Here’s how VC funding is shaping up now, in 3 charts

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As we (slowly) roll into 2023, data is showing just how much the venture capital industry has slowed down in two years. 

Absent some looming high-profile fundraises from companies like OpenAI, whose ChatGPT tool may reportedly help Microsoft’s Bing take on Google, many startups have struggled to garner the interest founders had become accustomed to the last couple years, or are having to sign off on less-favorable terms. Down rounds, while still few and far between, are still taking place, including at Instacart, which has reportedly cut its valuation to around $10 billion, according to The Information, down from the grocery delivery company’s heaping $39 billion valuation in 2021. CapitalG partner Sumi Das told me last month that he believes “almost all the later-stage companies” that were pre-IPO were thinking about docking their own valuations. 

Every quarter, we are getting a better sense of just how much the venture capital industry has pulled back from an unprecedented 2021—and a clearer picture of how deals will likely play out moving forward. New data released today from Crunchbase shows that venture funding fell to $445 billion last year—down 35% from 2021 levels. Let’s be honest: Those numbers are still really high. In 2020, investors wrote checks worth some $342 billion to startups across the globe, per Crunchbase.

But it’s worth pointing out that the slowdown really sped up in the last two quarters of 2022—meaning that while VCs have been predicting a pullback for a year or so, it really only started playing out in the last six months. Indeed, in Q4 2022, funding levels hit their lowest point since the first quarter of 2020, back when VCs were dreading a collapse due to the COVID pandemic that never really panned out as expected.

The pullback is being felt even in seed stages now. Seed-stage and angel funding dropped 35% in the fourth quarter of 2022 compared to the year-ago period, per Crunchbase. And late-stage companies, which have been experiencing the brunt of the pullback, saw funding levels drop to $40 billion in the fourth quarter, down 64% from 2021 levels.

Here’s what the data is telling us now:

A little catching up to do… Since Term Sheet has been off on holiday, a whole lot of stuff has happened, particularly in the realm of FTX. For anyone who might have missed it, SBF was extradited to the U.S. and later released on a $250 million bond. The names of two of the guarantors on the bond are being withheld, though we know that his parents used their home in Palo Alto to secure the bond.

Speaking of that home in Palo Alto, Anne Sraders and I were just there a few weeks ago. It’s a home situated right on the Stanford University campus, and near several fraternity houses at the college. Anne and I stopped by early last month, knocking on the door to see if Bankman-Fried’s parents were around (they weren’t) and talking to a couple of neighbors (they declined to comment). Little did we know we had just missed SBF by only a few weeks, as this is the home where he will be serving house arrest until his trial. The university has shut down some streets and added extra security near their home, according to local reports.

Meanwhile, Caroline Ellison and Gary Wang were added to the civil CFTC complaint against SBF, FTX, and other entities, and the SEC filed a new complaint against them. (They have pleaded guilty to the Department of Justice’s federal fraud charges.) The two are cooperating with prosecutors, which will likely make things worse for SBF.

We want to hear from you… One of my Fortune colleagues is working on a list of the best professional networking groups specifically for founders and entrepreneurs. If you’ve joined any networking groups, clubs, or online communities that you’d like to recommend, we’d love to hear from you about why you joined and what made it a worthwhile experience. Was it the connections to investors? Advice from veterans of startup life? Or just a fun place to make new friends? If you’d like to share your thoughts, please email Paolo Confino at paolo.confino@fortune.com.

And now for January’s cartoon from Ian Foley…

See you tomorrow,

Jessica Mathews
Twitter: @jessicakmathews
Email: jessica.mathews@fortune.com
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Jackson Fordyce curated the deals section of today’s newsletter.

VENTURE DEALS

User Interviews, a remote-based user insights platform, raised $27.5 million in Series B funding. Sageview Capital led the round and was joined by investors including Teamworthy, Accomplice, Las Olas VC, Trestle Partners, ValueStream, Remarkable Ventures, and FJ Labs.

SirionLabs, a Bellevue, Wash.-based contract management software platform, raised an additional $25 million in Series D funding from Brookfield Growth.

Eduvanz, a Mumbai-based education loan provider platform, raised $12.6 million in Series B extension funding. Rethink Education led the round and was joined by investors including Sequoia Capital, Juvo Ventures, and Unitus Ventures.

