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PacBio Takes Top Spot, Complete Genomics Ranks Seventh Among VentureSource's Top 50 VC-Backed Firms

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By Julia Karow

This article has been corrected to clarify that Oxford Nanopore Technologies has not received any investments from classic VC firms.

Pacific Biosciences took first place and Complete Genomics came in seventh in a recent ranking of venture-backed companies by research firm VentureSource.

For its ranking of the "top 50 VC-backed companies," reported in the Wall Street Journal, the firm, like the WSJ a unit of the News Corporation, considered five factors with different weights: the track record of success for VC investors on the company's board (board ranking, 27.5 percent), the amount of capital raised by the company over the last three years compared to its peers (equity ranking, 22.5 percent), opinions of Dow Jones VC reporters and editors (editorial ranking, 20 percent), the track record of success for the company's founders and CEO (executive ranking, 17.5 percent), and recent growth in value of the company (valuation ranking, 12.5 percent).

Almost 5,200 firms were eligible for the analysis, which only considered firms that raised equity financing in the last three years and have a valuation of $1 billion or less.

The analysis used proprietary data from Dow Jones VentureSource, which tracks more than 38,000 venture-backed companies in the US, Canada, Europe, China, and India, as well as over 14,000 private investment firms worldwide.

PacBio, which has raised about $266 million in VC funding and grants since it was founded in 2004, took the top spot. It ranked 10 or below in all areas but the editorial category, which was not reported. For its board, the company ranked 38; for equity, 19; for its executives, 10; and for its valuation, 32.

Complete Genomics, which raised $91 million in VC funding, came in seventh, ranking No. 16 and below in all categories but the unreported editorial ranking. For its board, it ranked 20; for equity, 36; for its executives, 25; and for its valuation, 16.

Other privately funded sequencing technology firms did not make the cut, or were not included in the analysis. Oxford Nanopore Technologies, for example, which has raised about $74 million so far (see In Sequence 2/2/2010), has not had any investments from classic VC firms, according to a company spokeswoman. Oxford's investors include so-called crossover funds as well as long-term funds of hedge funds.

NabSys, which has raised at least $11 million in VC funding to date (see In Sequence 2/23/2010), was not among the "top 50."

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