Estonian startup scene report: €1B in funding and €958M in turnover in H1 2022

The first half of the year has been extremely successful for the Estonian startup sector. For the first time, the total amount of investments in Estonian startups has exceeded €1 billion and the turnover of all projects increased by 68% to €958 million. Startup Estonia prepared a report on how the first half of 2022 looked for Estonian startup scene. AIN.Capital publishes a brief overview of the Estonian startup scene report with the key facts. 

Investments and Exits

  • The total amount of investments in Estonian startups reached the €1 billion in the first half of 2022, more than quadrupling the sum of investments made in the same time period last year. 
  • In total, there were 44 new investment deals averaging almost €23 million each, 28 of those were worth at least €1 million. 
  • The biggest investment in the first half of 2022 was raised by:
    • Bolt, €628 million in a round that doubled startup’s valuation to €7.4 billion;
  • During the first half of 2022, there were already three acquisition deals in the ecosystem.
    • FinTech startup EveryPay, a platform for receiving payments, was acquired by LHV Group. 
    • Stebby (formerly SportID), the largest wellness service marketplace in the Baltics, announced an exit from Funderbeam platform via management buyout and investment by Livonia Partners. 
    • Supervaisor, building technology to make streets safer with AI and computer vision, was acquired by Motive Technologies.

Startups’ turnover

  • Estonian startups generated a record-breaking €958 million in turnover in the first half of 2022, a 68% increase compared to the same period in 2021, when it amounted at €571 million.
  • Startups with the largest generated turnovers were Bolt with €467 million that is 49% of the whole sector, Veriff with €32 million, Swappie with €25.7 million, Comodule with €18.6 million, and Starship Technologies with €16.4 million.
Estonian startup scene report-1

Employment and Taxes

  • The first half of 2022 is showing a significant rise in people working in the Estonian startup sector. The employee count of Estonian startups has risen 36% in a year, from 7113 to 9692 people employed at the end of the second quarter of 2022.
  • The current top employer is Wise, Bolt, Swappie, Veriff, and Starship Technologies. According to the research, top 5 employers take up 41% of the whole employee count of the Estonian startup sector.
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Images: Startup Estonia
  • During the first half of the year, Estonian startups have paid €83.4 million worth of employment taxes, which is 46% more than the employment tax contribution of €57 million at the end of the second quarter of 2021.
  • The largest contributors for the first half of 2022 were FinTech, Transportation & Logistics, Business software, services & HR, CyberTech, and CleanTech  startups.
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  • The most employment taxes amongst individual startups were paid by Bolt with €13.8 million, Wise with €11 million, Veriff with €3.7 million, Starship Technologies with €2.1 million, and Monese with €1.8 million.

Salaries in startup sector

  • The Startup Estonia’s analysis shows that average monthly gross salary in Estonian startups over the first half of 2022 was €2,840, which is approximately two times higher than the Estonian average.
  • At the same time, the average salary rate in startups has risen 6% compared to the same time last year — it amounted at €2,685 in first half of 2021.
  • The largest average gross salaries by month were paid in Communication (€3,318), Business software, services & HR (€3,304), Transportation & Logistics (€3,273), CyberTech (€3,180), and FinTech (€2,972).