PE Week Wire — Friday 6/6

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CryoCor Inc., a San Diego-based company focused on cryoablation techniques to treat cardiac fibrillations and arrhythmias, has raised $27.5 million in Series C funding. The financing is structured with an immediate payout of $15.3 million and another $12.2 million next June. William Blair Capital Partners (WBCP) and OrbiMed Advisors co-led the deal, with Dr. Arda Minocherhomjee of WBCP and Dr. Robert Adelman of OrbiMed joining the CryoCor board of directors. The only other new investor was Oakwood Medical Investors, while return backers included MPM Capital, Beecken Petty & Co., Frantz Medical Ventures and Technology Partners. The company has now received around $47 million in venture capital commitments since its 2000 founding, including a $12 million Series B deal in late 2001 at a post-money valuation of $28 million.

White Amber, a Lake Success, N.Y.-based provider of Web-enabled human resources services, has raised $4 million in new funding from existing investors Infinity Capital, RRE Ventures, Venrock Associates and Wachovia Strategic Ventures. The company now has raised over $40 million since its 2000 founding, including a $9 million round in early 2002 at a post-money valuation of approximately $55 million.

Forefront Education Inc., a Barrington, Ill.-based provider of post-secondary education, has received $10.5 million in private equity financing to support its acquisition of Platt College Inc., which owns three post-secondary campuses in Southern California. Equity capital was provided by existing investor GTCR, the senior debt facility came from LaSalle Bank and Caltius Mezzanine provided senior subordinated notes with common and preferred stock.

Hawaii Biotech, a Honolulu-based biopharma company focused on anti-inflammatory small molecules, has raised a $4.4 million in Series A funding co-led by the International Venture Fund and HMS Hawaii.

Pivotal Private Equity has received bankruptcy court approval for its $63 million acquisition of Pacific Crossing Ltd., which is a former subsidiary of Global Crossing. The unit operates a PC-1 fiber optic telecom network connecting Japan with the United States

Richard Holcomb has joined The Aurora Funds as a venture partner, after having spent a number of years on the investment firm’s technology advisory board. Holcomb is a serial entrepreneur who has founded such tech companies as StrikeIron, HAHT Commerce and Q+E Software.

John Moore, president of Edson Moore Healthcare Ventures, has been named chairman of Elite Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AMEX: ELI). The move follows the sudden resignation of Elite CEO Atul Mehta, who has now been replaced by pharmaceutical industry veteran Bernard Berk.

Nicholas Sargen has been named chief investment officer at Cincinnati-based Fort Washington Investment Advisors. Sargen most recently served as managing director and global market strategist for J.P. Morgan Chase.

Maipu Communication Technology Co Ltd., a Chinese communications company, has received $15 million from Intel Capital, HSBC Private Equity, Compass Fund and French NBP Asia Investment Fund.

AOL Time Warner Inc. has taken its book publishing division off the chopping block after failing to receive an attractive acquisition offer.

Rexam PLC has reached an agreement with Montagu Private Equity and other shareholders to acquire all the shares of Risdon Pharma Development SA a plastic pharmaceutical packaging business. The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval. involves €125 million in cash subject to net asset and other adjustments.

Matrix NetSystems Inc., a venture-backed provider of Internet performance management solutions, has merged with Alignment Software Inc., a venture-backed developer of application performance software. The combined company is named Xaffire Inc., and The Deal is reporting that it has raised $13 million in new venture funding from Mobius Venture Capital, Meritage Private Equity and The Feld Group. The report adds that the new company hopes to raise another $5 million.
NEWS FROM THURSDAY 6/5

Battery Ventures has announced plans to acquire and privatize Made2Manage Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: MTMS), an Indianapolis-based provider of enterprise software for small and mid-sized manufacturers and distributors. The deal is for cash considerations of approximately $30 million, or $5.70 per share. This represents a premium over today’s opening price of $4.05 per share.

Harris (Terry) Hyman has joined Grotech Capital Group as a general partner focused on the healthcare industry. He previously served as a senior manager responsible for healthcare M&A at Credit Suisse First Boston.

Secure Data in Motion (a.k.a. Sigaba), a San Mateo, Calif.-based provider of secure message management solutions, has raised $8 million in Series B funding from Liberty Partners.

