European countries are trying to prey on the UK’s fastest-growing technology businesses as founders consider whether they want to continue building their startups in a country that has voted to leave the European Union.
UK startups are concerned that Brexit will make it harder for them to hire the right talent and attract investment from venture capitalists.
Ireland, Switzerland, and others have already been in touch with TransferWise, a London fintech company with a valuation over $1 billion, to see if it’s interested in starting or moving operations to their shores.
TransferWise CEO and cofounder Taavet Hinrikus welcomed the attention on Twitter, saying “competition between states is good.”
A report in The Wall Street Journal on Friday said that officials from Paris, Frankfurt, and Dublin are “pouncing” on London’s financial companies post-referendum as they look to become Europe’s premier financial hub.
Hinrikus did not reveal whether he plans to take the countries up on their offers but several other startups have publicly stated that they plan to expand overseas.
Josh March, founder and CEO of customer service software provider Conversocial, is contemplating a move from London to Ireland or Germany following the UK’s decision to leave the EU, while Rich Pleeth, founder and CEO of friend meetup app Sup, is looking to at a potential move to New York City.
While several startups are eyeing up a move, Matt Clifford, cofounder and CEO of startup factory Entrepreneur First does not believe there’s going to be a mass exodus anytime soon.