February 1, 2023

The Nordics maintain its position as one of the top global hubs for VC funding

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In a year of global recalibration, the Nordic region once again proved its resilience in 2022. Despite the inevitable impact of global macro-economic and geopolitical turbulence, Nordic startups had their second highest year for VC funding. With overall activity 50% higher than pre-pandemic figures, it is evident that the Nordicsʼ is one of the top global hubs for VC funding.

In partnership with Silicon Valley Bank and Dealroom, NGP Capital conducted a pulse check of the Nordic startup and venture capital ecosystem, the report, reveals:

  • Nordic startups raised the second highest year ever for VC funding, despite the economic downturn. Nordic startups raised $11.7B total in 2022. This figure represents a 36% decrease from the all-time high in 2021 but is still over 50% higher than pre-pandemic numbers.
  • Early-stage investment has held up far better in 2022. Nordic startups have raised $3.4B in early-stage investment in 2022, a -6% decreased from the peak in 2021. Iceland and Norway, the two smallest Nordic ecosystems by VC funding raised standout as the fastest growing in early-stage.
  • Impact Nordic startups have raised 35% of all VC investment in 2022. The Nordics continue to be an impact powerhouse, raising $4.3B in 2022, up 2.0x from 2020.

Commenting on the report's findings, NGP Capital's Managing Partner, Bo Ilsoe said: 

"The last decade has seen a rapid maturation of the Nordic ecosystem with large, outsized winners such as Spotify, Minecraft, Unity, Supercell, Universal Robots, Wolt and many others. We see repeat entrepreneurs, founders backing other founders, and we believe now is the time for founders to solve big enterprise challenges by leveraging breakthrough technologies such as foundation AI, XR developer tools and digital twins as our physical and virtual worlds start to converge.”

“The Nordic countries have been in the lead from a European perspective in venture capital investments, with government institutions actively backing up the industry, added Robin Lindahl. "However, to remain in the lead, a broader asset allocation into venture capital from pension funds, family offices, banks and insurance companies is needed. The region needs see larger allocations into venture capital through fund of funds, direct funds and directly into startups. These investments would give the region the ability to flourish, innovate, and drive growth.”