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Record level of VC investment in Switzerland

Funding for Swiss startups reached a new record high in 2017. The greatest rise was reported for venture capital investment in fintechs in the area of digitalisation, while biotech and medtech continued to receive the highest amounts. Growth was particularly strong in the canton of Zurich.

 

Xeltis
Startups in the biotech and medtech sectors were able to attract investment of 600 million francs in 2017. Image Credit: Xeltis

Over the past year, “more start-ups received investment than ever before” in Switzerland, say Startupticker.ch and the Swiss Private Equity & Corporate Finance Association (SECA) in their collaborative publication, the Swiss Venture Capital Report. According to the data, 938 million Swiss francs was invested in 175 Swiss startups in 2017. When compared with 2016, capital investment has therefore increased by 3 per cent. 

With an increase of 60 per cent on 2016, interest has above all risen in fintech companies operating in the area of digitalisation. A total of 30 Swiss startups in this segment were able to attract investment of 76 million francs overall. As in previous years, the greatest share in terms of value was once again attributable to startups in the biotech and medtech sectors, with 600 million francs received.

The report highlights that Zurich, Zug, Basel-Stadt, Vaud and Geneva were the most popular cantons for venture capital investment. The canton of Zurich particularly stands out, with investment over the course of the year up from 108 million francs to 273 million francs, which represents an increase of more than 150 per cent.

Overall, “Swiss venture capital continues to gain in maturity”, the report maintains: “ICT has established itself as the second most important sector alongside biotech.” The authors also noted the positive development that the number of growth financings between 2 million francs and 10 million francs increased in 2017. However, one negative aspect focused on in the report is that startups struggle to secure investment from Swiss companies and instead rely on foreign investors.

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