Startup Estonia (SUE) is a government led initiative managed by the Estonian Development Fund (EDF) and financed by the European Regional Fund. The aim of the SUE program is to give a boost to the development of Estonian startups ecosystem and therefore launch different training activities to support the emergence and development of startup companies as well as improve their accessibility for smart money. SUE aims to increase the number of startups in Estonia from 350 to 1000 by 2020.
Startup Estonia, drawing upon the input of Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), Global Entrepreneurship Development Index (GEDI) and of various international experts, arrived at 2 main conclusions:
- Startup entrepreneurs are struggling to grow the value of the company above 1 Million Euros. The main reason for hitting the glass-ceiling is the lack of experience.
- The ideation phase is well covered with a great number of initiatives, but the ecosystem is lacking of programs focusing on team building and developing the idea further.
In order to alleviate these bottlenecks various initiatives will be launched under Startup Estonia. In essence they can be divided into 2 groups: training programs contributing to building strong teams and launch new startup companies; secondly activities concentrating at helping startups grow and attain readiness to attract investments to finance them. All initiatives follow a particular order – initial team – team development with product and client development – business conception – investment readiness.