33 unicorns and $25b in funding: Israeli tech sector sets new records in 2021

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Israel's tech sector is wrapping up a record year in 2021, with startups raising an astonishing $25 billion in funding from January through November, and 33 companies entering the unicorn club of private firms valued at over $1 billion, according to a report published Monday by Start-Up Nation Central (SNC). The value of capital investments represented a 136% increase in equity funding over 2020, itself a record year with over $10 billion capital raised. Funding in Israeli startups and companies was 71% more than the global average, and 78% more than in US companies, according to the report, which examined comparative data compiled by research firm Pitchbook. These record-setting numbers are a "reflection of global trends that are not necessarily Israel-specific, like the rise in investments in technologies, partially as a result of COVID-19 and the lessons of how much digital innovation and tech are key components of a strong and robust industry… but the numbers in Israel are stronger than the average," Start-Up Nation Central CEO Avi Hasson told The Times of Israel in an interview Monday. Indeed, global venture funding has reached all-time highs in 2021, with roughly $500 billion invested in companies worldwide so far this year, compared to over $330 billion in all of 2020. Larger funding rounds of $100 million or more dominated the global tech industry, with all funding stages seeing significant growth, according to Crunchbase data.

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