How a hobby project turned into the leading online magazine about startups in Europe

EU-Startups-8th-Birthday

8 years ago, in October 2010, I published the very first post on EU-Startups.com. I started the website because I was, and still am, excited about technology, new business ideas and Europe’s future. Back in 2010, more and more cross-border funding deals, expansions and acquisitions were happening, and I saw a need for an online publication covering startups from a European perspective.

Since then, about 3,000 news articles, interviews, lists and guides have followed, and over the years EU-Startups slowly and steadily grew its readership. Many great contributors from across Europe joined the team, and we constantly developed the site further by also adding a job board, a directory and a research section.

It’s important to mention, that until January 2016, EU-Startups was run mostly as a hobby project – which might explain the spike in traffic from then onwards:Visits-GrowthToday we count about 100,000 visits and more than 225,000 page views per month. Also, we reach about 20,200 Facebook fans, 24,000 Twitter followers, 2,000 Instagram followers and more than 26,000 newsletter subscribers. We’re very thankful for our loyal readers and event attendees. Without you, Menlo Media (EU-Startups) would not be the slowly but nicely growing media/events company it is today.

Check out how the web design of EU-Startups changed between 2010 and 2018:EU-Startups-Designs-over-the years

By the way: Our EU-Startups Job Board also grew nicely over the years, and with 400+ current job opportunities on the site, today it can be considered one of the leading sources for startup jobs in Europe. We just optimized the pricing structure: While basic job ads are free, the standard option of Featured Job posts is available for just €49 and provides you with additional visibility!

Our Events: In 2014 we did the very first edition of the EU-Startups Conference in Munich with 90 attendees, in 2015 in Berlin with 130 attendees, in 2016 again in Berlin with 200 attendees, and 2017 a final time in Berlin with 375 attendees. In 2018, shortly after moving to sunny Barcelona, we rebranded the event to EU-Startups Summit and on April 24 we gathered 700 founders, investors and startups enthusiasts from across Europe.

In the beginning of this year, my colleague Pablo Hernández joined Menlo Media (EU-Startups) as COO, which clearly helped to accelerate our growth. In order to further develop our online magazine and events business, we just hired our 3rd full-time team member (more info follows soon!). With combined efforts we’ll organize next year’s EU-Startups Summit, on May 2-3 in Barcelona, which will gather over 1,200 of Europe’s best startups and investors!

Also next year, or 2020 at the latest, we’re considering to do an equity crowdfunding campaign – probably on Seedrs (we’re currently completely bootstrapped). Not because we need it, but as a community-driven media and events business we want to give stakeholders of the European startup ecosystem the opportunity to get more actively involved and to further improve EU-Startups for the benefit of the whole startup and investor scene in Europe. Also, this will enable us to grow even faster in the coming years while slightly lowering our financial risks.

Building a business out of a startup publication is not easy and over the past 8 years we saw many good blogs coming and going. For some examples, check out our article “The graveyard of European startup blogs” from 2017 – where we listed 16 European startup publications which shut down their operations over the past few years.

We’re not going away, but have big plans for the future! 🙂 In the next 5 years, we want to further grow the audience of EU-Startups to over 1 million monthly visits, while also growing the EU-Startups Summit to be the best startup event in Europe – attracting about 5,000 visitors per year. We’re doing this with the clear goal to further grow our positive impact and to follow our vision to connect the European startup scene and to encourage entrepreneurship within Europe.

In order to survive and thrive, we already have a diversified set of revenue streams, like our research section, our startup sourcing service, our job board, advertising and events. Long story short: We’re here to stay! If you like what independent startup publications like EU-Startups are doing, you should consider to follow our newsletter, to advertise with us and/or to attend our events. Thank you!

EU-Startups-Summit-Team

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