Contentious Debate Looms Over Small Business Venture Capital

In the parlance of venture capitalists, it’s known as the "valley of death," a place that small technology companies fear. No matter how good their science, the valley awaits if they can’t bridge the financial gap between the lab and their first commercial product.

In many cases, however, nascent tech firms can bridge the valley by tapping the government’s small business programs, which provide everything from loan guarantees and grants to fee waivers for government services. But therein lies the rub. Can a small business still be considered small if it’s substantially owned by a venture capital firm with hundreds, if not thousands, of employees?

By Keith Girard

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