It was the end of 2015, and the U.S. stock market was in a rough place. A big selloff in China dragged down stocks globally. Falling oil prices and concerns about the solvency of Greece added to investors’ fears.
The pain was felt all the way over in Silicon Valley, where startups who needed to fundraise quickly found investors weren’t willing to pay as much. Median valuations for VC-backed companies raising their second major financings and beyond dropped for the first time in years, according to PitchBook.