Weekly Update #231: 2018 Venture Capital Themes

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Hello Investors,

2018 Venture Capital Themes

With 2017 rapidly drawing to a close, we look at several key themes that are likely to shape the venture investment environment in the year ahead:

  • Cryptocurrencies and blockchain - Cryptocurrency emerged as one of the hottest tech topics in 2017. Are we in a bubble? Possibly. Even so, the technology underlying these currencies -- blockchain -- promises to be a key foundational technology of the modern economy, with the potential to transform payment systems, contract settlement, record-keeping and more. Irrespective of cryptocurrency performance, we expect interest in blockchain development to continue in the new year.     
  • Artificial intelligence - In our view, AI is likely to become increasingly ubiquitous, with the potential to reshape large swaths of the economy. 2017 marked a banner year for AI investment and 2018 may be similarly strong, with TechCrunch recently reporting a flurry of investment activity in AI chip startups. For more information on AI and AI startups, please see our industry report here.
  • Internet of things - Advances in smart home devices, drones, and robotics are just a few examples of the way the “internet of things” is changing the way we live and work (and play). Expect this area to remain a key focus for venture capitalists.
  • Cybersecurity -  2017 saw one of the largest cyber breaches in history, with over 140 million records compromised by an attack on Equifax. As data and digitalization become increasingly pervasive in the global economy, we expect demand for securing digital assets to increase...and investment in cybersecurity technology along with it. Our cybersecurity report from earlier this year has more detail on the sector.  

Looking for more 2018 startup predictions? See our 2018 IPO Outlook here.

Happy New Year!

In other news...

Phil Haslett
Founder + Head of Investments, EquityZen


Funding Rounds Since Last Week

Invest in Carbon
Carbon - Carbon is raising a $200 million Series D to scale 3D printing for manufacturing
Invest in Lemonade
Lemonade - Lemonade raises $120 million from SoftBank, others to take its chatbot-based insurance service global

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