by the numbers
New analysis puts Houston's leap in venture capital investment in perspective
Houston-area startups raked in the cash last year, setting a record for the region’s annual tally of venture capital.
In 2021, Houston startups collected $2.02 billion in VC funding, according to a Greater Houston Partnership analysis of data from PitchBook. That’s up 175 percent from the $734.2 million raised in 2020.
“This record year in venture capital funding for Houston companies is another important example of the positive momentum building around our innovation ecosystem,” says Susan Davenport, chief economic development officer for the Greater Houston Partnership.
“In just the last year alone, we saw the opening of The Ion, East End Maker Hub, Greentown Labs as well as the growth of other startup development organizations,” Davenport adds. “We also witnessed two of our startups — Solugen and Axiom Space — grow into unicorns, achieving a valuation of more than $1 billion. Add to this the expanded local presence of tech giants such as Microsoft, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud, and it’s clear that Houston is rapidly building on its reputation as an innovation and technology hub.”
Here’s a breakdown of last year’s record-shattering year for VC in Houston.
- $188.5 million in angel and seed funding, up 92.6 percent from $97.9 million in 2020.
- $687.4 million in early-stage funding, up 361 percent from $149.1 million in 2020.
- $1,144.3 billion in late-stage funding, up 134.9 percent from $487.3 million in 2020.
- 219 deals, up 26.6 percent from up from 173 deals in 2020.
- 122 angel and seed deals, up 9.9 percent from up from 111 deals in 2020.
- 49 early-stage deals, up 58.1 percent from 31 deals in 2020.
- 48 late-stage deals, up 54.8 percent from 31 deals in 2020.
Average deal size
$11.6 million average deal size, up 110.3 percent from $5.5 million in 2020.
Industries receiving the most VC in 2021
- Information technology, $632.1 million.
- Health care, $518.4 million.
- Materials and resources, $426.5 million.
Serafina Lalany, executive director of Houston Exponential, told InnovationMap in January that tracking VC data offers her organization a metric for growth of the local innovation ecosystem.
“It gives us insights into the rate of capital that is deployed and how that’s growing over time and where it’s getting deployed. [It also] gives us the signal as to what our strengths are and the areas that we need to continue to build out infrastructure,” Lalany said.