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Background
This survey is a special interim report to highlight changes in the Silicon Valley venture capital environment through October 2020 in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please note that when providing data on a monthly basis, and especially when analyzing trends among industries or series on a monthly basis, we are working with smaller numbers than in our quarterly report and accordingly the possibility of statistical anomalies increases.

Key Findings
Venture valuation metrics were strong, returning to pre-pandemic levels for the first time. Deal volume was also solid. The software and life sciences industry results were strong, while internet/new media lagged.

Valuation metrics were strong.

  • The percentage of up-rounds in October was 79%, the highest since February and just slightly below the 2019 average of 83%. The percentage of down rounds was 4%, the lowest since December 2019.
  • The average share price increase was 101%, the highest since January and higher than the 2019 average of 93%.
  • The median share price change was 73%, the highest since November 2019 and notably higher than the 2019 average of 60%.

Financing volume continued solid.

  • The number of Silicon Valley venture financings was stable in October, with 65 financings, which was the same amount as in September, as well as the average for 2019.

Software and life sciences posted strong results, internet/new media lagged.

  • There were 15 life sciences financings in October, compared to a monthly average of nine in 2019. The life sciences industry was the only industry to surpass its 2019 average monthly amount. Software had the largest number of financings in October at 29, a small decline from its 2019 average of 30.
  • The software industry led on the valuation front, with an average per-share price increase of 140%, compared to 88% in September and 101% in 2019. Life sciences was second with a 74% average increase. The internet/new media industry was a laggard, with only a 40% average per-share price increase, compared to 99% in September and a 122% average in 2019.
  • The median share price increase results reflected a similar trend, with the software industry leading with an 83% median increase and the life sciences industry second with a 77% increase. Internet/new media lagged at 18%.

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