London has an established position at the cutting edge of tech. Previously in Fintech, but now also AI and Healthtech. It’s critical we leverage this advantage — attract the best talent and build a supportive ecosystem.
London remains a tech powerhouse, with local startups in the British capital valued at an astronomical $47 billion, but the ecosystem faced considerable headwinds this year. In addition to the global disruption caused by the pandemic, the finalization of Britain’s protracted and messy breakup from the EU left many commentators wondering whether London would retain its spot near the top of startup ecosystem rankings. So far, signs are good. VC investment into Britain is the third highest in the world, after the United States and China, and hit a record high of $15 billion in 2020. Despite the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, 63% of that funding came from overseas last year, up from 50% in 2016. Previous to Brexit, London excelled at attracting overseas talent, which led to concerns about the impact of the end of freedom of movement for Europeans. However, Britain boasts plenty of homegrown tech talent, and ecosystem insiders note that the end of the drawn-out Brexit process at least brings clarity, allowing startups to plan. Britain’s new freedom to craft it’s own regulatory regime could potentially offer benefits to the ecosystem as well. Finally, the City of London continues in its status as a global financial hub, suggesting the greater ecosystem will retain its dominance in the Fintech sector. Edtech is a growing sub-sector in London as well. The bottom line is that the gloomiest predictions regarding the impact of Brexit on Britain’s biggest startup ecosystem don’t seem set to have come to pass, though London startups have faced a year of adjustment and recalibration.
Ecosystem by the numbers
Reasons to move your startup to London
Are you interested in diving deeper into this ecosystem? Drop us a message. Our Ambassadors and Partners can plug you in.