So what if no startups have gone public so far this year? According to new data from the National Venture Capital Association (as reported by TechCrunch), venture-capital firms have invested $12.1 billion in promising tech firms in the first quarter of 2016.
Although that $12.1 billion represents a significant decline from the first quarter of 2015, in which VC firms paid out $13.7 billion, it’s roughly aligned with the fourth quarter of last year, when funding totaled $12 billion.
A sizable percentage of that money is flowing to startups with a clear business model and a history of growth, with “older” firms such as Lyft and Uber receiving significant funding; investment in early-stage companies declined 18 percent year-over-year.
Despite those worries, the number of startups with a billion-dollar valuation, also known as “unicorns,” is higher than ever. Despite all that paper value, though, none have launched an IPO this year, much to the chagrin of certain venture capitalists. “That should be a publicly traded company,” Fred Wilson, co-founder of Union Square Ventures, told Fortune earlier this year, referring to Uber.
For startups trying to establish themselves, the funding is still out there—provided they demonstrate a solid business plan and a route to growth (if not profitability). Funders seem more reluctant to toss money at newborn firms that haven’t yet drawn customers.