Survey: Majority of Startup Founders Support DP/CSV

Illustration elections photo (Photo: © Phil Scroggs/Unsplash)

The change brought about by Sunday’s national elections is welcomed by the Luxembourg startup ecosystem, a survey of founders suggests. 

In the run-up to Luxembourg’s legislative elections, Silicon Luxembourg launched an elections survey among startup founders. 

Snapshot of key findings: 

Outgoing government: 30% of respondents thought the support from the last government was poor. 30% found it good or excellent. 40% found it average. Half of the respondents wanted a new government. 

Party support: CSV was considered best-placed to understand startup challenges and most trusted to boost innovation for startups. Nevertheless, the DP garnered the most votes from startup founders (whether eligible to vote or not), followed by CSV, ADR and Pirates in joint second place. The LSAP scored zero votes from respondents. 

Personalities: Luxembourg prime minister Xavier Bettel (DP) was far and away the most popular political personality, followed by Luc Frieden (CSV) and outgoing finance minister Yuriko Backes (DP).

Policy priorities: Investor incentives (tax breaks for business angels to invest in startups) were the top policy for respondents, followed by tax incentives for single people and effective stock options programmes for employees.

In Focus

Altogether, 38.5% of survey respondents said they’d vote for DP, followed by 15.4% backing the CSV. This finding aligns with the early results of the 2023 legislative elections, in which former opposition party the CSV outstripped any other party with 21 seats, followed by the DP with 14. The result reflects the fact that the CSV and DP programmes were favourable to entrepreneurs and startups.

In joint second were right-wing party the ADR and liberals the Pirates, both of which gained an additional seat on Sunday. The LSAP, which gained a seat to secure 12 places in parliament, received short shrift in the survey, however, securing 0% of votes from respondents. This may be an anomaly because of the small sample size.

Understanding the challenges of startups

The CSV was considered best placed to understand startup challenges by 6 out of 10 respondents, followed by Xavier Bettel’s DP party with 4 out of 10 votes and Pirates with almost a quarter of votes. ADR and LSAP followed with 15.4% of votes each.

When it came to introducing innovation and startups, the majority of survey respondents placed their faith in the DP (53.8% of respondents), followed by the CSV (38.5%), Pirates (23.1%), ADR (15.4%), Déi Gréng (7.7%), Lenk (7.7%) and LSAP (7.7%). 

If the next government wants to secure its position for the future and support the startup ecosystem, they’d do well to tackle the following, listed in order of importance and popularity by respondents:

  • Investor incentives (tax break for business angels to invest in startups)
  • Tax incentives for single people
  • Stock options for employees
  • Affordable housing 
  • Startup bank account (fast track)
  • Fast-tracked startup business licences
  • Scale up accelerator programmes
  • Improved support for spin-offs
  • Startup incubator programmes
  • Affordable office space
  • Startup visa (for non-EU residents)

About the survey respondents

The survey was conducted online on a voluntary basis from 22 September to 6 October. Some 17 founders completed the elections survey, the majority of which had launched their initiatives in the last five years. 70% remained small operations, employing 1-5 people. Almost one-third were active in fintech. Other fields covered included: space, web3, iot, deeptech and tech for good. 60% of respondents were eligible to vote in national elections. 

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