Where did venture capitalists go to college?

 The educational backgrounds of VC investment professionals are in some ways surprisingly diverse, even if the population of investors generally isn’t. Still, there are some definite trends to suss out at all levels of the educational continuum, and that’s what we’re going to do today. Read More

A peek inside Alphabet’s investing universe

 Chances are you’ve heard of Google. You’re likely a contributor to one of the 3.5 billion search queries the website processes daily. But unless you’re a venture capitalist, an entrepreneur or a slightly obsessive tech journalist, you may not know that Google, or, more properly, Alphabet, is also invests in startups. And, like most of what Google does, Alphabet invests… Read More

Raise softly and deliver a big exit

 In the world of venture capital, the prospect of a successful “exit” looms large in the minds of investors. A VC’s business model is less about the money that goes into a startup than it is about what comes out. It’s true that most companies fail to exit gracefully, and of those that do, surprisingly few exit by going public. Read More

Mobile delivers high exit multiples despite broader market slowdown

 In the world of mobile apps, numbers come in two sizes: big and bigger. More than one billion people use Facebook’s mobile app every day. But what about the financial side of the mobile business; specifically, venture investment and returns? By looking at the numbers behind two different ends of the startup life cycle, a reasonable understanding of the mobile market today can be had. Read More

Did the tide of global VC start to turn in Q4 2017?

 The U.S. has led the world in venture capital investing in a number of ways, but does the U.S. market also serve as a leading indicator for the rest of the world? It’s something to keep an eye on for the next couple of quarters. Downturns may be contagious, even if they take some time to incubate. Read More

Where venture capitalists invest and why

 Entrepreneurs looking to raise capital are often told that investors like to keep things close to home. Is that true? The question influences where people locate companies. After all, if investors are only willing to invest in their own backyard, you might be better off starting your next company as close to capital as possible. Unless, of course, the conventional wisdom is wrong. Read More

What happens when you sell your startup?

 This is the final installment in the series “A Startup Takes Flight.” We started by creating a company — the Internet of Wings, a provider of drone-delivered chicken sandwiches that pivoted into general food delivery — and examined some of the most common financing terms entrepreneurs and VC investors discuss. It’s time to get our investors a liquidity event… Read More

Where venture capital has peaked

 “Peak startup” is a phrase that no doubt strikes terror in the hearts of entrepreneurs and startup investors alike. But saying “peak startup” is not the same as saying that the market is at the very height of a bubble. Peak startup merely means that the market is running out of steam for this cycle. And that’s what we’re going to examine here. Read More

Here are the best startup cities in the Midwest

 The American Midwest, to some, is just the “flyover states.” Its tropes — rusted-out factories, cornfields and calorically dense fried foods at state fairs — are well-known. However, it’s also increasingly home to more technology startups. Looking through the lens of startup and VC funding activity, we’ll be looking out how the Midwest and its metros stack… Read More

For startups, VC funding is always in season

 We’ve entered the dog days of summer. For many, that means time on the beach, backyard barbecues and, if you’re like us, seeking out the blissful respite afforded by a solid air conditioning system. In the land of startups and venture capital, however, summer can mean something a bit different. Read More

Inside the Q2 2017 global venture capital ecosystem

 One thing is clear: The market for startup equity is on firmer footing now than it was three months ago. With two successive quarters of growth, both in the number of deals struck and the amount of money invested, as well as a growing appetite on the part of public markets for shares in venture-backed startups, there’s reason for cautious optimism going into the second half of this year. Read More

Here’s where you’re most likely to randomly run into a unicorn in the US

 Where’s the best place to start a startup? It’s a perennial and somewhat intractable question entrepreneurs love to ask. And before you get your hopes up, we’ll start by saying there is no one right answer to this question. Like much in the world of startups and venture capital, it depends on a number of factors. But what we can tell is that networks matter. Read More

Regulation could stifle growing China-US venture activity

 Let’s step back from politics and look at some cold, hard numbers to assess the current state of cross-border investment and other transactional activity between the U.S. and China. We’ll look at one type of transaction that could be affected: venture capital investments. We’ll show the “big picture,” as well as analysis of transactions in AI and related sectors. Read More

Advertising giants leave little room for adtech startups, and VCs are noticing

 Since the earliest days of the commercial web, there was a Faustian bargain struck between users and content publishers: Users got free access to online content in exchange for tolerating ads sold by the very same publishers delivering the latest words, images, and videos. And, by and large, it’s a bargain that’s worked out well for digital advertisers. According to data published… Read More

How Ethereum became the platform of choice for ICO’d digital assets

 For most of the history of blockchain-based currencies and assets, the story has been all about Bitcoin. At a market capitalization of around $40 billion, it remains the most valuable cryptocurrency. But with the rise of a new ‘chain on the — ahem — block, namely Ethereum, and new ways to fund the development of new crypto-platforms with ICOs, the narrative is shifting somewhat. Read More

Startups, you must raise this much to join the 1%

 Joining the exclusive club of one-percenters is hard, and, by definition, nearly every company fails to gain entry. For founders and investors alike, the heartening thing is that, in most cases, even a small seed and Series A round puts your company in the top half of startups founded in or after 2003. And there’s one good thing about being middle of the pack — you have plenty… Read More

Quantifying startup funding inequality for fun and profit

 Income inequality and disparity in resource distribution have drawn a lot of attention recently in the United States. Today, we’ll investigate a variation on the theme, exploring the distribution of a specific resource, venture capital funding, across a particular population, in this case, all U.S.-based technology companies founded in or after 2003 with at least one recorded funding round. Read More