PE Week Wire — Friday 11/7


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Austin Ventures (AV) will close its remaining Dallas office, according to various press reports. The firm has asked four investment professionals – including general partner Ed Olkkola – to relocate to Austin, while several lower-level staffers will be laid off. Back in the venture salad days, AV featured two Dallas offices, but closed one last year at around the same time it reduced the size of its investment fund.

Bear Stearns Merchant Banking has paid $210 million in cash to acquire CamelBak Products Inc. from The bowes family of San Francisco. CamelBak designs and manufactures portable, hands-free hydration system backpacks.

White Label LLC, a Billerica, Mass.-based provider of enterprise technology solutions platforms, has received $10 million in new funding from Mumbai, India-based Datamatics Ltd. As part of the transaction, Rahul Kanodia and Pradeep Sen of Datamatics have joined the White Label board of directors.

Reddy Ice Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of Reddy Ice Group Inc., has completed its acquisition of Lumberton, N.C.-based Triangle Ice Co. Inc. No deal terms were disclosed. Reddy Ice Group Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Reddy Ice Holdings Inc., an entity formed and controlled by Trimaran Capital Partners and Bear Stearns Merchant Banking.

Kevin Waldman has been promoted to managing director of VSS Private Equity, the private equity arm of media merchant bank Veronis Suhler Stevenson. He joined the group in 1996 as a director, after a stint with J.P. Morgan. In related news, Morgan Callagy has been promoted to a managing director post at Veronis Suhler Stevenson International Ltd., the firm’s London-based affiliate that oversees European activities. Joining Veronis Suhler Stevenson in 1996, Callagy has been actively involved in numerous transactions across media segments through both the firm’s Investment Banking and private equity fund activities.

Levine Leichtman Capital Partners has invested $41.5 million into a management-led buyout for Texas-based franchising company CiCi’s Pizza. Founder and majority owner Joe Croce has sold his interest in CiCi’s to its current management team: Craig Moore, president; Robert Kulick, president of JMC Restaurant Distribution, the purchasing arm of CiCi’s; Forbes Anderson, chief financial officer and Robert Parent, vice president of development. LLCP received a 28% equity ownership in CiCi’s in connection with its investment.

Greg Avis, a founding managing partner of Summit Partners, has been elected to the board of directors at The James Irvine Foundation, a San Francisco-based nonprofit grant-making foundation established in 1937.

Will Wilcoxson has joined Axiom Venture Partners as a general partner. He previously served as a general partner with Claflin Capital Management, where he specialized in early-stage information technology companies.

Andy Vollmer has been named managing director of the M&A business at KeyBanc Capital Markets. Prior to leaving Key for National City in 2002, Vollmer spent 11 years in investment banking with McDonald Investments, where he led the automotive and transportation equipment group.

Chyron Corp. (OTC BB: CYRO) has sold all of the stock in wholly owned subsidiary Chyron UK Holdings Ltd. and its operating subsidiary Pro-Bel Ltd., which constituted all of the Company’s signal distribution and automation business. The purchaser is Oval Ltd., a UK-based company jointly owned by the venture capital arm Lloyd’s TSB Group and members of Pro-Bel management. Pro-Bel was Chyron’s signal distribution and automation business.

PrivateEquityCentral.net is reporting that The Carlyle Group has postponed talks to start a Russia-focused buyout fund with Russian firm Alfa Group. The move follows the recent arrests of former Carlyle advisors Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Platon Lebedev. Khodorkovsky served as an adviser to Carlyle’s energy group while Lebedev was on the Europe board. Both men deny the charges.

Reuters is reporting that Jafco Co. Ltd. is planning to set up 130 billion Yen (approx. $1.2 billion) worth of private equity funds next year, focused on private Japanese companies, plus U.S. and Asian-held biotech and high-tech startups.

The Deal is reporting that Alison Mass has been named co-head of Goldman Sachs‘ financial sponsors group. She replaces Sean Mahoney, who recently retired from the firm. Mass most recently served as chief of staff for Goldman’s fixed-income, currency and commodities group (FICC).
NEWS FROM THURSDAY 11/6

HarbourVest Partners has purchased the private equity fund partnership portfolio of UBS Capital. The deal-which had been rumored for weeks — includes 50 limited partnership interests from UBS. No price tag was disclosed, except that the original fund commitments were valued at $1.3 billion.

