Tech sector sees more venture capital investment
Britain’s tech sector saw more venture capital investment and stock market flotations in 2018 than any other European country, as the likes of Monzo and Funding Circle took centre stage.
UK tech companies attracted £2.49bn in venture capital investment last year – far more than Germany in second place with £1.38bn and France in third place with £1.03bn, according to data from London & Partners and PitchBook. High profile initial public offerings (IPOs) from the likes of online fashion firm Farfetch and peer-to-peer lender Funding Circle also ensured Britain took the crown for the most tech listings, at 17 throughout 2018.
Sweden was second with 10 tech IPOs, followed by France with eight and Germany with six.
The UK’s high investment levels are being driven by a surge in funding for emerging tech sectors such as Fintech, artificial intelligence (AI), cryptocurrency and blockchain, according to the research.
It found there was record investment in UK companies developing innovations in these areas last year.
The figures also showed London was by far the UK hub for investment, accounting for £1.8bn or 72 per cent of the country’s venture capital raised in 2018.
Tech businesses based in the capital are benefitting from access to almost double the amount of growth capital than other European cities, the research found.
The data shows investment into the UK’s AI sector peaked at £736m in 2018, up 47 per cent on the previous year.
Firms developing cryptocurrency and blockchain technology also saw record growth, securing more than £200m in venture capital funding, up from £19.11m in 2017.