It can be hard to tell how venture capital companies are doing. Sometimes it’s easier after a major exit, like Figma’s last week, which gave us a glimpse into the significant returns some of its early backers, including Index Ventures and Greylock, were able to cash in. But VC firms tend to be an opaque group when it comes to performance.
So when the market started to sour in the first quarter, it was clear we wouldn’t know how things were actually until the data started trickling in from their limited partners, or LPs, who, if they’re public, generally have to make a lot of that information public as well. Pension fund meeting papers are starting to give us a first look at recent venture capital results.
The folks at Sacramento County Employees’ Retirement System (SCERS) released their first quarter performance data this week. We decided to unpack the numbers and use their stakes as a potential sign of how other funds from the same vintage — referring to the year they started putting capital in — could fare.
The most important thing to stress, as your company’s fund matures, is that last year’s high valuations and exit prices do not appear to have met the kiss of death many expected as falling technology stocks began to impact the company in the first quarter. Not yet, at least.