Auxilium Pharmaceuticals Inc., a Norisstown, Pa.-based specialty pharma company focused on urology and sexual health, has raised $43 million in Series D funding. Sprout Group led the deal, and was joined by fellow new investors Orbimed Advisors and BB Biotech. Return backers include SCP Private Equity Partners, Perseus-Soros BioPharmaceutical Fund, Lehman Brothers Private Equity, Schroder Ventures and CIP Capital. Auxilium has raised approximately $92 million in private equity funding since its 1999 founding

Pharmion Corp., a Boulder, Colo.-based biopharma company focused on hematology and oncology, today will begin trading on the Nasdaq under ticker symbol PHRM. The company yesterday priced six million shares of stock at $14 per share, as part of an IPO that netted $84 million. The company has originally filed its IPO papers in August with the hopes of raising up to $86.25 million. Pharmion has raised nearly $130 million in venture capital funding, including a $40 million infusion in late 2002 at a post-money valuation of approximately $163 million. Company backers include New Enterprise Associates, Nomura International, ProQuest Investments, Versant Ventures, Domain Partners, Bay City Capital, General Electric Pension Trust, Celgene Corp. and Aberdare Ventures.

NitroMed Inc., a Bedford, Mass.-based biopharma company focused on nitric oxide chemistry, will begin trading today on the Nasdaq under ticker symbol NTMD. The company yesterday priced six million shares at $11 per share, for an IPO take of $66 million. NitroMed originally filed its IPO papers in August with the hopes of raising upwards of $100 million. The company had raised over $90 million in venture capital funding, including a $19.9 million infusion earlier this year at a whopping post-money valuation of $350 million. Company investors include HealthCare Ventures, Rho Ventures, Care Capital, Johnson & Johnson Development Corp., Atlas Venture, Goldman Sachs, Senmed Medical Ventures and the Boston University Community Technology Fund.

The Blackstone Group, Apollo Management and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners have completed their acquisition of Ondeo Nalco Co. from Suez SA. The private equity syndicate tendered an offer for Ondeo Nalco in September for $4.2 billion. As of the closing of the sale, the renamed Nalco Co. will operate as a privately held, independent water treatment business.

Percardia Inc., a Merrimack, N.H.-based medical device company focused on coronary artery disease, has held a $12.9 million second close on its Series D funding round. The deal is now worth a total of $23.5 million, and includes investments from Prism Venture Partners, Atlas Venture, Advance Technology Ventures, Medtronic, Crescendo Ventures and Vanguard Ventures.

sourcing. TransOcean Capital Inc. on Monday closed its acquisition of Stronghaven Inc., an Atlanta-based maker of corrugated packaging containers. TransOcean Capital partnered with Stronghaven management and with a syndicate of senior secured, junior secured, and mezzanine financiers in funding the leveraged recap of Stronghaven, which was previously owned by an investment fund affiliated with Code Hennessy & Simmons LLC. The secured financing was arranged by Antares Capital Corp., with participation from Madison Capital Funding LLC, GSC Partners, and Denali Capital LLC. The mezzanine financing was arranged by New Canaan Funding LLC.

Oxford Automotive Inc., a Troy, Mich.-based automotive supplier, has completed a refinancing plan that includes a $75 million private equity investment from MatlinPatterson Global Opportunities Partners.

Avexus Inc., a San Diego-based provider of enterprise software for the management of complex assets, has raised $8.5 million in Series B funding. Wall Street Technology Partners led the deal, and was joined by return backers Moore Capital and QTV Capital.

MindSHIFT Technologies Inc., a Fiarfax, Va.-based managed services provider to small and medium-sized enterprises, has raised $11 million in new venture funding from Fidelity Ventures and Columbia Capital.

IatroQuest Corp., a Montreal-based developer of bio-sensing technologies, has raised Cdn$15 million (approx. $11.22 million) in new funding. Investors included Fonds de solidarité FTQ, T2C2/Bio 2000, Desjardins Venture Capital and Business Development Bank of Canada.

Compass Minerals International Inc., an Overland Park, Kansas-based producer of rock salt (a.k.a. highway deicing salt), has filed to raise $172.5 million via an initial public offering on the NYSE under proposed ticker symbol CMP. The company was known as IMC Potash Corp. prior to Nov. 28, 2001, when it parent company IMC Global sold the business as part of a recapitalization to a subsidiary of Apollo Management. Apollo currently is Compass Minerals’ majority shareholder.

