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Start- and scale-ups aim for growth in 2021

More than 3 out of 4 scale-ups are (somewhat to highly) confident in their current strategy and business model 

Start- and scale-ups remain resilient in face of the pandemic reveals Deloitte’s latest survey. They are expecting 70% (median value) growth in 2021 by focusing on acquiring new customers, entering new markets, and concluding partnerships/resellers.

Lower or delayed new business and customer signings remains the key concern amongst start- and scale-ups, whilst liquidity and operational challenges are primarily experienced by early growth ventures.

65% of the respondents are seeking additional funding of which half for an amount superior to €3 million, which they aim to raise primarily by including investors in the company’s equity and through government grants and subsidies.

Key insights

  • Reduced or delayed sales remains the key concern amongst start- and scale-ups, whilst primarily start-ups (companies <€1 million) have experienced cash flow/liquidity issues.
  • Start- and scale-ups are planning for significant headcount growth in 2021, with an expectation to recruit an additional 2.692 full-time equivalents amongst our 123 respondents, with a median FTE growth of 5 jobs. However, various challenges exist in attracting talent and 1 in 2 respondents is unconfident that they will find the right talent.
  • 2 out of 3 respondents are seeking additional funding, with 1 in 4 respondents seeking funding superior to € 3 million. Start- and scale-ups are raising additional equity funding from existing (42%) and new (75%) investors, whilst also relying on government grants and subsidies (65%).
  • Despite these challenges, start- and scale-ups realised significant growth in 2020 (33% weighted average) and are expecting 70% (median value) growth in 2021.
  • Start- and scale-ups remain confident that they will continue or even accelerate their growth trajectory in 2021, with our confidence index up from 6,9/10 in April 2020 to 7,9/10 in February 2021.
2021 Start- and Scale-ups Confidence Survey report

Five key insights

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