NEWS & ANALYSIS
London remains Europe’s VC investment hotspot
The near £3bn in funding raised for startups eclipses the rest of the major European cities by a massive margin, with Berlin at £456m and Paris at £564m.
LONDON, United Kingdom – With the UK’s departure from the European Union pencilled in for March 29th, 2019, the British capital looks in no mood to hand over its status as Europe’s undisputed tech capital any time soon.
In figures announced this week, London remains the hotspot for VC funding for startups in Europe with an all time high of £2.99bn raised in investment in 2017.
The near £3bn in funding raised for startups eclipses the rest of the major European cities by a massive margin, with Berlin at £456m and Paris at £564m. Big winners in 2017 were the gaming startup Improbable which was backed by major international firms including Andreessen Horowitz and several startups in the booming fintech sector which includes major players Transferwise and coming of age startups Monzo and Revolut, both of whom are attempting to disrupt the UK’s banking industry with significant investment rounds this year.
The news has been welcomed by tech leaders in the capital who were concerned about the impact that Brexit might potentially have on investment into the capital. London’s time zone, language and solid foundation of legal and financial services continue to make it a world class destination for setting up a new technology company.
Eileen Burbidge, a leading figure in the London VC scene was delighted at the news. “It’s a testament to our exceptional entrepreneurs that the UK tech sector continues to produce companies that are leading in the development of cutting edge technologies such as artificial intelligence and fintech,” she said.
However, she warned that continued access to world class talent was essential post Brexit. “Access to talent is critically important,” she said. “Being able to attract EU talent has been a huge advantage for the UK in the last few years. For the UK to look like a welcoming place is really important.”
Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London said: “Today’s record investment figures are further proof that London is the undisputed tech capital of Europe and I am committed to ensuring we take over from Silicon Valley as the world’s leading tech hub.
“Technology entrepreneurs and businesses are attracted to our great city for its diverse talent pool and unique business ecosystem and I am determined that London remains open to investment and the best tech talent from all over the world.”
If London does indeed want to take over from Silicon Valley as Khan suggests, there’s a little while to go yet. In 2016 alone, Silicon Valley attracted almost $25bn in total VC funding – a fall of 25% year on year.
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