NEWS & VIEWS

Global private equity and venture capital news and research

North America

13 April 2004

Leveraged recapitalisations: There is such a thing as being too rich and too thinp

A combination of a strong high yield financing market and the new lower tax rates for dividends and capital gains in the US, have recently provided private equity investors with a strong economic incentive to effect leveraged recapitalisations of their portfolio companies to finance a special dividend or redemption of stock, according to Marilyn French and Scott Mazur of Weil, Gotshal & Manges.

13 April 2004

Getting in position to be in positionp

Achieving liquidity through the US public equity markets has become more time consuming and more expensive in the wake of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and other related regulations. Portfolio companies that understand the increased effort required to complete an initial public offering and prepare in advance to be a public company will significantly reduce the number of obstacles to liquidity confronting them and their private equity investors, according to Mark Bettencourt of Testa, Hurwitz & Thibeault.

6 April 2004

Total US venture capital reportp

Over $5.5bn of venture capital was invested in 502 private US based companies in the fourth quarter of 2003. This represents the first quarter-to-quarter increase in funding in two years and the largest increase since early 2000, according to Growthink Research.

6 April 2004

Alternative market perspectivep

US private equity firms raised $43.9bn in 2003, down 26 per cent from $59.4bn in 2002, and more than 75 per cent less than the $178.5bn raised at the height of the private equity bubble in 2000, according to the Hewitt Investment Group.

22 March 2004

The case for Arizona: Early-stage technologyp

Arizona is experiencing the beginnings of critical mass in life sciences and other early-stage technologies suggesting it may have the potential to emerge as a new partner on the global stage. But the market is currently suffering from a severe lack of venture capital activity and is among the most underserved markets in the world, according to Intium Capital.

15 March 2004

M&A rebounds as financial and strategic buyers returnp

Like the last recovery a decade ago, the current rebound of merger and acquisition activity in the US is being driven largely by corporate divestitures. But this time around the recovery is also being driven by the increasing number of private equity firms looking to exit their investments, according to Ira Kreft of Fleet Capital.

15 March 2004

Moneytree survey: Full-year results 2003p

A total of $18.2bn of venture capital was invested in 2,715 companies in 2003. This represents a 15 per cent decline from 2002's $21.4bn, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers' MoneyTree Survey.

2 March 2004

Canada’s private equity industry in 2003: An overviewp

Investment activity in Canada's private equity industry continued to decline in 2003 with investments totalling $1.5bn, down by a substantial 41 per cent from $2.5bn in 2003, according to the Canadian Venture Capital Association and Macdonald & Associates.

24 February 2004

Annual US middle-market private equity surveyp

Nearly two thirds of US middle-market private equity firms expect a stronger economy over the next 12 months, according to RW Baird's second annual survey of the market. And the median number of investments that middle-market firms expect to make over the next year is 50 per cent higher than in 2003.

18 February 2004

The new corporate governance requirements – Why private equity sponsors should carep

The new corporate governance landscape in the US should not require drastic changes in the way in which private equity firms and their portfolio companies operate, according to Douglas Warner and Ernest Ceberio of Weil, Gotshal & Manges.

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