Venture

Here’s What An Acquirer Could Get Out Of GE Ventures

General Electric—hamstrung by a rough year on the public markets, accounting problems, and enormous debt—is looking to sell GE Ventures to help salve its woes.

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The venture firm has been a prolific investor in startups, with over 160 startup investments made, according to Crunchbase data.

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Selling a corporate venture capital arm of a major corporation is, at least publicly, not a common occurrence. And for potential buyers, picking and choosing startups from the portfolio isn’t a likely option. As reported by CNBC, “GE has made clear to potential buyers that it does not want to sell off its investments on a piecemeal basis, but would prefer to offload the entire basket and ideally find a home for its remaining partners.”

It’s a hefty basket at that. Below, we show the current top twenty companies in GE Ventures’ portfolio, ranked by the total amount of capital each one has raised.

GE_Ventures_TopPortcos

The chart excludes companies which, at time of writing, have either been acquired or gone public.

Based on data recorded by Crunchbase, GE Ventures total participatory venture investment amount comes to nearly $3.5 billion. Nearly half of its announced deals are seed and early-stage investments, and for a venture fund looking to shop itself to potential acquirers, that amount of risk might make for a tough sell. Traditionally, the earlier the startup, the bigger the risk of failure.

Additionally, those with GE Ventures as a lead investor are most likely to feel the impact of a potential sale. Oftentimes, lead investors take a board seat, shaping a startup’s corporate strategy, future ability to raise, and even exit opportunities.

GE Ventures was formed in 2013 as an effort to consolidate General Electric’s various startup investments, which span sectors ranging from healthcare to renewable energy, mirroring GE’s own conglomerate structure. According to Wall Street Journal reporting from the time, GE planned to invest $150 million per year through GE Ventures, though we don’t know how much the firm actually invested at this time.

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