Amsterdam’s tech and startup sector continues to boom

According to a new report by Dealroom that was commissioned by StartupAmsterdam, the Amsterdam tech ecosystem makes up 13% of the total job market in Amsterdam, even though tech companies represent only 1.4% of all companies in Amsterdam. The key takeaways of the report are:

  • 69,000 jobs were identified at 1,600 Amsterdam-based tech companies
  • 13,000 jobs were added in the last two years (2016-2018)
  • Young companies are the ones driving growth

Tech surpassing other sectors

With 69,000 jobs identified, the tech and startup sector has surpassed the finance sector (46,000), as well as the hospitality (39,000) and retail (26,000) sectors in terms of jobs. It is also important to note that the figure does not include tech jobs at multinationals such as Shell, Philips or ING, where the main product is not tech-based.

Notably, more than 54% of the 69,000 jobs are in home-grown companies. Furthermore, according to the data, 84% of startups in Amsterdam are home-grown and 16% are foreign. All foreign tech companies, including Uber, Netflix, Tesla, Amazon and Microsoft, provide around 32,000 jobs.

Tech companies are the fastest growing job engine in Amsterdam

StartupAmsterdam commissioned Dealroom.co to compile a report outlining how the Amsterdam startup ecosystem is contributing to the overall economy in terms of job creation. The report maps out the growth that happened between December 2016 and December 2018. In those two years, employment in Amsterdam’s tech and startup ecosystem increased by 13,000 jobs, which indicates an annual growth rate of 12%. In comparison, the advisory and research sector added 7,000 jobs, the real estate sector added 4,000 jobs and the financial sector added 1,000 jobs in the same period.

“Rapidly expanding startups in the technology industry are vital to Amsterdam’s economy, and Amsterdam boosts sustained growth and innovation within the startup ecosystem,” says Udo Kock, alderman for economic affairs at the City of Amsterdam, adding: “To further strengthen our tech and startup businesses, the City of Amsterdam is investing €5 million in the next four years of the StartupAmsterdam programme.”

New companies adding the most jobs

Among the home-grown businesses, the biggest employers are Booking.com, TomTom, Picnic and Adyen. Remarkably, younger companies – business no older than five years, such as Picnic – are the ones adding the most new jobs to the economy. Picnic is also the fastest hiring scale-up in Amsterdam in 2018, followed by Adyen, Takeaway, newcomer Swapfiets and MessageBird.

And Amsterdam continues to be popular with startups and scaleups. “Setting up Picnic’s HQ in Amsterdam has proven to be a great decision, as the city is an easy sell to both Dutch and international tech talent,” says Roline Spijkervet, head of talent acquisition at Picnic. “The high quality of life, fluency in English and outstanding infrastructure make Amsterdam a great city to relocate to. The tech and startup scene are also famous at a global level. All this makes it easier to attract highly-skilled technical talent, which Picnic is always on the lookout for.”

Venture capital investment activity has grown

Venture capital investment is a key driver behind startup expansion, so increased availability of venture capital enables Amsterdam-based startups to accelerate their hiring plans. The number of venture capital rounds tripled in the past six years, while the number of rounds exceeding 1 million Euros reached a record number of 50 in 2018. The same year even saw several investment rounds exceed 20 million Euros, including those of Ohpen (Series C), Framer (Series B) and Tiqets (Series B).

More opportunity for growth

There is plenty of potential yet to be unlocked in the tech and startup sector. In Amsterdam, female founders continue to be under-represented. Startups with at least one female founder make up only 12% of all startups in Amsterdam.

Get in-depth information

For more information, read StartupAmsterdam’s press release or delve into the entire report by Dealroom.