VC funding for European start-ups highest since 2001 in Q2

28 Jul 2014

The latest figures regarding venture-capital funding for start-ups in Europe has shown that in the second quarter of this year alone, companies across the continent received €2.1bn, the highest since 2001.

The financial figures released by Dow Jones VentureSource indicate the amount of funding being pumped into the tech industry in Europe is heading towards the lofty height of the infamous dot-com tech bubble that burst in 2000, but is still only half-way to reaching these levels.

At its height prior to the dawning of the 21st century, venture-capital funding reached as high as €4.4bn before dropping sharply to just under €2bn by 2001.

This recent spate of backings has been largely attributed to increasing interest and investment from US markets, as a number of European tech companies reached billion-dollar valuations, including Criterio (France), Supercell (Finland), and King Digital Entertainment in Sweden, according to The Wall Street Journal.

US still dominating

Meanwhile in the US, venture-capital funding still surpasses that of Europe by a considerable margin both in 2001 and in 2014.

At the height of the previous tech boom prior to 2000, US venture-capital funding reached as high as US$26bn and now sits at the still-impressive total of US$13.84bn. Investors have been quick to say this current achievement rate of funding is far more secure than that of the dot-com era.

According to Michiel Kotting, of the venture-capital firm Accel Partners, the previous generation’s failings were down to making repeated investments with the intention of making quick profits.

It appears that from the second-quarter findings, the companies receiving the most funding are largely consumer services-based, with the largest single receiver of funding being the Russian online retailer Ozon Group, the recipient of US$150m last April.

Tech start-up funding image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic