Fintech may be all the rage, but it is in the mobile arena where the biggest bets are being placed, with over $1.1 billion raised globally across 58 financings in Q1 alone, according to data from CB Insights.
The uplift is part of a larger trend, which has seen mobile fintech funding top $300M in four of the last five quarters. Overall Q1’15 funding, which reached $372M, was up 238% versus the same quarter a year prior.
Four of the ten largest deals went to Asian companies, with Enniu Internet Technology, maker of u51, a mobile credit card management and analytics platform raising $50M, and India’s MobiKwik, a mobile wallet company, raising a $25M Series B. Cumulatively the top 10 deals thus far in 2015 have raised over $1B.
One97 Communications, the maker of Paytm, India’s largest mobile commerce platform, has accounted for two of the three largest deals this year, having raised a cumulative $575M. The company is now valued at upwards of $1.8 billion.
With financing for fintech reaching an all-time high, those entrepreneurs dreaming of future unicorn status are likely to be disappointed. For all the fixation on companies reaching billion-dollar valuations, it remains pretty rare for a company to hit the unicorn mark, says CB Inisghts, which has analysed data from early stage financings going back to 2008. It found that the percentage of companies exiting with a $1b+ valuation amounted to precisely 1.28% of the sample.