snIP/ITs Insights on Canadian Technology and Intellectual Property Law

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Funding your Start-Up: One Clause That Could Cost You Your Start-Up

Posted in Startups

Venture Capital firms (or VC’s) often invest in early-stage start-ups with uncertain valuations. The terms of a VC’s investment will often be heavily weighted in favour of the VC and may include downside protection. This means that the VC’s investment will be protected in the event that the valuation of your start-up decreases in subsequent financings. One common method used by VC’s for downside protection is known as a “ratchet” clause. A “ratchet” clause is an anti-dilution clause that works to protect, and in some circumstances can even increase, the VC’s proportionate ownership of your start-up, if the value of … Continue Reading