The H1 (Q1 and Q2) Danish Funding Analysis

After looking at the whole of the region’s funding performance in H1 yesterday, it’s time to turn our attention to our country specific funding analysis, starting with Denmark.


Methodology and Disclaimers

  • The most important thing to mention, is that at the end of a quarter we spend time updating our database from investments that we either missed at the time or were subsequently uncovered post the original analysis. Therefore, some of the numbers, particularly on the number of investments per quarter differ in this analysis from previous ones you may have read previously.
  • We are largely able to achieve this increased accuracy due to the higher quality of available data sources that exist in the region these days, particular shout-outs deserve to go to Nordic9Nordic Tech List and Northstack.
  • Any differences that occur in our datasets are predominantly due to methodology, therefore it is important to outline ours:
  • We only record publicly disclosed, private minority (equity and loan) investments into Nordic tech companies. We do not include secondary investments, nor do we include accelerator investments (for entry into a programme)


The Number of Investments

There were a total of 72 investments in H1 2018 (38 in Q1 and 34 in Q2) meaning we saw a 10.77% increase compared to H1 2017, considerably above the increase seen across the region as a whole which was 2.2% year-on-year.

Q1 was particularly strong, with only Q4 2016 ever seeing more investments announced across a three month period. It’s also worth noting the rather consistent performance, with the last 3 quarters all seeing above 30 investments announced, the most consistent period since the end of 2016.

If the rate of investment was maintained throughout the remainder of 2018 then Denmark would record just short of 150 investments for the year and register a new record year for the number of investments, outperforming 2017’s 128.


The Amount of Capital Invested ($M)

$463.9 million was invested into Danish startups in the first half of 2018, with Q2’s $341.9M a new record quarter, although Tradeshift’s $250 million round obviously made up the majority of this.

The $463.9 million was a 315% increase on H1 2017 and to really drive home just how much this is in the context of the Danish funding environment, the amount invested in H1 2018 is more capital than has ever been invested in any full calendar year, meaning we can already declare 2018 a record year for capital invested in Denmark.


The Number of Investments per Round Size

Taking into account the fact that nearly all of the undisclosed investments are likely to be under $1 million, the vast majority of action in Denmark is still happening at the early stage, with 62.5% of the investments occurring below $1 million, compared to 52.5% across the region as a whole.

However, there are clear signs of maturity in the funding ecosystem, with 8 investments above $10 million in H1 2018 compared to just 1 in H1 2017. This also helps to explain the dramatic increase in total capital invested.


The Number of Investments per Vertical

Enterprise and SaaS and FinTech are battling it out to be top dog in Denmark, while Food and Drink makes an appearance, which shouldn’t be overly surprising considering the reputation of Denmark as a food hub, although interestingly we haven’t really seen this spill over into the startup environment, until now perhaps.

Denmark also continues to attract funding for its HR and Recruitment startups which there appear to be a never ending conveyor belt of in these parts.


The Number of Investments per City

Naturally, Copenhagen leads the way, claiming 73.6% of the investments. Still, it’s encouraging to see Aarhus and Aalborg record multiple investments in 2018 so far, proving there is life outside of the capital, with Aarhus in particular consolidating its position as a place producing interesting companies on a consistent basis.


The Top 5 Investments ($M)

  1. “Tradeshift Raises $250 Million in Series E Funding Round, Bringing Company Valuation to $1.1 Billion”
  2. $30M Record-Breaking Investment In The Danish Educational Technology Company Area9 Lyceum
  3. Peakon raises $22 million for its people analytics software tools
  4. Wine discovery app Vivino raises $20 million as its ecommerce business takes off
  5. Blackwood Seven raises €16.8 million funding to support global expansion of AI powered software platform


The % of Funding Rounds with a minimum of 1 International Investor

International investors continue to be interested in backing Danish companies, with 18.1% of rounds including at least one investor from outside of the Nordics. This is only slightly under the 18.9% recorded across the region.



With a record year for capital invested secured, 2018 can already go down as a positive year for the Danish startup funding environment. It’s particularly promising to see 8 rounds above $10 million announced, compared to just 1 in H1 2017, as a lack of quality at Series A in Denmark had been a concern of many in the ecosystem.

If H2 even slightly outperforms H1 in terms of the number of investments, then we will see 150 investments breached for the first time, combine that with an already secured record year for capital invested and things are looking fresh in the state of Denmark.

Neil S W Murray founded The Nordic Web in 2014 in order to provide the Nordics with the quality coverage it deserves. As well as being Founding Editor of The Nordic Web, Neil is also an active community builder in the region, participating in a number of initiatives, and has previously worked for