FinTech venture capital (VC) funding fell back year on year in the first quarter of 2019, but the number of deals remained strong. That’s according to the latest quarterly report from market analysis firm CBInsights.

In the first three months of 2019, VC-backed FinTech companies raised a total of $6.3 billion from 445 separate deals globally – an average of $14.1 million per investment. The number of deals was up four percent sequentially, but funding dipped by 13 percent overall.
Europe saw FinTech investment grow to $1.7 billion, while VC-funded deals in Asia fell below $1 billion for the first time in five quarters, largely due to tighter regulatory controls in China. Asia funding dropped to $875 million from 127 separate deals, a 67 percent fall from the previous quarter.

In Asia, India hit the top spot for VC-backed FinTech deals in Q1, with $286 million invested. By contrast, China saw funding fall back to $192 million, representing an 89 percent drop quarter on quarter. India and China clinched 29 VC deals apiece.

In the US, early-stage deal share was flat quarter on quarter as investors to concentrated their bets on established FinTech unicorns.

According to CBInsights, there are 41 VC-backed FinTech unicorns worth a total of $154.1 billion. Q1 2019 witnessed three unicorn births (N26, Chime, and Airwallex) with a further three in the first month of Q2 (, Liquid, and Lemonade).

Q1 saw a record number of M&As between payment providers and FinTech mega-rounds to support staying private, but lacklustre IPO activity.

Fiserv acquired First Data for $41 billion in January, while FIS acquired Worldpay for $43 billion in March.

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