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Indians set up 205 companies in Estonia, majority startups to access European market

The programme launched in December 2014 has so far seen more than 2,174 individuals from India setting up around 286 businesses in Estonia.

Around 205 digital entities were set up in Estonia by Indian entrepreneurs in 2018 as part of the European country’s e-Residency programme that allow individuals from across the world to launch their new digital company or set up a local unit in Estonia through a digital ID issued by its government.

Majority of the 205 companies set up are startups in sectors viz., web designing, software programming and, content writing etc.

Entrepreneurs can access the European union business ecosystem along with public e-services through their digital identity, said a statement issued by the Embassy of Estonia in Delhi.

The programme launched in December 2014 has so far seen more than 2,174 individuals from India setting up around 286 businesses in Estonia.

The e-Residency programme, however, saw maximum enrollment last year when it added 1062 individuals in 2018.

The programme includes the likes of Reliance Industries’ chairman Mukesh Ambani as the group had launched a research centre for Jio in November last year in Estonia.

Estonia, based in Northern Europe, claims to be the first country globally to launch such a program inviting people from across the world to do business in Estonia without physical presence.

“The program has already made a mark among the Indian entrepreneurs and our Indian e-Residents are now fully equipped to make their business prosper with easy access to the European market,” said Riho Kruuv, Hon. Ambassador of the Republic of Estonia to India.

The country expects to add 300 new ventures from India in 2019 particularly tapping its vast base of IT enabled youth centered in cities such as Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

“India has a large base of freelancers operating in IT hubs such as Bangalore and Hyderabad as well from Tier II and Tier III cities. Goa is also increasingly becoming a hub for both Indian and international digital nomads,” said Arnaud Castaignet, Head of Public Relations of the e-Residency programme.

Estonia has also partnered with Bengaluru-based platform for startup collaboration and networking Startups Club to promote the programme. “The cost of entry into Europe has been traditionally very high dissuading most startups from attempting to enter it,” said Startups Club founder and managing director Salma Moosa.

The maximum interest for the programme has been from IT specialists and developers, blockchain, SaaS, Fintech and other technology-led ventures, said Moosa.

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