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Venture-Backed Biotech Generates Quicker Exits but Lower Multiples than Medical Device
Date:5/19/2011

SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), financial partner to innovative technology and life science companies worldwide, released a study today that examines the merger and acquisition behavior of private, venture capital-backed biotech and medical device companies.

Based on an analysis of private merger or acquisition transactions of US venture-capital backed companies (60 biotech and 58 medical device) since 2005, SVB found several conclusions about investments in life science companies that counter conventional wisdom. SVB's study included private life science M&A activity in excess of $50 million for device companies and $100 million for biotech companies.

"We feel like we are myth busters," said Jonathan Norris, Managing Director with SVB Capital's Venture Capital Relationship Management team. "Our research shows that many of the basic assumptions upon which life science investors base their decisions do not hold true in the current market. We wanted to look at the big deals – the winners – and learn from their common characteristics. We were definitely surprised by the results and think this report will have an impact on some firms' life science investment philosophies."

Having reviewed M&A exits over a six year period, SVB's report shows biotech companies overall have quicker exits and lower multiples versus medical device companies, which tend to have longer exits and higher multiples.  The research also revealed that biotech companies that received Series A venture capital investments at the pre-clinical stage made up the majority of the biotech exits over the past six years. Additionally, the study shows a shift among biotech exits to predominantly structured deals that pay a portion up front with the remaining payment comin
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SOURCE SVB Financial Group
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