While few would argue that London isn’t the startup capital of Europe, uncertainty surrounding Brexit has cast some doubt over the city’s ability to retain its crown. That’s why it’s so encouraging to see that not only have Silicon Valley investors continued to pump money into the Big Smoke’s startup ecosystem but they have also increased their investment since the EU referendum.
According to new research from London and Partners, the mayor of London’s promotional agency, investors from the Valley have so far invested $1.13bn in UK startups in 2017 and the British capital’s companies have received 90%, or $1.04bn, of that money. In total, Silicon Valley investors have injected $2.94bn into Blighty since 2012.
And looking closer at the findings, these investors clearly have more faith in London’s entrepreneurs than those in other European cities. For instance, while Stockholm has birthed more unicorns per capita than any other city save Silicon Valley, the Swedish city has only received a total of $1.4bn since 2012. Similarly, Berlin has received $641m and Paris has been given $500m by Bay Area investors.
The research has been released to mark the start of Silicon Valley Comes to the UK (SVC2UK), a week-long series of events bringing together leading figures from the Californian community and the UK tech scene. Commenting on the study, Sherry Coutu, co-founder of SVC2UK and serial entrepreneur, said: “It is no surprise to see that British tech firms continue to attract more venture capital investment from the Bay Area than any other European country and the figures released today suggest that Brexit has not had an impact. London will continue to be a diverse, outward-looking city and we look forward to welcoming our friends from the Valley to encourage greater collaboration between the two centres.”
It’s impossible to say what the final outcome from the Brexit negotiations will be. Nevertheless, the fact that confidence in London is still high means the city should remain the continent’s startup capital, come what may.