The data, compiled by London & Partners, show that technology firms in the capital have secured more than $1.4bn in venture capital financing during 2014, double the amount raised in 2013. However, taking into account technology companies across the rest of the UK, including emerging tech hubs in cities such as Sheffield, Leeds and Manchester, VC investment rises to more than $2.1bn.
It’s simply astounding how fast the tech scene is changing and improving almost on a weekly basis. Now, just four years after the Prime Minister and the Mayor of London launched the Tech City initiative, venture capital investment into London’s tech sector is 20 times greater than in 2010.
“Our tech sector has fostered bucket loads of innovation and entrepreneurialism, and is now becoming an industry that’s changing the way the world does business, creating real jobs and economic growth both in London and across the entire country,” London Mayor Boris Johnson said.
Similarly, Eileen Burbidge, London technology ambassador believes that “London is rapidly becoming one of the most exciting tech markets in the world. Too many people still believe that tech innovation and investment is centered around the US. In fact entrepreneurs, companies and investors are all gravitating to London to set up shop and launch products, lured by a rich talent pool and a vibrancy and dynamism that simply doesn’t exist elsewhere.”
And Tech City CEO Gerard Grech said: “The record level of investment in Britain’s tech sector is proof that the UK is well on its way to becoming a world leader in digital technology innovation. These numbers are testament to the skillsets and the increasingly strong digital clusters across the UK, coupled with improving policy conditions. Building on London’s success and creating connectivity between different cities and clusters will continue to drive the overall health of this fast growing sector.”
As the tech sector in the UK continues to mature companies are beginning to secure larger funding rounds. During 2014 a dozen deals each worth more than $40m have been closed, that’s up from just four in 2013.
Over the next ten years the number of digital technology companies in London is expected to rise to 45,000 adding 46,000 new jobs in the process and creating more than £12bn of economic activity, according to research by Oxford Economics.
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