Helinet Aviation Services LLC, a Van Nuys, Calif.-based provider of helicopter flight services, has received a $20.5 million investment from Bison Capital Structured Equity Partners.

Ohio Voters on Tuesday narrowly rejected Issue 1, which would have amended the state constitution to allow Ohio to issue $500 million in bonds to support high-tech companies, entrepreneurs and research programs. The program was supported by Republican Governor Bob Taft.

Big 5 Sporting Goods Corp. (Nasdaq: BGFV) will file with the SEC a preliminary prospectus supplement to its existing shelf registration statement relating to a proposed underwritten public offering of 4,500,000 shares of its common stock. The common stock to be offered is owned by Green Equity Investors, an investment fund formed by Los Angeles-based private equity firm Leonard Green & Partners. As of the date of the filing, Green Equity Investors owns approximately 6.2 million shares of Big 5 common stock. Big 5 will not realize any proceeds from this offering. It is currently anticipated that the underwriters will be granted an over-allotment option for an additional 675,000 shares owned by Green Equity Investors.

NEWS FROM WEDNESDAY 11/5

Stone Arch Capital unveiled itself today, as a new leveraged buyout firm focused on middle-market companies in the Midwest. The Minneapolis-based firm was founded by: Peter Grant, recently resigned U.S. chairman of RBC Capital Markets; Charles Lannin, former Norwest Equity Partners general partner; and Mark Michaels, former Crossroads Capital and Willis Stein partner.

The National Association of Securities Dealers Inc. (NASD) has agreed to transfer control of the American Stock Exchange (AMEX) to the Amex Membership Corp., a group that represents AMEX members. The agreement will call for NASD to satisfy its remaining contractual obligations stemming from the original 1998 transaction between NASD and Amex. NASD also will provide other financing to strengthen Amex’s balance sheet. The move comes just weeks after private equity firm GTCR Golder Rauner began to reassess a $110 million bid it made earlier this year to purchase AMEX from NASD.

Convoq Inc., a Lexington, Mass.-based provider of instant messaging solutions, has raised $10 million in Series B funding. The company also announced a name change from Applied Messaging Corp. Return backers North Bridge Venture Partners and Polaris Venture Partners co-led the new funding round. The company now has raised $17.4 million since its 2002 inception.

Nortel Networks (NYSE: NT) and Koor Industries (NYSE: KOR) will reorganize their joint telecommunications activities in Israel. Under this reorganization, Nortel Networks will assume full ownership of Nortel Networks Israel Ltd., its joint venture with Koor Industries, by acquiring the remaining 28% ownership interest currently held directly and indirectly by Koor Industries.

American Capital Strategies Ltd. has invested $35 million in the buyout of Jones Stephens Corp., a Moody, Ala.-based provider of specialty plumbing components. American Capital’s investment takes the form of subordinated debt and preferred and common equity. Union Bank of California N.A. and Antares Capital Corp. are providing senior debt financing. Jones Stephens’ founders will continue to have a significant ownership stake in the enterprise.

Novell Inc. (Nasdaq: NVL) has agreed to acquire German enterprise Linux company SuSE Linux AG for $210 million in cash. SuSE Linux has raised around $30 million in total venture capital funding, from investors like Apax Partners, DB Investor and Intel Capital. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of January.

VisionCare Ophthalmic Technologies Inc., a Saratoga, Calif.-based maker of visual prosthetic devices for the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and other central vision disorders, has raised $12.4 million in additional Series C funding. The company had held an initial Series C close on $6.8 million in July 2002, but now has called down additional dollars from return backers Onset Ventures, Three Arch Partners, Pitango Venture Capital and Infinity Venture Capital. The company also announced the completion of patient enrollment into its Phase II/III clinical trial for untreatable late-stage AMD.

Ecutel Systems Inc., an Alexandria, Va.-based provider of mobile virtual private network software, has acquired Inciscent Inc., a Falls Church, Va.-based enterprise management software company. No deal terms were disclosed. Inciscent is partially owned by buyout shop Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst, while Ecutel has received over $10 million in venture funding from Core Capital Partners, Intel Capital and Updata Venture Partners.

