Venture capital-backed businesses in the UK raised more than £3.3 billion in funding in 2015, according to a report by KPMG Enterprise and CB Insights.
The record-breaking total was reached via 400 deals over the year, and was capped off with deals worth £910 million in the final quarter alone.
The figures mean that the UK accounted for nearly half (43%) of all venture capital funding deals secured in the whole of Europe in 2015. The UK's performance during the final three months of the year is also in sharp contrast to the rest of the world, which saw a 30% fall and the lowest number of deals secured since the start of 2013.
Nevertheless, 2015 was still a landmark year with global VC funding hitting an all-time high of £89.3bn, up 44% on 2014’s total of £62.4bn.
Ben McDonald, head of KPMG Enterprise in the UK, said: “2015 was a record-setting year for VC investment in the UK, with the maturity of our start-up ecosystem, coupled with our celebrated culture of entrepreneurship, proving to be a strong draw for investors from across the globe. Experienced management teams, highly skilled employees and disruptive business models will always attract attention, and I have no doubts that we will continue to see significant levels of investment activity throughout 2016.
“Nevertheless, the slowdown in VC funding activity seen globally does provide us with something of a slight reality check. With a number of IPOs falling short of recent private valuations in the US, other US investors re-evaluating and writing down some of their VC investment portfolios and substantial uncertainties making Asian equity markets stumble, VC investor confidence has clearly been rattled. We will need to keep a close eye on these developments over the coming months, as the UK VC ecosystem is clearly not fully immune to them.”