Friday 2 October 2009

Fastest Five Risers and Fallers in European Tech

For a while I've been staring at TechCrunch Europe's Top 100 chart. Powered by YouNoodle, this chart suggests which start-ups are hot and which are not. See the TechCrunch article for an explanation of how it works.

The Hot Handful

1. Monitise (35/100, up 14.6). Set up by a highly experienced team, London-based Monitise claims to be the world's leading mobile banking and payments partner. Founded by Alastair Lukies (CEO), formerly co-founder of, and Steven Atkinson (CTO), who has held senior positions at Vodafone, Informix and the MoD.

2. Spotify (76/100, up 9.4). Needing little introduction, this music-streaming darling of the digerati has been shooting up the chart recently, following news of the $50m investment by Wellington Partners and the Li Ka Shing Foundation. It's still below Deezer, it's French counterpart, separated by just 3 points.

3. SoundCloud (56/100, up 8.2). German SoundCloud is an online platform for music professionals to collaborate, promote and distribute their music. The company raised €2.5m from Doughty Hanson Technology Ventures earlier this year.

4. Distimo (15/100, up 7.1). Founded just this year in the Netherlands, Distimo provides analytics for mobile applications, across app stores. They are generating good media coverage with a clever PR strategy, including producing reports on the state of the mobile app sector. Although at the lower end of the league, Distimo is the fastest mover in percentage terms (up 89%).

5. Playfish (88/100, up 6.1). Second in the TechCrunch Europe league, London-based Playfish is one of the top creators of free games for players to interact and compete on social networks.

The Cold Clutch

1. Adconion (41/100, down 23.6). The biggest mover in number terms, Adconion Media Group is a performance-driven online advertising network. The company had a great year in 2008: it ranked second by comScore's global ranksings; and pulled in an $80m Series C round from Index Ventures and Wellington Partners. According to YouNoodle's algorithm, 2009 has been harsh.

2. Scoopler (15/100, down 14.3). Scoopler is a real-time search engine for discovering what people are talking about on the internet right now. It's in an exciting but really competitive space. $15,000 seed funding from YCombinator is unlikely to be enough to win against Google's own efforts. It's score has halved and it struggles to make the cut.

3. Joost (44/100, down 11.5). There's nothing new to be said. Falling from a great height, Joost proves that great founders are not a sufficient condition for a start-up to succeed.

4. Badoo (85/100, down 10.3). UK-based badoo offers standard social networking features and allows it users to pay to make themselves more popular across badoos network. Although slipping ten points, badoo is still in the top ten TechCrunch Europe rankings. With a steady 750,000 daily unique visitors, it can't compete with the scale of the major social networks but it's revenue model might deliver a decent profit.

5. Dailymotion (86/100, down 10.2). Paris-based dailymotion was supposed to differ from YouTube by virtue of including professional content. Not so anymore. The last two years have seen its traffic halve from 3.0m to 1.5m. But don't write it off yet. It remains one of the top five European tech start-ups.

Reversals of fortune are frequent so I'll be revisiting the TechCrunch Europe Top 100 from time to time.

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