You know it’s the end of Summer for East London’s tech startup community because the co-working spaces are starting to fill back up and the tech event invitations are starting to flow heavily again. As we move into September, and Brits are back from their long holiday stretches (O.K. this is admittedly being written by an American), London’s tech community has come back to life from its August slumber and is now in the midst of deals, fund raisings, parties and all of the hullabaloo that accompanies regular startup life.
Tonight is Moo’s famous ‘end of the Summer’ free bash, which London tech folks tell me is the party to attend this month. It’s an event that every year signals ‘back to work everyone’ and this year it’s circus-themed (of course) and in the heart of Shoreditch. For those of you that don’t know Moo, they make well designed business cards, stationary, and the like for consumers and small businesses.
This entire week has been filled with London tech events. All week at the O2 arena, Campus Party has been attracting makers, developers, designers and the tech crew to attend workshops on topics like 3D printing and Internet of Things. Some notable speakers have included Vint Cerf and Jimmy Wales, and on Friday everyone’s favorite game guru Nolan Bushnell will speak.
This week is also Seedcamp London Week, and the startup accelerator Seedcamp announced some data that it’s collected over its six-year lifetime — in particular the data shows how London’s startup and investor scene has been growing steadily. Seedcamp said it’s invested in 93 companies over its lifetime, including ten investments in the first half of 2013. The accelerator has processed 7,876 applications over the years, but already more than 2,000 of those were within 2013.
In terms of the success rate of Seedcamp companies, the group says the close to 100 companies that have gone through the program have been able to secure $120 million in follow-on funding. Eighty percent of the 2012 Seedcamp companies were able to raise follow-on funding, and 60 percent of the 2013 Seedcamp companies have already secured follow-on funding.
GigaOM is holding its own event in London in two weeks. We’ve brought our cloud computing-focused conference Structure to London this year, and Structure:Europe will take place on September 18 and 19. I can’t wait for our founder Om Malik and one of our keynote speakers Matt Mullenweg to hang out with me in Shoreditch. Structure:Europe will feature data and cloud startups, as well, as the leading companies innovating with the cloud like Google, Amazon, VMWare, and Facebook.
But it’s not just events and announcements that are coming out this week. There’s also been some notable deals and fund raisings from the London tech crowd, too.
Online event site Eventbrite made its first two acquisitions and one of those was of London’s own Lanyrd. London-based startup SwiftKey, which sells a smart keyboard for Android devices, this week said it closed a $17.5 million series B led by Index Ventures. SwiftKey plans to spend the money on natural language processing and machine learning research. Online fashion site Boticca also announced that it’s raised $4 million from MMC Ventures to expand internationally.
I’ve been covering London tech since mid-June and this is the busiest I’ve seen it. I’m here for another couple of weeks before I head back to foggy San Francisco. Reach out to me if you want to meet up before I go or learn more about Structure:Europe.