Venture Capital funding rose by 41% to €401m in 2014
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Irish SMEs raised €401m from investors in 2014, up 41% on the previous year, according to the annual Irish Venture Capital Association VenturePulse survey published today. In 2013 Irish SMEs raised €285m.
“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 syndicates who invested €200m in this period,” commented John Flynn, chairman, Irish Venture Capital Association.

Funding for expansion represented 83% of the funds. 13% of the funds were raised by five Irish companies who went directly abroad, mainly to Silicon Valley. 

“The growing ability of indigenous firms to raise investment in Silicon Valley is a tremendous validation of Irish technology and reflects a growing confidence among Irish entrepreneurs,” added Regina Breheny, director general, IVCA.

First round seed funding recovered in Q4 of 2013 to deliver annual growth of 31% over that year. However, Stephen Keogh, a corporate partner in William Fry, which acted as legal adviser in over 30% of the funding rounds during the year, emphasised that seed funds supported by the banking sector and Enterprise Ireland’s Seed & Venture Capital Programme of 2007-2012 are close to being fully invested.

“The importance of seed and early stage funding cannot be overestimated. We need to back promising early stage start-ups in order to build a pipeline of successful Irish firms. While Foreign Direct Investment makes a valuable contribution to the Irish economy, it is increasingly mobile and it is important that we do not become over dependent on it,” added Mr Keogh.

The IVCA survey finds that since the onset of the credit crunch in 2008, over 1,000 Irish SMEs raised venture capital of €2.1bn. 

IVCA chairman John Flynn, who heads up ACT Venture Capital, commented,  “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 €865m of capital into Ireland and geared up the State’s investment through the Seed & Venture Capital Programme by almost seven times.”

Summary:
FUNDS RAISED
The IVCA VenturePulse survey shows that Irish companies raised €400.8m from investors in 2014. This compares with funds raised from investors of €284.9m in 2013 and to €269m in 2012, an increase of 49% in the two year period.

SEED/EARLY STAGE

Total seed funds raised in 2014 is €66.8m (17% of total funds raised). This compares to €51.6m (18% of total funds raised) in 2013 and to €53.7m (20% of total funds raised) in 2012, an increase of 24% in the two year period.

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The data is based on detailed information supplied internally by members of the Irish Venture Capital Association and from published information where IVCA members were not involved.

For press queries or interview please contact:

Regina Breheny, Director General, IVCA, Tel: 087 0517754 or
Ronnie Simpson, Simpson Consulting, Email: ronnie@simpsonconsulting.ie
Tel: 086 855 9410  

Key Contacts

Stephen Keogh Partner

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