Crowdfunding fosters UK startup scene

According to the main findings from the last report released yesterday by the British research house Beauhurst, which focuses on all equity investment in non-listed UK companies in Q1 2017, equity funding in the UK is still stagnant when compared with its steady growth pre-2016, despite a small improvement in deal numbers.

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In particular, researchers discovered that even though overall deal numbers increased by 2.7% from the previous quarter, deal numbers were still 6.72% lower than in the same quarter last year.

However, the total amount invested increased by 2.2%, which represents the highest amount since Q1 last year although growth in deal numbers was only seen in early-stage deals.

The equity crowdfunding segment saw almost £45m invested over 80 deals, reporting an 11% growth in deal numbers with growth only seen in early-stage deals.

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Among the top investing houses, Seedrs, which yesterday announced the launch of a beta secondary market by the next summer, led the pack with 35 deals followed by Crowdcube (29 deals), Entrepreneur First (17), SyndicateRoom (13) and Scottish Enterprise (11).

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According to data, while the South East – the second busiest region for equity investment after London – felt a harsh decline of over 50% in deal numbers, West Midlands reported the highest percent change in regional deal number from Q4 2016.

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From a sector perspective, medical technology (medtech) and life sciences reported 3 of the quarter’s 5 biggest deals.