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Venture Pulse: Q4’18 Global analysis of venture funding

Venture Pulse: Q4’18 Global analysis of venture funding

Quarterly global report on VC trends published by KPMG Enterprise

Sunil Mistry

Audit Partner, Enterprise and TMT

KPMG Accountants B.V


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Seeing over $254 billion of VC funding raised globally, compared with $174 billion last year, 2018 was a bumper year for VC investment, with record levels in the Americas, Asia, and Europe. The strong and diversified US market continued to attract the majority of investment, although Asia came in a close second, thanks to an ongoing wave of $1 billion+ mega-deals, including four in Q4 alone. And despite ongoing uncertainty around Brexit, European VC also remained very strong, with a significant increase over 2017.

In the Q4'18 edition of Venture Pulse, we examine both annual and quarterly VC market results and explore a variety of global and regional trends, including:

  • Rising unicorn birth rates
  • Increasing opportunities in emerging markets
  • Growing investment in AI all around the world
  • Ongoing breadth in transportation investment

Heading into 2019, the IPO market will be one to watch as a number of massive unicorns prepare to go public. However, the unexpected turbulence of the public markets at the end of 2018, may give pause for thought.

Fundraising a key focus in Canada

It was a strong year for VC investment in Canada, with deals happening right through Q4, including a $100 million raise by travel booking platform Hopper and an $80 million raise by Milestone Pharmaceuticals, which is working on interventions for tachycardias. While most deals focused on later stage rounds, there was some increasing interest in Series A rounds and Seed/Angel rounds by Family Offices and smaller VCs.

During Q4'18, US-based healthcare investment firm Versant Ventures raised $100 million for a fund focused on Canadian startups, NorthleafCapital Partners announced the launch and initial closing of the NorthleafVenture Catalyst Fund II, and Kensington Venture Partners raised $85 million under the VCCI program.

The steadiness of the pace of funding in Canada has in fact been remarkable throughout the past two years. With the second-highest quarterly tally ever for the nation in the first half of the year, 2018 saw a new high—$2.9 billion, far outstripping any prior tallies, even though 2015 still saw the most volume. But given the pipeline of deals at the end of 2018, Q1'19 is expected to be quite active for VC investment in Canada.

Download the full report to read more.

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