What 2020 holds in store for tech startups in Romania

Demotivational poster by zerochan.net

Healthcare

In Healthcare, we’ll see the proliferation of local platforms (the emphasis is on “local”) — all favored by the collapse of the state-operated system.

HR

Startups in Human Resources will flock in two main categories: training heads and employing hands.

Fintech

The disruption craze in retail banking will continue. This is the combined result of the over-excitement generated by PSD2, and of Romanians throwing themselves head-first into spending money they don’t have (repeating the same stupid mistakes they made during the 2008 financial meltdown).

Travel

I foresee no change here. More and more marketplaces for activities will emerge as this is the last type of bookable inventory left partly uncovered by the OTAs, GDSs, and other giants. But the market fragmentation is too high, the service providers are technically illiterate, the required marketing effort is huge, there is no loyalty in travel, the level of customer support is insane, the margin is ludicrous, etc. etc. etc.

And the big winner is… agritech!!!

Mark my words: 2020 is the year for agritech startups to raise their heads as they have been long enough overlooked and underfunded. They address painfull needs and hold golden promises.

Consider this a call for startups: at EGV, we want to meet teams that solve the problems of farmers in any field (pun intended). Don’t be shy! Come talk to us!

Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity deserves a better year. Much is expected from a country that gave the world Bitdefender as well as so many hackers.

APIs

Eastern Europe at large and Romania, in particular, are not API-fied. For those willing to take it, this is an opportunity to build something meaningful and useful.

Consider this another call for startups: EGV is looking for startups that build APIs.

For us, the APIs are the software infrastructure needed by many industries, the technological backbone that will make possible the development of new companies, products, and services.

Developer tools

B2D (Business to Developers) is something I would like to see more animated. There are many devs around; it should be easy to test your ideas with them. Ask them what they think, adapt, and iterate. Also, devs should know what devs need.

  • the above-mentioned lack of real technological innovation
  • the high regulation of the filed which adds complexity to the business and reduces the speed of startups
  • the specificity of the Romanian market which makes local models almost impossible to export elsewhere
  • the strong dependency on the state-operated health infrastructure and all the troubles and frustrations this fact brings
  • and not lastly, our team’s lack of expertise in this field — which may render irrelevant all the points above.

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Cristian Munteanu

Cristian Munteanu

Blogging about Startups and Venture Capital