Covid-19 Fuels New Startup Investment Record

This article first appeared on the BNEF mobile app and the Bloomberg Terminal.

  • May VCPE funding for digital industry is record $1 billion
  • Automation, remote working technologies boosted by Covid-19

After a dip in April, digital industry startup funding skyrocketed to $1 billion in May, a record high value according to BloombergNEF data. The jump may fuel hopes for a rapid market recovery but under the surface, startups still have myriad challenges to confront.

From a technology perspective, investors rewarded startups serving Covid-19 working conditions. Beneficiaries include Ligado developing security software for remote connections, and Covariant developing robotics to automate manual processes.

Financially-motivated deals were also prevalent with investors injecting cash into their existing big bets, at lower valuations. By protecting those startups through the downturn, they also protect the value of prior large investments. Samsara Networks signed a $400 million Series F-II round – May’s largest – from many previous backers including Andreessen Horowitz and General Catalyst.


Capital injection is not a cure-all, but will be a helpful cushion for startups struggling through challenges like layoffs and demand uncertainty.

BNEF Shorts are research excerpts available only on the BNEF mobile app and the Bloomberg Terminal, highlighting key findings from our reports. If you would like to learn more about our services, please contact us.

About BloombergNEF

BloombergNEF (BNEF) is a strategic research provider covering global commodity markets and the disruptive technologies driving the transition to a low-carbon economy. Our expert coverage assesses pathways for the power, transport, industry, buildings and agriculture sectors to adapt to the energy transition. We help commodity trading, corporate strategy, finance and policy professionals navigate change and generate opportunities.
Sign up for our free monthly newsletter →

Want to learn how we help our clients put it all together? Contact us