Global funding for companies in the automotive and mobility sectors fell to $27.6 billion in 2020, a 5% decrease year-over-year, with 522 deals completed according to CB Insights’ recent report and webinar on the State of Mobility. While the first half of 2020 was particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the second half of 2020 saw more investor interest in the sector as companies addressed electrification and autonomous driving.

As demonstrated by the shift to later stage financings and the emergence of new automotive and mobility unicorns, automotive and mobility companies are remaining private longer. Globally, there are now 45 unicorns in the sector, collectively valued at over $226.8 billion.

In 2020, there were 107 auto and mobility company exits, which included 22 SPAC deals. Companies developing technology to support electric vehicles (EV) made up 58% of 2020’s total SPAC deals.

Highlighted below are the 2020 funding highlights for certain notable subsectors:

  • EV companies raised $12.8 billion in 193 deals completed in 2020, with $8 billion of funding going to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).
  • Autonomous vehicle companies raised $7.3 billion in 105 deals, with the average deal rising 17% year-over-year to $104 million.
  • Connected vehicle companies raised $1 billion, a decline from 2019’s $2.2 billion, with 70 completed in 2020. Analysts believe the shift to electrification and autonomous vehicles may have led to this steady decline.

As we continue to speed through 2021, particular focus continues to be placed on zero-emission transportation and commercial vehicle innovation, given the global focus on ESG. Due to the ripple effects of the pandemic on our daily lives, analysts expect to see the emergence of new mobility tech, including robotaxis, micromobility and personal electric vehicles, and digital car dealerships.