To challenge big tech, European startups need their own Nasdaq


Why can’t European tech companies compete with Silicon Valley giants? It’s a perennial conundrum for the continent’s IT leaders — and one that Phill Robinson is trying to solve.

After a globetrotting career as a tech executive, Robinson returned home to the UK and founded Boardwave, a networking platform that wants to make Europe a software superpower.

The concept emerged from Robinson’s diverse background in the sector. The entrepreneur spent decades traversing Europe and Silicon Valley, in roles ranging from CMO of during its IPO to CEO of Dutch software giant Exact. 

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These experiences exposed several advantages for tech firms in the US. Robinson zeroed in on one: the breeding ground for success created by Silicon Valley’s tight-knit community. The small area of land interconnects a multitude of tech whizzes, entrepreneurs, investors, and advisers. In Europe, meanwhile, the business environment is highly fragmented.

To emulate the valley’s network effects, Robinson founded Boardwave. At TNW Valencia on 30 March, he promises to share further insights on building tech giants.

Ahead of the talk, Robinson unveiled one of his most ambitious proposals: creating a pan-European version of Nasdaq.

Robinson founded Boardwave to create the connections that European software companies need to thrive.