Inverness Capital Partners has raised $100 million for its new investment fund, which will provide growth and expansion capital to small and mid-sized companies with proprietary manufacturing technologies and processes in the industrial equipment and components, advanced materials, robotics and factory automation, manufacturing IT and advanced packaging areas. Average investment sizes will range between $4 million to $8 million per company, each of which should feature revenues of $5 million and $25 million. The Wayne, Pa.-based firm says that its original fund size target was $90 million, but that it has now raised its expectations to $125 million.

Alberto Cribiore, managing partner of private equity firm Brera Capital Partners, has been named to the board of directors at Merrill Lynch & Co.

David Andonian, former president and COO of CMGI Inc., has been named executive chairman of Affinova Inc., a Cambridge, Mass.-based developer of brand and product design, development and testing solutions.

Key3Media Group Inc. received bankruptcy court approval of its reorganization plan. As part of the deal, Thomas Weisel Capital Partners will own at least 90% of the equity of Key3Media upon its emergence from Chapter 11 protection.

Array Networks, a Campbell, Calif.-based provider of Web traffic management and SSL VPN solutions for global enterprises, has secured additional financing from existing investor H&Q Asia Pacific. No additional details were disclosed. The company had previously raised over $45 million, including a $31 million deal in late 2000 at a post-money valuation of $100 million.

Cheveux Acquisition has entered into an agreement to substantially all of the assets of bankrupt FS Concepts Inc. and certain of its affiliates who have the rights to the Fantastic Sams hair salon business. Terms were not disclosed, except that private equity firm Pouschine Cook Capital Management is providing part of the deal’s equity.

Jean-Bernard Schmidt, managing partner and chairman of Sofinnova Partners, has been named chairman of the European Venture Capital Association. He takes over for Max Burger-Calderon of Apax Partners. Golden Gate Capital and Oak Investment Partners have completed the acquisition of Divine Inc.‘s collaboration assets. The newly formed private company will be renamed Parlano Inc. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Eaton Vance Corp. has agreed to acquire an 80% stake in Parametric Portfolio Associates, a Seattle-based investment management firm with $4.7 billion in assets under management. Parametric is owned through a holding company whose shareholders include Orca Bay Partners, a Seattle-based private equity firm, and by Parametric’s senior management and other key employees. Following the acquisition, Parametric will become a subsidiary of Eaton Vance and will operate as a distinct and autonomous business unit.

MDS Capital, a Toronto-based venture firm, has raised Cdn$211 million (approx. $156 million) for its latest life sciences fund. Investors included Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Fonds de Solidarite des Travailleurs du Quebec, International Business Machines Corp. and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.

Visto Corp. has acquired ViAir Inc., a Seattle-based provider of mobile access solutions. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. ViAir has received over $22 million in venture funding since its 2000 founding, including a $15 million infusion in early 2001 at a post-money valuation of over $50 million. Investors included 3i Group, Barksdale Group and Spectrum Equity Investors.

William Mayer, founder and co-senior partner of Park Avenue Equity Partners has been named to the board of directors at The Reader’s Digest Association Inc. Mayer previously served as president, CEO and managing director of The First Boston Corp. (now Credit Suisse First Boston).

EMI has sued fellow record company Bertelsmann for its financial support of online file swapping service Napster Inc. This is in addition to a similar suit by Universal, and a combined EMI-Universal suit against Napster backer Hummer Winblad Venture Partners.

AFX Asia is reporting that government-operated Malaysia Venture Capital Management has launched a rng100 million (approx. $26 million) funding program to develop the local information and communications technology industry.
NEWS FROM WEDNESDAY 6/4

Schroder Ventures Life Sciences has held a $402 million final close on its third international life sciences fund. The close included 18 new investors, with half of the total commitments coming from North America and the rest from UK and other European investors. The new fund will maintain SVLS’ strategy of investing between $5 million to $20 million into companies across a wide range of life sciences sectors. The firm’s previous fund was capitalized at $310 million and closed in 1999.

Defywire, a Reston, Va.-based provider of wireless enterprise software solutions, has raised $4.5 million in Series A funding. Intersouth Partners led the deal, and was joined by both Anthem Capital Management and the Washington Dinner Club. Don Rainey of Intersouth and Xander Perry of Anthem Capital will join Defywire’s board of directors.

EsophyX Inc., a Kirkland, Wash.-based maker of an endoscopic device to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease, has secured $5 million in Series A financing. Advanced Technology Ventures and MPM Capital co-led the round.

Nanostream, a Pasadena, Calif.-based developer of microfluidics technology, has held a $22 million first close on its ongoing Series C funding round. Co-lead investors AEA Investors and Lilly BioVentures were joined by return backers Techno Venture Management and Flagship Ventures.

