The Pros and Cons of Starting a Small Business in Eastern Europe

    When you’re looking to start a small business, it’s common to look into setting one up locally. However, did you know it could be more beneficial to start up in another country?

    While it certainly comes with challenges, there are lots of benefits of starting up somewhere like in eastern Europe. Here, we’ll look at some of the pros and cons of starting a small business in the region. 

    The benefits of starting a business in eastern Europe

    A decade ago, it was extremely challenging to set up a business in Europe. However, thanks to advancements in technology, these days it is a lot easier and a lot more beneficial to set up in eastern Europe. The fast-growing region provides countless opportunities for businesses including:

    • High potential for future growth
    • High import demand
    • Cost benefits
    • Similar cultures
    • Access to a large talent pool

    There is a lot of potential for growth in eastern Europe for businesses today. Some of the top places renowned for their growth opportunities include Lithuania, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Tbilisi, Georgia. 

    These countries also have huge import demand. There are 500 million people within the EU, with many looking for international imports. Interestingly, even during the Eurozone recession, the number of imports in Europe increased. So, if you’re looking to set up a business that’s going to be resistant to economic change, eastern Europe is a great place to consider. 

    These are just some of the benefits you can expect to experience when you do business in Eastern Europe. So, what about the potential cons?

    Understanding the potential cons

    Although eastern Europe is one of the fastest growing regions for start-ups, it still doesn’t have a huge variety of opportunities. There is a real lack of angel investors and large acceleration programs available. However, this is slowly starting to change. What it means for now, is that businesses can’t get the same level of investment in eastern European countries as they can elsewhere.

    There is also a lower entrepreneurial mindset in these countries. This can make it difficult to convince local talent and investors to take a chance on your new business. If you’re looking to offer goods such as music, a streaming service or design services, you’ll also find it particularly difficult to break out in eastern Europe. This is because piracy is on the rise in the region.

    The costs of setting up in the region can also be quite high and there are a lot of legalities to familiarise yourself with.

    How to overcome the challenges

    While there are a lot of challenges involved, there are also ways to overcome them. To keep costs down, businesses can look at outsourcing via RSM. Doing your research into the legalities and target markets can also help you to prepare you for the challenges ahead. 

    Starting a new business isn’t easy, but you will find a lot of opportunities in eastern Europe. The above are just some of the pros and cons you can expect when you start a business within the region.