European VC deals in fintech at a record low in Q1

New research from CB Insights reveals that while investment in fintech across the world rose to a record $5.4bn in Q1, VCs’ interest in Europe dropped to a five-quarter low

European VC deals in fintech at a record low in Q1

Fintech is booming around the world. But even though investors are eagerly investing their money in promising startups, the number of deals in Europe took a dive in the first three months of 2018, according to a new report from CB Insights, the VC database.

The continent may host such strong fintech Meccas like London but that still didn’t prevent the number of VC-backed deals to drop to from 77 deals in the previous quarter to 63, which represents a five-quarter low. Encouragingly though, that didn’t stop the territory from having a few significant deals. In fact, with Atom, the UK challenger bank, raising an impressive $207m (£149m) series D round in March and other multi-million deals saw the grand total of invested capital across Europe jump from $900m in the last three months of 2017 to $933m.

This positive outlook seems to echo across the globe with fintech startups raising a total of $5.4bn across 323 deals in Q1, a quarterly record. Unsurprisingly, given this influx of cash, the first three months of 2018 also saw the birth of two new fintech unicorns: UiPath, the software company that develops a platform for robotic process automation, and Nubank, the financial services scaleup. The addition of these two has seen the world fintech unicorn total reach 26. Together they have an estimated net worth of $77.6bn.

Of all continents, North America saw the most investment reach its fintech entrepreneurs. The number of deals in the US and Canada jumped from 114 at the end of 2017 to 157 in Q1. This brought the investment on the continent to $2.17bn in the year so far, a decline from the previous quarter when the grand total stood at $2.469bn.

While some European entrepreneurs may feel concerned to see the number of deals drop across the continent, it seems that, with all things considered, the global fintech startup community is alive and kicking.

Eric Johansson
Eric Johansson

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