MySQL AB, a Seattle-based open source database developer, has raised $19.5 million in Series B funding. Benchmark Capital led the round, and was joined by Index Ventures.

Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM), yesterday announced a commitment to invest up to $100 million in early- to mid-stage Chinese companies engaged in the development and commercialization of code division multiple access (CDMA) digital wireless technology. The capital will be invested by Qualcomm Ventures.

Pilot Software, a Mountain View, Calif.-based provider of business analytics solutions, has raised over $5 million in Series A funding from Excelsior Venture Partners, company management and other private investors.

BeamExpress, a Swiss maker of optoelectronic components, has raised $7.5 million in Series B funding. Atila Ventures led the deal and was joined by return backer Index Ventures.

CyThera Inc., a San Diego-based biotech company focused on developing cell replacement therapies for the treatment of diabetes,has raised $2 million from existing investors Alta Partners and Sanderling Ventures. The company also received and NIH grant of approximately $650,000.

Scalix Corp., a Palo Alto, Calif.-based provider of enterprise email infrastructure, has raised $13.2 million in Series A funding. New Enterprise Associates led the deal, and was joined by incubating investor Mayfield.

Siebel Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: SEBL) has acquired the assets of BoldFish Inc., a Santa Clara, Calif.-based provider of marketing email solutions. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. BoldFish had raised over $22 million in venture funding since its 1997 founding, including a $15 million deal in 2000 at a post-money valuation of around $52 million. Investors in the company included Alloy Ventures, Mayfield Fund and Stanford University.

Digital Path Networks, a Chico, Calif.-based high-speed Internet service provider, has raised seed funding from DFJ Frontier, the Sacramento affiliate of Redwood city, Calif.-based VC firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson.

SKM Growth Investors and Four Corners Equity Partners last month purchased Schilling Corp., a construction services company, from its founders Tom and Wilma Schilling. Terms were not disclosed.

Money Mailer, a Garden Grove, Calif.-based direct mail marketing company, has been acquired for an undisclosed amount by Roark Capital Group. Merrill Lynch provided senior debt and American Capital Strategies Ltd. provided senior subordinated debt financing for the transaction.

Westpoint Stevens, a major U.S> linens manufacturer that makes Martha Stewart brand linens for Kmart, has filed for bankruptcy. This will be thec second time in bankruptcy court for Westpoint Stevens, which currently is a portfolio company of ESL Investments and Greenwich Street Capital Partners.

The Financial Times is reporting that Dutch grocery conglomerate Royal Ahold NV is looking to reduce debt by selling off its U.S. Foodservice group.

PrivateEquityCentral.net is reporting that Deutsche Bank last week priced $550 million worth of collateralized private equity fund obligations. The Triple-A bonds are supported by more than 700 companies, most of which are within buyout fund portfolios. The sale is expected to close late this month.

The Deal is reporting that Art Penn has joined private equity firm Apollo Management. Penn is the former co-head of leveraged finance at UBS Warburg Bankers Trust.
NEWS FROM TUESDAY 6/3

GTCR Golder Rauner, a Chicago-based private equity firm, has entered a letter of intent to purchase the American Stock Exchange (AMEX) from the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) for approximately $110 million.

PNC Financial Services Group agreed yesterday to pay a $25 million fine and $90 million in restitution to avoid prosecution in a criminal securities fraud investigation. The deal means that the Pittsburgh-based bank has acknowledged trying to hide $762 million of bad loans and venture capital investments to off balance-sheet entitites in 2001. PNC maintains that it was acting on the advice of its consultants.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT) has agreed to acquire Spinal Concepts Inc., an Austin, Texas-based maker of in-fix cage devices for use in spinal surgeries. The deal is worth $170 million in cash plus an additional $40 million if certain milestones are met. It is expected to close during the second quarter, pending regulatory approvals. Spinal Concepts has raised over $43 million in venture capital since its 1996 founding, including a $21 million fifth round in the summer of 2001 at a post-money valuation of $55 million. Investors included Essex Woodlands Health Ventures, Richland Ventures, HLM Partners, KBL Healthcare Ventures, Onset Ventures and Vector Fund Management.

 

Landmark Networks Inc., a Honolulu-based provider of equipment to deploy large Wi-Fi networks, has raised $3.2 million in Series A funding from Menlo Ventures, HMS Ventures, Hawaiian Electric Industries and individual investors.

