Despite the fact that the coronavirus is a serious threat to access to finance and brings many projects closer to the abyss, significantly reducing their valuation, the data from the first semester reveal solidity and experts assure that international investors continue to have Spain on their priority list.
The technology sector, with Amazon and Netflix at the forefront, is reaping growth above the stock market due to the strong support that the coronavirus has brought to its business. And, although light years from the American giants, on the national scene there are indications that suggest greater maturity and opportunities to come in the coming months.
Between April and June, they closed financing operations of technology companies in Spain valued at 211 million euros. The impact of COVID-19 slowed down investment compared to the first quarter —358 million—, but the one accumulated until June shows 569 million in 90 operations, according to data from the investment bank GP Bullhound, specialized in the technology sector and which also invests in startups –Klarna, Revolut or Glovo are among its investees. In all of 2019, for the second consecutive year, financing activity exceeded the 1,000 million euro barrier.
“Fundraising continues and begins to recover from the coronavirus effect. Companies are raising funds in an open market and the average size of operations is greater than in recent years, which indicates greater maturity, “Jaime Sendagorta, vice president of GP Bullhound, said a few days ago in a webinar on the situation in the Spanish market. The company has committed 125 million capital for its fifth fund, which will be used to support technological projects in growth phase in the software industry.
Among the recent milestones in the financing chapter, the round of 17 million raised by the digital platform for road freight transport Ontruck or the 15 million obtained by the startup specialized in software and services in the field of human resources Factorial. Both operations were closed in the middle of the coronavirus and the trend, according to Sendagorta, suggests that “There is an evolution in Spain from services to end customers (B2C) to services for companies (B2B)”.
Freepik, an unexpected operation
The dynamism has been greater if the corporate operations. The first quarter, with 9 operations and a volume of 805 million euros, has already far exceeded the 295 million spread over 6 movements in the same period of 2019. And, since then, Spanish technology companies have undergone major movements.
It is the case of Freepik, the Google of the images, which was transferred to the Swedish investment fund EQT after disbursement of 250 million. The company surprised more than one. “It was off the radar and had no outside investors,” said Sendagorta. Soon after, Twitter and Square founder Jack Dorsey closed the purchase of fintech Verse with the aim of boosting its growth in Europe.
The result is that, Until June, mergers and acquisitions totaled 1,192 million, compared to 1,630 million for all of last year. Then, it took 28 operations to reach that figure. In the first half of 2020, the almost 1,200 million were obtained in 13 operations: “The size of transactions is growing and stands out the focus on fintech and software as a service (Saas, for its acronym in English); Spain is one of the markets with the largest exits and there has been a great evolution in the last 5 years. ”
“Authentic global leaders such as Glovo or TravelPerk are being createdAnd that’s a trend that will continue, “said Lucile Cornet, a partner at Eight Roads Ventures, which participates in companies like Red Points or Wallapop.
Business Insider Spain It will hold its VIII Smart Business Meeting on July 7, the eighth event in a series that brings together the most relevant managers in each sector to talk about current events, future challenges and their transformation. On this occasion, the meeting will focus on the challenges and opportunities in the entrepreneurial ecosystem after COVID-19.