European tech startups raise $21 billion from investors as 2021 looks set to beat records

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High-profile listings by the likes of Deliveroo has sent European exits to a quarterly high, according to Pitchbook.

VCs have invested €17.6 billion ($21.25 billion) into European startups in Q1 2021, new data shows. High-profile IPOs by Deliveroo and TrustPilot have sent EU exits to a quarterly high of €21 billion. America’s SPAC craze is set to push across into Europe, according to Pitchbook analyst Nalin Patel. See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Venture capital investment into European startups in 2021 is set to eclipse the €45.3 billion ($54.7 billion) record set last year, new figures show.

A quarterly high of €17.6 billion ($21.25 billion) was invested into companies across Europe in the opening three months of the year, according to figures from research firm Pitchbook.

The US has long dominated VC investment across the world with $156 billion invested into domestic startups over the course of 2020 alone, as per figures from the National Venture Capital Association. But investor appetite for European startups has continued to swell in recent years as backers look beyond the US for innovative companies.

Over €45.3 billion ($55 billion) was raised across 7,825 deals across Europe last year, a massive increase on the €7.5 billion ($9 billion) accrued in 2011.

Nalin Patel, a Pitchbook analyst, said annual records for the bloc could be surpassed again this year following a rapid opening to the year.

“Throughout the quarter, enormous late-stage rounds closed as highly valued companies attracted ample investment,” he said.

“First-time deal activity started the year off strongly as investors targeted trends accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Mr Patel also said that travel restrictions had not dampened fundraising and that VCs were particularly keen on healthcare and sustainability startups.

Among the larger rounds cited for driving up the level of VC investment was that of German ecommerce firm Branded, which raised €123.9 million ($150 million), and cryptocurrency service Blockchain.com, which raised €250.3 million ($302 million).