Cooley LLP recently released a report on venture financings for 2012. The report provides a summary of data reflecting our experience in venture capital financing terms and trends. Information is taken from transactions in which Cooley served as counsel to either the issuing company or the investors.
Overall, our data pointed to a year marked by slowing deal volumes and stabilizing valuations. In 2012, we saw aggregate dollars raised reach $4.9 billion, down from $6 billion in 2011. The decrease in both deal volumes and invested capital was driven by a slowing financing environment during the second half of 2012. Median pre-money valuations were relatively flat across all deal stages with the exception of Series B transactions. We saw an increase in up versus flat/down rounds. Up rounds represented 75% of all financings in 2012, a level not seen since 2007. Additionally, the percentage of recapitalization transactions fell in 2012, as well as the number of tranched deals. Deal terms also mirrored the financing statistics. The utilization of fully participating preferred provisions was relatively flat from 2011 and we witnessed a decrease in pay-to-play provisions in 2012, compared to the prior year.