VC Deals In Charts (Q1 2008)—Welcome To The Slowdown


Here are some slides from Pricewaterhouse Coopers and the National Venture Capital Association illustrating the trends in venture capital deals last quarter that Duncan mentioned yesterday. (Click on them for a bigger image). The overall amount venture firms invested dropped both year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter to $7.1 billion (less than any quarter in 2007, but still above the level of investment every quarter in 2006 and 2005). The average deal size is still healthy at $7.7 million. So things aren’t so bad. The concern is whether this is the beginning of a steeper decline that we will begin to see over the next few quarters, which it may very well be.


VC money going into the software sector (broadly defined) declined 9 percent quarter-over-quarter (flat year-over-year) to $1.264 billion and was about even with the amount invested in biotech ($1.267 billion). If you cut the numbers a different way and look at Internet-specific deals, those declined 7 percent from the fourth quarter of 2007 to $1.310 billion, but were slightly up year-over-year. Meanwhile, the craze over clean-tech investments looks like it may have peaked in the third quarter of 2007 when $851 million was invested. Or, at least, it is taking a breather. That number has now gone down for two quarters, and was at $625 million during the first quarter of 2008.


Finally, here is a breakdown of the money going into early-stage versus later-stage deals. About 23 percent of the money invested in the past four quarters went into seed or early-stage deals, which seems to actually be a slightly higher percentage than was typical over the previous two years.