PE Week Wire: Tues., Aug 7, 2007

For the past two weeks, readers have been emailing to ask where the Q2 Moneytree report was. Thankfully, I no longer have to respond with: “We are experiencing technical difficulties, please stand by…”

The data was released this morning, courtesy of PwC, the NVCA and Thomson Financial (publisher of PE Week Wire). It shows the highest number of VC financings since Q3 2001, with nearly 977 deals. The actual number of dollars invested was down slightly from Q1 — $7.13 billion compared to $7.43 billion — but it still topped any other quarterly tally from between 2002 and 2006. You can get the press release and detailed data here.

*** Yesterday I mentioned that Bain Capital is raising $15 billion. To be clear, that includes a $10 billion general fund and a $5 billion co-investment fund. I’m told that there had been some early discussions inside Bain about jettisoning the dual fund structure – and that pesky 20% carry on the co-invest fund – but it was a nonstarter. Also worth adding that Bain is soliciting LPs not so much because existing ones are bailing – although a few likely will – but more because its existing LP base already stretched their commitment limits when Bain raised a total of $10 billion. A lot of endowments and foundations just can’t make 50% increases, which has led to marketing among larger pensions (including publics).

*** There was a VentureWire report last week that Advanced Technology Ventures might have closed its eighth fund with a total of $272 million, based on a regulatory filing. I’ve also seen the doc, but have reason to think that there’s a bit more to come. I spoke yesterday with an ATV spokeswoman, who repeatedly said that she “can’t talk about fundraising.” Maybe I’m reading too much into that statement, but it sure sounds like the process is ongoing. Moreover, SEC anti-marketing restrictions drop the moment a fund is actually closed…

*** One of today’s top news items is that secondary ticker broker Viagogo has raised $30 million in third-round funding. This is an interesting company by virtue of lineage, as its founder Eric Baker also co-founded StubHub – but left three years before eBay bought StubHub for $310 million. (note: I’ll be posting a 5 Questions with Baker at peHUB later this morning)

It also has a differentiated biz model. Not only does it provide mobile access, but it began in Europe and was able to sign several exclusive secondary ticket deals with football clubs like Manchester United.

The new funding is designed to help it come stateside, and it already has signed a deal with the Cleveland Browns. Only problem is that you can’t do exclusive deals in the U.S. – so the Browns deal is just a preferred partnership. On the other hand, the Browns will probably be so bad this year that plenty of season ticket holders will be looking for someone to take their place on any given Sunday…

*** David Toll asks if fund-of-funds managers are really picking the best GPs.

*** A Congressman begins blogging on private equity and carried interest.

*** Quiz Time: Can you name the one-man venture firm that has improbably closed its debut fund? Hint: Its website recently launched.

*** Quiz Time Part Deux: Can you name the West Coast buyout firm that just raised its fundraising target to $5 billion. Hint: It doesn’t do cleantech, but you would be forgiven for thinking that it did – based on past headlines.

*** Quiz Time Part Trois: Can you name the latest cleantech company to be funded by Kleiner Perkins and Khosla Ventures? Hint: It’s very earthy.

*** Finally, please remember that you can always drop me anonymous tips. Let me know what’s going on, without getting yourself fired…

Top Three

McDonald’s Corp. has agreed to sell its Boston Market restaurant chain to Sun Capital Partners for an undisclosed amount. Boston Market, originally called Boston Chicken, was acquired in 2000 for $173.5 million as part of a McDonald’s initiative to diversify its business. Now the chain has 630 restaurants in 28 states. Sun Capital has a portfolio that also includes bakery chain Bruegger’s Enterprises, Garden Fresh salad restaurants and cheese-and-meat retailer Hickory Farms.

Viagogo, a UK-based online ticket reseller formed by StuHub co-founder Eric Baker, has raised $30 million in third-round funding. Backers include Index Ventures, LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault, German media mogul Herbert Kloiber and financier Jacob Rothschild. Viagogo has now raised $50 million in total VC funding, and plans to use the new funding to enter the U.S. market.

