sources (like smartphone sensors and smartwatches) to figure out the timing of people’s daily routines so they can sell it to apps.

? Koru kids raises £10m. This London-based startup for finding and managing childcare is scaling up.

?️ Cazoo raises €27.7m. This UK used-car platform was founded 9 months ago and is due to launch later this year. The idea is to bring Amazon-style home delivery, with cars arriving within two days of being ordered. It was founded by Zoopla’s Alex Chesterman.


? Spotawheel raises €5m. Meanwhile in Athens, another used car platform is picking up speed. Spotawheel, which currently operates in Poland and Greece, also wants to make the used car market feel more like ecommerce.


?️ Jumping ship. According to some new research from the University of Liverpool Management school, female entrepreneurs are less likely to quit their businesses than men.

? Space for one more? American electric scooter giant Bird has begun its Nordic roll-out in Stockholm. There are now eight (8!) electric scooter companies on the streets of Stockholm.

? Israeli tech in NYC. Israeli ride-hailing app Via has made a smart school bus system that optimises bus routes. It also has an app so that parents can track when their kids will get home. It’s being rolled out in NYC.

? Slovenia crypto startup secures backing. Eligma, a payment-processing firm, has raised €4.4m from famed bitcoiner Roger Ver. The company is planning on expanding into Turkey.