Planitax Inc., a San Francisco-based enterprise software and services provider focused on lowering corporate taxes, has raised $7.5 million in first round funding. Mobius Venture Capital led the deal, and was joined by Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Access Venture Partners and select individual investors. New Planitax board members include Heidi Roizen, managing director of Mobius VC, and Greg Prow, former tax practice leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers and now managing director and COO of Mobius VC.

Elpida Memory Inc., a Japan-based maker of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips, has received a $100 million investment from Intel Capital. As part of the transaction, Intel only receives non-voting stock, with existing shareholders NEC and Hitachi retaining their 50% voting stakes.

Peter Boylan and Megan Taylor have both joined Dallas, Texas-based private equity firm Brazos Private Equity Partners. Boylan will serve as an executive at Brazos, and most recently served as a vice president at Thomas Weisel Capital Partners. Taylor comes over as an associate after three years spent with TCW/Crescent Mezzanine in Los Angeles.

Singapore Telecom has agreed to sell its yellow pages directory business (SYP) to CVC Asia Pacific and JPMorgan Partners Asia for $220 million. The unit reported fiscal 2002 revenue of $83.5 million and net profits of $21.1 million.

Vivendi Universal SA has continued its debt cutting by agreeing to sell its Spencer Gifts U.S. subsidiary to a private equity consortium led by Gordon Brothers Group. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Invensys PLC has sold its manufacturing software subsidiary Baan to Cerberus Capital Management and General Atlantic Partners for $135 million in cash. For the 12 months ended March 31, Baan generated revenue of $265 million and an operating loss of $32 million. Net assets, including capitalized goodwill, are approximately $120 million.

Dechert LLP has opened a Palo Alto, Calif. office staffed with 28 attorneys that have come over from Oppenheimer Wolff & Donnelly LLP. The new shop will focus on IP litigation, commercial litigation and patent prosecution.

Savia SA de CV (NYSE : VIA) has agreed to acquire all outstanding shares of Seminis Inc. (Nasdaq:SMNS), an Oxnard, Calif.-based producer of vegetable seeds. Public holders of approximately 15.8 million Seminis shares will receive $3.78 per share in the merger. Immediately following the merger, certain Savia related parties will sell a certain number of shares to San Francisco-based private equity firm Fox Paine & Co. Semanis stock was trading a $3.68 at end of trading yesterday.

Pharmos Corp. (Nasdaq: PARS), an Iselin, N.J.-based drug developer focused on neurological and inflammation-based disorders, has raised $8 million from a private placement of common stock and warrants to 10 institutional investors.

Cees van Lede, former CEO of Akzo Nobel NV, has joined the advisory board of The Carlyle Group‘s European buyout fund.

David Bernfeld has been named an associate with Greenwich, Conn.-based private equity firm Ardshiel Inc. He previously worked in the exclusive sales group at Bear Stearns.

The Daily Deal is reporting that buyout bids for aircraft parts maker TransDigm Inc. were due yesterday. Remaining bidders are said to include Aurora Capital Partners, Thomas H. Lee Partners, Warburg Pincus and a syndicate of Greenbriar Private Equity, Berkshire Partners and Weston Presidio Capital. The rumored asking price is $1 billion.

The Globe and Mail is reporting that Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. is planning a $300 million IPO for a stake in the yellow pages business it bought from Bell Canada just one year ago. The price is expected to be worth twice what KKR paid per share.
NEWS FROM MONDAY 6/2
RackSaver Inc., a San Diego-based provider of high-density individual rack-optimized servers, blade servers and supercomputer clusters, has raised $14 million in Series A funding. Voyager Capital and Celerity Partners co-led the deal, with Voyager’s Bill McAleer and Curtis Feeny taking RackSaver board seats alongside Mark Benham of Celerity Partners and Ed Harper, former chairman of the board for Network Associates.

Xoft MicroTube Inc., a Fremont, Calif.-based developer of disposable miniature x-ray tubes for radiation therapy treatment, has raised $18 million in Series B funding. Sutter Hill Ventures led the deal, and was joined by MPM Capital, Frazier Healthcare Ventures, Mosaix Ventures and Frantz Medical Ventures. The company has now raised over $30 million, including a $13 million Series A deal in late 2000 at a post-money valuation of $19.3 million.

