Web

Report: Europe VC scene catching up to US

europe vcsSilicon Valley is at the center of the venture capitalist world – but maybe not for long. And despite accusations of a struggling and limiting environment, a report from VC firm Earlybird shows that the European VC market could very well be giving the US a little competition in the near future. It’s a younger, newer atmosphere than in the US, where there is an older tradition of investment firms. Venture capitalism is relatively new to Europe, and it’s supposed to get stronger.

According to Earlybird, Europe VCs are producing higher exit multiples and lower entry valuations than the US, meaning that more stateside startups are receiving insanely high pre-IPO valuations but exiting their private stage at a considerably smaller worth in comparison to those in Europe. Sound familiar? You could probably list a few tech startups from the past year that were pegged at insanely high values and didn’t see the same numbers when they filed their S-1 forms.

In fact, since 2005 European VC-backed IPOs either matched or bested US VC-backed IPO performance. The catch is that there are simply more VC firms in the US. Our market is more mature, more expansive, and just all-around bigger. But this means that the handful of successful European VC firms are flourishing, and it has contributed to a buyer’s market. There’s a lack of confidence in investing in startups, keeping initial valuations lower and boosting capital efficiency well above that in the US. It might sound like a problem at first glance (less money, less confidence, fewer investors), but it’s actually creating a very profitable and promising situation for the European VC market.

europe vcsVC firms in Europe are much choosier than those here, and money generally only gets put into the top contenders of startups. There’s less room for waste. So proportionally, European VCs are outperforming those in the US – but that doesn’t mean their market is altogether more successful.

The US VC scene is in a period of flux, it seems, but is generally considered to still be thriving. Everyone’s got an idea and a VC firm supporting it. Unfortunately, there have been a number of flawed projects that received ridiculous amounts of financial backing (we can’t help but think of Color). Is it that we’ve been the center of digital innovation for so long that our confidence is beginning to get the best of us? Or that so many great startups have come out of Silicon Valley in the past 10 years that any company with the right buzz words can get VCs to empty their pockets? Whatever it is, it’s precisely a problem Europe doesn’t have. In comparison, European startups are receiving lower entry valuations, less cash throughout their development, and approximately the same exit value, yielding a much higher return on investment.

There’s a persisting idea that the European VC culture is less aggressive, less innovation-focused than the US, and this has limited its approach to entrepreneurship. The numbers seem to suggest that while more sensible, European VC firms are less inclined to tackle as many ideas as US firms – for better or for worse. And this could actually be a thorn in our side: We’re more willing to fund an idea, but sometimes to a fault. And while the European method appears more practical and in the long term profitable, it is undeniably a more restricted approach that can negatively impact entrepreneurs.

Product Review

Apex Legends' unique gameplay is the battle royale revival we needed

Apex Legends has amassed incredible popularity, bringing features and an approach that we haven’t quite seen before. We’ve decided to see if it still shapes up a month later.
Movies & TV

Stay inside this winter with the best shows on Hulu, including 'Legion'

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Mobile

Saving for a vacation? Here are the best apps to help you manage your wealth

Looking to start managing your money, but don't care for intricate software or spreadsheets? Lucky for you, we made a list of the best budgeting apps designed to help you rein in your expenditures.
Mobile

T-Mobile, unlocked Galaxy Note 9 phones finally getting Android Pie update

Android 9.0 Pie has been released. But is your phone getting Android 9.0 Pie, and if so, when? We've done the hard work and asked every device manufacturer to see when their devices would be getting the update.
Music

The best free music download sites that are totally legal

Finding music that is both free and legal to download can be difficult. We've handpicked a selection of the best free music download sites for you to legally download your next favorite album.
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Mobile

Hey Google, why did you kill off Allo, your best messaging app in years?

Allo, Google's messaging app, has shut down. I convinced my closest friends and family to switch to the app two-and-a-half years ago when it debuted, and we've been using it since. With its death, I'm feeling pain and sadness.
Social Media

Twitter takes a cue from Instagram and Snapchat with new quick-swipe camera

Twitter is giving the "what's happening" treatment to photos and video by allowing users to access the in-app camera fast enough to catch and share the moment. The new Twitter camera is now accessible with a swipe.
Movies & TV

No TV? No problem. Here's how to watch the Final Four online

Whether you want to watch the Big Dance on your phone or on your smart TV, we have the lowdown on the ways to watch all the March Madness you can handle. Grab your foam finger and some nachos.
Social Media

Yep, it’s not just you. Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp are down for many

Facebook's family of apps has been suffering issues for much of the day. Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook itself have been out of action for users around the world, with the company scrambling to sort it out.
Web

Privacy-focused DuckDuckGo added to Chrome as a default search option

DuckDuckGo is now listed as a default search option on Google’s popular Chrome browser. The privacy-focused search engine was added this week as part of the browser's latest update.
Computing

Netgear’s new Nighthawk Pro Gaming router keeps you connected at a nice price

Netgear's latest router expands its Nighthawk range with a $200 entry. It's still fast and helps reduce lag in gaming, but it does it at the lowest price of a Nighthawk Pro Gaming router yet.
Social Media

Facebook explains its worst outage as 3 million users head to Telegram

Facebook, if you didn't already know it, suffered a bit of an issue on Wednesday, March 13. An issue that took down not only its social networking site, but also Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger. On Thursday it offered an explanation.
Computing

How to easily record your laptop screen with apps you already have

Learning how to record your computer screen shouldn't be a challenge. Lucky for you, our comprehensive guide lays out how to do so using a host of methods, including both free and premium utilities, in both MacOS and Windows 10.