Looking back at the Corona Year — Rhine-Main Raised More Than One Billion US$

Published in
4 min readFeb 3, 2021


In total Rhine-Main raised 934.08 mn Euros (1.12 bn US$).

Most of the funding we have been tracking in all of 2020 was funding going to the Mainz-based NASDAQ listed unicorn BioNTech, which essentially avoided a decline of our tracked investments. BioNTech did prove worth the money and came up — together with their partner Pfizer — with the world’s first corona vaccine. Without this biotech company, the year would have looked much worse.

One point, which clearly shows in all the years we have been tracking so far is that more than half of the startup funding was already raised on June 30th. The two following quarters are usually weaker, with the summer quarter (Q3) — with the usual vacation time in Germany — proves to be especially low in actual investment activity.

Fundraising each quarter for the Greater Rhine-Main Area

Please note that the increase in funding may also be due to an increase in the publication of raised funds, or a better penetration of the market by our team. From the available data, we can say that the funding is trending upwards, also with growth in average funding. BioNTech has driven these values overall and excluding them from the calculation of average transaction size shows a dip in 2019, the year of the NASDAQ IPO for the biotech company. We will later get to that point.

The overall picture

The overall picture is good, mostly due to the investments in biotech, driven by the Corona vaccine. Thumbs pressed for a speedy V-shaped recovery.

Venture Funding Greater Rhine-Main — Birds Eye View Including The Number of Deals

Noteworthy fundraisings in 2020

Noteworthy fundraisings we tracked in Q1 2020

· Volocopters (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/2PpfpdJ

· Scoutbee (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/2O0Y4r5

Noteworthy fundraisings we tracked in Q2 2020

· Fintech TIS (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/3eEnKEK

Noteworthy fundraisings we tracked in Q3 2020

· None, only 3 smaller transaction (< 10 Mio Euros)

Noteworthy fundraisings we tracked in Q4 2020

· Proptech Bullfinch (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/35IrXnQ

· Insurtech Getsafe (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/3lU4aaM

· Fintech Solactive (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/3gwkMUW

· Computing provider Northern Data (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/2KOccFc

· Insurtech Clark (>10 m €) https://buff.ly/3nCyzeq

o An English interview covering the fundraising here: https://buff.ly/2L30ozq

Average transaction size

Since we talk such a lot about BioNTech, we were curious what impact the funding of the company had on the average transaction size. It turns out a lot! We calculated the numbers in total and excluding their fundraising and this shows the immense impact of one great company on the overall picture.

Average Transaction Size — With and without BioNTech

Other Noteworthy News in 2020

There are other transactions we want to draw your attention to. They are not included in our data, but we think none less, they are noteworthy. They include:

· German holding company Haniel buys majority stake in Emma, a “sleep tech” startup https://buff.ly/2Vv956V

· Fintech creditshelf makes first closing with 62 MN EUR for their first ‘Direct-Lending’ fund, investors include European Investment Fund (EIF) https://buff.ly/35JaCL5

o You can learn more about creditshelf here: https://buff.ly/3td67UB

· Not really included in Rhine-Main (and therefore not included in our data), but this IPO shows the appetite for tech IPOs in Germany, even during Q2 “Successful IPO despite Covid 19, Nuremberg based database company Exasol lists at Frankfurt Stock Exchange and jumps 50% during first trading https://buff.ly/2XwdDdY

· Axel Springer takes over the majority in the start-up FRAMEN — Frankfurt Valley https://buff.ly/34hVzJ1

o Learn more about the founding brothers here https://buff.ly/3oXM7lY

Keep to date

You can keep up to date, by following our blog here, or our Twitter account. On the social media channels, we also post on these channels content related to venture financing in the greater Rhine-Main Region.

Hashtags to follow

Have a look on Twitter for Frankfurt and the wider Rhein-Main area: #rheinmainrocks, #frmstartupscene #frankfurtvalley or #startupradio

Jörn Menninger founding partner of RhineMain.vc




We are the inbound venture capital index for the greater Rhine-Main region, including Frankfurt. Initiative by @RMStartups @gruenderhub @startuprad_io