U.K. FinTech startups raised $173 million across 16 deals in Q4 2016, an increase of $95 million from Q3, according to a report from CB Insights.
The report, The Global FinTech Report Full Year 2016, from the company which tracks venture capital investment, looked at FinTech venture capital across markets in Europe, Asia and North America. The results found that investment within financial technology firms had risen by 122 percent between October and December 2016 with the number of deals taking place increasing by 33 percent.
Despite an increase in U.K. financial technology investment during Q4 2016, across the whole year the amount raised only amounted to $494 million compared to $962 million in 2015. During Q4 2015, U.K. FinTech funding reached $275 million.
An earlier report by Innovate Finance and Pitchbook found that investment in FinTech in the U.K. had fallen in 2016 to 33.7 percent while China and the U.S. dominated the sector. Yet, this bounce back in Q4 2016 will provide a sense of relief to those within the sector suggesting that the earlier slowdown in investments may have been a temporary halt caused by Brexit.
Despite London still remaining the lead as the global FinTech hub in light of the Brexit results last June other countries have been ramping up efforts to overtake London’s lead. Paris is one such city that has been proving it’s a potential threat to London after its Paris Fintech Forum attracted over 1,500 bankers, investors, and entrepreneurs in January.
However, with questions still remaining as to whether London will retain hold of the top spot post-Brexit, it seems for now that the temporary pause in investment was just that rather than the start of a more general decline in venture capital within the sector.
CB Insights found that in 2016, European venture capital funding reached $1.2 billion across 179 deals, down from $1.6 billion during 2015.
However, while funding fell 25 percent on a year-on-year basis, European financial technology deals increased 11 percent in 2016 and 124 percent compared to 2011’s figure.
The report found that global investment to venture-backed financial technology companies declined from 2015’s high.
On a year over year basis, funding to venture capital funded companies decreased by 13 percent while deals fell by 1 percent.
The report shows, though, that while Brexit certainly played a role in a drop in U.K.’s funding within the sector, other countries were affected too through various factors.
And yet, while the U.K.’s investment may not have been what it was in Q4 2015, the fact that it did rise after Brexit suggests that companies are not as worried as they initially were, giving London the incentive to do more to maintain its number one lead.
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