PREMIUM: Case study: Malaga-based Freepik acquired by EQT

Updated: Jul 2

- Hidden gem in a less known startup hub.

Credit: Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash.com

I was excited to learn about the acquisition of Malaga based company Freepik for completely other reasons than those you might think.


Yes, EQT Group happens to be a Swedish Private Equity firm (I'm Swedish) and it is a huge deal that the transaction value - if made public- (general assumption is EURO 250 million) would most certainly top the lists of most successful exits in Spain's startup ecosystem.


But my excitement is threefold:

  1. Real proof that there are hidden gems in less known startup hubs, like in Malaga, Valencia and Bilbao to name a few.

  2. Shows that it is possible to build the necessary trust and conduct the majority of negotiation meetings online and from home.

  3. All 3 founders continue to operate the company from Malaga, Andalusia and the HQ remains in Spain.

Gold to be found in startup hub Malaga


Barcelona and Madrid still continue to grab the attention from an international public, part from "just" LATAM, because they have been flirting with - in English -interested parties for many years already. Barcelona the longest time although Madrid is almost getting as much investor loving nowadays.


BUT, there are other startup hubs in Spain you should follow if you want to find those "hidden gems", "unpolished diamonds", "golden opportunities, under the radar ". One of those is surely Malaga with a growing community of international entrepreneurs seeking both a satisfaction in their business life as well as quality of life in general.


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