In our 2015 Global Venture Capital report, we found that worldwide venture capital investments surpassed $128B in 2015 — an increase of over 44% from the previous year — and 72 VC-backed companies achieved unicorn status.
In comparison, 2014 saw only 53 companies joining the club of private companies valued at over $1B.
Some of the notable new unicorns were news and entertainment company BuzzFeed, Canada-based Kik Interactive, online doctors’ appointment scheduler ZocDoc, Germany’s home furnishing startup Home24, and car-hailing app Lyft.
But the number of unicorns dropped steeply — to 12 in Q4’15— from 24 in the previous quarter. The decline in new unicorns was a result of slowing deals and mega-rounds ($100M+ rounds, which were almost cut in half in Q4’15).
Europe had no new unicorns in the last quarter and North America saw new unicorns drop from 17 in Q3’15 to 7 in Q4’15, a 59% drop.
As we reported in our Global Venture Capital report, “After 2 incredibly strong quarters, investors are becoming more cautious with their funding.”
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