May 13, 2020 - Economy & Business

Venture capital's new normal

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Two months ago today, we wrote in this space that U.S. venture capitalists claimed to still be open for business, even if they were now working from home.

Fast forward: Investment activity remains vibrant, but off approximately 25% from pre-pandemic levels, according to data provided to Axios by PitchBook.

March data was unreliable, given that many contemporaneous announcements were for deals that had been signed at a time when frequent flier miles still mattered.

  • The typical February 2020 week saw 211 U.S. venture deals raising $2.6 billion, putting the average deal size at $12.3 million.
  • The typical April 2020 week saw 157 U.S. venture deals raising $1.97 billion, putting average deal size at $12.5 million.
  • The first week of May had 150 deals that raised $2.01 billion.
  • Both the February and April numbers this year were much lower than their 2019 counterparts. On the one hand, that could suggest that part of the April 2020 slowdown is just part of an ex-pandemic slide. On the other, it's worth noting that last year's April numbers were much larger than last year's February numbers, which makes the April 2020 decrease even more dramatic.

The key 2020 takeaway is consistency in April and May. The weekly disparity for four of the five weeks is just 30 companies and $210 million. Or, put another way, U.S. venture capital appears to have found its new normal.

Go deeper

Updated 3 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Trump lashes out at governors, urges them to "dominate" streets with National Guard

President Trump berated the nation’s governors in a video teleconference call Monday, calling many of them "weak" and demanding tougher crackdowns on the protests that erupted throughout the country following the killing of George Floyd, according to audio of the call.

The latest: White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at a briefing Monday that Trump's call for law enforcement to "dominate" protesters referred to "dominating the streets" with a robust National Guard presence in order to maintain the peace.

2 hours ago - World

Kremlin says Trump discussed inviting Russia to G7 in call with Putin

President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin at their bilateral meeting at the G20 Osaka Summit 2019, in Osaka, Japan in 2019. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke on Monday about Trump's plans to expand September's G7 meeting in Washington to include Russia, according to the Russian government's readout of the call.

The big picture: The phone call between the two leaders, which the Kremlin says was initiated by Trump, comes amid six consecutive days of mass unrest in the U.S. over police brutality and racial inequality. The White House confirmed the call took place and said a readout was forthcoming.

Facebook employees stage "virtual walkout"

Screenshot of an image some Facebook employees are adding to their internal profiles, with or without the hashtag, to protest company policy.

"Dozens" of Facebook employees staged a "virtual walkout" Monday over the company's decision not to take action against President Trump's provocative messages in the face of nationwide protests against police violence, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: While Twitter added fact-check labels and hid the president's most inflammatory tweet — "when the looting starts, the shooting starts" — Facebook has said Trump's statements do not violate its policies and that the platform aims to promote free speech.