Over the last ten years Amsterdam has secured its position as a major player when it comes to international tech.  Saying that, it might not surprise you to hear that there are many ‘couldn’t live without’ technical innovations that were created right here, including Wi-Fi, Python, Bluetooth and (love or hate them) speed cameras. 

Fast forward to today and there are over 2,200 tech companies in Amsterdam employing close to 100,000 people.  And while the start-up/scale-up scene is booming here it’s still home to around 450 multi-national companies’ European or Global HQs including TeslaNikeNetflixBooking.comAdidasIKEA and Cisco. 

Why is Amsterdam is such a mecca for emerging technology? 

The nature of successful large organisations full of exciting opportunities being based in Amsterdam has meant a huge network of talent have located themselves in and around this area; there is estimated to be over 200,000 professional tech developers in the current talent pool.  It’s a testament to the talent in this city that companies like Uber and Amazon have sizeable tech development teams based out of Amsterdam. 

Alongside the talent pool, Amsterdam city itself is an exceptionally special place to live.  It’s well connected from a travel perspective with excellent air links, high-speed railways and an international port. It was ranked by Savills as the fourth best global city and it always performs well in happiness indexes, all of which has contributed to it becoming a tech hub for life sciences, health, fintech, enterprise software and the travel/tourism industries. 

Our Top Five Innovative Technologies 

So, we know that the environment is perfect for incredible technology to be developed, it’s happened before and it’s going to keep happening.  But what emerging technologies coming out of the city are we buzzing about right now? 


Overstory Amsterdam

  • Founder/s: Indra den Bakker, Anniek Schouten, Roelof Pieters 
  • Founded in: 2018 

Overstory applies artificial intelligence to satellite imagery to provide realtime analytics of the status of our natural resources.  It helps a range of industries from forestry to insurance to improve their ability to make timely and accurate data-driven decisions.  The company is working to give businesses the tools to protect the earth’s forests by providing actionable intelligence on our planet. 


Owlin Amsterdam

  • Founder/s: Sjoerd Leemhuis, Bas van Ooyen, Richard Kraayenhaagen 
  • Founded in: 2012

Owlin, backed by Rockstart, develops innovative real-time data analysis for the finance sector, cumulating real-time news analysis to their AI-based platform.  The company already works with the likes of ING, KPMG and Deutsche Bank. 


MessageBird Amsterdam

  • Founder/s: Robert Vis 
  • Founded in: 2011 

An Omnichannel Platform that easily enables enterprises, medium and smaller sized companies to communicate with customers on any channel of their choosing by bringing together messaging services like Whatsapp, Messenger, WeChat, Twitter, SMS, email and voice.  Customers can start a conversation with a business online then move it to their choice of messaging app – making custoemr interactions more efficient and satisfactory. MessageBird raised raised €169m in 2020 and was valued at €2.5bn.  


 Payaut Amsterdam

  • Founder/s: Ernst Van Niekerk, Gillis Haasnoot 
  • Founded in: 2019 

Payaut offers an automated payment solution for online marketplaces, simplifying the process of the cash flowing through marketplaces and getting to the correct seller.  The company offers all-in-one payment solutions for online marketplaces taking care of everything when it comes to payments.  With 62% of global web sales in 2020 coming through a marketplace site, and the number of marketplaces increasing by 29% between 2019 and 2020, Payaut’s market has boomed.  The company recently raised over $3m in its seed round of funding. 



CodeSandbox Amsterdam

  • Founder/s: Ives van Hoorne, Bas Buursma 
  • Founded in: 2017 

The idea for CodeSandbox came to the founders while on a trip to St Ives down in Cornwall.  Van Hoorne was working on the conversion of Catawiki to React, while he was away he received lots of queries from other developers about React – but he couldn’t answer them without having access to an editor and the required libraries.  This inspired the development of CodeSandbox, an online code editor that allows users to create a new web application in a single click.  The platform manages the setting up of the development environment, the tooling and the provisioning leaving the users to focus on creating the application.  Users can share the project simply via sharing a URL, plus it’s integrated with deployment targets like Vercel and Netlify and source control providers like GitHub. The company has recently achieved over $12m in their Series A funding. 


There’s so much to be excited about in Amsterdam right now.  Whether you’re a developer, a marketeer or an infrastructure specialist these booming businesses are creating whole hosts of opportunities.  We work with a vast network of talent across Amsterdam connecting them with their next challenge on a daily basis.  If you’re looking for your newest team member, or personally seeking a new challenge in the Venice of Northern Europe then reach out to one of the team for our advice.


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