UK leads the way in European tech funding

Written by Hannah McGrath

The UK is leading the boom in European funding for tech firms, with a total of €829.9 million injected into early stage companies in the last three years.

Figures released jointly by Stripe, and Techstars at Lisbon’s Web Summit show that investment in early stage technology (EST) startups in Europe has increased four-fold since 2015, up from €875 million in the first six months of 2015 to more than €3.6 billion in 2018.

The Europe-wide study found that while France pipped the UK to the post on funding for EST firms, the UK is leading the charge when it comes to growth and late stage funding for more mature companies. This includes €790 million of funding into UK startups in the first six months of 2018 alone.

The research shows that France generated almost a quarter (24.04 per cent) of EST deals in Europe, just shy of the UK’s 24.55 per cent piece of the EST investing pie.

On a sector by sector basis, the UK led the field in FinTech investment with €829.9 million in EST funding compared to €402.2 million invested by nearest rival market Germany.

The report found that FinTech startups such as UK challenger Banks Monzo, Revolut and Germany’s N26 were neck and neck with MedTech startups in leading to field for investment in early stage development.

Artificial Intelligence, which was the UK’s fastest growing technology sector also secured a substantial chunk of funding, with London accounting for double the number of AI companies than the total for France and Germany.

Iain McDougall, country manager at Stripe said Europe’s tech scene is clearly thriving. “To see a fourfold increase in the value of early stage investments in just three years is a huge testament to the continent’s startup scene.

“Despite the looming threat of Brexit, the UK is still strong when it comes to EST investment and is not alone anymore. We are now seeing the birth of a new generation of globally competitive tech companies, led by France, Germany, Sweden and Spain.”