Funding of Irish SMEs almost doubles in first quarter to €237m 

  • IVCA VenturePulse survey finds that 1,250 Irish SMEs have raisedventure capital of €2.8bn. since 2008
  • Results reflect continuing strong appetite by international investors for Irish tech firms

Irish high tech SMEs raised €237m in the first quarter of 2016, or nearly double the amount over the same period last year, according to the Irish Venture Capital Association VenturePulse survey published today in association with William Fry. “About half the funds came through international syndicates which shows an encouraging and continuing strong global appetite for the Irish tech sector,” commented Brian Caulfield, chairman, IVCA. “The first quarter results continue the positive performance of last year overall when funding of Irish SMEs rose by 30% to €522m.”

He pointed out that one company (Oneview Healthcare) raised €40m through an IPO in Australia reflecting the increasing globalisation of Irish businesses. “The increase in this quarter to €237m from €119.8m last year is a positive result considering that the industry in Ireland is in fundraising mode,” added Regina Breheny, director general, IVCA. She said that life sciences dominated the first quarter with 42% of funds raised by 15 companies in this sector. Two companies raised over 25% of total funds. Growth/expansion funding represented 90% of total funds raised. “The importance of close international relationships is once again emphasised by continued strong support from global players, who invested €116m or 49% of total funds raised in the first quarter,” said Breheny. She added that first round seed funding at €24.7m had more than doubled from €11.9m in the same period last year. “Early stage companies have benefited from support from Irish VCs and private investors such as angels.

While seed funds supported by Enterprise Ireland are being renewed, it will take some months yet to get these up and running.” She said that since the onset of the credit crunch in 2008, in excess of 1,250 Irish SMEs raised venture capital of €2.8bn. These funds were raised almost exclusively by Irish VC fund managers who during this period supported the creation of up to 20,000 jobs; attracted over €1.25bn of capital into Ireland and geared up the State’s investment through the Seed & Venture Capital programme by almost 16 times.

Summary:

Funds Raised

The IVCA VenturePulse survey shows that Irish companies raised €237.4m from investors in Q1 2016. This compares with funds raised of €119.8m in Q1 2015, €145.4m in Q1 2014 and with €52.1m in Q1 2013.

Seed/Early Stage

In Q1 2016 early stage companies raised seed capital of €24.7m (10% of funds raised). This compares with €11.9m (10% of funds raised) in Q1 2015, €4.6m (3% of funds raised) in Q1 2014 and with €7.3m (14% of funds raised) in Q1 2013.