The UK Crowns 100th Tech Unicorn

The UK Crowns 100th Tech Unicorn

June 17, 2021 at 06:47PM

The United Kingdom tech industry hit a major milestone on Thursday (June 17), with 100 tech firms in the country reaching a valuation of at least $1 billion to attain unicorn status, according to an announcement that cited Tech Nation and Dealroom data.

“Smashing through this milestone cements the U.K.’s place as one of the world’s top tech hubs,” Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said in the announcement.

Tractable, an artificial intelligence (AI) upstart that is developing computer vision tools, is the country’s 100thtech unicorn, according to the announcement. It revealed a $60 million Series D raise, which brought the company’s valuation into unicorn territory.

Thirteen United Kingdom tech unicorns have been made to date this year, while only 7 were created in all of last year.

“With U.K. tech unicorn creation growing by 127 percent over the last 3 years, it’s clear that the U.K. tech sector has become a rapidly growing hub for unicorns, culminating in 100 companies with unicorn status today,” Tech Nation Chief Executive Gerard Grech said in the announcement.

All in all, the country’s 100 tech unicorns have landed nearly $32 billion in venture capital investment. About a third – or 34 percent – of United Kingdom tech unicorns are FinTech firms.

The United Kingdom has more tech unicorns than the Netherlands, France and Germany put together. It is also the first nation in Europe to have 100 unicorns.

Investment in British “deep tech” companies has quickly increased over the last half of a decade, reaching roughly $3.2 billion in 2020, as per the British Business Bank.

But the organization pointed out that British “deep tech” companies bring in much smaller rounds of funding than the same types of firms in the United States.

More specifically, the organization says that the average British “deep tech” companies notched roughly $33.9 million after six rounds of funding.

By comparison, the average U.S. “deep tech” company raises about $159.3 million after six rounds.