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The dot com boom also brought the industry into sharp focus as venture capitalists chased quick returns from highly-valued Internet companies.According to some estimates, funding levels during that period peaked at 9.6 billion.Then, in 1979, a change in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) allowed pension funds to invest up to 10% of their total funds in the industry.
Though it can be risky for investors who put up funds, the potential for above-average returns is an attractive payoff.
For new companies or ventures that have a limited operating history (under two years), venture capital funding is increasingly becoming a popular – even essential – source for raising capital, especially if they lack access to capital markets, bank loans or other debt instruments.
The main downside is that the investors usually get equity in the company, and, thus, a say in company decisions.
The National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) is an organization composed of hundreds of venture capital firms that offer to fund innovative enterprises.
Angel investors are typically a diverse group of individuals who have amassed their wealth through a variety of sources.