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Andersen Puts $1 Billion Behind Net Start-Ups

Andersen Consulting, a name synonymous with helping blue-chip companies around the world streamline their operations, now wants to be a driving force behind the Internet's growth.

The company Monday formed Andersen Consulting Ventures and said it will put $1 billion into the unit which will help create new electronic businesses.

The new unit will be based in Palo Alto, Calif., and will be headed by Jackson Wilson, who previously served as a managing partner at Andersen. Wilson will be responsible for establishing relationships with venture capital firms, investment banks and e-commerce providers. He will also seek out investment targets in North America, Europe and Asia.

"Andersen Consulting Ventures will offer a significantly different venture capital operation for promising start-ups. In addition to the experience and knowledge we have gained through our more than 140 investments and allinaces with (Internet) companies, we will be able to leverage Andersen Consulting's scale, global presence and relationships with established industry leaders throughout the world," Wilson said.

We will make investments in start-up companies that are well-positioned to leverage technology in order to enable new business models and change entire industries."

Andersen has already made investments in a number of Internet and e-commerce plays including Covation, which targets the health care industry with e-commerce services; ChemConnect, an Internet-based chemicals and plastics exchange; Snowdrops.com, a Swedish retailer of beauty products; and customer relations software maker Calico.



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