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Restarting the innovation engine after the crisis

The State of Startups 2022
The State of Startups 2022

In 2021, VC-backed startups bounced back to pre-pandemic growth — but will it be enough to push the whole ecosystem forward? In our third annual State of Startups report, we take a deep dive into the top-line tech trends, financing records, and the future of the industry.

Please note that this report was drafted before the conflict in Ukraine. Our hearts go out to everyone affected by these unprecedented and devastating events, including members of our global team and their loved ones.

key takeaways .

key takeaways .

key takeaways .

Deals and dollars

Startup funding hits an all-time high

$311B
raised by US startups in 2021, more than double the 2020 figure of $150B
23%
increase in deal size in 2021 YoY
65%
of total 2021 funding came from mega-rounds
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Industry spotlights

Healthtech and fintech lead the way

Healthtech startups raised a record $60B in 2021, accounting for 19% of all venture dollars
$60B
NFT funding skyrocketed to $22B in 2021 — a 22,000% jump from 2020's total
$22B
BNPL (“Buy Now, Pay Later”) services explode into the mainstream. In the US alone, the volume of BNPL payments reached $100B in 2021, up 4.3x over 2020
$100B
Climate tech offers new opportunities for investors. In 2021, the sector doubled to hit $40B across 600+ deals
$40B
Eldertech is still in its infancy — but it’s growing fast. Compared with $0.8B in 2020, funding for eldertech grew more than 2.6x in 2021
$2.1B
Unicorns

The unicorn herd is multiplying fast

  • 295 companies joined the US unicorn club in 2021, up 2.6x over 2020
  • 1 in 3 newly minted unicorns is in healthtech
  • 600 private US companies may reach a billion-dollar valuation in the next few years
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US startups in the global ecosystem

Welcome to the United States of Startups

  • Among the top 30 startup ecosystems worldwide, 12 (more than 40%) are in the US
  • Silicon Valley, including San Francisco, is still the largest startup hub in the world
40%
of startups are in the US
Diversity and corporate responsibility

Companies show incremental progress toward diversity and inclusion

  • The number of women in startup leadership roles reached 10.3% in the last year, a slight increase from 9.2% in 2013-2017
  • Out of 260,000 US startup founders, only 20.8% belong to the BIPOC community
  • Research shows that companies that demonstrate strong sustainability commitment outperform industry peers on all key profitability metrics
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