What you need to know about the Nordic investment market in H1 of 2021

15 July 2021 Insights
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We had a look at the Nordic numbers related to startup investment activity from the Nordics for the first half of 2021.

The growing trends we underlined at the end of Q1 accentuated in all the respects.

Both the dollar value and the investment frequency increased considerably in the spring, resulting in a record number of Nordic deals for a half a year - 657.

Here's how the number of deals dynamic looks like.

The total number of deals in the first half of 2021 is 10% higher than in the last half of 2020 and at a higher number than H1 2018 (621), which was a record at that time.

And here's what the absolute dollar value deployed looks like in time.


No surprises here - anybody with a marginal interest in this ecosystem knows that the market is full of money and that record amounts are spent for purchasing assets from the private market.

A recurrent theme though is that this money is spent at later stages, at higher than usual valuations for already established businesses. WHich is fantastic but it comes at the cost of shifting the attention from earlier stages, where fewer deals are done.

Let's have a look first at very early stages, how the trend looks like in terms of number of transaction done at less than $1M.

139 deals closed in H12021 is the lowest in the last 5 years.

Two explanations:

1. higher valuations - the high supply of money means competition which commands higher valuations, meaning that value deals shifted at a higher range

2. lower number of startups are launched.

When will this impact? In about 2-3 years when at later stage there will be a lower pool of condidates to choose from. See below for more.

The 2017-2019 numbers are the ones raising money at a later stage today. Here's how the dynamic for $1-10M deals looks like.

262 deals in the first part of this year is 20% growth from previous periods. More established companies attract more funding. Here's what the dollar situation looks like for the deal range.

$827 million spent for $1-10M deals in H12021, which is roughly 25% higher than the average of the last 9 other halves of the year.

And here's how the later stage transaction situation looks like:

There you go - the number of later stage deals ($10M and higher) closed in the Nordics in the first half of 2021 is at the same level as what was done for the whole year of 2020 (124).

And that's a direct correlation to the early stage graph from above - the early stage deals from 3-5 years ago are the later stage deals from last year and this year. WHich begs the question - what does the future looks like given the negative record of early stage deals closed in the past 18 months?

For the records, here's the dollar value distribution of $10 million+ transactions done in the Nordics.



Getting back to what happened in the first part of 2021, we crunched below the specifics. As always, keep in mind that there's a data lag and that we only track equity deals made for minority equity stakes on the privately held companies. If you have any questions or you would like us to go a bit deeper on a specific vertical, just drop us a line, we sit on one of the better Nordic data sources out there.



  • 657 deals | $12.1bn | 132 with undisclosed value


  • 613 deals | $5.2bn | 156 with undisclosed value [H2 2020]
  • 590 deals | $2.3bn | 132 with undisclosed value [H1 2020]
  • 620 deals | $2.2bn | 220 with undisclosed value [H2 2019]
  • 606 deals | $2.2bn | 160 with undisclosed value [H1 2019]


  • 2758 deals | $47.8bn | 497 with undisclosed value [H1 2021 in Europe]


Deal size

  • < $500k: 65 deals | $17M
  • $500k-1M: 74 deals | $56M
  • $1-5M: 213 deals | $494M
  • $5-10M: 49 deals | $333M
  • $10-20M: 59 deals | $849M
  • $20-50M: 37 deals | $1.1bn
  • $50M+: 28 deals | $9.3bn
  • n/a: 132 deals



  • software: 257 deals | $2.9bn
  • manufacturing: 164 deals | $3.9bn
  • health: 81 deals | $944M
  • financial services: 79 deals | $2.3bn
  • ecommerce: 78 deals | $1.1bn





  • Stockholm - 206 deals
  • Copenhagen - 114 deals
  • Oslo - 93 deals
  • Helsinki - 46 deals
  • Gothenburg+Malmö - 46 deals


If you're interested to dig deeper and understand more, we have created a few Nordic-focused reports crunching the H1 data:


You will need to log in in order to access the reports - they are part of the Cheat Sheet Library and provided complimentary with the data access to all N9 customers.

Not a customer yet? It's easy and very affordable to join - choose a package that suits your needs from here.


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