NEWS & VIEWS

Global private equity and venture capital news and research

Features

6 September 2010

New waves of disruptive innovation : why microcap VC is happening now $

Sophisticated investors know that significant excess returns are available if they can invest with the best venture capital managers. In the 1990s, a consensus emerged around a list of top venture brands, based on triple digit returns produced before the collapse of the tech bubble. Ten years later, the brands on that list retain significant cache among the limited partner community, despite profound changes in the opportunity set and disparities in recent performance. For investors without independent sources of information and context, the list of brand name VCs is a false friend.

24 August 2010

Duff & Phelps managing director Frank Bollmann on the use of fair value in private equity $

Fair value has been heavily criticised for exacerbating the financial crisis. Some argue that marking assets to market promoted procyclicality at a time when stability was needed. Others even commented that the application of fair value in accounting had caused the crisis in the first place. Yet, many believe that fair value accounting shined the light on poorly performing assets, allowing investors to see more clearly their real value.

17 August 2010

How the US improves other countries’ economies while hurting its own $

While the state of the US economy is suffering from one of the most devastating downturns since the Great Depression, some countries are actually enjoying good economic times. Where is that economic fuel coming from, and why aren’t we exploiting it?

3 August 2010

Congress may be listening – FINALLY! Hope for the Silicon Valley start-up $

For some time, I’ve been conveying a chilling message: the US financial ecosystem for venture capital-backed start-ups is crumbling and placing the US economy in jeopardy at a time when countries such as China and India are producing far more sophisticated start-ups than ever. I’m heartened to say that the message, at long last, may be finally gaining some traction in Congress. This is great news for start-ups.

27 July 2010

Tim Green of GMT Communications Partners on industry specialisation in private equity $

Tim Green, managing partner at GMT Communications Partners, sat down with AltAssets to talk about the specialisation of private equity houses and why its good to have an industry focus, the challenges faced by the media and communications industry space and how well it stood up to the disastrous effects of the global economic downturn.

20 July 2010

Angels or demons? – a feature on private equity and employment by Vicky Meek $

Private equity’s record on employment in portfolio companies has been the subject of fierce debate between the industry’s critics and proponents. But what’s the real story? We look at two research papers with very different results, writes Vicky Meek.

6 July 2010

David Wilmot of Babson Capital Europe on today’s mezzanine market $

David Wilmot, the joint head of private equity and mezzanine at Babson Capital Europe, spoke to AltAssets about the current lack of mezzanine funds able to make plays in the market, about the wealth of good quality deals to be had, about the popularity of mezz over high-yield in Europe, and about banks’ reluctance to rush back into highly leveraged private equity deals.

29 June 2010

Private equity investing for high net worth families and individuals: the time is now $

Over the next several years, the opportunity for wealth creation in private equity should be significant, particularly for high net worth families and individuals, writes Dan Lubeck, founder and managing director of Solis Capital Partners.

8 June 2010

Europe stakes claim for cleantech VC leadership $

The traditional view of European venture capital asserts that it is the poor relation to its more established relative on the US West Coast. With the rise of Asia’s private equity scene and as a growing economy in general, some would equally suggest that it is in danger of being marginalised.

25 May 2010

Something ventured, nothing gained – writes Ray Maxwell $

One of the greatest mysteries of our time is the general failure of venture capital to live up to expectations. It is perverse that an asset class that exhibits steroid levels of risk generates such low levels of return. Samuel Johnson, the British linguist of the 1700s who pioneered the English dictionary, remarked that “second marriages are a triumph of hope over experience” and the same comment could aptly be applied to venture capital. As an asset class, it has only periodically delivered returns and, even in good times, the range of returns between the best and worst performers has been immense. It will be worthwhile exploring why this has occurred and whether or not venture capital can survive.

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