VS&A Communications Partners the private equity affiliate of media merchant bank Veronis Suhler Stevenson, has acquired a controlling interest in User-Friendly Phone Book, a Louisiana-based independent yellow pages publisher. Deal terms were not disclosed on the deal, which was done in partnership with company management. Paul Cejas, former U.S. Ambassador to Belgium and current chairman and CEO of PLC Investments Inc., has been named to the board of directors at IVAX Corp. (AMEX: IVX).

Dimensional Associates, the Rye, N.Y.-based private equity arm of JDS Capital Management, has finalized the purchase of digital music services provider Emusic.com Inc. No deal terms were disclosed.

Fortune Brands Inc. (NYSE: FO) has agreed to acquire Maumee, Ohio-based door maker Therma-Tru Corp. from Nbew York-based private equity firm Kenner & Co. The deal is worth approximately $925 million.

Jim Lash, chairman of Greenwich, Conn.-based Manchester Principal LLC, is the new first selectman of Greenwich. Lash, a Republican, beat Democratic incumbent Richard Bergstreser for the Gold Coast town’s highest office.

KPS Special Situations Fund II has acquired the stock and related assets of Speedline Technologies Inc. from Cookson Group PLC for a total consideration of approximately $10 million. Speedline’s management will continue to manage the company, under the Speedline Technologies name, following the acquisition. Speedline is a Franklin, Mass.-based provider of manufacturing equipment and services for the printed circuit board and semiconductor packaging industries.

The Deal is reporting that Italian private equity firm Investitori Associati SpA is prepping a fourth fund-raising drive with a target capitalization of €600 million.

Reuters is reporting that private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR) has been granted the right to exclusive talks with DaimlerChrysler about buying its MTU aero-engine business. The final price is expected to be somewhere around €1.5 billion.

PrivateEquityCentral.net is reporting that GB Palladin Capital has hired retail industry veteran Alan Taylor as managing director of its London office. Taylor is the former CEO of GUS Home Shopping, and also has worked as a director with Arcadia, Safeway and Nintendo UK.

Candover reportedly has sold rail track fastening and support system maker Pandrol to French engineering group Delachaux.

 

NEWS FROM TUESDAY 11/4
Network Appliance Inc. (Nasdaq: NTAP) has agreed to acquire Spinnaker Networks Inc., a Pittsburgh-based provider of scalable system architectures, distributed file systems, next-generation clustering technologies and virtualization. The all-stock deal is worth approximately $300 million, and is expected to close in January. Spinnaker had raised $51.4 million over two rounds of venture funding, including a $20.4 million Series A deal in early 2000 at a post-money valuation of approximately $57 million. Company investors include Mellon Ventures, Menlo Ventures and Norwest Venture Partners.

NeuroMed Technologies Inc., a Vancouver-based biopharma company focused on chronic pain, has raised $32 million in Series C funding. MPM Capital led the deal, and was joined by fellow new investors Neuro Discovery, TriFund Capital Ltd. and Cogene Biotech Ventures. Return backers included GrowthWorks Capital, MDS Capital, BDC Venture Capital and the Royal Bank of Canada.

RedTail Solutions Inc., a Milford, Mass.-based provider of electronic trading services and electronic data interchange (EDI), has raised $3 million in Series A funding. Venture Capital Fund New England and 8 Wings Ventures co-led the deal, and were joined by Hub Angel Investment Group.

TNS Inc., a Reston, Va.-based provider of data communications services to processors of credit card, debit card and ATM transactions, has filed to raise $86.25 million via an initial public offering (IPO) on the NYSE under proposed ticker symbol TNS. If completed, this would represent the company’s second IPO. TNS was founded in 1990 and completed an IPO in 1994, before being acquired by PSINet Inc. in late 1999. In 2001, the company was sold in a $285 million buyout led by GTCR Golder Rauner.

Ventures West has held a Cdn$158 million (approx. $118 million) first close on its eighth venture capital fund. The Toronto-based firm invests in early-stage biotech, communications, energy technology and IT companies across Canada. Investors in the fund include British Columbia Investment Management Corporation, Business Development Bank of Canada, CPP Investment Board (Cdn $50 million investment), EdgeStone Capital Partners, OMERS and Teachers’ Merchant Bank, the private equity arm of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.

Kent Kressa, former chairman and CEO of Northrup Grumman Corp., has joined The Carlyle Group as a senior advisor to the firm’s aerospace and defense group.