XLHealth Corp., a Baltimore-based healthcare and disease management company for chronically-ill seniors, has raised $290 million in private equity and debt funding from MatlinPatterson Global Advisers. Past investor Goldman Sachs Capital Partners will retain an ownership position. XLHealth says that it will use the funding for working capital and to fund the acquisition of Leprechaun LLC, a healthcare information and clinical services company for Medicare Advantage plans.

VC Deals

BridgeLux Inc., a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based provider of LED technology to the high-volume solid-state lighting market, has raised $23 million in Series C funding. Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital led the deal, and was joined by VantagePoint Venture Partners and return backers DCM, El Dorado Ventures and Harris & Harris Group. BridgeLux had raised an $8.55 million Series B round in May 2005.

Silicon Genesis Corp., a San Jose, Calif.-based developer of engineered substrate process technology for the semiconductor, display, optoelectronics and solar markets, has raised $23 million in new VC funding, according to a regulatory filing. Backers include H&A Asia Pacific, Lake Street Capital, Riverside Management Group, Firsthand Technology Ventures, Convexa Capital Ventures and Spencer Energy AS. Silicon Genesis has raised over $117 million in total VC funding, but this represents its first round since a 2001 infusion of $35 million at a post-money valuation of approximately $166 million.

The 41st Parameter Inc., a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based provider of online fraud detection and prevention solutions for ecommerce and financial services, has raised $10.07 million in Series C funding. Jafco Ventures led the deal, and was joined by return backers Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Norwest Venture Partners. It has now raised around $25.5 million in total VC funding since 2005.

Worldwide Biggies Inc., a New York-based developer of digital entertainment for kids, families and young adults, has raised $9 million in Series A funding. NBC Universal and Platform Equity co-led the deal, and were joined by Hearst Corp., Greycroft Ventures and Prism VentureWorks. The company is led by Albie Hecht, former president of both Nickelodeon and Spike TV.

Think Passenger, a Los Angeles-based provider of on-demand customer collaboration solutions, has raised $8.3 million in Series B funding. Steamboat Ventures led the deal, and was joined by StarVest Partners and return backer Shelter Capital Partners.

T&K Machine Inc., a Paris, Texas-based manufacturer of airframe components for the commercial and military aerospace markets, has raised $5 million in new VC funding from Advantage Capital Partners and Stonehenge Capital Company.

TeeBeeDee Inc., a San Francisco-based social network for the 40+ crowd, has raised $4.8 million in Series A funding. Shasta Ventures and Monitor Ventures co-led the deal. TeeBeeDee previously had received angel funding from such individuals as Ron Conway, David Nierenberg, Jan Brandt, Jim Hornthal, Ruth Owades and Bill Sahlman.

ITM Software Corp., a Santa Clara, Calif.-based provider of IT business management solutions, has raised $4 million in new VC funding. Red Rock Ventures and InnoCal Venture Capital co-led the deal, and were joined by Ascend Venture Group, Technology Partners, RBC Technology Ventures and Square 1 Bank.

Vivid Restaurant Concepts of Nashville, Tenn. has raised around $3 million in VC funding from Northwood Ventures. It also secured a $7.7 million loan from GE Capital Solutions, Franchise Finance.

AM-Pharma BV, a Dutch developer of improved endogenous proteins, has raised €2.5 million in bridge financing from existing backers Forbion Capital Partners and Inventages Venture Capital. The round is a “prelude” to a Series C financing, which VentureWire reports is targeting €25 million.

Elastra Corp., a San Francisco-based software startup from former Plumtree CEO Kirill Sheynkman, has raised $2.6 million in Series A funding, according to a regulatory filing. Hummer Winblad Venture Partners led the deal, with John Hummer joining the Elastra board of directors.

Mirics Semiconductor, a UK-based developer of solutions for the mobile broadcast receiver market, has raised $2 million in additional Series B funding from Acacia Capital Partners. This closes the round at $12 million, following a first close from Intel Capital and Pond Venture Partners.

ChanTest, a Cleveland-based provider of lab testing services for drug discovery and development, has raised an undisclosed amount of VC funding from Ampersand Ventures.

