For more than four decades, Fenwick & West LLP has helped some of the world’s most recognized companies become, and remain, market leaders. From emerging enterprises to large public corporations, our clients are leaders in the technology, life sciences and cleantech sectors and are fundamentally changing the world through rapid innovation.  MORE >

Fenwick & West was founded in 1972 in the heart of Silicon Valley—before “Silicon Valley” existed—by four visionary lawyers who left a top-tier New York law firm to pursue their shared belief that technology would revolutionize the business world and to pioneer the legal work for those technological innovations. In order to be most effective, they decided they needed to move to a location close to primary research and technology development. These four attorneys opened their first office in downtown Palo Alto, and Fenwick became one of the first technology law firms in the world.  MORE >

From our founding in 1972, Fenwick has been committed to promoting diversity and inclusion both within our firm and throughout the legal profession. For almost four decades, the firm has actively promoted an open and inclusive work environment and committed significant resources towards improving our diversity efforts at every level.  MORE >

FLEX by Fenwick is the only service created by an AmLaw 100 firm that provides flexible and cost-effective solutions for interim in-house legal needs to high-growth companies.  MORE >

Fenwick & West handles significant cross-border legal and business issues for a wide range of technology and life sciences who operate internationally..  MORE >

At Fenwick, we are proud of our commitment to the community and to our culture of making a difference in the lives of individuals and organizations in the communities where we live and work. We recognize that providing legal services is not only an essential part of our professional responsibility, but also an excellent opportunity for our attorneys to gain valuable practical experience, learn new areas of the law and contribute to the community.  MORE >

Year after year, Fenwick & West is honored for excellence in the legal profession. Many of our attorneys are recognized as leaders in their respective fields, and our Corporate, Tax, Litigation and Intellectual Property Practice Groups consistently receive top national and international rankings, including:

  • Named Technology Group of the Year by Law360
  • Ranked #1 in the Americas for number of technology deals in 2015 by Mergermarket
  • Nearly 20 percent of Fenwick partners are ranked by Chambers
  • Consistently ranked among the top 10 law firms in the U.S. for diversity
  • Recognized as having top mentoring and pro bono programs by Euromoney


We take sustainability very seriously at Fenwick. Like many of our clients, we are adopting policies that reduce consumption and waste, and improve efficiency. By using technologies developed by a number of our cleantech clients, we are at the forefront of implementing sustainable policies and practices that minimize environmental impact. In fact, Fenwick has earned recognition in several areas as one of the top US law firms for implementing sustainable business practices.  MORE >

At Fenwick, we have a passion for excellence and innovation that mirrors our client base. Our firm is making revolutionary changes to the practice of law through substantial investments in proprietary technology tools and processes—allowing us to deliver best-in-class legal services more effectively.   MORE >

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Fenwick Releases 2016 Survey of Unicorn Financings

Valuation Metrics Decline in 2016

Mountain View, CA (January 27, 2017) – Fenwick & West LLP, one of the nation’s premier law firms providing comprehensive legal services to high technology and life sciences clients, today announced the results of its third survey of the terms of US-based venture-backed unicorn financings.

The survey analyzed the terms of 31 unicorn financings that closed in the twelve months ended December 31, 2016.

“The most notable finding in the survey was that all three valuation metrics declined in 2016. The percentage of financings that were up rounds declined from 97% in 2015 to 75% in 2016, while flat rounds increased from 0% to 21% and down rounds were essentially unchanged at 2% and 4%, respectively. Additionally, the average increase in unicorn valuation from the prior financing round decreased from 162% in 2015 to 83% in 2016, and the median increase in valuation declined from 92% in 2015 to 30% in 2016,” said Barry Kramer, co-author of the survey and a partner at Fenwick & West.

There was also a decline in the number of US-based, venture-backed unicorn financings, from 62 in 2015 to 31 in 2016.

“The net result is an interesting dichotomy. On the one hand both valuation metrics and the number of financings have declined, potentially signaling difficult times ahead for unicorns that plan to raise money in 2017. On the other hand, venture capital fundraising in 2016 was very strong, Nasdaq had a good year and large technology companies have substantial cash reserves and high value stock with which to make acquisitions. So the conclusion seems to be that the financial resources are available for promising unicorns seeking funding, but it might take a continued moderation in valuations to entice investors," concluded Mr. Kramer.

Complete results of this most recent unicorn survey are posted on Fenwick & West's website at The first and second surveys are available at and

About Fenwick & West
Fenwick & West LLP provides comprehensive legal services to ground-breaking technology and life sciences companies – at every stage of their lifecycle – and the investors that partner with them. We craft innovative, cost-effective and practical solutions on issues ranging from venture capital, public offerings, joint ventures, M&A and strategic relationships, to intellectual property, litigation and dispute resolution, taxation, antitrust, and employment and labor law. For more than four decades, Fenwick has helped some of the world's most recognized companies become and remain market leaders. For more information, please visit​