VCs More Upbeat As Up Rounds Rise

Up rounds vs down rounds (Fenwick & West)
Up rounds vs down rounds (Fenwick & West)

There are few more certain measures of venture sentiment than an enthusiastic up round, and these more hopeful financings are on the rise.

According to the latest Fenwick & West analysis, up rounds saw a noticeable increase in the fourth quarter. The law firm’s survey, released Thursday, found that 67% of deals were marked higher compared with 21% marked lower. The remaining 12% had flat valuations.

This was a significant increase from the third quarter, when 53% of rounds were priced up and 30% fell. Fenwick & West analyzed 95 fourth quarter transactions.

The quarter was the sixth in a row with up rounds exceeding down rounds.

Overall, average per share prices rose 61% for the fourth quarter, a big jump from 28% in the third quarter. Software was the most popular category for up rounds, with 90% of deals increasing in value. It was followed by cleantech, where 72% of deals rose.

Life sciences was the worst performing industry with 36% of deals priced up and 36% down.