10-fold increase in blockchain and cryptocurrency investment

Blockchain and cryptocurrency developers benefited from record levels of investment in the UK last year.

Wednesday 09 

10-fold increase in blockchain and cryptocurrency investment

Data from London & Partners shows that venture capital funding into blockchain and cryptocurrency companies reached £200m in 2018 – more than 10 times the £19m raised in 2017.

Artificial intelligence (AI) firms attracted £736m of investment, up from £499m the previous year, with the FinTech sector receiving a total of £1.17bn – 90% of which went to London-based companies.

The capital remained the most attractive city in Europe for investment into tech firms, with the £1.8bn received in 2018 almost double the £936.5m acquired by its closest competitor Berlin.

“With high levels of investment for growth sectors such as AI, FinTech and big data, our research shows that London is producing game-changing companies and ideas to change the world,” London & Partners CEO, Laura Citron, said.

“2018 was another great year for investment into London’s tech sector, and today’s figures demonstrate that London is place where ambitious, international companies can thrive.”

Total investment into British technology firms reached £2.49bn last year, compared with £1.38bn in Germany, £1.03bn in France, £531.8m in Switzerland and £275m in Spain.

The strength of London and the UK was also boosted by a high number of tech exits in 2018, with more initial public offerings (IPOs) for British firms than in any other European country.

There were 17 IPOs for UK companies in 2018 – raising 1.3bn in capital – compared with eight offerings in France, six in Germany, three in Italy and two in the Netherlands.

Several London-based FinTech companies reached unicorn status last year – seeing their value rise to over $1bn (£0.8bn) – including digital banking start-up Revolut after receiving £177m of investment.

The firm’s CEO, Nikolay Storonsky, said: “London provides you with access to some of the world’s best tech talent, investment and expertise you need to grow your business.

“London is also a global hub for FinTech, making it a great place for us to expand into overseas markets.”

 

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