Without question, Lithuania is rapidly emerging as a tech and startup hotspot in the Baltics and through Europe, competing with major Western countries.
With an abundance of tech talent, international-facing events, a strong portfolio of signature sectors such as fintech, cybersecurity, and ed-tech, and favorable conditions for entrepreneurs. So it’s unsurprising that Lithuania has just become one of the most significant startup hotspots in 2020.
Lithuanian startups have also been featured as the most promising European startups, especially in fintech and blockchain.
Why Start Business in Lithuania
Vilnius, the capital city, is one of the most budget-friendly European cities. As a result, the living standard is much higher than in most Western European countries for a reasonable amount of money.
Interest in this relatively new technology cluster is still rising, and we at EU-Startups are keen to see how the ecosystem develops in the following years.
Foreign entrepreneurs are looking to scale in Lithuania to benefit from its ecosystem and connect them with like-minded participants.
Size of the Startup Scene
At the moment, Lithuania has over 1,000 startups firms and one official unicorn - Vinted, an online marketplace for old and vintage apparel.
Vinted raised €250 million this year, has a market capitalization of more than €3 billion, and has more than 45 million users worldwide.
In the first quarter of 2021, total sales of Lithuanian companies in domestic and international markets totaled €520.2 million, an increase of 110 percent over the same time in 2020.
Additionally, exports of high-value-added goods and services generated by Lithuanian startups reached new highs in the first quarter of this year, totaling €348.4 million, a figure that exceeds the €168.1 million recorded in the first quarter of 2020 by 107 percent.
How Resilient Is Lithuania with The Pandemic
Lithuanian startups expanded and conquered new markets throughout the epidemic; they even capitalized on the opportunity offered by the crisis for commercial development, achieving a slew of impressive accomplishments.
Businesses grew at a phenomenal rate both last year and this year; the number of startup employees jumped by 15% in the first half of the year to 12,400.
Additionally, if we look at a yearly timeframe, we can see substantial growth in startup talent — the growth rate has topped 33% over the last year.
Taxes paid by startups grew to €48.3 million in the first half of the year, up from €30.1 million in the same period the previous year.
Advantages of Vilnius as a Startup Hub
Vilnius is a fully developed and vibrant startup ecosystem. It includes many venture capital funds and accelerators, including LitBAN, Vilnius Tech Park and Tech Loft.
The city hosts various events ranging from meetings to large conferences - all of which are critical for businesses.
Vilnius will undoubtedly continue to attract foreign investors and companies, helping the local ecosystem thrive.
Which Sectors to Watch in Lithuania
While Lithuanian founders and the entire startup ecosystem are well-known for their work in the Fintech sector, we also see significant promise in the cybersecurity, education technology, SaaS, life sciences, and gaming industries.
These are the most in-demand industries, and the growth prospects for these businesses are also the highest - which is why you should watch these sectors.