There have been 169 PE exits so far in 2010, according to the PitchBook Platform. The leading exit method has been the sale of portfolio companies to corporations with 104 exits, followed by secondary transactions (a PE firm selling a company to another PE firm) with 45 and thirdly IPOs at 20. Secondary transactions have seen the biggest rebound, having already surpassed 2009's total of 42 only halfway through the year. The IPO market has also improved significantly with 40 PE-backed companies going public in the past 9 months and raising a total of $10 billion. The rise in exit activity has been driven by the need for liquidity as many PE firms hit the end of their funds' lifecycles, a rise in valuations with the increase in the public markets and the desire by firms to return some capital to their LPs before raising their next fund.