The Exit Rates of Liquidated Venture Capital Funds

37 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2003

Date Written: May 28, 2003


Exit rates provide a simple yet practical measure for evaluating and benchmarking the performance of venture capital funds. We create a sample of 138 liquidated U.S. venture capital funds and investigate the outcomes of their 4,549 portfolio companies. We study exit rates, proportions of different exit routes, and their determinants. The median fund in our sample exited 19% of portfolio companies through an IPO, 7% through a sale of listed equity, and 23% through mergers or acquisitions. There exist, however, interesting differences between funds even after controlling for industry and stage focus. In particular, large funds and fund management firms have significantly higher exit rates.

Keywords: Venture Capital, Exits, IPO, M&A

JEL Classification: G24, G32

Suggested Citation

Torstila, Sami and Laine, Markus, The Exit Rates of Liquidated Venture Capital Funds (May 28, 2003). Available at SSRN: or

Sami Torstila (Contact Author)

Aalto University ( email )

P.O. Box 21210
Helsinki, 00101
+358 40 353 8069 (Phone)

Markus Laine

Eqvitec Partners ( email )

Fin-00101 Helsinki

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