TechUkraine Baseline Findings on Scaling Startups in Ukraine

TechUkraine Internationalization Readiness Program

The TechUkraine International Readiness Team has drafted this baseline report about the state of Scaling Startups in Ukraine, based on Going Global and National Network teams interactions.

The selected startups represent a variety of verticals, such as:

  • Retail/FMCG Logistics
  • Big Data Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning
  • Business Intelligence SocialMedia
  • Marketplace Data/Product Analytics
  • Legal tech Marketing Tech
  • Hardware Fintech
  • Entertainment AgTech
  • AR/VR IoT
  • HR Tech Inventory Management
  • Cyber Security

The majority of the startups have 10 to 50 employees; however many teams have less than 10 employees, and only 2 teams have over 50 employees.

Top markets:

  1. Top markets the startups are already operating in: UA, USA, UK, Russia, Kazakhstan, Poland.
  2. Top markets the startups would like to expand into: USA, UK, Germany, the Netherlands, China, Spain.

Some of the most common challenges and bottlenecks that Ukrainian scaling startups mention include:

  • Low trust of Ukrainian products and professionals on international markets
  • Limited cultural ties and economic proximity to home market
  • Legal restrictions in target countries
  • Language and cultural barriers
  • Looking for government support
  • Difficult certification process

The most frequently cited challenges founders identified include:

These are the most common first steps scaling startups take when entering foreign markets:

The data collected from these interviews, Masterclass and questionnaires is representational of only a small percent of the overall number of scaling startups across Ukraine and cannot be taken as indicative of the total population, nor of the total set of challenges that scaling startups from Ukraine face when preparing to go global. However this does constitute an important baseline of data collection that TechUkraine can use for developing future projects, and for validating and refining existing projects and programs.

If TechUkraine can continue to identify potential challenges and the more we help these scaling startups plan for those challenges, the result should be more Ukrainian scaling startups that successfully hit international markets in shorter amounts of time, and with less wasted resources.

The more that the Ukrainian ecosystem can understand that these challenges are not unique to Ukraine, and that they can and have been solved by thousands of scaling startups across the globe before them, the faster Ukrainian scaling startups can learn, grow and start to dominate on the global markets.

*The base for this report is 28 surveys, 4 audio interviews and 11 responses to the Going Global master class – 37 startups in total.

See the full report here.
Thanks Going Global and National Network teams for the great work!

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