By the end of 2018, the venture industry deployed $130.9 billion in US-based startups, according to the PitchBook-NVCA Venture Monitor*.
The fourth quarter saw $41.8 billion invested across 2,072 deals, closing out the full year with 8,948 completed deals totaling $130.9 billion, a new all-time high.
Angel & seed and early stage dealmaking experienced 15.0% and 22.9% increases in median deal size, respectively. Late stage deals made up 62.7% of total deal value.
The number of mega-deals, or deals over $100 million, soared to 199 representing an 91.3% YoY increase. Notable mega-deals closed in 2018 included:
– Epic Games’ $1.3 billion round, and
– Instacart’s $871.0 million Series F.
Also driving investment in the late stage was Corporate and PE involvement: CVC’s were involved in 1,443 deals, while PE investors participated in 792 completed financings.
The venture-backed exit market surpassed $120 billion for the first time since 2012 with an increase in exit value and flat exit count (864) which translated into higher average exit sizes. 49 exits were over $500 million. Several outsized exits helped drive value, including the acquisition of:
– Github by Microsoft for $7.5 billion,
– Cisco’s acquisition of Duo Security for $2.35 billion, and
– Moderna Therapeutics’ $604 million IPO.
Venture fundraising reached an all-time high in 2018, with $55.5 billion raised across 256 vehicles. By year-end, there were 11 funds raised with $1 billion+ in commitments. Among the firms raising $1 billion+ mega-funds were:
– Tiger Global’s $3.75 billion fund,
– Bessemer Partners’ $1.85 billion fund and
– GGV’s $1.36 billion fund.
* The quarterly report is jointly produced by PitchBook and the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), with support from Silicon Valley Bank, Perkins Coie and Solium.