Nicolas Rapp
By Anne VanderMey
August 24, 2017

New research posits that without fancy accounting, half of unicorn startups would lose their horns.

What are Silicon Valley’s darlings really worth? Two business school professors took a sample of 116 “unicorns,” companies with valuations of $1 billion or more, and calculated their fair value—using the price of preferred shares to value shares that don’t have those rights. Their conclusion: Half the “unicorns” were worth less than $1 billion, and more than a dozen were overvalued by 100%.

A version of this article appears in the Sept. 1, 2017 issue of Fortune with the headline “What’s in a Valley Valuation?”

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