And Now, the Biggest Exits of the “Top 20″ Venture Firms of 2012

Last night, PrivCo, a New York-based firm that tracks privately held companies, released a list of what it has determined were the top 20 venture capital firms of 2012, based on the firms’ successful M&A exits.

The list is attracting as much attention for who isn’t on it (including Kleiner Perkins and Andreessen Horowitz) as who is (including 12-year-old Ignition, which is right now trying to raise a much smaller fund, with far fewer partners).

But we were as interested in the numbers behind the deals, and PrivCo has just obliged us with a list of the firms’  largest exits of last year — not all of whose prices have been disclosed previously — along with the companies’ acquisition dates.

By the way, PrivCo’s VC firm rankings are part of its annual private company M&A report, which is itself worth a look.

Update: In an earlier version of this story, we didn’t make clear enough that PrivCo’s “top 20″ list centers on M&A exits and excludes IPOs. Apologies for any confusion.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.


  • The list doesn’t make a lot of sense to me without more explanation of the methodology. For instance, Andreessen Horowitz, Lightspeed and NEA also backed Nicira, but aren’t on the list. Not sure of their exact stakes, but Lightspeed had a stake larger than 10% I’m told, and Andreessen’s was likely larger as they were backers in rounds 1,2 and 3.

    Also, Benchmark isn’t listed as a Nicira investor in the Thomson Reuters database. Instead, I see references online to Andy Rachleff, co-founder of Benchmark Capital being an individual investor.

  • Funny – you seem to have left Kleiner off your list. Oooh, that’s right. Kleiner has failed to find a significant outcome for ANY of its failed greentech investments. Has anyone told John Doerr?

    Maybe when Fisker starts building cars again, they can find some poor sap ah, er, buyer for that mess.

  • joanna, i’ve heard from numerous vcs who are unhappy about this list.

    what i know of the methodology: this list is tied to an earlier list that privco produced on the vc firms that (according to privco research) enjoyed the MOST, but not necessarily the biggest, exits in 2012.

    unfortunately, privco titled that list “the top 20 most successful venture capital firms of 2012.” obviously, “most successful” suggests that the firms saw bigger returns than their peers, when that’s not what the list captures.

  • The list of VCs who aren’t pleased with the Q1 ’13 fundraising numbers ought to be longer than 20, I bet…

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