The UK is home to 17 out of 40 digital startups in Europe worth over $1bn, reports investment company GP Bullhound.
It also accounts for eight of the 13 tech startups in that category - popularly known as 'unicorns' - that have joined the list in the last year. These include fashion brand FarFetch, eCommerce provider Powa, music recognition platform Shazam, electronic payment service Skrill, app store Ve Interactive, loan business Funding Circle, cricket fan service Fanduel and international money transfer solution TransferWise.
Overall the number of $1bn plus companies has risen from 30 to 40 since last year's report was published, with three companies dropping out. Some 77 per cent of new additions are consumer-focused while, in terms of industry, some 31 per cent are in the financial tech (fintech) space.
The UK also boasts the most diverse range of companies spanning what GP Bullhound defines the eCommerce, software, marketplace, fintech, gaming and audience sectors.
Software and marketplace are the strongest sectors representing 20 per cent of the total number of Europeans unicorns each, with fintech not far behind with 18 per cent.
The report also revealed that at inception, 36 per cent of founders were aged between 35 and 40, with 30-35 year-olds on 22 per cent. Those aged 25 to 30 and 40-plus are seemingly least likely to found a company with nine per cent and 11 per cent respectively.
Of the companies involved in the report, 87 per cent still had at least one remaining member of the original management and only 13 per cent had completely refreshed the management team.
The cumulative value of the 17 unicorns in the UK is $40.4bn (£25.9bn), followed by Sweden's six unicorns totalling up to $26.5bn. Germany's four are just behind with $18bn, and the four in Russia have been collectively valued at $16.2bn.
The overall value of European unicorns is $120bn, compared to Apple's $737bn valuation and Facebook's $230bn valuation. Uber and Airbnb also boast valuations of $50bn and $20bn respectively.
When it comes to investors, 37 per cent of startups have been given investment from five to eight institutional investors to date, and 32 per cent have had fewer than three investors.
The most successful investors to date are Index Ventures with nine European unicorn investments under its belt, Accel Partners with six, five for DST, three for Atomico, Balderton Capital, Rocket Internet and GP Bullhound, and two each for other investment companies including Sequoia, HV Ventures and Northzone.
GP Bullhound has predicted which companies it thinks will be in the next wave of Unicorns and picked out companies including Foodpanda, Huddle, iZettle, SoundCloud, Takeaway.com, Tradeshift and Trust Pilot.
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