London crowned king of European tech investment
London again topped the European league table for tech investment in 2018 by some distance.
The UK capital attracted almost double the investment of nearest rival Berlin after £1.8 billion was funnelled into its firms.
That is almost three-quarters the total funding into UK technology businesses in 2018, which amounted to £2.5bn.
However the total fell short of the record investment in 2017 of £2.99bn across the UK and £2.45bn in London.
According to the data, compiled for London & Partners by PitchBook, Berlin attracted £937m – almost double the previous year’s total – while Paris also significantly grew its tech funding to £797m.
Total VC funding in European tech dropped slightly with £10.44bn raised compared with £10.47bn in 2017.
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Alliot Cole, CEO of Octopus Ventures – one of the largest early-stage investors in Europe with a portfolio worth more than $1.3bn – said the news was “fantastic” for London.
“International confidence in our investment ecosystem remains strong,” Cole said.
“This data’s great insight is the maturing of the UK’s position as the number one place in Europe to scale businesses with global potential.
“We must continue to provide the funding, talent and infrastructure that will enable home grown businesses to build on the UK’s position as a market leader in growing companies that can truly change the world.
“When looking at the future of money, the future of industry and the future of healthcare, the opportunity for the creation of extraordinary businesses has never been stronger.”
FinTech investment across the UK amounted to £1.2bn thanks in part to the fast growth of digital banks such as Revolut and Monzo while artificial intelligence investment rose 47 per cent to £736m.
Eileen Burbidge, a partner at venture capital firm Passion Capital, told Reuters that London’s status as a financial centre was at the heart of the investment.
“We get a lot of calls and inquiries from investors in the US and Asia looking for FinTech opportunities,” she said. “In FinTech, AI and a few other sectors such as life sciences and robotics, London genuinely leads the world.”