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YEurope, a venture capital firm which specialises in working with early stage European tech startups, officially launched this week.

Despite the similarity of the name and homepage slide show, YEurope is not to be confused with YCombinator, a company which provides the same service in the US. According to the home page, the site is 'inspired by, but not affiliated with YCombinator.'

YEurope is inviting the founders of eight startups to Vienna to work on their businesses. These startups will be funded a flat fee of €5,000 (£3,400) plus  €5,000 per team member.

In return, YEurope will take between 2% and 10% of stock in the new company.

On its site, YEurope cites the Aho Group Report, which criticised the lack of early stage funding for European ICT ventures. YEurope hopes that its program of funding startups will help to address this problem.

The 'Y' part of name isn't the only thing YEurope and YCombinator have in common. On the YCombinator site many comments claim that this is a serious case of plagiarism, not limited to name and business model, but also facets of the website.

We may yet launch an incubator ourselves. Watch this space...

Graham Charlton

Published 25 April, 2007 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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