5678.0 - Venture Capital and Later Stage Private Equity, Australia, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 14/02/2013   
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For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.


The Venture Capital and Later Stage Private Equity (VC & LSPE) Survey provides key statistics on both the financial and non-financial contribution to venture capital and later stage private equity investments in Australia for the 2011-12 financial year. This release includes detailed statistics on VC & LSPE investment vehicles, such as source of funds, assets and liabilities and VC&LSPE investee company information.

The measure of investment is an indication of the level of innovation in the economy which drive improvements in productivity and living standards. The survey also informs public debate on Australian venture capital and later stage private equity activity and provides data with which to assess relevant government policy and programs.

The Department of Industry, Innovation, Science and Research Tertiary Education (DIISRTE) fully fund the survey and are the main users of the data. They provide government service and assistance to VC & LSPE vehicles through either co-investment in early stages or providing tax exemptions. DIISRTE fundamentally use the data to measure the impact of policies initiating small company start-ups. State governments also use the data to determine areas requiring small business funding assistance.

The frame is constructed from lists of VC & LSPE fund managers in government programs managed by DIISRTE (including Pooled Development Fund, Innovation Investment Fund, Venture Capital Limited Partnerships, Information and Communications Technology Incubator Program), membership of Australian Venture Capital Association Limited (AVCAL), the Australian Venture Capital Guide, business directories and venture capital journals.


Data are collected on an annual basis, with the reference period being the financial year (i.e. year ended 30 June). Statistics compiled from the data collected are released approximately 7 months after the reference period.


As the VC & LSPE survey does not have a sample component, the data are not subject to sampling variability. However, other inaccuracies, collectively referred to as non-sampling errors, may affect the data. These non-sampling errors may arise from a number of sources, including:

  • errors in the reporting of data by respondents;
  • errors in capturing or processing data;
  • estimation for missing or misreported data;
  • definition and classification errors; and
  • inadequacies in the collection instrument.

Every effort has been made to reduce non-sampling error to a minimum by careful design of questionnaires, appropriate methodology and contact with providers to resolve anomalies. Response rates are generally very high which in turn increases the accuracy and level of the data which can be released for users. Thorough editing of the data received is undertaken to ensure that the integrity of the collection is upheld.

Occasionally reporting and classification errors are identified from previous cycles and where possible these are revised if they have a significant impact on the data.


There are no other data sources which can be directly compared to the VC & LSPE survey data. However, some observations can be made which suggests the survey outputs give a reasonable indication of real world expectations and events. For example, trends in VC & LSPE survey data aligning with trends in the AVCAL collection.

While the ABS seeks to maximise consistency and comparability over time by minimising changes to the survey, sound survey practise requires ongoing development to maintain the integrity of the data, its relevance to the changing needs of users and the efficiency of the collection. For example, a review of the Venture Capital Survey in 2006 examined the scope of the survey, clarified the definition of venture capital and reviewed user requirements. The review found that definitions of venture capital varied across users and data providers and, in particular, the distinction between venture capital and later stage private equity was unclear. The review confirmed that previously published results from the Venture Capital Survey included later stage private equity and this was made explicit by renaming both the survey and this publication. Despite the name change, the results from the 2005-06 survey are directly comparable to results from the previous surveys. The review also resulted in the collection of additional information.


There are no international standards that relate to growth capital statistics. However in several countries, national industry associations conduct surveys of their members using a common core set of questions maintained by Thomson Economics. The VC & LSPE Survey adopts a number of definitions from the Thomson Economics survey (e.g. stage of investment), modified for Australian industry and user needs.

Data providers self classify industry information using ANZSIC93 and Standard and Poors' Global Industry Classification for types of activity. The ABS makes every effort to ensure correct and consistent interpretation and reporting of these data and applies consistent processing methodologies.


The publication and datacubes which store all available data from the VC & LSPE survey can be found on the ABS website.

For links to data and publications relating to the VC & LSPE survey and information and technology statistics please see the Innovation, Science and Technology @ a Glance pages in the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>.

For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070.