Definition of investment termsLast Updated: June 07, 2019
Below, we list out brief definitions of some of our most commonly referenced investment rounds and terms.
Acquired: The default label for company acquisitions. These can include both private and public company acquisitions. If an unspecified buyer acquires a company, it is entered as “acquirer”.
Angel: When angel groups or individual angels invest in company.
Biz Plan Competition: The cash prize or award given to a company in a business plan competition. No equity is involved.
Bridge: A debt round or short term loan until a company secures its next round of funding.
Convertible Note: A debt investment that allows for conversion into equity. Only recorded for private companies.
Corporate Majority: Company acquires 50.01% - 95% of a private company’s equity.
Corporate Minority: Company acquires 50% or less of a private company’s equity.
Crowdfunding: Funding of a company by raising contributions or donations (no equity involved).
Dead: This company is no longer in existence.
Debt: When a company receives a loan and pays it down over time with interest.
Grant: Government entity or foundation award that provides non-repayable funds to a company.
Growth Equity: A VC, private equity, or investment firm makes an investment into mature companies looking to expand or restructure operations.
Incubator / Accelerator: Funds received from an Incubator/Accelerator program with no equity involved.
IPO: Occurs when a company goes public.
Merger: A type of exit round where companies merge into one entity.
Mezzanine: Debt financing that gives the lender rights to convert to an ownership or equity interest if loan is not paid back.
Private Equity: Investments that are not listed on a public exchange. Barietiated as “PE,” it comprised of funds and investors that invest directly in private companies.
PIPE: Funding rounds after completion of an IPO. When a private company / PE / VC invests in a Public company.
Reverse Merger: Public company acquires a private company or private company becomes Public, and Public company is absorbed into the private company.
Seed: The initial capital used to start a business. Also used when an incubator or accelerator (Inc/Acc) receives an equity stake in a startup.
Seed VC: Initial capital raised from a VC firm.
Series A: The first significant round of funding, usually following a seed or seed VC round. Seed and Series A financings are typically referred to as “early-stage” rounds.
Series B: Second significant round of funding that tends to be a larger amount of money than seed or Series A rounds.
Series C: Third round of funding. Stages B and C are sometimes called “mid-stage” rounds.
Series D - K+: Late-stage funding rounds.
Take Private: A public company gets acquired by a PE or venture capital firm and is taken Private. The acquired company stops trading.
Unattributed: An unknown funding round not involving a venture capital or private equity firm.
Unattributed VC: An unknown funding round involving a VC firm.