Innovating the defence setor

According to the European Defence Agency (EDA), defence investments grew by 16% in 2021 compared to 2020, totalling €52 billion. The continued increase in DefenceTech investments, number of start-ups and innovations is required to provide governments with the high-end defence capabilities they need in the future to stay competitive, increase the European sovereignty, and confront new emerging threats.

However, long sales cycles and a lack of investor understanding of defence technology have made it difficult for European venture capital firms to back defence innovations. Traditionally, governments were behind the funding of defence projects. In recent years DefenceTech start-ups are attracting more and more attention of venture capitalists. Furthermore, some investors are focusing on start-ups with dual-use defence technology, which has a civilian use case in addition to its militarypurpose.

DefenceTech start-up mapping

Skopai has created a mapping of DefenceTech start-ups in Europe and Israel with a particular focus on French start-ups. The mapping is based on the data on 113 start-ups listed on the Skopai platform in June 2023. The data on start-ups are collected from sources publicly available on the internet, using data science and AI algorithms. Report topics include: 

  • Geography: the analyzed DefenceTech start-ups are spread across 17 countries
  • Maturity stage: most start-ups are on the go-to-market stage (52%) and mature stage (40%)
  • Team size: most start-ups have between 11 and 50 employees (46%), and 29% of start-ups have between 51 and 500 employees
  • Innovation map: aerospace, maritime, robotics & autonomous systems, AI & ML, materials, cybersecurity, workforce training, advanced equipment
  • Business models: the majority of start-ups operate in the sectors of development and manufacturing (51%) and R+D+I Services (30%, Research, Development and Innovation/Industrialization)
  • Technology and patents: a total of 104 patent filings were registered by the start-ups during the last five years (2018-2023)
  • Investments: start-ups that raised funds in 2023

Download the mapping and explore the ecosystem of European DefenceTech start-ups: 

Access a FULL LIST of DefenceTech start-ups for free and a limited time only:

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