European tech startups set policy priorities for global growth
Allied for Startups members met from December 8th to 10th in Brussels to discuss their priorities for the upcoming year. This is the first meeting of this kind where not only entrepreneurs but organisations, that represent thousands of startups, incubator-programmes and whole ecosystems came together to discuss policy priorities. Identified and voted were onlineplatforms, copyright, and a net-neutrality to as its chief policy goals for 2016. Efforts will be directed towards legislators but also towards regulators, like BEREC, who are responsible for drawing up guidelines for net-neutrality.
“For 2016 we see the our main activities around the Digital Single Market-Agenda mainly copyright, platforms and a free and secure flow of data” said Lenard Koschwitz, who runs the Brussels office. “We further want to contribute to debates around a startup-visa and help policy makers tobetter understand the nature of startups and what distinguishes them from SMEs for example”
“It was truly inspiring to see digital leaders from 15 EU member states, 18 associations representing over 10,000 startups fully engaged to set these priorities together“ said Melissa Blaustein, Allied for Startups’ Founder and CEO. “I am incredibly enthusiastic about Allied for Startups’ work in the coming year and I look forward to supporting these efforts alongside my colleagues.”
Guy Levin, Executive Director of UK-based Coadec (The Coalition for a Digital Economy), added “It is the best time in history to launch and grow a digital startup in Europe, but decisions made in Brussels during the next year will have a huge impact on our digital future. There’s enormous potential for Europe’s digital economy, but only if we continue to win the argument for innovation. In Allied for Startups we have a strong united voice campaigning in vital EU debates, including on platforms, copyright and Data Protection.”
Gianmarco Carnovale, President of Roma Startup said: “The EU should begin to care much more about actively creating conditions for local startups to compete and scale globally. Current EU policies on digital single market and telecoms focus more on large players than innovation stemming from startups. Creating a favorable environment to best and innovative practices, no matter the size, is always the best choice, in a global economy which is getting increasingly fluid”.
Koschwitz sums up: “All these initiatives will feed into a better environment for startups in Europe which finally enables them to grow on a global scale. Startups want to be competitive globally, not only in Europe. If startups have to be global from day one, we want policy makers to think exactly the same way.”