Counting The Hits

Venture Capital is a hits business. All of the returns come from the top cohort of investments. So figuring out how many “hits” there are over a given time period turns out to be a useful exercise.

Aileen Lee posted her attempt to do that on TechCrunch a while back. I countered with a post of my own on the topic.

Those two posts started William Mougayar on a long process to figure out what the right number is. This week he published his findings.

William has found 235 global “tech” companies that were started since 2000 that have gone on to be valued at north of $250mm.

I think William’s efforts are the most exhaustive I’ve seen to date but I don’t think the list is anywhere near complete, particularly for the $250mm to $1bn cohort.

I pointed him to three or four of our portfolio companies that are carrying valuations north of $250mm that he did not have on his list. And I am sure there are many more like that out there.

My guess is an exhaustive list of global tech companies founded since 2000 that have gone on to be valued at north of $250mm would be 400-500 companies and possibly more.

It is very unusual for a company to get to $250mm in valuation in a year or two so you would not have many companies started since 2010 on this list, yet.

So if we take my guess and divide by ten years, that means there are 40-50 global tech companies started a year that go on to be worth $250mm or more.

That feels about right to me. Let’s help William compile that list. Leave him comments on his post or this post suggesting companies he has left out.