Daniel Mao, former CEO of Sina Corp. and onetime vice president with VC firm Walden International, has married Hu Haiqing, daughter of Chinese President Hu Jintao.

American Capital Strategies Ltd. has invested $54 million in the buyout of Flexi-Mat Corp., a Chicago-based provider of pet beds. Company management also invested significantly in the transaction.

Apogee Enterprises Inc. (Nasdaq: APOG) has agreed to sell the stock of Harmon AutoGlass, its retail auto replacement glass business, to Synergistic International Inc., doing business as Glass Doctor, a subsidiary of The Dwyer Group. No deal terms were disclosed. The Dwyer Group was acquired on October 30 in a going private leveraged buyout by an affiliate of private equity firm The Riverside Co.

NanoNexus Inc., a San Jose, Calif.-based provider of semiconductor connector technologies, yesterday announced that it raised $14 million in Series C funding. The deal closed back in March, and was led by Rustic Canyon Partners. Other new investors included Hunt Ventures, Pacifica Fund and Finaventures, while return backers included Idanta Partners, KT Venture Group, Compass Technology Partners, 2M Technology Investors and Goff Moore Strategic Investors. In related news, NanoNexus recently closed a $1 million equipment loan line with Pentech Financial Services Inc.

Michael Schiavo, a partner and CFO of Waltham, Mass.-based Kodiak Venture Partners, has been elected to the board of directors at Boston Private Bank & Trust Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of Boston Private Financial Holdings Inc.

Jean Dubois, former founder and CEO of defunct telecom equipment maker Pelago Networks Inc., has been named senior vice president of engineering of Flamenco Networks Inc., an Alpharetta, Ga.-based provider of Web services network infrastructure.

Tutogen Medical Inc. (AMEX: TTG) has entered into a non-binding letter agreement with an unnamed private equity firm proposing to acquire all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Tutogen for $6 per share in cash. The proposal is subject to a due diligence review and the execution of definitive transaction documents. Tutogen makes sterile biological implant products made from human and animal tissue. Alterity Partners of New York is advising Tutogen Medical in this transaction.

Flavin Ventures announced that it has helped fund the launch of Shamrock Structures, a Chicago-based structural proteomics company that will offer integrated services in structural proteomics including protein cloning, expression, purification and crystallization.

NEWS FROM MONDAY 11/3
Swander Pace Capital has closed its third consumer buyouts-focused fund with $325 million in capital commitments. PE Week subscribers can read more on this story in the protected Weekly Headlines section of   www.PrivateEquityWeek.com, or in today’s print edition.

Todd Brooks, a general partner with Mayfield, has decided to leave the Menlo Park, Calif.-based venture firm. PE Week subscribers can read more on this story in the protected Weekly Headlines section of www.PrivateEquityWeek.com, or in today’s print edition

Quantum Leap Packaging Inc., a Wilmington, Mass.-based provider of liquid crystal polymer (LCP) packaging solutions for high-volume electronic and optical components, has raised $3.5 million in Series A funding from Battery Ventures. Morgan Jones, a general partner with Battery, has joined the Quantum Leap board as part of the transaction. PE Week subscribers can read more on this story in the protected Weekly Headlines section of www.PrivateEquityWeek.com, or in today’s print edition

TA Associates has invested $60 million into the Center for Financial Research & Analysis Inc. (CFRA), a Rockville, Md.-based financial research organization serving the investment community. Goodwin Procter served as legal counsel for TA Associates. Shaw Pittman acted as legal counsel for CFRA, while Evercore Partners provided investment banking services to CFRA.

DoubleWide Software, a Santa Clara, Calif.-based company focused on the embedded software development process, has raised $9 million in Series B funding at a post-money valuation of $15.25 million. Investors included U.S. Venture Partners and Walden International.

Motion Computing Inc., an Austin, Texas-based provider of build-to-order slate tablet PC solutions to the mobile workforce, has raised $11.2 million in second-round funding. New Enterprise Associates led the deal with a $10 million investment, and was joined by return backer G51 Capital. Motion Computing now has raised $17.7 million since its 2002 founding, including a $6.5 million infusion last year at a post-money valuation of approximately $14.5 million.

