Rod Werner
Senior Vice President
Managing Director
City National Technology Group
(650) 812-8311

The second quarter saw another deluge of venture capital money flow to Silicon Valley companies, led by later-stage financings for some familiar names.

A $1.5 billion growth-equity funding deal for Airbnb, the global online lodging-rentals service, pushed total VC financing to $9.32 billion for companies in San Francisco and the Bay Area, according to data firm CB Insights. The second-quarter sum was the largest of the current venture-investing wave and kept the region by far the nation's No. 1 destination for VC money.

The dollar total was up nearly 25 percent from a year earlier; however, the number of deals declined 11 percent to 338.

The drop in deals in the region meant VC firms and other investors were writing bigger average checks than a year ago. That in part reflects their willingness to pour more capital into some of the area's largest private firms.

All 10 of the region's largest VC infusions in the quarter went to San Francisco-based businesses, further cementing the city's status as an entrepreneurial mecca.

Besides Airbnb's huge funding, ContextLogic received $500 million in Series C funding. The company operates the personalized-shopping website

Another $500 million, also in Series C financing, went to Zenefits, a 2-year-old firm that handles payroll, benefits and other human-resources services for small businesses.

Other top-10 deals included $186 million in Series G funding for personalized-media website Pinterest and $150 million in Series E money for ride-sharing service Lyft.

The ongoing VC investments in Airbnb, Pinterest, Lyft and others show those firms remain in no hurry to go public. "Overall, private valuations of companies are more favorable than public market valuations," said Rod Werner, head of City National’s Technology Group in Palo Alto. That is deterring the initial public offering decision for many tech companies.

Indeed, the number of VC-backed companies nationwide that went public in the first half of 2015 fell sharply to 44 from 66 in the first half of 2014, according to Thomson Reuters and the National Venture Capital Association.

What's more, VC investors are being flooded with fresh capital from clients worldwide. VC firms raised $10.3 billion in new money in the second quarter, the most since 2007, Thomson and the NVCA say. That is fueling more talk of a bubble.

Still, "Investors everywhere are looking for growth stories, and that is naturally drawing them to U.S. entrepreneurs," Werner said.


  2 Q 2015 1 Q 2015 4 Q 2014 3 Q 2014 2 Q 2014 2014 Total
Number of Financing Deals 338 284  338  366  380 1400
Amount Invested ($MM) $9318.5 $5051.4 $5803.6 $4859.2 $7483.4 $23095.5


Airbnb Community marketplace for people to list, discover and book housing accommodations San Francisco Growth Equity $1500 Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Tiger Global Management, T. Rowe Price, General Atlantic, GGV Capital, Temasek Holdings, Wellington Management, Fidelity Investments, Hillhouse Capital Management, Horizon Ventures, China Broadband Capital, Baillie Gifford & Co.
ContextLogic ContextLogic operates Wish, a social platform to discover, collect and share products with friends San Francisco Series C $500 Founders Fund, GGV Capital, Digital Sky Technologies
Zenefits Cloud HR automation platform San Francisco Series C $500 Insight Venture Partners, Founders Fund, Khosla Ventures, TPG Growth, Fidelity Investments, Comcast Ventures, Sound Ventures
Affirm Develops financial products that include a more affordable way to buy online with credit

San Francisco

Series B $275 Lightspeed Venture Partners, Spark Capital, Khosla Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, Jefferies & Company
DocuSign Digital transaction management platform San Francisco Series F $233 Bain Capital Ventures, Generation Investment Management, Wasatch Advisors, Brookside Capital, Wellington Management, ClearBridge Investments, Sands Capital, Iconiq Capital
Denali Therapeutics Biotech company focused on the development of neurodegenerative disease therapies San Francisco Series A $217 ARCH Venture Partners, Flagship Ventures, Fidelity Biosciences, Alaska Permanent Fund
Pinterest Online pinboard to discover ideas for projects and interests San Francisco Series G - II $186 Bessemer Venture Partners, FirstMark Capital, Goldman Sachs, SV Angel, Andreessen Horowitz, Wellington Management, Fidelity Investments, Valiant Capital Partners
Prosper Marketplace Peer-to-peer lending marketplace San Francisco Growth Equity - II $165 JPMorgan Chase & Co., Passport Capital, USAA, SunTrust Banks, Breyer Capital, BBVA Ventures, Neuberger Berman, Credit Suisse NEXT Investors
Slack Technologies Web and mobile team communication platform San Francisco Series E $160 Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Spark Capital, Google Ventures, Horizons Ventures, Accel Partners, Index Ventures, Digital Sky Technologies, Andreessen Horowitz, Institutional Venture Partners, The Social+Capital Partnership
Lyft Ridesharing marketplace San Francisco Series E - II $150 Icahn Enterprises, Fontinalis Partners


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