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Entries tagged “Venture Capital”

Does Pandora’s Lukewarm IPO Foreshadow Groupon’s Fate?

Insight June 30, 2011

After filing for an IPO in Februrary, 2011, streaming music company Pandora went public on June 15, 2011 with little fanfare.  In contrast to LinkedIn which went public last month with a soaring valuation, Pandora’s valuation has been largely as expected.  Off the heels of LinkedIn, this could be seen as disappointing. 

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Trading on the Secondary Market

Insight June 29, 2011

In recent years, the secondary market for stocks – a platform through which investors can buy and trade shares of private companies – has grown exponentially in size and use.  This year,    transactions on the online platforms of SharesPost and SecondMarket alone have totaled over $ 4.6 billion, and are projected to exceed $ 6.9 billion next year. This does not include the much larger volume of trading by traditional broker-dealers and financial advisers, or other online platforms. 

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Legal Evolution:  Serving Clients by Doing More With Less

Insight June 24, 2011

Law firms need to take a lesson from their business-clients by utilizing technology to become more efficient and cut costs to clients.

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Interpreting the Startup Visa Act

Insight June 22, 2011

On March 14, 2011, Senators John Kerry and Richard Lugar introduced a bill titled the Startup Visa Act of 2011, which is an updated version of a 2010 bill.  If passed, the act would provide temporary work visas to various kinds of foreign workers if certain financial benchmarks are met.

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Silicon Valley:  Connecting to Israel

Insight June 06, 2011

Recent moves into Israel by companies from the Silicon Valley are a reminder that there are still many untapped opportunities for economic cooperation between two of the world's foremost centers of high technology.  Innovative business cultures and common values make Israel and the Silicon Valley natural partners in the world of high-tech and venture capital.

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House Passes Changes to Carried Interest Taxation

Insight June 10, 2010

On May 28th, the House passed H.R. 4213, the "American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act." The Act addresses an array of issues, but has particular signficance for certain partnership and LLC "carried interests" for investment fund managers. If it goes through, the Act would prevent investment fund managers of venture capital, private equity, hedge and real estate funds from paying taxes at capital gain rates on investment management services income received as carried interest in an investment fund.

Under the proposed changes, return on invested capital in the form of carried interest would continue to be taxed at capital gain tax rates. But to the extent that carried interest does not reflect a return on invested capital, investment fund managers would eventually be required to treat seventy-five percent of the remaining carried interest as ordinary income.

The proposed changes would not take effect until 2011. However, for the bill to become effective it must also be passed by the Senate, an outcome which is not certain to occur.

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Venture Capital Survey of the Silicon Valley in 2009 Third Quarter

Insight Michael Moradzadeh Michael Moradzadeh · November 16, 2009

Dow Jones VentureSource is one of the most popular nationwide venture capital date reports in the United States. VentureSources published its latest data on the development of venture capital investments in the third quarter of 2009. Below are some overviews observed by VentureSource.

  • With 616 venture deals and $5.1 billion invested, Q3 is a 6% drop over Q2;
  • IT investment barely outpaces health care;
  • Web2.0 investments surpassed the software sector for first time on record;
  • Medical device investments nearly match biopharmaceuticals;
  • Corporations investing instead of acquiring, commitments to VC-backed firms surpasses 2008 total;
  • $5 million median deal size on par with Q1&Q2, but still lowest since 1999.

It is undeniable that the investments and fundraising by venture capitalists remained at low levels in 3Q’2009, but there is room for optimism as the economy is picking up slowly and Nasdaq continued to improve. In addition, with regard to the largest U.S. deals overall in 3Q’2009, eight deals are conducted in California, such as Facebook, Tesla Motors, and Pacific Biosciences of California, etc.

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What do entrepreneurs give up to VCs?

Insight September 01, 2009

Lots of young entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley these days hope to begin their business, let people know their companies, and furthermore, draw the attention of venture capitalists, who will devote money to their new enterprise.

Something that an entrepreneur must keep in mind is something that he must give up to VCs when getting money from them – most commonly stock of the new company. Generally, a venture capitalist asks for “preferred stock” from the entrepreneurs; the owner of preferred stock enjoys shareholder rights superior to the shareholders of common shares.

Most types of preferred stock are designed to convert into common stock (for example, one share of preferred stock converts into five shares of common stock), either at the discretion of the investors (voluntary conversion) or when some preset threshold is reached (automatic conversion, for example, in a public offering scenario). Thus, the conversion condition, time of conversion (voluntary or involuntary), and the conversion rate, is always one of the most fiercely argued clauses in the investment negotiations between VCs and entrepreneurs.

Of course, another major issue to consider before seeking venture capital is the loss of control of your company. When VCs invest, they want to make sure their investments are secure, so they often require a seat on the board of directors and certain voting rights. This means an entrepreneur effectively has a new boss. This can be a good thing since VCs often add experience and credibility to the company. However, this often causes power struggles between the entrepreneur and the venture capitalists.

 

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