Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Irish tech firms raised €120m in first quarter - IVCA VenturePulse survey

Irish technology companies raised €120m in the first quarter of 2015, according to the Irish Venture Capital Association VenturePulse survey which is published in association with William Fry.

John Flynn, chairman, Irish Venture Capital Association said that the level of activity continues the positive momentum experienced in 2014 where 41% growth to €401m was achieved for the full year.

“It’s a strong performance at a time when the venture capital industry in Ireland is in the middle of fund raising.”

He added that the Irish venture capital community continues to be the main source of funding for Irish innovative SMEs both through direct investment and as the local lead investor for international syndicate investors who invested €63m in this period.

“The figures reflect an encouraging international appetite for investment in Irish tech firms who continue to punch above their weight,” added the IVCA chairman who heads up ACT Venture Capital.

“Growth/expansion funding represented 90% of total funds raised which demonstrates that the positive seed funding activity over the past few years is starting to pay dividends and produce high quality expansion opportunities,” he said.

However, Regina Breheny, director general, IVCA, said that first round seed funding at 10% of funds raised is below the 17% achieved last year.

“The seed funds supported by the banking sector and Enterprise Ireland’s Seed & Venture Capital Programme of 2006-2012 are close to being fully invested,” she said.

“These need to be renewed if entrepreneurs are to be supported as actively as in the last five years but we are hopeful that new funds will come on stream in the second half of 2015.”

The IVCA VenturePulse survey finds that since the onset of the credit crunch in 2008, in excess of 1,000 Irish SMEs raised venture capital of €2bn. These funds were raised almost exclusively by Irish VC fund managers.

The IVCA estimates that this has supported the creation of up to 20,000 jobs; attracted over €825m of capital into Ireland and geared up the State’s investment through the Seed & Venture Capital programme by almost seven times.