Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Dizzying Ride May Be Ending for Start-Ups - The New York Times

More unicorn math, with, e.g., Fidelity discounting its Snapchat investment by 25%; tangentially, see Berkshire Says Unrealized IBM Loss Hits $2 Billion, Affirms Bet (BloombergBusiness)

"The competition among investors also helped create a herd of dozens of “unicorns,” a term for private companies valued above $1 billion, coined when such a phenomenon was still considered rare.

Yet unlike venture capital firms, mutual funds are legally obligated to value each of their portfolio holdings every day, including hard-to-value assets like shares in private companies, and they must report these values at least every half year.

A spokesman for the Investment Company Institute, one of the largest mutual fund associations, said that the process was a “good faith determination” of what an owner could get in a sale of the asset.

“This assessment has been widely recognized to be more art than science,” said Mike McNamee, a spokesman for the institute."
Dizzying Ride May Be Ending for Start-Ups - The New York Times
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