Control of integrin activation is required for cell adhesion and ligand-induced signaling. Here we report that loss of the focal adhesion protein Kindlin-2 in mice results in peri-implantation lethality caused by severe detachment of the endoderm and epiblast from the basement membrane. We found that Kindlin-2-deficient cells were unable to activate their integrins and that Kindlin-2 is required for talin-induced integrin activation. Furthermore, we demonstrate that Kindlin-2 is required for integrin outside-in signaling to enable firm adhesion and spreading. Our findings provide evidence that Kindlin-2 is a novel and essential element of bidirectional integrin signaling.