Permeo Technologies Inc., a Dallas-based provider of enterprise application security solutions, has secured $12 million in Series B venture funding. Sierra Ventures led the deal, and was joined by return backer Austin Ventures. Permeo Technologies was founded in June 2001 as a private spin-off of NEC US Inc.

Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE : LU) has sold Hyannis, Mass.-based telecom equipment company Excel Switching Corp. to an investor group led by Soros Private Equity Investors LP and Oak Investment Partners. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, although the price tag seems to be far less than the $1.7 billion Lucent paid for the unit a few years back. Under the arrangement, Excel will now act as a stand-alone entity and continue to serve new and existing customers. As part of the transaction, Northbrook, Ill.-based Airslide Systems is being merged into Excel via Soros and Oak portfolio company EAS Corp..

Aspen Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: AZPN), a Cambridge, Mass.-based provider of manufacturing industry software, has agreed to a $100 million private equity infusion from Advent International. The transaction is subject to stockholder and regulatory approval, as well as other closing conditions.

Pannaway Technologies Inc., a Portsmouth, N.H.-based provider of broadband convergence solutions, has raised $7 million in second round funding. The new capital came from a private investors group led by Robert Levine, founder of Cabletron.

Toolwire Inc., an enterprise service provider of on-demand shared work environments, has completed a merger with Logilent Learning Systems Inc., an IT service provider of live hands-on training in networking technologies. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, and the merged company will continue to operate under the Toolwire name. Logilent has received nearly $50 million in venture funding from investors like Compass Technology Partners, Mellon Ventures, Novus Ventures, Outlook Ventures and Sigma Partners. Toolwire has received about $17 million from 3i Group, Angel Investors, Artemis Ventures, Barrington Partners and Horizon Ventures.

Advent International has acquired poultry company Aviagen Group Ltd. from BC Partners for £255 million (approx. $415 million). This represents a strong exit for BC Partners, which paid £110 million (approx. $180 million) for the unit back in 1998.

Halliburton (NYSE: HAL ) has sold Halliburton Measurement Systems (HMS) for approximately $33 million in cash to SCF Partners portfolio company NuFlo Technologies Inc..

Permira, a UK-based private equity firm, has purchased a 49% ownership stake in German ophthalmic optics company Rodenstock. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, except that CEO Randolf Rodenstock will maintain the remaining 51 percent.

Space Holdings, a New York-based multimedia company, has raised $4 million in new venture funding from existing investors Blue Chip Venture Co., Gannett Co., SpaceVest and Venrock Associates.

Nanosys Inc., a Palo Alto, Calif.-based developer of nanotechnology-enabled systems, has held an $8 million second closing on its Series B funding. This brings the round total to $38 million, and includes lead backer CDIB BioScience Ventures alongside UOB Hermes Asia Technology Fund, UOB Venture Technology Investments Ltd, Healthcare Focus Fund (managed by ARCH Venture Partners for CalPERS), Eastman Kodak Co. and H.B. Fuller. The investors in the first closing included ARCH Venture Partners, CW Group, Polaris Venture Partners, Venrock Associates, Prospect Venture Partners, Alexandria Real Estate Equities CDIB BioScience Ventures (CBV), Chiao Tung Bank, China Development Industrial Bank (CDIB), Harris & Harris, Lux Capital, Quanta Computer and SAIC Venture Capital Corp.

Triosyn Corp., a Burlington, Vt.-based developer of advanced microbiocidal compounds, has announced today that it has raised $4 million in new venture funding. All investors were return backers, including SL Ventures, CDP Capital/Technology Ventures, BDC Venture Capital and Innovatech du Grand Montreal.

John Dadakis and his team of private wealth-management attorneys from Clifford Chance have left to join the New York office of Morrison & Foerster. ISIS Private Equity Partners has sold portfolio company Thomas Sanderson Blinds to Hunter Douglas NV for an undisclosed amount.

FatWire Software has completed its acquisition of Divine Inc.‘s Content Management business from private equity firm Saratoga Partners. As part of the Divine bankruptcy auction, Saratoga Partners acquired Divine’s content management assets, and Saratoga Partners simultaneously transferred the content management assets to FatWire. FatWire also announced today that it had completed the sale of the Participant Server product line (formerly Eprise Inc.) to SilkRoad Technology, Inc.

PrivateEquityOnline is reporting that Stockholm-based Altor Capital Partners has held a €650 million final close on its inaugural investment fund. The middle-market buyout firm had originally been looking to raise €500 million when it formally began fundraising earlier this year.

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