Berlin Conference

The Digital Catch-Up Race

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    The two countries want to find ways to help European digital companies become more competitive internationally.

  • Facts


    • The Berlin conference is the second event of its kind, after last year’s conference which was held in Paris.
    • The conference was initiated by the German and French economics ministers.
    • Europe lags far behind the United States in the number of digital unicorns (companies valued at more than $1 billion) headquartered there.
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Factory Berlin, a startup hub in the German capital. Source: Factory Works GmbH

When the German economics minister, Sigmar Gabriel, and his French counterpart Michel Sapin meet today in Berlin, California will be on their minds.

Not because the two men need a break in the sun, even if they do. But because Europe’s two-biggest economies need to find a way to help the continent catch up to Silicon Valley in digital Technology.

The second-annual German-French Digital Conference is a high-priority event, and both German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President François Hollande are attending.

Helping Europe’s digital companies become more competitive internationally. Under better conditions, perhaps Europe could also produce a digital company on par with Google or Facebook.

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