We Need to Update the Definition of a VC, Here’s Why

by & filed under Capital Formation & Regulation, NVCA Blog.

Justin Field

Last week, NVCA sent a letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) offering recommendations for how the agency could modernize the definition of “venture capital fund” to more accurately reflect the industry as it looks today. Why is this important? Because this definition governs which private funds can be Exempt Reporting Advisors (ERAs) and which must register with the SEC as Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs). (more…)

CFIUS Head Sat Down with NVCA Members. Here’s What We Learned

by & filed under NVCA Blog, Public Policy.

Jeff Farrah

VCs and entrepreneurs continue to be impacted by new foreign investment scrutiny. In August, the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA) delivered enhanced powers to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), a U.S. government entity that has been called the “ultimate regulatory bazooka” for its ability to reject foreign investment for national security reasons. Recently, NVCA members and startups heard from CFIUS leaders at our Emerging Technology Meets National Security conference. That included the Treasury Department’s Heath Tarbert, who leads FIRRMA implementation and has a major role in how the new powers will impact the venture industry going forward. (more…)

Let Banks Invest in Venture Capital Funds Once Again

by & filed under Capital Formation & Regulation, NVCA Blog.

Charlotte Savercool

NVCA is working to allow banks to invest in venture capital funds again. As part of this effort, we recently filed a comment letter proposing two solutions for how the various federal agencies can accomplish this priority while still adhering to the broader goals of the Volcker Rule. Through this post, our aim is to share some background on the current regulation and provide an overview of what our proposal seeks to accomplish and why. 

Before the Volcker Rule became the law of the land, banks served as an important source of capital for venture capital funds, particularly for smaller funds in emerging startup ecosystems. (more…)

Foreign investment scrutiny: 5 questions every venture investor should know the answer to

by & filed under NVCA Blog, Public Policy.

Jeff Farrah

Venture investors and startups are waking up to a new reality as the U.S. government is newly empowered to scrutinize foreign investment, including into venture funds and by foreign strategic investors.  We’ve written previously about the big impact the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA) will have on venture capital.  The Treasury Department recently made a bold gambit when it issued Pilot Program rules under FIRRMA (fact sheet here).  All aspects of the startup ecosystem are wise to understand these rules and buckle up going forward. (more…)

Foreign Investment Bill and its Impact on the VC and Startup Ecosystem

by & filed under Capital Formation & Regulation, NVCA Blog.

Jeff Farrah

If you’re a VC with a foreign LP or have foreign co-investors, then you should know the law is about to change. 

Later this week, Congress is expected to pass legislation that will impact foreign investment into the venture and startup ecosystem in new ways. President Trump is expected to sign the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA), as he chose to back the bill rather than move forward with China-specific restrictions. NVCA is pleased to see key changes in the final bill, but it still stands to affect VC funds with foreign limited partners and/or co-investors. We will continue to engage on your behalf and encourage you to be in touch with questions or comments. (more…)

VC Industry Makes an Impact on Washington at VCs-to-DC

by & filed under Events, NVCA Blog, Public Policy.

Devin Miller

At a time when the startup ecosystem is intersecting more and more with policies coming out of Washington, it seems like an ideal time to bring venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and policymakers together to discuss the future of policy impacting America’s innovation industry.

Last week, NVCA did just that at VCs-to-DC. Our event brought together the entrepreneurial ecosystem and policy decision makers in Washington, D.C. to take part in conversations on policy issues to strengthen the U.S. startup ecosystem. (more…)

Emerging Growth Companies Want to Go Public, The Question is When?

by & filed under Capital Formation & Regulation, NVCA Blog.

Heather Gates

Note from NVCA: We always encourage our members and industry partners to share their perspectives on industry issues. Heather Gates of Deloitte shares her views on the current IPO environment for venture-backed companies. NVCA remains engaged on capital market reforms to support small cap companies. We recently released a report with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on policy reforms to encourage more public companies.


Recently, I had the pleasure of participating in the Stanford/NVCA Venture Capital Symposium along with Scott Kupor, Greg Rodgers, Jeff Thomas, Nizar Tahurni and Justin Field. Our panel, The Death of the IPO, focused on the trends in the volume of IPOs and the challenges and opportunities facing aspiring publicly traded companies.

Interestingly, within just the past week or so, we’ve seen a recent uptick in enterprise tech IPOs and companies in the media and fintech space going public or announcing plans. (more…)

A Proposal to Encourage More Public Companies – NVCA’s Perspective

by & filed under Capital Formation & Regulation, NVCA Blog, Public Policy.

Justin Field

I hope that you were able to read the press release NVCA sent out yesterday announcing the release of a proposal to encourage more U.S. public companies.  This effort builds off the success of the JOBS Act and is intended to make it more attractive to become and remain a public company.  We were pleased to partner with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, Nasdaq, Equity Dealers of America and several other organizations to put this package together, and we look forward to working with this coalition to get these ideas passed.

Capital markets reform and reviving the Initial Public Offering (IPO) is one of our top priorities at NVCA.  We believe the blueprint we just released can reverse the trend of the dwindling number of public companies in the U.S.  We also hope this report can spark a further conversation on these issues among our membership as we continue this important work.  (more…)

NVCA Highlights from 2017 and What’s Ahead in 2018

by & filed under Ecosystems, NVCA Blog, Public Policy.

Bobby Franklin

With 2017 in the rearview, we can now take a deep breath and try to make sense of what was a very turbulent year. President Trump’s first year in office turned out to be even more unconventional than his campaign for president. Protests the day after his inauguration, making news with the stroke of a tweet, and major legislative failures followed by major legislative victories, President Trump’s (almost) first year in office has been filled with fireworks on a weekly—and often daily—basis. As someone who has lived and worked in Washington for nearly three decades, this has been both exciting and exhausting to witness. (more…)

NVCA Gets Its Day in Court on Immigration Case

by & filed under Immigration, NVCA Blog.

Jeff Farrah

NVCA has worked hard in 2017 to make the United States a friendlier place to immigrant entrepreneurs.  The venture industry knows first-hand the many incredible contributions of foreign-born entrepreneurs, like how more than half of U.S. “unicorns” were started by immigrants, or that one-third of U.S. venture-backed companies that went public between 2006 and 2012 had at least one immigrant founder.

Our immigration advocacy takes on multiple forms.  We continue to be the leading advocate on Capitol Hill for creation of a Startup Visa and have welcomed efforts by Senator Flake (R-AZ), as well as Senators Moran (R-KS) and Warner (D-VA), to do just that.  Separately, we also lead the fight for the International Entrepreneur Rule, which would allow foreign-born founders to remain in the U.S. for up to five years to grow a startup.  In July, the Trump Administration announced it would delay and move to end the rule.  This unfortunate development followed months of intense advocacy by NVCA and our allies to maintain the rule so that foreign-born founders could start and scale their enterprises here in the U.S. (more…)