Venture investment in healthcare nearly doubled in Europe last year, rising from $8.4 billion (€7.4bn) in 2020 to $13.9 billion (€12.2bn) in 2021, according to a report by Silicon Valley Bank (SVB).
The annual Healthcare Investments and Exits report found that healthtech funding in Europe almost doubled from $1.36 billion (€1.2bn) in 2020 to $2.6 billion (€2.2bn) in 2021.
European investment in medical devices was particularly strong – rising threefold from $773 million (€681) in 2020 to $2.3 billion (€2.02bn) in 2021. The combined health tech and medical device markets in Europe saw a 150% increase in funding.
Biopharma also had a boost in venture investment from $4.6 billion (€4.06bn) in 2020 to almost $6.6 billion (€5.8bn) in 2021.
Although medical diagnostics and tools companies (dx/tools) trailed the other healthcare sectors, the UK continued to be a hot bed for deals in this area with 20 seed/Series A deals.
Overall dx/tool investment saw a new record with the number of European financings rising from $145 million (€128m) in 2020 up to $210 million (€186m) in 2021.
WHY IT MATTERS
The report from SVB features analysis and data from Europe, the US and globally relating to new records set by venture capitalist (VC) backed exits and healthcare funding/investment in 2021, reflecting demand created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
THE LARGER CONTEXT
New venture funds allocated to healthcare in 2021 almost doubled 2020’s record with investment into companies exceeding $86 billion (€75.8bn) in the EU and the US.
SVB predicts that venture healthcare investment in EU and US companies will total around $64 billion (€56.5bn) in 2022 as VCs slow down their deal pace but continue to invest from recently closed funds.
Big scorers in 2021 included British surgical robotics firm CMR Surgical, which scored $600 million (€529m) in a Series D round led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and co-led by Ally Bridge Group.
Also, Swedish digital healthcare firm Kry, closed a $300 million (€264m) Series D round led by CPP Investments (CPPIB) and Fidelity Management & Research LLC.
Other significant funding announcements in 2021 came from French biotechnology company Mnemo Therapeutics, which completed a €75 million ($90 million) Series A financing round and Swiss diet and lifestyle coaching scaleup Oviva, which raised €67 million ($80m) in Series C funding to expand its digital diabetes treatment across Europe.
ON THE RECORD
SVB head of life sciences and healthcare UK, Nooman Haque, said: “2021 was the strongest year for investment into European life sciences and was especially strong in healthtech and medical devices which, on a combined basic saw a 150% increase in funding to $4.8. billion [€4.2bn].
“Companies like Kry from Sweden and CMR Surgical based in the UK led the way. These significant increases reflect how the ongoing pandemic has increased demand for healthcare overall and also changed, permanently, the way healthcare is structured and consumed.”