Friday, July 27, 2012

Europe Squelches New Entrepreneurs by Red Tape

The Economist has an article describing Europe's stagnation, in other words the United States in twenty years if Obama is elected.
Data show that continental Europe has a problem with creating new businesses destined for growth. According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, which compiles comparable data across countries, in 2010 “early-stage” entrepreneurs made up just 2.3% of Italy’s adult population, 4.2% of Germany’s, and 5.8% of France’s. European countries are below—in many cases well below—America’s 7.6%, let alone China’s 14% and Brazil’s 17%.

Few in number, European entrepreneurs are also gloomy about their prospects. A study by Ernst & Young, an accounting firm, showed last year that German, Italian and French entrepreneurs were far less confident about their country as a place for start-ups than those in America, Canada or Brazil. Very few French entrepreneurs said their country provided the best environment; 60% of Brazilians, 42% of Japanese and 70% of Canadians thought there was no place as good as home. Asked which cities have the best chance of producing the next Microsoft or Google, Ernst & Young’s businesspeople plumped for Shanghai, San Francisco and Mumbai (though, to be fair, London got a look in too).

The article goes on to describe the European economy as terminally on a downhill run since the two Great World Wars in the early part of the century destroyed their morale vis-a-vis industry. Of course, the same didn't happen to Japan, less prone to Gramscian backwardness in succumbing to the prevailing Weltanshaung of decadent low morale. And evidence of Europe's sclerotic business environment abounds:
Many aspiring entrepreneurs simply leave. There are about 50,000 Germans in Silicon Valley, and an estimated 500 start-ups in the San Francisco Bay area with French founders. One of the things they find there is a freedom to fail. If your firm goes under in France, says Dan Serfaty, the French founder of Viadeo, a fast-growing business-networking website, you don’t get a second chance.

"If at first you don't succeed....." in Europe, you might as well get out of Dodge & head for San Francisco!

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