London overtakes New York as UK FinTech investment hits record high

Mark Johnson's picture

London has overtaken New York for FinTech investment deals, according to new research based on Pitchbook data released today by London & Partners, and Innovate Finance.

A Fine Year for FinTech: Global Trends from a UK Perspective explores the FinTech VC-led investment trends so far in 2019, comparing countries and cities around the world, in terms of deal value, deal count and sources of investment.

The data was released as Sibos, one of the main global financial services events, opened in London.   

UK-wide appeal

While London has long been established as a thriving, well-connected financial eco-system, 2019 has seen record levels of investment in the UK overall. 

In the first eight months of the year alone, over $2-billion has been invested in London-based businesses across 114 deals, surpassing totals seen in any previous year.

Amongst FinTech investment deals on a global level, London has taken top spot in 2019, with a total of 114 deals, overtaking New York in second place (101). 

San Francisco is in third place (80 deals), with Singapore (23) and Beijing (24) competing for fourth and fifth.   

US remains largest market

The US remains the largest market globally, with $9.37bn raised so far in 2019.

Key findings from the report include:

  • The top five world cities by deal value in 2019 show the US leading with San Francisco at $3.02bn, London second at $2.1bn, New York in third at $1.93bn, followed by Berlin at $881m, and Stockholm in fifth at $735m.
  • A country comparison of global FinTech investment by deal value reveals the US in top place ($9,371.6m), the UK second place ($2,292.8m), followed by Germany (998.8m), China ($770.8m) and Sweden ($736.7m)
  • London leads overall FinTech investment in Europe with $2.11bn investment, followed by Berlin ($881m), Stockholm ($734m), Paris ($330m) and Milan ($49m). 
  • London also leads Europe with the top number of investment deals (114), ahead of Stockholm (21), Berlin (20), Paris (19), Milan (8).
  • Germany has also performed strongly, with investment levels reaching record levels in 2019, following rapid growth between 2014 –18. In 2019, just under $1bn was invested in German companies across 37 deals. 

London leads EU on largest deals 

Out of the ten largest European investments recorded so far in 2019, London-based companies account for half these deals, totalling $1.8bn between them. 

The UK capital’s FinTech sector is a leading source of high value scale-up companies, with Monzo ($143m) and WorldRemit ($175m) featuring in the lofty ranks of unicorn success stories. 

Other London based investment deals include: OakNorth ($440m); Checkout.com ($230m); Iwoca ($195m).

Fintech leaders: London makes up half of top 10 for deals

An analysis of the top ten cities for number of FinTech deals in 2019 shows that London has the most international investors, with 54% of total VC investment involving an investor from outside the UK.

Wider mix of investors 

The UK capital attracts a wider international variety of investors than other European hubs, with 39% of investors coming from outside Europe, compared to 32% in Berlin and Paris with 24%. 

London also attracts a wider international investor mix than North American cities; only 11% of investors in San Francisco came from outside of North America, and 15% in New York. 

“London has always been ahead of the curve and pivotal in embracing new technology and opportunities while pushing the boundaries of an existing ecosystem, to present an even better solution”, Laura Citron, CEO, London and Partners, said, on the sidelines of the Sibos conference. 

“This is why we’ve seen these outstanding global trends in FinTech. The financial technology sector is diverse, creative, cutting-edge and innovative – these very qualities are shared by London – and Londoners. 

“The report shows London is leading the world in terms of the number of FinTech deals and the investment across Europe. 

“With no signs of slowing down, the FinTech community reflects the unstoppable nature of our city”.  

UK global leader 

Charlotte Crosswell, CEO, Innovate Finance, said: “The UK is the clear global leader in the FinTech, spearheaded by London’s success and long-standing position as a major leading financial centre. 

“It’s no surprise London and the whole of the UK Fintech sector is experiencing record growth – we are home to world-class talent and our historical pedigree enables access to key global markets. 

“With record investment under our belt, this is the time to boost the sector further and secure future growth.”

Sibos 2019 marks the first-time this global financial services event has been held in London, with over 10,000 delegates expected to attend. 

The conference explores the concept of thriving in a hyper-connected world with the challenges, and opportunities brought by mass digitisation and data-driven relationships. 

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