Despite the ongoing pandemic, the venture capital community has shown resilience and prosperity during 2021. Nationally, there has been a sharp increase in fundraising this year, making even 2020’s record-breaking numbers look small in comparison. Washington, D.C. is no exception, experiencing record growth in just the past nine months.
At large, America’s VC industry is looking pretty bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Last quarter, investors gave $82.8 billion across 3,518 deals, according to the Q3 2021 PitchBook-NVCA Venture Monitor report released late last week. This means a total of $238.7 billion has been invested in 2021 so far.
In addition to healthy activity across seed, angel and early funding, 2021 also brought a huge number of mega-rounds (deals totaling $100 million or more). More than 200 of these deals were closed in Q3 alone, bringing the total invested in mega-rounds so far this year to $136.5 billion. For those keeping score at home, that’s nearly double the record-breaking $76.7 billion invested in 2020.
D.C. saw a lot of that growth, as well. By the end of Q3, D.C. startups brought in $4.3 billion in VC deals — an increase of 150 percent from last year — across 297 deals. While D.C. didn’t see anywhere near the number of deals bigger tech hubs like New York and Silicon Valley did, DMV did surpass noted tech hubs Denver, Austin, Atlanta and Miami in total VC funds raised so far this year.
D.C. also welcomed six new tech unicorns this year, its first since Living Social became the area’s first tech unicorn back in 2010. Notable DMV unicorns include primary care physician Aledade (valued at $2.1 billion), digital identity network ID.me (valued at $1.5 billion) and Arlington’s first-ever unicorn Interos (valued at $1 billion).
Of course, PitchBook’s Q3 report doesn’t take into account funding rounds already announced this month. Shift5, a cybersecurity operational technology company, brought in $20 million just last week. In the same week, cloudtamer.io and Pivotal Analytics also announced a $9.5 million and a $10.2 million funding round, respectively. The week prior, data integration startup hotglue nabbed $1.5 million in seed funding.
To put it lightly, D.C. tech startups are raking in the dough this year and showing no signs of slowing down.