While early stage deals tend to be more prevalent than late stage investments, there are certain industries in which late stage investments are more common. Classifying seed/angel, Series A and Series B deals as “early stage” and Series C and later deals as “late stage,” analysis shows that from 2009 to 2012 the industry with the highest relative proportion of late stage deals was semiconductors & electronics. In this industry late stage investments accounted for 45% of the total number of deals in the period. Healthcare and clean technology both saw a relatively high proportion of late stage deals, with these investments accounting for a third of the total number of deals in each industry.
At the other end of the scale, just 13% of investments in consumer discretionary companies were classified as late stage. Similarly, 15% of investments in firms operating in the internet sector were late stage deals, while 17% of investments in business services fell into this category.
Although it is uncommon for companies to receive Series G or H funding, there have been examples of such late stage deals in 2009 to 2012. In September 2010, Onconova Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company based in Newtown, PA, received $15mn in Series H financing from a consortium of investors. Zipcar, a Cambridge, MA-based car sharing company, raised $21mn in Series G financing from Meritech Capital Partners and Pinnacle Ventures in December 2010. A group of investors including Silver Lake and Valor Equity Partners invested $81mn in SolarCity in February of this year in a Series G financing.