Here’s a look at the past week’s scoops, opinions and analysis from the peHUB blogging team.
It was Q1 earnings week, and we covered the Blackstone and American Capital calls. Dan liveblogged Blackstone’s media call. I posted some of the highlights, including Tony James on how “portfolio companies are like humans.” As for American Capital, shareholders are pretty worried about the possibility of bankruptcy or a reverse stock split (we didn’t even realize that was possible!).
Private Equity deal activity dipped in April, but that doesn’t meant there aren’t a ton of companies on the block-here’s our Midweek M&A Madness roundup. Not to mention, KKR landed the second largest deal of the year even though it submitted the lowest bid, and there’s a heated bidding war for software services company SumTotal.
On the VC side, we dug up scoops on six new fundings. Connie reported on new money for Gist, and Dan provided details on investments with 23andMe. Venture firm vSpring backed an aggressive buyout roll-up. Alex profiled a new start-up founded by Willard MacDonald. Connie noticed that Twitter-watching has gone so, so wild.
In entrepreneur celebrity news, Google’s cofounder got sentimental and Facebook’s founder cozied up to college students. Skype’s co-founders launched a new venture fund and eCast’s founders were accused of fraud. Meanwhile, global warming activist Al Gore is taking some heat on his role as a partner with VC firm Kleiner Perkins and software titan Peter Norton is still very rich.
We posted Q&A’s with two VCs and one CEO:
- Cliff Friedman, Constellation Growth Capital
- Samuel Schwerin, Millennium Technology Value Partners
- And Joel Strellner, the CEO of Twitt(url)y
Meanwhile, DFJ is facing fundraising difficulties and VC firm Omidar Network laid off a handful of employees, not long after hiring. HIG Capital’s investment in Spring Air Mattresses is losing its bounce (and maybe its backing).
The fountain of news that is the New York pension scandal continued to gush. We took stock of Aldus Equity’s diminishing client list. Dan approved of CalPERS plan to monitor placement agents rather than ban
then, and laid out five issues facing pension funds that are bigger than placement agents. New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli released a detailed list of placement agents that were involved with investments made by NY Common Retirement Fund under former Comptroller Alan Hevesi. The
accompanying press release also pretty much dissed Hevesi at every opportunity it got.
Vox Populi contributor Chris Bulger pointed out the NVCA’s two big blind spots. Michael Butler detailed
future of financial regulation with a post titled, “How a Changing Investment Banking Industry Will Finance the Future.” Denise Palmieri offered some expert pointers on how to (and how not to) ace a phone interview. Tim McMahon outlined the opportunities for small caps (and why they’re on their way.)
The weekly downgrade wrap-up was light for once.
And of course, First Read and Second Opinion covered plenty of ground, including the Silver Lining for Cerberus on Chrysler, once place where MBA life is good, TPG’s transition into a buyer of debt, leverage gone very, very wild, Firefox versus Facebook, the return of junk bonds, the arrival of vulture investors from China, and reverse PIK toggling.