Private Equity Portfolio Companies: A First Look at Burgiss Holdings Data

30 Pages Posted: 3 Mar 2020

See all articles by Gregory W. Brown

Gregory W. Brown

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill - Finance Area

Robert S. Harris

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

Wendy Hu

Burgiss

Tim Jenkinson

University of Oxford - Said Business School; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Steven N. Kaplan

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI); University of Chicago - Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship

David T. Robinson

Fuqua School of Business, Duke University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative

Date Written: January 17, 2020

Abstract

This paper provides a first look at newly available data on the holdings of private equity (PE) funds. Because research has been hampered by the lack of comprehensive, high-quality data on portfolio companies, this new source offers the potential for a wide range of research. Provided by Burgiss, a global provider of data and analytics to investors in PE funds (limited partner investors or LPs), the data are gathered from the financial reports of general partners (GPs) to LPs who are Burgiss clients. The sample covers over 45,000 investments in funds’ portfolio companies (in buyout and venture capital); moreover, the coverage is expected to grow through a phased release process. The paper describes preliminary findings on sample characteristics and offers a high-level view on aspects of performance in hopes of inspiring additional research. Returns to investments in portfolio companies are highly variable and skewed. This is particularly true of venture capital where many investments turn out worthless and average performance is boosted by a few spectacular successes that create the bulk of fund value. Performance is related to a number of factors (including investment size, duration of the investment and levels of fund raising), with patterns differing for buyout and venture capital investments.

Keywords: Private Equity, buyouts, venture capital, portfolio company

JEL Classification: G12

Suggested Citation

Brown, Gregory W. and Harris, Robert S. and Hu, Wendy and Jenkinson, Tim and Kaplan, Steven Neil and Robinson, David T., Private Equity Portfolio Companies: A First Look at Burgiss Holdings Data (January 17, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3532444 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3532444

Gregory W. Brown

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill - Finance Area ( email )

Kenan-Flagler Business School
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3490
United States

Robert S. Harris (Contact Author)

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business ( email )

P.O. Box 6550
Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550
United States
434-924-4823 (Phone)
434-924-4859 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/harris.htm

Wendy Hu

Burgiss ( email )

111 River St., 10th Floor
Hoboken, NJ 07030
United States

Tim Jenkinson

University of Oxford - Said Business School ( email )

Park End Street
Oxford, OX1 1HP
United Kingdom
+44 1865 288916 (Phone)
+44 1865 288831 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.sbs.oxford.edu/timjenkinson

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

HOME PAGE: http://www.ecgi.org

Steven Neil Kaplan

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-4513 (Phone)
773-702-0458 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

University of Chicago - Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship

Chicago, IL 60637
United States

David T. Robinson

Fuqua School of Business, Duke University ( email )

100 Fuqua Drive
Durham, NC 27708-0120
United States
919-660-8023 (Phone)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative ( email )

215 Morris St., Suite 300
Durham, NC 27701
United States

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