Data Shows Which UK VCs Have Been The Most Active In The Last 5 Years

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It was only at the end of last month that new data appeared showing that fundraising by European startups was emerging from the bad old days of 2001. Dow Jones VentureSource reported that they’d raised more than $2.8 billion from VCs in the second quarter of 2014. That data also showed the UK was the country to beat in Europe, since companies there had raised 28% of the total amount for Europe in the second quarter, followed by France with 19% and Germany with 15%.

Now some new data has appeared to mark out who of those UK VCs have the most active over the last five years.

According to CB Insights, North West Fund and Index Ventures have been the most active venture investors in UK-based tech companies since 2009. Now, before we break out the champagne for North West, we need to note that this is an evergreen fund that makes most of its investments in the North West of England through a subset of funds dedicated to biomedical, digital & creative, energy and clean tech. That means Index is much more in the frame in terms of the TechCrunch constituency.

Out of the funds we are more familiar with, Accel Partners was next in line in terms of activity in the UK, with investments across a variety of stages, with the most recent being Funding Circle’s $65M Series D which included Union Square Ventures, Ribbit Capital and Index Ventures.

The rest of the list consisted, in order, of Balderton Capital, Midven, MMC Ventures, Northstar Ventures, Amadeus Capital Partners, Notion Capital and DFJ Esprit.

It’s interesting to see Notion in this list as it is still a relatively new fund. Northstar Ventures is a Newcastle-based fund typically investing under $1M, while MMC invests almost exclusively in London-based companies.

CB Insights said Index Ventures led all tech VCs at the mid-stage since 2009, with notable investments including participation in Just-Eat’s Series B and C ($48M and $64M, respectively) and Onefinestay’s $12M Series B.

Accel Partners has of course notably done Series B financings for SwiftKey and Hailo.

Balderton Capital’s highlights since 2009 include Wonga’s $117M Series C and HouseTrip’s Series B and C which cumulatively raised $57M. Both companies have Accel Partners as investors.

Foreign investors making noteworthy incursions into UK companies include US-based Accel Partners, Greylock Partners and Spain-based Nauta Capital.

The rest of the mid-stage list consisted of Eden Ventures, DFJ Esprit and Dawn Capital.

In the early stage arena, the names that comes up in the top ten included Index, Notion, Accel, MMC, Passion Capital, Atomico, Balderton, and IP Group. It’s worth pointing out that in the last year Atomico has moved from early stage towards growth funding.

With the corporate and evergreen fund of Google Ventures now launching in Europe, it will be interesting to see who head up this list in five years time.