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Skyscanner Chairman on the challenges facing European tech

Tim Green

The chair of SkyScanner gives her views on Euro tech vs the US.

Can European tech ever catch-up or even surpass the US technology scene? Specifically, can investors on this side of the pond match the status of those in the Valley?

This was the subject of a panel session at Hot Topics’ most recent event in London.

And a very relevant discussion it was because, for all the undoubted growth in European tech, the biggest investments, acquisitions and IPOs are still happening Stateside.

The US continues to have access to seemingly limitless capital while the likes of Facebook, Google, Apple and Amazon acquire businesses on a global basis.

Can Europe ever truly compete?

The panel included Margaret Rice-Jones, chair of Skyscanner, and Hot Topics caught up with her after the session to quiz her for her own views on the subject.

She conceded that the diversity of Europe poses a challenge.

“Businesses in the US and China can both grow pretty big without ever having to go beyond one language and one set of regulations,” she said.

“European businesses have to deal with a lot more complexity early in their life cycle and that make life more difficult for them.”

But Rice-Jones was overall very optimistic about the potential of the region. Watch the full video above.

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