UK tech experiences record first half $4.8BN venture capital investment in 2019

A new database from Tech Nation, the leading scale up network for entrepreneurs, and Dealroom has revealed that venture capital investment into UK tech companies broke new records in the first half of 2019, totalling $4.8 billion in the first five months of the year.

The Data Commons for UK Tech is a ground-breaking national database that is set to become a vital resource for entrepreneurs and could spark a new wave of investment in tech startups across the country.

Yoram Wijngaarde, CEO and founder at Dealroom, said: “The Data Commons for UK Tech represents a special project for us. As a system that is open to all, we believe it will ensure that stakeholders in Britain’s innovation economy have the data and insights they require to make good decisions as well as encourage users to become part of a community in which data is shared for the good of everyone.”

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As of today, the new Data Commons can be accessed from Tech Nation’s website and provides a 360-degree view of the rapidly evolving innovation economy right across the UK for investors, entrepreneurs and policy makers.

It has been launched ahead of London Tech Week as part of the UK’s ambition to lead the world in providing open data and includes detailed information on individual technology businesses, founders, investors, VC funds, angels, accelerators, universities and service providers to the sector.

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Adam Hale, board member, Tech Nation, said: “I registered as soon as I saw this. Data like this is key to building a community of success in the UK which sits at the heart of Tech Nation’s mission. This data allows people to understand and navigate the community, informing them what to know and also who to know. It will highlight opportunities for partnership, collaboration, investment and even angels by area. For those based in the UK’s largest town, Reading and places like it, this kind of information allows us to compete globally.”

Example data you can find inside:

List of 72 UK unicorns (both realised and current);

List of 78 potential future unicorns based on funding and valuation momentum;

Record first half venture capital investment of $4.8 billion into UK tech companies;

List of 1,600 female-founded startups;

All the largest funding rounds of 2019; and

Heatmap of investment by industry and by UK region.

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The UK tech scene is thriving

The innovation or digital economy is thriving in every region across the UK, but a lack of comprehensive information on activity and emerging trends within the national ecosystem could be impeding even faster growth.

By creating an inclusive Data Commons, Tech Nation and Dealroom want to provide a world-leading resource that can help Britain’s emerging technology companies to fulfil their potential.

The Data Commons will provide investors and entrepreneurs with the information they need to develop their business plans and network with a broad range of potential partners within the ecosystem, to accelerate their growth.

For instance, the platform provides founders with an opportunity to see who else is working in their field, the success stories to date, growth indicators and where businesses in the same sector are concentrated.

Digital Secretary Jeremy Wright said: “This timely initiative from Tech Nation and Dealroom is a world-first with the potential to spark a new wave of investment in the UK’s tech startups and help create new jobs and prosperity across the country.

“International and UK-based investors are pumping record amounts of cash into our thriving technology industry and, as they arrive in the capital for London Tech Week, this new tool will provide them with a rich new open data source to inform their decisions.”

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“Speed is vital”

Lesley Eccles, board member, Tech Nation, said: “When you’re building a technology business, speed is vital. Having access to a high quality database of relevant investors, potential partners and service providers specialising in the tech space, means that UK tech companies will be able to make the right decisions more quickly. The Data Commons by Tech Nation and Dealroom provides the tools to make meaningful connections and informed decisions. This will ultimately help UK tech businesses connect locally to grow globally.”

Data defines decisions

George Windsor, head of insights at Tech Nation, said: “Robust, comprehensive data is the foundation to informed decisions and innovative solutions. This open database will help all of us to build a true picture of the UK’s fast-growing tech sector, to spot opportunities, make smart connections, reduce costs and drive innovation. Our team will work on the ground across the 11 regions and nations to encourage adoption and contribution to this resource and to make sure that it truly captures the entire ecosystem. Tech Nation is proud to play our part in this important work, enabling the UK to stand apart and to lead the world by producing actionable data for everyone.”

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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...

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