Top tech stats: Global tech investment, ransomware attacks & more

Reading reports

Welcome to your round up of some of the past week’s most interesting surveys, statistics and reports relevant to those involved in the UK tech industry.

This week, we have statistics relating to post-Brexit investment trends, the amount invested in 2016, confused attitudes towards Brexit in the tech industry, ransomware attacks and why HealthTech could help your employees.

Young investors

A study of 1,000 UK retail investors by SyndicateRoom has found that despite 54% voting to remain in the EU, 28% are more likely to invest following the referendum result. Just 17% are less likely to do so.

Of those more likely to invest post-Brexit, the 18-30 age group are more likely to invest than their older counterparts – 53% intend to invest after the result, despite 71% voting to stay in the EU. That’s compared to only 15% of investors over 51 who are more inclined to invest.

Additionally, of the additional capital investors plan to invest in 2017, 70% is expected to be invested in Britain.

Goncalo de Vasconcelos, CEO and co-founder of SyndicateRoom, commented: “The UK has a lot of to be proud of. Our market leading technology, fast evolving investor environment and first class talent makes Britain the most attractive centre in the world for bringing technology and fintech companies to market. This remains the case, irrespective of Brexit.

“The continued confidence we’re seeing from our next generation of investors is a glowing endorsement of these strengths. It’s clear that tomorrow’s investors are the future of Brexit Britain,” he added.

Global innovation investment

Crunchbase has released its Global Innovation Investment Report for 2016. The report found that global VC investment grew 19%, with total Seed and Venture funding projected to be $176bn in 2016.

However, projected venture investment in the US in 2016 was found to stand at $76bn, down 11% from $86bn in 2015.

There was also a decline in new unicorn formation. The report stated that in 2015, a private unicorn was created every three days, but investors produced less than 40 firms with a disclosed or reported first-time valuation of $1bn in 2016.

The report also revealed London’s most active investor in 2016 was LocalGlobe, followed by Balderton Capital, Passion Capital, Index Ventures and Octopus Ventures respectively.

Brexit & tech

Company Check’s annual “Business Consensus 2017” report found Brexit has had a negative impact on 35% of the 1,300 companies surveyed.

The survey, which was carried out in November and December last year, also revealed tech firms were the least optimistic about the UK economy in 2017, with just 49% saying they feel positive.

This compares to 59% of manufacturers, 63% of businesses in professional services and 69% of companies the food and drink industry that are optimistic about the economy this year.

Additionally, more than a third of tech companies said that the vote to leave the EU had already negatively impacted their business – again the highest of all the sectors.

However, while 68% of tech firms grew in 2016, 74% of those surveyed said they expected to grow in 2017.

Katie Deverill, operations manager at Company Check, commented: “The findings show Brexit appearing to have a chilling effect on tech, with high levels of pessimism compared to other professions.

“Uncertainty was a concern which came up time and again during our research, although optimism was still high for growth in 2017. A mixed picture and a confusing time for all UK businesses.”

Ransom cyber attacks

Radware’s “Global Application and Network Security Report 2016-2017” has discovered 49% of European businesses believe ransom was the top cyber attack motivation in 2016. This compares to just 25% in 2015.

Additionally, 25% of European IT professionals surveyed said they fear a total or partial outage from cyber attacks, and 23% said data leakage or loss was their primary cybersecurity concern. This was followed by reputation loss (18%), service degradation (7%) and customer or partner loss (6%).

Of all organisations surveyed, half have experienced a malware or botnet attack in the last year, and 55% said that IoT makes defending cyber crime more complicated as it increases the surface of the attack landscape.

Despite this, the research also indicated less than half of European businesses claim to be well prepared to fight ransom attacks, with 44% having no cybersecurity response plan in place.

Pascal Geenens, EMEA security evangelist at Radware, commented: “The message from our report couldn’t be clearer: Money is the top motivator in the threat landscape today. Attackers have expanded their skillset and are leveraging new tools in their attempts to access lucrative data.

“Whether it is a ransom attack to lock a company’s data, a DDoS smokescreen to facilitate information theft or a brute force attack to attempt to gain direct access to internal data, attackers have shown that unprepared businesses will be easy targets.”


A new YouGov survey has revealed 57% of the British workforce would be open to monitoring their health at work, as long as their employer supplied them with a device to do so.

The AXA PPP Health Tech & You State of the Nation survey also found this figure increased to 63% if employers offered to pay for employees’ devices alongside a financial bonus for wearing it at work.

Of those who would be likely to wear a fitness band at work, 58% added they would be comfortable to share the data generated from the device with their employer if it helped with the organisation’s employee health and wellbeing programmes.

However, only 5% of British employees say their employer currently provides workers with HealthTech.

Dr Chris Tomkins, head of proactive health at AXA PPP healthcare, commented: “The increased use of HealthTech within the workplace could so easily be a win-win for both employer and employee. For the first time it is possible to support an individual throughout their journey, from better understanding of their health to actual improvements through smart digital platforms.”