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Venture Briefing: August 22, 2018 Venture Briefing: August 22, 2018

Venture Briefing: August 22, 2018

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Once Rare, $100 Million Start-Ups Becoming More Common
Start-ups raising $100 million or more from investors -- known as a mega-round in Silicon Valley -- used to be a rarity. But now, they are practically routine, producing a frenzy around tech companies with enough scale and momentum to absorb a large check.
(Source: The New York Times, 2018-08-14) Read the full article
2018 VC-Backed Unicorn IPOs Hitting Record Numbers Globally
With the IPO window wide open, an apparent record number of venture-backed companies privately valued over $1 billion have launched public offerings this year. Crunchbase data shows 23 unicorn IPOs globally so far in 2018, well outpacing full-year totals for 2016 and 2017.
(Source: Tech Crunch, 2018-08-19) Read the full article
Small Businesses Taking Advantage of Strong M&A Market
As small businesses embrace a strengthening economy, there is another reason for entrepreneurs to be optimistic: Some advisors say it's the best M&A market they have ever seen, certainly in recent years, and even small business owners who aren't yet ready to retire are looking to take advantage. For small business sales, advisors say seller sentiment hasn't been this high in the five-year history of the quarterly report.
(Source:, 2018-08-13) Read the full article
Amid Slow Summer, Banks Rein in M&A Lending to High-Quality Firms
Bank lending to high-quality U.S. companies to fund acquisitions has slowed due to concern over government policies amid the summer doldrums but is expected to pick up after the Labor Day holiday, bankers said. No bridge loans were recorded by Thomson Reuters in July, for the first time in any month since March 2017, as a more cautious tone set in over the summer after several acquisitions fell apart and U.S. trade wars escalated.
(Source: Reuters, 2018-08-17) Read the full article
IRS Proposes Regulations Regarding Small Business Tax Deduction
Small business owners have gotten more information about a new tax break many will get, with the IRS issuing proposed regulations that explain the deduction for qualified business income and which company owners can claim it. Some of the new details include how to handle a spouse's income, whether side businesses qualify, and the rules for losses in one or more businesses.
(Source: ABC News, 2018-08-13) Read the full article
In Light of #MeToo, Merger Deals Including Sex Harassment Clauses
Advisers are adding guarantees to certain merger agreements in light of the sexual misconduct scandals that have enveloped the producer Harvey Weinstein and other high-profile businessmen -- ones that legally vouch for the behavior of a company's leadership. The move is particularly noteworthy given its source: the male-dominated world of M&A advisory where the terms of an offer can make or break a bid.
(Source: Insurance Journal, 2018-08-09) Read the full article
Trump Tells SEC to Study Reducing Corporate Earnings Reporting
President Trump, in a message posted on Twitter, wrote that he had directed the Securities and Exchange Commission to study moving corporate America from reporting earnings on a quarterly basis to doing so twice a year. Mr. Trump's proposal is likely to renew a debate about whether American companies are overly focused on short-term results at the expense of long-term goals.
(Source: The New York Times, 2018-08-17) Read the full article
CEO Pay Up 17.6% Over Year, While Worker Pay Rose Just 0.3%
The compensation for CEOs at the U.S.'s biggest public companies continued to surge in 2017, according to a new report, but the workers in those same industries are seeing meager gains. A study by the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal think tank focused on labor issues, found that total compensation for CEOs at the 350 largest publicly traded companies in the U.S. rose to $18.9 million in 2017, up 17.6 percent from the year before. But compensation for the average worker in the U.S. rose just 0.3 percent.
(Source: Business Insider, 2018-08-16) Read the full article
California Could Become First State to Require Women on Boards
The state of California is paving the way for more women to serve in positions of power in companies. State Sen. Hannah Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) is pushing Senate Bill 826 which would make California the first state to require companies to hire women on their corporate boards of directors or face a fine.
(Source: CBS Sacramento, 2018-08-09) Read the full article
Healthcare Mergers and Acquisitions Driven by Cost Concerns
Cost concerns are driving many mergers and acquisitions, but hospital and health system leaders are finding that there are hidden challenges when bringing their operations together. Left unchecked, those issues can degrade quality of care and threaten the cost savings that motivated the mergers in the first place.
(Source: HealthLeaders Media, 2018-08-16) Read the full article
Large Firms Much More Willing to Work with Early-Stage Startups
Large companies increasingly are willing to work with early-stage startups and set up corporate venture capital arms as they pursue digital transformation, venture capitalists said at an event hosted by enterprise software vendor SAP SE's startup accelerator program. The new willingness to work with startups occurred during the past decade, in part because companies realize they can't tackle digital transformation alone, said Hilary Gosher, managing director of Insight Venture Partners, a growth equity firm that invests in software and internet companies.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal, 2018-08-14) Read the full article
Ohio Takes the Lead in Blockchain with Signing of Cybersecurity Bill

The state of Ohio took a big step to position itself as a leader in cybersecurity and a haven for blockchain technology. On August 3, Ohio Governor John Kasich signed the Data Protection Act (Senate Bill 220) into law. Read full article online.


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Ice Miller has been one of the most active law firms in the private equity industry over the last decade, representing both entrepreneurs building great companies and the private equity firms and individuals that invest in them.  We have extensive experience with all types of funds (formations and operations); mezzanine and senior secured financing; leveraged buyouts, roll-ups, build-ups, and consolidations; divestitures and exits; and complex litigation on behalf of investors and privately financed companies.  In addition, over the past 10 years, Ice Miller has represented hundreds of emerging growth businesses in various industries on such matters as entity formation, capitalization, capital raising, alternative financing, intellectual property rights and protection, growth and exit strategies, corporate governance, tax matters, and many other legal issues that are critical to the growth and success of an emerging company.

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