PitchBook News - One IPO hopeful debuts—who's next?

AI drives unicorn creation; takeaways from the Game Developers Conference; ViaLase bags $40M for glaucoma treatment
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The Daily Pitch: VC
April 2, 2024
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In today's Daily Pitch, you'll find:
 
Today's Top Stories  
20 companies most likely to IPO in 2024
After a slow two years, the IPO market is expected to pick up in the back half of 2024. In anticipation of this mass liquidity event, PitchBook's Emerging Tech Research analysts plotted the 20 VC-backed companies most likely to IPO with their newest valuation and revenue figures in our recent analyst note.

It's been one month since our analysts set their predictions, and one of the candidates—AI hardware company Astera Labs—has already listed on the Nasdaq. Could Rubrik, Stripe or DataBricks be next?
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Unicorn creation rises 48% in Q1
In Q1, 37 startups crossed the billion-dollar valuation mark—the highest quarterly figure in a year and 48% higher than Q4 2023, our unicorn tracker shows.
  • AI had something to do with the rebound: Generative AI startups Mistral AI, Celestial AI, Perplexity and Together are among the latest batch of new unicorns.

  • More than half of the newcomers were based in Europe or Asia, continuing a trend that began last year. Previously, US-based companies tended to make up the majority of new unicorns.
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A message from Dropbox DocSend  
What last year's pre-seed round can tell us about today's fundraising landscape
DocSend's latest pre-seed data shows investors' focus on long-term profitability as VCs place increased emphasis on due diligence and scalability over rapid growth. Dive into the full report to learn about what the trends can tell us about the current landscape, and how successful founders have shifted their approach to meet the moment.

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Game developers, investors eye future
Analyst Eric Bellomo spoke to investors and founders at the annual Game Developers Conference in San Francisco about the state of the industry for our latest Emerging Tech Research. The note lays out where the sector might be heading and what investors are keeping an eye on—including AI, user-generated content and gaming SaaS startups.
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March wrap-up: One month in global markets
Our latest Global Markets Snapshot breaks down a month of trends in the equity, debt and commodities markets, tracking returns across a range of indexes and sectors. It also features private market activity, including major deals, fundraising, IPO performance, lending volume and unicorn creation.

In this monthly digest, we provide the datasets that the PitchBook Institutional Research Group is keeping an eye on as we head into Q2.
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Slowdown? PE fundraising shows surprising strength
(Sakchai Vongsasiripat/Getty Images)
PE fundraising remained surprisingly resilient last year, despite the market's concern that a lack of exits and a slower distribution pace might make it more difficult for GPs to raise new capital.

Worldwide, PE funds hauled in $554 billion in 2023, almost on par with the previous year. That was supported by a strong rebound in the back half of 2023, when GPs wrapped up a crop of mega-funds.
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Since yesterday, the PitchBook Platform added:
13
VC valuations
1934
People
758
Companies
34
Funds
See what our data software can do
 
The Daily Benchmark:
2017 Vintage Global Debt Funds
Median IRR
8.97%
Top Quartile IRR
11.31%
0.64x
Median DPI
Select top performers
Aero Credit Opportunities Fund I
Stellex Capital Partners
MCP Private Capital Fund III
*IRR: net of fees
79 Funds in Benchmark »
Check out the latest version of PitchBook Benchmarks
 
VC Deals  
Selux Diagnostics, a Boston-based biotech startup specializing in antimicrobial resistance, secured a $48 million in a round led by RA Capital Management.

Glaucoma treatment specialist ViaLase, which is based in California, raised a $40 million Series C from investors including Venture Investors Health Fund and Arboretum Ventures.

Blockchain startup Xion raised $25 million from Animoca Brands, Arrington Capital, Morningstar Ventures and others.

Terraclear, an agtech startup based in Washington and Idaho, raised a $15 million Series A extension from Madrona Venture Group and others.

Defense-tech startup Firestorm Labs, which is based in San Diego, raised a $12.5 million seed round led by Lockheed Martin Ventures.

Seattle's Goodbill, the developer of a hospital billing accuracy platform, raised $2 million from investors including Founder's Co-op, Maveron and Liquid 2 Ventures.
 
PitchBook Tech Talks Webinar: Tracking the LLM app stack
PitchBook research finds that large language model pilot projects can take up to six months to deploy even in successful cases. Buyers must compare a variety of models, orchestration frameworks and deployment services to balance cost and performance.

In addressing this opportunity, companies in our large language model operations market map have nearly closed more VC deals in the last 14 months than in the prior three years combined. To track how these new products fit together, PitchBook senior analyst Brendan Burke will discuss the structure and state of the large language model app stack with AI developer community leader Yujian Tang, a senior developer advocate at Zilliz. Key topics include:
  • How software engineers select orchestration tools to build for the two biggest use cases: retrieval-augmented generation and AI agents.

  • Data preparation techniques to bring unstructured, multimodal data to large language model applications.

  • Deployment tradeoffs with new, small models and hardware constraints.
Register now to secure your spot.
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PE Deals  
Advent International has agreed to buy Nasdaq-listed Nuvei, a Canada-based payments processor, for $6.3 billion.

Chinese property developer Dalian Wanda has sold 60% of its mall unit to PAG in a $8.3 billion deal, Reuters reported.

Liberty Media is taking over Madrid-based motorcycle racing league Dorna Sports' MotoGP from Bridgepoint Advisers and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in a $3.8 billion deal.

Florida-based Juniper Landscaping, a landscaping company backed by Bregal Partners and L Capital, has acquired peers Rip's Professional Lawn Care and Elegant Landscape & Design.

Novacap-backed TV advertising company Cadent has agreed to acquire Nasdaq-listed AdTheorent, which offers an AI-powered advertising platform.
 
Exits & IPOs  
Golden Gate-backed Bob Evans Restaurants is planning on a sale of the eastern US chain, Axios reported.
 
Fundraising  
Hunter Point Capital raised $3.3 billion for a fund dedicated to buying stakes in private fund managers.

CF Private Equity closed its fourth secondaries fund on $1.1 billion, The Wall Street Journal reported.
 
Investors  
OpenAI has changed the structure of its VC arm, OpenAI Startup Fund, so CEO Sam Altman no longer controls or owns the fund, according to SEC filings.

L Catterton Asia has formed a joint venture with former Hindustan Unilever CEO Sanjiv Mehta, focused on Indian consumer brands.
 
Correction  
Friday's newsletter incorrectly included AustralianSuper in the acquisition of SRS Distribution by Home Depot. AustralianSuper had exited its stake in the company previously.
 
Chart of the Day  
Source: 2023 European All In: Female Founders in the VC Ecosystem
 
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