Category

Venture Economics

Venture Outcomes are Even More Skewed Than You Think

The typical “successful” venture portfolio is often described as having the following outcome: 1/3 of companies fail 1/3 of companies return capital (or make a small amount of money) 1/3 of companies do well Fred Wilson, for example, described this a few years ago: I’ve said many times on this blog that our target batting average…

That convert you raised last year is a part of your cap table

When it comes to convertible debt, I’ve had a few instances recently where “out of sight, out of mind” has created some misunderstandings around deal structures. Seemed like a good topic to cover here. Given the prevalence of convertible debt as a seed financing instrument, an increasing number of companies we look at have some…

California, Massachusetts, New York, Colorado

California, Massachusetts, New York, Colorado. That’s the order of states with the greatest dollar value of seed and early stage investment according to a PWC MoneyTree study that my partner Jason blogged about today. $290M invested in 41 companies based in Colorado in 2011. Compare that with 2006 when Colorado ranked 12th on the list…

The Seed Signaling Problem That’s NOT Being Talked About

There’s been plenty of chatter over the past few years about the potential pitfalls for entrepreneurs taking seed money from VCs. This includes a recent and very thorough overview of the issues by Elad Gil which I’d highly recommend reading, even if you’re already familiar with the issues around seed financing (and in particular the…

Has convertible debt won? And if it has, is that a good thing?

Paul Graham, founder of Y-Combinator, sent out a tweet on Friday saying: “Convertible notes have won. Every investment so far in this YC batch (and there have been a lot) has been done on a convertible note.” It’s an interesting data point on Y-Combinator companies, but is this truly a macro trend? Have convertible notes…

Am I just a greedy VC?

My partner Jason has an impassioned post up about the carried interest debate currently taking place in Congress. No matter how you feel about Congress’ efforts to change the tax classification of VC profits from capital gains to ordinary income it’s worth a read (and keeping an open mind). Obviously this issue is important to…

The new era of venture capital

You already know the about the state of the venture capital industry in 2009: venture investing down (32%), exits down (14%; slowest exit year for VC backed companies since 1995), fundraising down (56%), IPO’s almost non-existent (8 venture backed IPOs in 2009). It’s a bleak picture for the industry overall, even if there’s a group…

First round valuations

I get quite a few questions sent in by readers and am going to make more of an effort to post some of the ones that I think would be of general interest (please – keep them coming). Recently Jonathan asked: Do you have any reference regarding recent pre seed, seed, and first round valuations…

Why NOLs should be transferable

Dad stopped by the other day on his way back from a meeting and we were kicking around some ideas. One of the things that he brought up that I’d been toying around with as well was the notion of enabling companies to sell their NOLs. I think this is an outstanding idea – both…

Some Venture Math

I’m in the middle of writing a few posts on the economics of venture investing (actually on venture “exiting”) and was therefore pretty interested in the VentureWire 2005 venture m&a stats that came out last week (there were a bunch of articles recapping the 2005 venture exits if you want to Google for them). Here’s…