Masterclassing

$682m Invested in London Startups in Q1 2015

Tim Maytom

London underground wifiThe first three months of 2015 have seen a record amount of venture capital investment in London-based startups, with $682.5m (£460m) poured into new firms, placing them on the track to break past $2bn in funding by the end of the year.

The record high in investment is a 66 per cent rise year-on-year, and smashes the previous record of $411.6m set in Q4 of last year. The figures, tracked by London & Partners, demonstrate the growth the capital has seen in tech investment since 2010, when it only managed $101m in total for the whole year.

However, the figures also reveal how clustered tech investment is on a national and global scale. Funding for London-based firms represented 80 per cent of all VC investment in the UK for Q1, and while 2014 saw London companies attract a record $1.35bn in funding across the whole year, it pales in comparison to US internet companies, which raised $11.9bn in 2014, and US software firms, which attracted $19.8bn worth of investment across the year.

Still, the figures are certainly encouraging for London-based startups, showing how rapidly the capital has managed to transform itself into a global centre for technology and innovation.

"This quarter is the most exciting yet in London's tech development, as we have seen companies based in the capital attract substantial new investments from some the world's most tech-savvy and influential investors," said Eileen Burbidge, partner at Passion Capital and technology ambassador for London.

"London is one of the most electrifying tech hubs in the world, with companies and investors all brought here by the city's ideas and entrepreneurial spirit, as well as its talent and access to markets."

"We have found London to be the perfect location from which to grow our global technology business – well on our way to a multi billion-dollar valuation," said Ambarish Mitra, CEO and co-founder of AR advertising startup Blippar. "The city has been a springboard for Blippar to open 10 offices in six countries and grow threefold year-on-year since we started three and a half years back. We have enjoyed great support from the British Government throughout our rapid global ascent to date and give credit to them for introducing policies favourable for British tech startups."