The European Innovation Council (EIC) has recently released its annual Impact Report for 2023, showcasing its pivotal role in nurturing deep tech innovation throughout Europe. The report emphasises the EIC’s status as a key investor in European innovation, with investments exceeding €1.2 billion in 2023 alone. Notably, these investments have catalysed an additional €3.5 billion in capital, demonstrating the EIC’s substantial leverage in mobilising funds for ground breaking projects.

One of the report’s key highlights is the significant growth in the total portfolio value of enterprises supported by the EIC, which has grown to nearly €70 billion. This exponential increase reflects the EIC’s success in identifying and supporting high-potential start ups and scaleups in the deep tech sector.

Iliana Ivanova, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, has lauded the EIC for its transformative impact on Europe’s innovation landscape, emphasising the creation of a robust ecosystem conducive to critical technologies, which is vital for maintaining Europe’s competitiveness on the global stage. Commissioner Ivanova said:

“The European Innovation Council (EIC) has emerged as a game-changer in supporting deep tech innovation in Europe. This Impact Report shows how the EIC supports the growth of high potential startups while at the same time building a European community of deep tech investors. This is crucial to ensuring the future of our companies and strengthening EU leadership in critical technologies.”

Moreover, the report highlights the EIC’s role in driving the growth of supported companies, leading to substantial increases in valuation, employment rates, and revenue generation. Additionally, the EIC has played a crucial role in fostering unique innovations and facilitating strategic partnerships, further solidifying its position as a driving force in deep tech innovation across the continent.

Key impacts to date of the EIC include:

  • An overall portfolio value of EIC supported companies of nearly €70 billionan increase of over €20 billion in just over a year;
  • Impact on scaling up companies, with over 150 “centaurs” (valuation above of €100 million), 15 of whom have a valuation above €500 million including 8 over €1 billion (unicorns);
  • EIC companies averaging 35% employment growth and 68% revenue growth in the first 2 years following EIC support;
  • Attracting over €12 billion of follow-on investments, primarily from venture capital, corporates, and national promotional banks.
  • 1686 unique innovations generated from EIC research projects (Pathfinder and predecessors);
  • EIC companies and projects matched to corporates, procurers and potential investors resulting in over 125 signed deals.

For those interested in delving deeper into the comprehensive document which offers insights into the EIC’s activities, successes, and future directions, you can download it here: EIC Impact Report 2023. You can download the key impacts summary here: EIC Key Impacts 2023.