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Inside SquareOne

Do you speak VC? 30+ jargons and acronyms you should know

Every time I jumped into a new industry (4 years ago it was Investment Banking, 3 years ago Tech VC) for the first couple of months I had to catch up with the new jargon and funny abbreviations. This is why I am creating a list of acronyms and tech VC slang that I hope is useful for you.

I will constantly update the list and in case I missed something leave a note or a comment, or ping me at:

I hope this serves as a small service for founders or VC Interns/ Analysts without a financial background. Should you need to dig deeper in some topics I can suggest the following sources:

VC/ Legals

TS = Term Sheet, a sheet summarizing the commercials of an investment agreement contract

SHA = Shareholders Agreement, the contract defining the relationship amongst the company and the shareholders and amongst the shareholders

CT = Cap Table or Capitalization Table, a document (usually a spreadsheet) that states who owns what % of shares in the company

ROFR = Right of First Refusal, in case existing shares of the company are sold, shareholders with a ROFR will have the option to buy those shares, ratably, before they are offered to new investors

Liq Pref = Liquidation Preference, a right attached to a specific class of shares that regulates the order of priority in case of a liquiditiy event (simply put: who gets the $ first in case there is not enough to make everybody happy)

Pre = Pre Money or Pre Money Valuation, one key term of the term sheet, it is the valuation of the company that determines the price per share for a capital increase

Post =Post Money or Post Money Valuation, Post = Pre + capital injection

LPs = Limited Partners, these are the investors of the VC funds

GPs = General Partners, there are commonly known as Partners and are the manager of the VC fund, deciding the allocation of the investments

General Financials

KPIs = Key Performance Indicators, a set of numbers/ ratios displaying the performance of a company

GMV = Gross Merchandise Value, total monetary value of transactions taking place on a marketplace

MRR = Monthly Recurring Revenues, the kind of revenues that SaaS and subscription based companies are earning

ARR = Annual Recurring Revenues, MRRx12

EBITDA = Earnings Before Interests Taxes Depreciation Amortization

EBIT = Earnings Before Interests Taxes

COGS = Cost Of Goods Sold

LTM = Last Twelve Months

YTD = Year To Date

MoM = Month on Month

YoY = Year on Year

H1/H2 =1st Half of the year/ 2nd Half of the year

Q1/Q2…= 1st Quarter of the year/ 2nd Quarter of the year…

FY = Fiscal Year

CAGR = Compound Annual Growth Rate

CAPEX = Capital Expenditure, expenditures required by a company to improve operations, it can be for example the purchase of machinery and properties

IPO = Initial Public Offering, when a company offers its shares to the public markets and gets listed

VC Financials

ROI = Return On Investment, Return/ Investment -1

Money Multiple = Shares Value now/ Total Investment

Valuation Multiple = Company Valuation now / Company Valuation at the time of initial investment

IRR = Internal Rate of Return

EV = Enterprise Value, the equity value + debt value (net of cash)

NAV = Net Asset Value, the total valuation of the assets in a fund

AUM = Assets Under Management, basically how many $ a VC fund is managing

MF = Management Fees, a fixed % of the AUM through which VCs finance the fixed costs of running a VC fund

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Founded as Paua Ventures in 2010, the Berlin-based investor is one of Europe’s leading early-stage venture firms investing in B2B SaaS, Enterprise Software, and Deep Tech startups.

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Federico Wengi

Early stage tech VC at @pauaventures. Tech and Food enthusiast. Europe's Citizen. FC Internazionale fan.