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Inside Pitchbook’s Q3 Venture Capital Report

We pulled the key points out of Pitchbook’s sprawling report.

2 Minute Read

Pitchbook recently released their quarterly venture monitor report. The 37-page report is full of insight, so we pulled out the key points for you here. (You’re welcome!)

Note: Data for this report is US-specific


  • Deal value will likely stay above $100b for the second year straight.
  • Total VC investment slowed in Q3.
  • Deal size still remains elevated. Megadeals ($50m+) still dominate and are set to hit a new record in 2019.

Angel and Seed

  • Angel and seed deal sizes continue to rise to new highs with the median at $2.2m, as compared to <$0.5m a decade ago.
  • Angel and seed deal count continues to drop, as companies look for other financing methods.

Early-stage VC

  • Lowest number of early-stage VC deals since 1Q 2013.
  • Early-stage deals are growing in size, with the median growing ot $6.3m.
  • 44 early-stage mega-deals closed in 2019, with fintech deals paving the way.

Late-stage VC

  • 3Q deal value was down relative to the past four quarters, but is regarded as a blip in a consistently growing late-VC stage.
  • Large “ultra-late-stage” (private IPO) investments have become more common, often to clear up their balance sheet.
  • AI/ML compose an increasing portion of late-VC companies.
  • Average late-VC deal was $35m, down from $42m in 2018, but higher than any year prior to 2013.


  • The West Coast continues to dominate VC activity.

By Sector

  • Software: Deal value approaches decade high.
  • Pharma & biotech: Deal sizes and valuations falling, with deals focusing on early stage.
  • Fintech: Deal value increases, with a focus on late-stage investment, including multiple outlier “mega-deals”. Fintech deal value hits new high.
  • AI: Deal value on pace for record year, with valuations relatively volatile.

Female Founders

  • Female founders on pace for record year of deal activity, with NY being the major hotspot for female-founded deals.
  • Deal size continues to grow, but valuation growth remains slow compared to mixed or all-male founded companies.

Alternative VC

  • Tourist investors continue to have a strong presence across deals (60% of total deal value involved a tourist investor), participating in >$90b last year.
  • Corporate venture capital slowed this year, but remains heavily involved (43% of deal value), with 1176 corporations participating in deals last year.


  • Annual exit value skyrockets to over $200b YTD, compared to $127b last year, but are heavily skewed by unicorn exits. Exit count lies at 633 YTD versus 990 last year.
  • 2019 holds the record for IPOs as a proportion of total exit value (82%). 
  • Pureplay SaaS has been priced more favorably as compared to more traditional businesses that are tech-enabled.


  • Investor confidence continues to be bullish, with162 funds raising YTD, but a slow-down as compared to 2018.
  • VC net cash flows continue to be positive, since 2012.
  • Micro-funds (<$50m) dropped as a percentage of funds closed in 2019
  • An increased focus on larger funds has resulted from increased LP interest in VC and a shift toward blitz-scaling, which is getting backlash after Softbank’s strategy with many of its investments.