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About this report

We have analysed all equity investment in UK startups and high-growth companies between 1 January - 30 June 2016.

We examine the size and frequency of deals around the UK, the stage of evolution, sector and location of companies that are being backed, and the nature of the funders that are backing them - from crowdfunding, to venture capital, private equity and more.

 

Key findings

Deal numbers in 2016 have fallen over 20% compared to the second half of 2015, with the EU referendum and its impact on investor confidence likely to have played a significant role in the second quarter of this year.

The amount of deals on crowdfunding platforms have fallen for the first time on record. Deal numbers are down 17% from this time 6 months ago.

Investment from institutional investors, for example venture capital and private equity firms, is at the lowest levels since the beginning of 2013.

Crowdfunding platforms still topped the investor charts, despite seeing a fall in deal numbers for the first time.

As fewer individual investments are being made, the average deal size is growing. Deals larger than £10m were the only investment size to increase in frequency, and smaller deals (less than £250k) declined by almost a third

Deals across London have plummeted by 28%, more than the average fall across the UK as a whole. But Cambridge, Manchester and Oxford all saw growth in activity compared to the last half a year.

Over 61% of equity deals in this period were never made public and uncovered only by Beauhurst research. This figure will only grow as further deals are discovered later in the year.

Every sector saw a fall in investment numbers, but retail and software sectors were hit the hardest, with deal numbers falling by 43% and 20% respectively.

A smaller number of high-value deals meant that certain sectors saw record highs for amounts invested, for example, software was bolstered by a large deal secured by Skyscanner – the largest so far in 2016.