5 Countries Where Tech Is Thriving
“There’s much more than just London and New York out there... who else is catching the tech bug?”
4 min read
As we fully dive into the age of technology, more and more countries are climbing on board. Today we’re looking at just a few of the places around the world experiencing astounding success in tech.
Israel is quite the prodigy when it comes to its knack for tech and innovation. Israel’s vibrant tech scene—Silicon Wadi— is quickly rivalling San Francisco’s own Silicon Valley. As a country only slightly larger than New Jersey and with a population of roughly 8.5 million people, Israel is proud to be the home to approximately 4,300 start-ups. The nation that has only existed for 69 years is also considered to have the most technologically advanced military in the world*. In March, Mobileye— a company that produces Advanced Driver Assist Systems software for cars —received the biggest deal in the history Israeli tech companies when it was acquired by Intel for $15.3 billion. From automated reality companies like Infinity AR, to people in MedTech like Zebra who have created algorithms to detect breast cancer, to genealogy sites such as MyHeritage— Israeli tech has it all.
* SheCanCode's sole purpose is to aid the cause of women in tech - we don't have any collective opinions on any global conflicts.
According to a report by the Small and Medium Business Administration in South Korea, 2016 was a record high for South Korea in venture capital, banking a total of 2.7 billion in USD in VC funds. While American venture investments decreased by 9.3% in 2016, South Korean investments increased by 3.1%. South Korea’s prime minister Lee Nak-yeon has also proven to be pro-startup. In the spring, Nak-yeon gave a speech sharing his plans to make Korea a nation for entrepreneurs in hopes to reduce the country’s high youth unemployment rate. Startups currently making it big in South Korea include Urbanbase— a company that uses virtual reality for interior design planning which raised $1.8 million in Series A funding, Zig Bang—an apartment searching site Goldman Sachs is investing $33 million dollars in, and Viva Republica—who recently got $48 billion dollars from Paypal to go towards their digital payment platform Toss.
Startup Chile was created by the Chilean government to reboot Chile’s economy and in hopes that Chile would become the leading hub for tech and innovation in South America: their three-program offer entrepreneurs the chance to build and boost their start-ups. They are currently the #1 accelerator program that exists in Latin America and in the six years Startup Chile has existed - their programs have created more than 5,000 jobs. You can check out this article written by the Guardian about Chilean tech companies and view the Santiago Startups List to read up more about the work going on in 'Chilecon Valley.'
Last year, TechCrunch reported a comprehensive chronology of Amsterdam’s rise into tech. TomTom— a watch and GPS manufacturer now turned multi-million dollar software producer— was one of the first Dutch companies to set the spark that lighted Amsterdam’s success in the startup world back in the ‘90s. In 2016, Amsterdam received the iCapital award and was named the European Capital of Innovation on behalf of the European Commission. The Dutch government is on board to make the Netherlands a major player in the Euro-tech world- Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands is currently serving as Holland’s start-up ambassador and StartupDelta2020 is set to receive government funding for at least 3 more years. Want to know some of the cool techie products the Dutch are creating? Check out Living Light, MiniBrew, and Wercker.
Articles upon articles detail the tug-of-war that currently exists between London and Berlin to be Europe’s leading city for technology and innovation. While I can’t weigh in on that debate, I can say that Berlin’s startup ecosystem rated #7 on the 2017 Global Startup Ecosystem Report published by Startup Genome. A minimum of roughly 1,800 active tech start-ups are based in Berlin. Berlin-based companies like Rocket Internet, Zalando, and Billpay are making millions (and in many cases, billions) of dollars each year. A few German tech companies you may have heard of include Babbel, a language learning app and website rivalling Duolingo, Clue, a period and menstruation cycle app endorsed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and HelloFresh, a meal delivery service that sends ingredients for healthy recipes right to your doorstep.
Where else in the world are you seeing a tech takeover? Let us know your thoughts, and be sure to tweet at us @SheCanCodeHQ.
Adriana Chavez is a student and writer based in New York. She currently works as part of the Day of the Girl-US action team where she runs the Girls in STEM blog series. She is passionate about coding and intersectional feminism. When not hidden behind her computer or a great book, she can be found walking the streets of New York with her rescue dog.