Q: What is venture capital?

A: Venture capital (VC) is a form of private equity and a type of financing that investors provide startup companies that are believed to have long-term growth potential.

Q: What is the difference between venture capital and private equity?

A: Private equity firms mostly buy mature firms across any industry that are already established. Private equity firms seek to obtain total control of the companies in which they purchase so they can make improvements, increase revenues, streamline operations, and/or improve profitability. Venture capital investing generally involves investing in startups or younger companies, primarily in technology, biotechnology or “new economy” type industries.  Venture capital investors do not generally seek a majority stake or obtain control of the companies in which they invest.

Q: What is a Unicorn?

A: A unicorn company, or unicorn startup, is a private company with a valuation over $1 billion. This term was first coined by Aielee Lee in 2013, after the mythical animal to represent the statistical rarity of such successful ventures.