KnowNow Inc., a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based provider of internetworking software for real-time information exchanges, has raised $7 million in Series C funding. Return backers included Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Palomar Ventures and TPG Ventures. KnowNow has raised $31.4 million in venture funding since its 2000 inception.

ICode Inc., a Chantilly, Va.-based maker of an enterprise resource planning solution for small businesses, has raised $8 million in Series C funding. Sierra Ventures led the deal, and was joined by return backers Updata Venture Partners and New Vantage Group.

Sofinnova Ventures has held a $220 million final close on its sixth venture fund. This comes in a bit below the San Francisco-based firm’s $250 million target, but above the size of its $210 million predecessor fund.

National Medical Health Card Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: NMHC), a Port Washington, N.Y.-based pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) doing business as NMHC Rx, has agreed to receive an $80 million convertible preferred stock investment from New Mountain Partners. The preferred stock provides for an initial annual cash dividend equal to 7% of the investment amount, which decreases to 3.5% after the fifth anniversary of issuance. The preferred stock will be convertible into common stock at a price of $11.50 per share of common stock, or an aggregate of approximately 7 million common shares. The company will use approximately $50 million of the New Mountain investment to conduct a self tender in which it will offer to purchase up to 4.5 million shares of common stock at a price of $11.00 per share. The remaining funds, estimated to be $22 million net of transaction costs, are expected to be used for growth opportunities.

ITM Software Inc., a Mountain View, Calif.-based provider of enterprise software solutions for the business management of IT organizations, has raised $9 million in Series B venture funding. The deal, which closed during Q3, included investments from InnoCal Venture Capital, Technology Partners, Ascend Venture Group and New Vista Capital.

Headstrong Corp., a Fairfax, Va.-based global consultancy, has merged with TechSpan Inc., a leading IT consulting services firm. No deal terms were disclosed. In 2000, Headstrong was bought out for $191 million by Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe ($173 million) and H&Q Asia Pacific ($18 million). TechSpan has raised venture capital funding from Goldman Sachs and Walden International.

EUniverse Inc. (OTC BB: EUNI), a Los Angeles-based provider of online interactive entertainment, has received an $8 million PIPE investment from VantagePoint Venture Partners. VantagePoint entities purchased 5,333,333 shares of a new Series C preferred stock for $1.50 per share. In July 2003, in anticipation of this preferred stock investment, VantagePoint loaned $2 million to eUniverse and purchased $500,000 of debt the company owed an indirect subsidiary of Sony Corp. of America to obtain an option to acquire certain common stock and Series B preferred stock of eUniverse owned by the Sony affiliate.

Enhance Biotech Inc. (OTC BB: EBOI), a New York-based biopharma company focused on premature ejaculation, has raised $2 million via a PIPE financing.

David Ankin has joined law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges as a Paris-based partner, where he will focus on private equity and M&A. He was formerly a partner at Linklaters. Emmanuelle Henry, also will be joining Weil, Gotshal & Manges.

RAIDCore Inc., a Nashua, N.H.-based maker of enterprise-class storage solutions, has raised $5 million $5 million in Series A commitments from Egan-Managed Capital and Longworth Venture Partners.

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. (NYSE: LEH) has completed its previously announced acquisition of Neuberger Berman Inc., bringing combined assets under management to over $100 billion. The transaction was approved by Neuberger Berman’s stockholders Friday morning. Pursuant to the transaction, each Neuberger Berman stockholder will receive, for each share of Neuberger Berman common stock, $9.49 in cash and 0.4741 of a share of Lehman Brothers common stock.

Berchwood Partners has moved its New York office to 599 Lexington Ave., Suite 2750.

Prospera Research has released its “Nordic Alternative Investments Survey”, which finds that more than 60% of large Nordic pension funds, life insurers and foundations are currently invested in hedge funds and/or private equity. The survey was conducted on behalf of IPM Informed Portfolio Management and AIMA, the Alternative Investment Management Association. 93 of the largest Nordic institutions were interviewed between June and September 2003, with a response rate of 90%.

DoveBid Inc., a Foster City, Calif.-based provider of capital asset auction, valuation and managed services, has raised $13 million in a Series AA recap funding, and secured a $15 million credit facility from Comerica Bank. The venture capital round was led by Softbank Capital Partners, and included participation from Texas Pacific Group. Dovebid now has raised approximately $180 million in venture funding, and once was valued as high as $331 million.

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