Top Dutch News – 31 January 2024

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Investing in the Netherlands: 7 great apps for getting into stocks in 2024 (Dutch Review) 

The article introduces seven user-friendly investment apps available in the Netherlands for 2024, aiming to simplify the often complex world of investing. Notable options include Scalable, praised for its clean aesthetic and versatile tools, DEGIRO, recognized for its low fees and user-friendly interface, and Peaks, which focuses on sustainable investment with an automatic rounding-up feature for purchases. Other featured apps include BUX Zero, eToro, Naga, bunq, and Revolut, each offering distinct features to cater to different investor preferences. The article emphasizes the convenience, accessibility, and cost-effectiveness of using these apps compared to traditional investment methods. Read more

Strong start to the year fuels optimism about investments in tech companies (fd.)

The Dutch tech investment landscape is showing promising signs in 2024, with €565 million already raised, marking a robust start compared to the previous year. The Quarterly Startup Report suggests a stabilization and signs of growth, bringing optimism for the tech investment sector. Notable recent investments include Soly and Onera raising €30 million each, Qphox securing €8 million, and online supermarket Picnic receiving €355 million. While 2023 saw a decline in investments, positive indicators, new funds, and optimism for 2024 are attributed to a recovering market, government support, and the expectation of improved venture capital participation. Read more

The ‘Adyen mafia’ continues to expand: these startups were set up by ex-employees (mt sprout)

Several startups, collectively dubbed the “Adyen Mafia,” have emerged with former employees and co-founder Arnout Schuijff at the helm. Drawing parallels to the renowned PayPal Mafia, these ex-Adyen members are making waves in the Dutch tech scene. Some notable startups include Firsty, focused on global mobile data without SIMs; Tebi, a payment platform for catering and retail; Solvimon, a B2B invoicing platform; Payaut, offering payment services for online platforms; Silverflow, a cloud service for managing multiple card networks; Katanox, connecting accommodations to travel management; Sparqle, optimizing last-mile delivery; Volt, a global real-time payments platform; Gymly, gym administration software; and Rootline (formerly June Technologies), competing in the SME payment market. Read more

Dutch startup Tidal Control secures €500K for its compliance automation platform (Silicon Canals)

Netherlands-based Tidal Control, a compliance automation platform, has raised €500K in a pre-seed round led by Brabantse Ontwikkelings Maatschappij and Rabobank, with participation from Starterslift and Bossche Investerings Maatschappij. Tidal Control’s platform automates compliance activities for startups and SMBs, streamlining the certification process for information security standards like ISO27001 and SOC2. The software, founded in 2021, provides continuous monitoring, offering automated guidance and real-time compliance for businesses, ranging from early-stage startups to larger enterprises. The investment aims to advance Tidal Control as Europe’s first platform for automating compliance activities. Read more

Google’s Gradient backs Send AI to help enterprises extract data from complex documents (Tech Crunch)

Dutch startup Send AI, backed by Google’s Gradient Ventures, secured €2.2 million ($2.4 million) in a pre-seed round. Send AI aims to revolutionize document processing, competing with UiPath and others. Their customizable platform allows businesses to fine-tune AI models for data extraction from various document formats, crucial for industries like insurance. Send AI ensures accuracy and security, training models for specific documents, enabling continuous monitoring, and human intervention for doubt. The funding will help expand its cloud-based solution, currently in private beta, and serve larger enterprises struggling with document processing challenges. The investment was led by Gradient Ventures and Keen Venture Partners. Read more

Dutch-UK startup Naq secures €3M for its digital health compliance platform (Silicon Canals)

Dutch-UK startup Naq secured €3 million in funding for its automated compliance platform, revolutionizing healthcare and medical compliance across the UK and the EU. The oversubscribed round was led by No Such Ventures, with additional support from existing investors. Naq’s platform streamlines compliance processes and ensures secure verification of supplier compliance for healthcare enterprises. Founded in 2021, the startup empowers innovators by simplifying compliance with healthcare frameworks, facilitating the faster introduction of life-saving solutions to the market. The funding will accelerate Naq’s growth and enhance the development of its automated compliance platform. Read more

Social media use has increased significantly in the Netherlands, even X is growing (Emerce)

According to Newcom’s Social Media Research 2024, 14.3 million Dutch people use social media, spending nearly 2 hours daily. The 20-39 age group has increased social media usage, with under-40s becoming more active daily. WhatsApp, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and LinkedIn remain popular and have grown, while TikTok gained 200,000 users. Twitter (Even X) increased by 240,000 daily users, but Threads saw a decline with 400,000 users dropping out. BeReal lost momentum among teens, Snapchat and TikTok gained popularity, and 6.3 million Dutch people believe social media negatively impacts mental well-being, with two million feeling less happy due to usage. Read more

Bunq sets its eyes on UK as it reports first full year of profitability (Press Bunq)

Dutch neobank bunq achieved a €53.1 million net profit in 2023, becoming Europe’s second most profitable neobank. With over 11 million users and €7 billion in deposits, bunq renews its global expansion by reapplying for a UK license. The application for an E-Money Institution (EMI) license aims to tap into the UK market, serving around 2.8 million British digital nomads. Bunq, fully licensed in the EU and awaiting a US banking permit, plans to reintroduce local payment accounts in the UK within five minutes. The neobank, showing a sustainable business model, marks its first full year of profitability. Read more

Rabo: growth funds deliver tens of billions in prosperity gains (fd.)

Rabobank’s economists estimate that every euro invested by the National Growth Fund will yield nearly €6, contributing to a €90 billion welfare gain until 2040. Scrapping the temporary growth funds could cost the Netherlands €75 billion by 2040. Rabobank urges a structural, politically distanced investment fund, emphasizing the declining Dutch productivity growth and the need for higher investments. The economists highlight the importance of consistent financing for tech strategy, as the government focuses on key technologies. They advocate a model akin to Norway and Singapore for a stable, long-term investment approach, crucial for economic progress. Read more 

The BUX acquisition: why do some make substantial profits while others incur losses? (mt sprout)

BUX’s recent acquisition by ABN AMRO has sparked dissatisfaction among early investors, including crowdfunders, who face losses while more recent investors may gain significant returns. The anger arises from liquidity preference agreements made during BUX’s challenging period last summer, where certain investors are prioritized for payouts in the event of an exit. Amid losses and urgent funding needs, ABN AMRO likely acquired BUX at a relatively low cost, with proceeds favoring those last-investors, leaving little for others. The situation underscores the importance of caution in negotiating liquidity preferences, often overlooked by both angels and entrepreneurs, risking unfavorable outcomes. Read more

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