2022 | StartupBlink View the Global Startup Map p. 179 Startup Ecosystem Overview Latvia’s startup ecosystem has the potential to become one of the country’s core economic engines. With easy access to Europe, an availability of skilled IT talent, and an affordable cost of living, the potential of Latvia’s startup ecosystem is clear. The country also benefits from a number of initiatives that make the location attractive, such as innovation vouchers and a startup-friendly regulatory system. Perhaps the most forward thinking of these regulations is the country’s Startup visa program, a government initiative aimed at attracting foreign entrepreneurs. The talented multilingual and diverse population is a great asset to Latvia’s startup ecosystem. However, Latvia suffers from brain drain as qualified workers immigrate to other EU countries; the public sector should do more to demonstrate the benefits of staying in Latvia. The government should also continue to cooperate with the private sector in devising new strategies, such as the stock option policies that were amended in 2020. This type of cooperation could allow the Latvian startup scene to close the gap with its more successful Baltic neighbors. Notable Startups and Ecosystem Champions ÂNordigen Riga, Latvia Nordigen is a free open banking API that provides PSD2 data connections to all major European banks. Â4finance Riga, Latvia Europe’s largest online and mobile consumer lending group, providing convenient and responsible access to credit across 16 countries. ÂFixar Riga, Latvia FIXAR is a leading software and aircraft design developer, powering commercial autonomous UAVs for industrial applications.