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June 2017 | Issue 86 Background Constellis Group,  Inc. is a private security firm.  In December 2013, the Company formed an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (“ESOP”), which purchased 100% of Constellis’s voting stock.  Wilmington Trust NA was named Trustee of the ESOP.  Less than a year after the ESOP was created, the ESOP sold all […] More...


March 2017 | Issue 85 Introduction Richard and Steven Parker are brothers who ran a flower business in Scotch Plains, New Jersey.  Richard is the President of Parker Interior Plantscapes (“PIP”), which installs and services plants and flowers in commercial settings.  Steven is the President of Parker Wholesale Florists (“PWF”), which is a garden center.  […] More...

Dell Appraisal Spawns a Multitude of Valuation Approaches

February 2017 | Issue 84 Introduction A Delaware Chancery appraisal case involving computer company Dell Inc. gave rise to a multitude of valuation measurements.  It is instructive to see how the court sorted through them in coming up with its final appraisal conclusion.  The case is In re Appraisal of Dell Inc., 2016 Del. Ch. LEXIS […] More...

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Life Science Venture Financing – Down Rounds Are Up

April 2009 | Issue 38

A survey of 2008 San Francisco Bay Area life science venture capital financings reveals that 22% of such financings were down rounds, as compared to 12 % in 2007. A down round is defined as a transaction in which the price is lower than that of the previous round of financing. The survey covered 81 biopharm and medical device company financings, and was carried out by Fenwick & West LLP, a global law firm specializing in services to high technology and life science clients.

Overall, of the 81 transactions from 2008 that were covered, 59% were up rounds, 22% were down rounds, and 19% were flat. The corresponding results from 2007 were 79% up, 12% down, and 9% flat.

The down round trend seemed to accelerate as 2008 wore on, with down rounds exceeding up rounds 39% to 30% in the fourth quarter of 2008.

The magnitude of price changes in 2008 life science financings also underwent a downward shift as compared to 2007. The average overall price increase in 2008 up rounds was 54%, as compared to 63% for 2007. The down rounds were also deeper, averaging 48% below the previous financing in 2008, as compared to 37% in 2007. Overall, the average 2008 price increase was 27%. This compares to 45% in 2007.

A copy of this report is available here.