Last year, the European tech startup market was at its strongest ever position, claims Atomico’s The State of European Tech 2020 report. However, the COVID-19 pandemic brought an economic shock that derailed the progress. While investors and founders prepared themselves to face the worst during the uncertain times, Governments rushed to provide liquidity. Gradually, the European tech ecosystem weathered the storm and realised another year of record-smashing investments, beating the odds.
European VC is standing on its own feet, continuing its outperformance as opposed to other investments, and minimising the dependence on government aids, notes the report. The most successful companies in the region have continued to smash records and hit record valuations. Having said that, here we have listed 10 largest funding rounds in Europe in 2020, according to the Atomico’s report.
Founder/s: Sebastian Siemiatkowski, Niklas Adalberth, Victor Jacobsson
Founded year: 2005
Total funding: €1.6B
In September, Klarna raised $650M (€537M) in an equity funding round post its $10.65B (€9.6B). With this, the fintech is the highest-valued private fintech in Europe. This investment round was led by Silver Lake along with participation from GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, BlackRock and HMI Capital. Also, Merian Chrysalis, TCV, Northzone, and Bonnier have acquired shares and will join current investors. The funding was to help Klarna invest in its unique shopping offering, continue to grow its global presence, and accelerate its strong momentum across all markets.
Founder/s: Peter Carlsson, Paolo Cerruti
Founded year: 2016
Total funding: €1.5B
Stockholm-based lithium-ion battery manufacturer Northvolt raised $600M (nearly €500M) equity funding in a round led by Baillie Gifford, Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division, and Volkswagen AG in February. And, private investors such as Cristina Stenbeck and Daniel Ek, co-founder and CEO of Spotify, also participated in the equity raise along with existing Northvolt shareholders.
The Swedish company intended to use this private placement to invest in three key areas – increasing its production capacity of battery cells and systems and support the goal of establishing 150 GWh of manufacturing capacity in Europe by 2030, expansion of the Northvolt Labs Campus, and establishing a giga-scale Li-ion recycling facility.
Founder/s: Nikolay Storonsky, Vlad Yatsenko
Founded year: 2015
Total funding: €836M
In July, London-based challenger-bank Revolut raised €460M Series D funding led by US-based growth capital firm TCV along with support from existing investors. With this fresh investment, the overall funding raised by the fintech accounts to €769M. And, the new round of funding positioned Revolut among the highest valued fintechs in the world with a valuation of nearly €5B.
Revolut planned to use this investment to optimise customer experience, core retail, and business offerings and product development. It also planned to optimise customer service, expand high-interest savings accounts outside of the UK, and banking operations across Europe.
Karma Kitchen (UK)
Founder/s: Eccie Newton, Gini Newton
Founded year: 2018
Total funding: €302M
Karma Kitchen, a London-based kitchen space startup bagged €302M Series A funding led by Vengrove Real Estate Management, a real estate investment firm in July. With this investment, Karma Kitchen planned to acquire, equip, and manage kitchen sites all over Europe. In five years, the startup hopes to provide flexible kitchen space to thousands of food businesses such as restaurants and meal kit companies.
Founder/s: Alex Chesterman
Founded year: 2018
Total funding: €527M
London-based used car marketplace Cazoo raised dual funding rounds in 2020 taking its valuation to over €2.3B. Firstly, in March, Cazoo secured £100M (nearly €108M) funding led by ed by DMG Ventures alongside other investors, including General Catalyst, CNP (Groupe Frère), Mubadala Capital, Octopus Ventures, Eight Roads Ventures, and Stride.VC.
Later, in October, Cazoo raised €265M from General Catalyst, D1 Capital Partners and Fidelity Management & Research Company and Blackrock. Besides them, existing and new investors – L Catterton, The Spruce House Partnership, Durable Capital Partners, Novator, Mubadala Capital and DMG Ventures.
Founder/s: Adrien Nussenbaum, Philippe Corrot
Founded year: 2011
Total funding: €357M
In September, Mirakl, a global marketplace solutions provider based in Paris raised $300M (nearly €250M) funding that takes its valuation to €1.4B, making it a unicorn. The funding round was led by Permira Advisers along with participation from existing investors – 83North, Bain Capital Ventures, Felix Capital and Elaia Partners. With this investment, Mirakl intended to expand across all areas with the same business model and the same features but with more resources. It also planed to hire 500 engineers and scale its customer and sales teams.
Auto1 Group (Germany)
Founder/s: Christian Bertermann, Hakan Koc
Founded year: 2012
Total funding: €1B
Berlin-based digital used car platform Auto1 Group announced that it raised $300M (nearly €250M) in July. This investment round was led by Farallon Capital Management and Baupost Group. Also, existing shareholders, including Softbank Group participated in the funding round. Auto1 Group plans to use the investment to develop its retail brand – Autohero. This new brand will sell secondhand cars directly to private buyers. Autohero will inspect, refurbish and deliver the vehicles.
Tier Mobility (Germany)
Founder/s: Lawrence Leuschner, Matthias Laug, Julian Blessin
Founded year: 2018
Total funding: €365M
In November, Berlin-based Tier Mobility secured $250M (approx €211.2M) Series C funding round led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and existing investors such as Mubadala Capital, Northzone, Goodwater Capital, White Star Capital, Novator, and RTP Global. With this fund, the company planned to expand its services in Europe and other strategic growth markets. It also planned to fast track its Tier Energy Network, as a part of which the company will see thousands of charging stations installed in cities across Europe to power electric vehicles.
Founder/s: Daniel Wiegand, Sebastian Born, Matthias Meiner, Patrick Nathen
Founded year: 2015
Total funding: €342M
In March, Munich-based aviation startup Lilium, which develops an all-electric, vertical take-off and landing aircraft secured $35M (nearly €29M) from Baillie Gifford, its new investor. This investor has backed high-impact companies such as Tesla, Amazon, Airbnb, SpaceX, and Spotify. This investment comes just three months after Lilium raised $240M (nearly €200M) led by existing investors – Atomico, LGT, Freigeist, and Tencent. Lilium planned to use these funds to support the development of Lilium Jet and underpinning preparations for the serial production at its newly completed manufacturing facilities.
Founder/s: Daniel Dines, Marius Tirca
Founded year: 2005
Total funding: €1.1B
In July, the Romanian company UiPath raised nearly $225M (nearly €186M) Series E funding in a round led by Alkeon, along with participation from Accel, Coatue, Dragoneer, IVP, Madrona Venture Group, Sequoia Capital, Tencent, Tiger Global, Wellington, and funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. This funding was to be used to accelerate its platform and meet its ambitions. Also, it was also supposed to help UiPath meet customer demands, according to the company.