ViVOtech, a Santa Clara, Calif.-based, has raised $22.5 million in Series C funding. First Data Corp. led the deal, and was joined by NCR, Miven Venture Partners and return backers Alloy Ventures, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Nokia Growth Partners. FT Partners served as financial advisor.

Buyout Deals

Actis has acquired a majority stake in Mouka Ltd., a Nigerian maker of branded foam products. No financial terms were disclosed. In related news, former UTC Nigeria CEO Peja Adebajo has joined Mouka as CEO, while Accenture Nigeria chairman Adedotun Sulaiman has joined as non-executive chairman.

CIVC Partners has acquired Icon Identity Solutions from Stonebridge Partners. No financial terms were disclosed. Icon Identity is an Elk Grove Village, Ill.-based provider of corporate identity solutions via nationwide facility signage programs. It was advised on the sale by Harris Williams & Company.

Thoma Cressey Bravo has completed its acquisition of Dallas-based home healthcare company Encompass Home Health from Apax Partners. Northwestern Mutual acquired a minority position. No financial terms were disclosed, although LBO Wire had previously reported that CIT Group was arranging a $180 million leveraged finance package.

PE-Backed IPOs

This week’s IPO calendar includes expected pricings from Masimo Corp., Cross Match Technologies Inc., HireRight Inc. and DemandTec Inc. Go here for more information on each offering.

PE Exits

The Carlyle Group has completed its $1.9 billion sale of both Landmark Aviation and Standard Aero to Dubai Aerospace Enterprise. Tempe, Ariz.-based Landmark provides aircraft maintenance services, while Winnipeg-based Standard Aero provides repair services at airport terminals. Doughty Hanson was also a Standard Aero shareholder.

Lime Rock Partners has sold PSL Energy Services to Halliburton (NYSE: HAL). No pricing terms of the all-cash transaction were disclosed. PSL is a UK-based provider of solutions for wells, process and pipeline services in the oil and gas industry. Lime Rock and a management team led by Doug Duguid acquired the company out of receivership in May 2003.

PE-Backed M&A

Conner Steel Products Inc., a San Angelo, Texas-based manufacturer of above-ground storage tanks for the oil and gas industry, has acquired Aggregate Plant Products Co., a San Antonio-based provider of material handling equipment for the oil and gas well fracturing services business. Conner Steel is a portfolio company of Empeiria Capital. Terms were not disclosed.

Hub International Ltd., a Chicago-based insurance brokerage, has acquired certain assets of Roslyn Heights, N.Y.-based brokerage Jacobs & Jacobs Inc. Hub also announced that it has acquired the stock of Templeton Southwest Insurance Agency and Templeton Southwest of Houston Insurance Agency Inc. — Texan insurance brokers specializing in commercial trucking insurance services. No financial terms of either deal were disclosed. Hub International was taken private earlier this year for $1.8 billion, by Apax Partners and Morgan Stanley Principal Investments.

Veridiam Inc., a San Diego-based metal components manufacturer, has acquired Allied Swiss Screw Inc., an Oceanside, Calif.-based maker of custom-fabricated ultra-precision machined products. No financial terms were disclosed. Veridiam is a portfolio company of WHI Capital Partners.

Firms & Funds

Welsh Carson Anderson & Stowe has begin pre-marketing for its 11th fundraising drive, according to LBO Wire. The New York-based firm plans to raise between $4 billion and $5 billion, after having closed its tenth fund just last year with $3.5 billion.

IMT Capital of Los Angeles has closed a real estate private equity fund with $350 million in capital commitments.

Human Resources

Morgan Stanley has named Brian Magnus as co-head of European private equity, alongside Graham Keniston-Cooper. Magnus is currently head of UK investment banking, while Keniston-Cooper joined the firm in July.

Paul Pensa will join Evercore Partners as principal accounting officer and controller, effective next Monday. He most recently served as a managing director and deputy controller at The Bank of New York Mellon and, before that, spent more than 18 years with Credit Suisse.

John Nowaczyk has joined Milestone Partners as director of business development. He previously worked in the I-banking department of Legg Mason Wood Walker as a vice president of its strategic advisory group.