May 26, 2023

The top 10 fastest-growing German startups

Germany is starting to bounce back when it comes to recovering from the downturn — here are the startups driving growth and nabbing talent the quickest

Sadia Nowshin

5 min read

Yannic Kress/Unsplash

Germany is one of Europe’s top tech hubs, with 31 unicorns (only surpassed by the UK) since 2005, 20.3k startups and $72bn odd in funding over the last 10 years.

And although the country’s tech ecosystem has suffered like most of Europe during the downturn, signs are that investment is starting to creep up again after Q1 of this year.

So, which German startups are driving that growth and nabbing the talent to grow fastest?  Sifted looked at Dealroom data to pull out the 10 fastest-growing startups hailing from the country over the past 12 months — to eliminate the growth of tiny teams, startups had to have raised at least $50m to be considered. 


10 fastest growing-German startups


Founded: 2021
Team growth past 12 months: 264% to 160 employees
Last raised: €200m Series A in April 2022
Total funding: $330m

1KOMMA5° installs energy systems like solar panels and heat pumps, to make carbon-neutral homes that are less reliant on the energy grid. It last raised a €200m Series A round in April 2022, and Dealroom estimates it to be valued at between $880m-1.3bn. 

Matter Labs

Founded: 2018
Team growth past 12 months: 157% to 72 employees
Last raised: $200m Series C in November 2022
Total funding: $258m

Matter Labs' main product is zkSync, a crypto scaling solution that reduces the cost of Ethereum transactions and aims to increase the accessibility of trading on the blockchain. Its Series C round included backing from Lightspeed Venture Partners and Andreessen Horowitz, and Dealroom estimates its valuation to sit between $800m and $1.2bn. 


Founded: 2018
Team growth past 12 months: 114% to 30 employees
Last raised: €200m ($215m) in February 2022
Total funding: $220m

HY2GEN develops, builds and operates production plants for the creation of green fuels. Alongside hydrogen-based efuels, it also produces green ammonia and green hydrogen as clean alternatives. Its €200m fundraise was the largest private green hydrogen-focused capital raise to date, according to the company. 


Photo: Enpal

Founded: 2017
Team growth past 12 months: 111% to 1419 employees
Last raised: €215m Series D in January 2023
Total funding: $513m

Enpal helps consumers install solar panels into their homes, with the option to rent panels as well as buy them outright. It’s one of Germany’s unicorns after being valued at $2.5bn in January 2023, and is backed by the likes of SoftBank, HV Capital and BlackRock. 


Founded: 2010
Team growth past 12 months: 101% to 279 employees
Last raised: €86m Series D in March 2022
Total funding: $257m

Sunfire helps industrial companies decarbonise with renewable energy alternatives by building electrolysers that they can use to make renewable hydrogen or renewable syngas, which is used in the production of efuels. It was valued at $600m after its March 2022 raise, according to Dealroom. 



Founded: 2012
Team growth past 12 months: 92% to 184 employees
Last raised: €40m Series A in May 2022
Total funding: $54.2m

HiveMQ offers a software broker that helps move data between connected devices easily. Its Series A round was backed by investors including Molten Ventures, Earlybird and Mubadala Capital.


Founded: 2021
Team growth this year: 86% to 151 employees
Last raised: $13m Series A in January 2023
Total funding: $70m

Mondu is a B2B buy now, pay later fintech that gives B2B businesses and marketplaces with flexible payment options for customers. Previous investors include Cherry Ventures, Fintech Collective and Peter Thiel’s firm Valar Ventures, and it was valued at $215m at its Series A raise earlier this year.  


Founded: 2021
Team growth past 12 months: 79% to 177 employees
Last raised: €103m Series A in November 2021
Total funding: $113m 

Helsing uses AI to improve the operations of existing government defence platforms and create new ones. The platform works using live data, so is useful in the case of immediate threats like cyberattacks, rather than the longer-term strategic changes that other systems work on. Spotify founder Daniel Ek sits on its board after his firm, Prima Materia, led the startup’s sole funding round in 2021. 

Integrity Next

Founded: 2016
Team growth past 12 months: 79% to 52 employees
Last raised: €100m in March 2023
Total funding: $110m

Integrity Next helps businesses manage the sustainability of supply chains and meet ESG requirements. Alongside reporting according to legal standards and helping companies do the required level of due diligence, the platform can be customised to scan for relevant ESG categories across suppliers, depending on industry and country. It raised €100m in funding from EQT Group. 


Founded: 2016
Team growth past 12 months: 73% to 159 employees
Last raised: $60m Series A in March 2022
Total funding: $60m 

An employee engagement and development platform, Leapsome’s platform helps companies track employee goals, run internal surveys and offer customisable skills training. It's a graduate of the Google for Startups Accelerator, and has since gained funding from Creandum, Insight Partners and Visionaries Club.

Want more on Germany's startup scene? Sifted has you covered:
👉 Ranking: 100 German companies to watch
👉 Trends to keep track of
👉 Briefing: The most exciting up-and-coming startups

Sadia Nowshin

Sadia Nowshin is a reporter at Sifted covering foodtech, biotech and startup life. Follow her on X and LinkedIn