Snaptrude, a New York-based building design platform for architects, raised $6.6 million in funding. Accel and Foundamental VC co-led the round and were joined by investors including Possible Ventures, Invision founder Clark Valberg, RFC, CapitalX, Home co-founder Thilo Konzok, and other angels. 

Poly, a San Francisco-based A.I. company for design assets, raised $4 million in seed funding co-led by Felicis, Bloomberg Beta, and NextView Ventures.

PRIVATE EQUITY

Wendel, through its investment arm Wendel Growth, agreed to acquire a minority stake in Tadaweb, an Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg-based intelligence platform, for €15 million ($15.91 million).

CES Power, backed by Allied Industrial Partners, acquired Global Power Systems, a New Orleans-based power generation and temperature control services provider. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

Duke’s Root Control, backed by Comvest Partners, acquired Pipetek Infrastructure Services, a Plymouth, Mich.-based sewer, utility, and underground infrastructure service provider. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

– Funds advised by Equistone Partners Europe acquired a majority stake in BUKO Infrasupport and BUKO Waakt, a Barendrecht, Netherlands-based traffic and safety management solutions provider. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

Juniper Landscaping, backed by Bregal Partners, acquired Yohe’s Lawn Care & Landscape, a West Palm Beach, Fla.-based lawn care and landscaping company. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

Offen Petroleum, backed by Court Square Capital, acquired the wholesale division of Gas Depot and Gas Depot Oil Company, a Chicago-based motor fuels distributor. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

Saylite, a CORE Industrial Partners portfolio company, acquired Vantage Lighting, an East Providence, R.I.-based LED lighting products manufacturer. Financial terms were not disclosed.

– An affiliate of Stellex Capital Management acquired G2 Web Services, a Bellevue, Wash.-based merchant onboarding and monitoring services provider, Lundquist Consulting, a Burlingame, Calif.-based bankruptcy and consumer behavioral data provider, and Fintellix India Private Limited, a Bangalore-based digital and regulatory solutions, from TransUnion. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

EXITS

Partners Group acquired SureWerx, a Chicago and Vancouver-based personal protective equipment, safety gear, and tool solutions provider from The Riverside Company. Financial terms were not disclosed.

OTHER

–  PTC agreed to acquire ServiceMax, a Pleasanton, Calif.-based field service management platform, from Silver Lake for approximately $1.46 billion. 

TELUS International acquired WillowTree, a Charlottesville, Va.-based digital product provider, for $1.225 billion. 

Relationshop acquired Stor.ai, a Tel Aviv-based e-commerce platform for regional grocery chains. Financial terms were not disclosed.

TipRanks agreed to acquire The Fly, a Summit, N.J.-based digital publisher of financial news. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

IPOS 

Skyward Specialty Insurance Group, a Houston-based property and casualty insurance company, plans to raise up to $136 million through the sale of 8.5 million shares priced between $14-$16.

FUNDS + FUNDS OF FUNDS

Hamilton Lane, a Philadelphia-based private markets investment firm, raised $2.1 billion for a fund focused on providing investors with exposure to deals.

PEOPLE

Blue Wolf Capital Partners, a New York-based private equity firm, promoted Natalie Marjancik to partner and James Shovlin to principal. 

Cressey & Company, a Chicago- and Nashville-based investment firm, promoted Ryan Moseley to partner and Matt Gorski to principal. 

Gamut Capital Management, a New York-based private equity firm, promoted Sam Powell and James Shanahan to partner and Ryan Brady and Brian Gramolini to principal.

Jump Capital, a Chicago-based venture capital firm, promoted Saaya Nath and Tarun Gupta to partner.

Long Ridge Equity Partners, a New York-based private equity firm, promoted Andrew Cedar and Jason Melton to partner and Doug Nelson to principal.

Luminate Capital Partners, a San Francisco-based growth buyout fund, promoted Mark Foreman and Max Horland to vice president.

Stride Consumer Partners, a Newton, Mass.-based private equity firm, hired David Retter as an operating partner. 

SVB, the Santa Clara, Calif.-based parent of Silicon Valley Bank, hired Kim Olson as chief risk officer. Formerly, she was with Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.  

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