Looking back to Q1: Venture funding highs and unicorns in herds

Published on
April 12th, 2021
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Q1 2021 reports are in, so we took a quick look at the record highs in venture funding plus did a quick retrospective on the newest unicorn startups and when they launched on Product Hunt.
On Thursday, Crunchbase released a new report about global venture funding. In Q1 of 2021, funding hit an all-time record high at $125 billion — “a 50% increase quarter over quarter and 94% increase year over year.”

Seed Stage TBD, Late-Stage Funding Booming

Of that historic total, 68% went to late-stage companies, with $4.1 billion invested in seed-stage deals and $35.5 billion invested in early-stage deals.

While the chart below shows the number of seed-stage deals trending down, Crunchbase notes that data tends to lag in this area with as many as 40% of deals added in the year after a quarter closes. They also attributed the dip in Q2 of 2020 to likely be a result of venture firms holding off on new funding while focusing on their existing portfolio instead.
via Crunchbase News
via Crunchbase News
via Crunchbase News
via Crunchbase News
The biggest growth came from late-stage funding and technology growth. Both the number of deals and the total amount invested in late-stage startups was way up.
via Crunchbase News
via Crunchbase News
Administrative services, lending, and sales and marketing saw the biggest year-over-year late-stage funding increase, with health care, financial services, transportation, and commerce and shopping lead investments.

Investment in Cryptocurrency is Booming, Too

Q1 reports from CB Insights also showed that crypto firms received more funding in the first quarter of 2021 than all of 2020. A total of 129 startups in the blockchain space raised $2.6 billion, with notably large rounds for Dapper Labs (creator of NBA Top Shot) and BlockFi.

Unicorns, Everywhere

According to Crunchbase, approximately two startups joined the unicorn club per working day in Q1.

What’s a “unicorn” in the startup world? It’s a private startup that’s valued at $1 billion or more (decacorns have reached $10B, and hectacorns have reached $100 billion). While 2020 saw a total of 159 companies reaching unicorn status, the first quarter of 2021 alone gave rise to 112.

We took a look at the full unicorn list from Q1 to highlight the startups that launched to the Product Hunt community. Take a look at their launch pages to get a peek into their growth from launch to unicorn.

Launched to Product Hunt: May 2020
Became a unicorn: January 2021
Check out our list of helpful Clubhouse tools.

Launched to Product Hunt: May 2016
Became a unicorn: March 23, 2021
See our coverage of Lattice here.

Hunted on Product Hunt: March 2021
Became a unicorn: March 21, 2021
Read our coverage on Pacaso.

Launched to Product Hunt: October 2020
Became a unicorn: March 30, 2021
Read about DapperLab’s NBA Top Shop in our blog about top NFT sales from March.

Launched to Product Hunt: 2019
Became a unicorn: March 30, 2021
Read over coverage about Cameo’s growth.

Launched to Product Hunt: February 2014
Became a unicorn: January 2021
Read our snippet on Zapier’s first acquisition — a product created by a Product Hunt alum.

Launched to Product Hunt: December 2017
Became a unicorn: March 2021
You may recognize Pilot as a frequent content sponsor too — check out their latest update.

Launched BlockFi Interest Account to Product Hunt: 2019
Became a unicorn: March 11, 2021

Launched to Product Hunt: April 2014
Became a unicorn: January 26, 2021

Launched to Product Hunt: August 2018
Became a unicorn: March 31, 2021

Launched to Product Hunt: 2017
Became a unicorn: March 18, 2021

Launched to Product Hunt: January 2018
Became a unicorn: February 18, 2021

Launched to Product Hunt: 2017
Became a unicorn: March 9, 2021
April has only just begun but taking a look at the Crunchbase Private Unicorn Company list — so far, so good.
Comments (1)
Henry Fieldse
The startup world is abuzz with the promise of unicorns. A "unicorn" is a private company worth $1 billion or more, so named because it sounds magical but also because there are so few of them -- as in "there are more unicorns than start-ups." I will read https://iedunote.com/study-hacks-to-get-straight-a article to read some useful study related tips to improve my score in college.