The March Q 2109 was massive for Startup and Tech Funding but is investment growth slowing?

Techboard is pleased to present its latest startup and young tech funding report for the quarter ending 31 March 2019. This quarter on the lead up to the Australian Federal Election we decided to do more analysis of our numbers than usual for our 'minor' reports and we identified a number of trends that may provide some cause for concern.   

During the March quarter 2019 Techboard identified over 150 funding events across a broad range of funding types ranging from accelerator program funding, acquisitions, equity crowdfunding, major debt instruments (sometimes called venture debt), grants, coin offerings, initial public offerings, ASX placements and private investment (including angel, VC and other large-scale private investment).  The report reveals funding events for Australian startups and young tech companies totalling $2.697b during the March 2019 quarter, the largest quarter for funding yet since Techboard began producing its reports.

The funding scene for Australian Startups and Young Tech companies in the March Quarter 2019 was notable for two standout funding events, for two local unicorns, namely the acquisition of property tech company Property Exchange Australia Ltd (PEXA) for over $1.6b and the $100m USD ($141m AUD) series C raise for Melbourne based foreign exchange fintech Airwallex which also valued the company at over USD $1b.

In addition, Fintech Moula secured $250m in debt funding which is the third largest debt financing for a startup ever captured by Techboard (behind Judo Capital’s $350m Dec Q 2018 and NextDC $300m Sept Q 2017). These three funding events represented almost $2b in funding events, more than double the quarterly funding average during 2018.

In December 2018 we opened up access to our funding data to commercial subscribers.  Our funding data customers get access to details of all funding events captured by Techboard, including Company name, Amount (where known), State, Category, Funding Type, Funder (where known), Link to Source and a link to the company profile in the Techboard Directory.

Read more about accessing Techboard's funding data. 

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Here are a selection of the stories written about the Funding Report:

Key facts:

Overall Funding recorded in March quarter: $2.697b (or $1,093m excluding PEXA acquisition)

Largest funding event: PEXA acquisition $1.604b

Private investment (including VC) recorded in March quarter: $477m, up from $362m in Dec Q 2018 and $346m in March Q 2018

Public investment recorded in March quarter: $229 up from $114m in Dec Q but down from $507m in March Q 2018 (which included $377m by NextDC)

Overall investment $714m up from $480m Dec Q but down from $859m in Mar Q 2018

Debt $310m down from $390m in Dec Q 2018

Largest Private funding: Airwallex $141m series C

Largest Funding Type by $: Acquisitions 60.4% ($1.632b)

Equity crowdfunding raises (startup and tech only) more than doubled from $2.7 to $6.9m

Most funding events by type: Grants/accelerators with private funding closely following behind.

Must funded category: Property 61.4% with Fintech 2nd dominating all other sectors with 51% of remainder once the PEXA acquisition is excluded.

Largest IPO: Uniti Wireless $16.2m

Largest ICO: Liven $14m

Largest Placement: Amaysim $50.6m ZipCo $42.8m

Largest Debt: Moula $250m

Private vs Public ratio: 2:1 (from 3:1 in Dec Q)

Largest Equity Crowdfunding: Ridesharing company Shebah $3m breaking the new record set by Xinja ($2.569m) earlier in the month of March

Most funded State: Victoria 79.4% - $2.145b including PEXA acquisition $1.604b (excluding PEXA NSW raised 40% ($339m) to Victoria’s 34.4% ($291m)).

27% of private investments by number had foreign investors, 67% by Value.

Of the 10 top largest private investment rounds representing 81 % of private investment in the quarter (by Value), half were foreign investor led.