New in the News
ARTISTdirect, BuildNet, Chain Link Technologies, Construction-Zone, Creativepro.com, Elastic Networks, GlobalFoodExchange.com, HealthAnswers, HomePortfolio.com, InfoVista, Intelligent Information, Mondera.com, NextGen Capital, OrderTrust, PowerAdz.com, Skyway Partners, TelePacific Communications, Tellium, THCG, VeloCom
New in the News
DENVER– VeloCom Inc., a rapidly growing international broadband telecommunications company completed a $250 million private equity offering. This round of financing brings VeloCom’s total equity capitalization to $365 million. Lead investors in the placement include existing VeloCom shareholders: Telecom Partners, Centennial Funds, Crescendo Ventures, SLI S.A. and Formus Communications International; as well as new investors: Banc of America Equity Partners Latin America, Mellon Ventures, GCC Investments and First Union Capital Partners. Also taking part in the placement are QUALCOMM Inc. (a VeloCom strategic partner in Brazil), Toronto Dominion Capital, Dolphin Communications Fund, Northwood Ventures, CRI Media Partners, Janco Capital Management and Brad Peery Capital. In the past few months, VeloCom has increased its market presence beyond Brazil to Argentina, Colombia, Peru and Uruguay through the acquisition of the Latin American assets of broadband wireless access providers Formus Communications International, Argentina-based SLI Wireless SA and Brazil-based Taquari Participacoes SA.
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.– BuildNet Inc., an e-business, technology and project management software provider for the home building industry, raised $104.7 million in its recent financing round. It is BuildNet’s third private financing round; most recently, it raised $35.7 million in May 1999. Investors in this round include institutional and strategic investors. Institutional investors include: John Hancock Global Technology Fund; J. & W. Seligman & Co. Inc.; Global Technology Investors Fund LLC, at Bessemer Trust. Barnard & Co. LLC; BancBoston Ventures Inc.; SGC Partners II; and Southeast Interactive Technology Funds have all participated in this round as return investors, having participated in one or more previous rounds.
ENCINO, Calif.– ARTISTdirect Inc., an online music company that provides music entertainment through the ARTISTdirect Network, entered into separate strategic relationships with, and received $97.5 million in equity investments from, six music and media companies. ARTISTdirect has entered into separate and independent licensing, marketing and/or distribution agreements with Universal Music Group, BMG Entertainment, Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group. Cisneros Television Group, a pay television content provider in Latin America, also entered into a strategic relationship with ARTISTdirect, including an equity investment. Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO) has taken a minority equity stake in the company.
OCEANPORT, N.J.– Tellium Inc., raised $50 million of equity in a mezzanine round of financing. The equity was in the form of preferred shares and includes $45 million of new cash and the conversion of $5 million of debt. New investors Thomas Weisel Partners and Pequot Capital joined current Tellium investors including SAIC, Ortel Corp., Oak Investment Partners, Accel Partners, Worldview Technology Partners, Blue Rock Capital Investors and Cisco Systems. The company expanded the board of directors to include William B. Bunting from Thomas Weisel and Jeff Feldman from Pequot Capital. In addition, Steve Rizzone, CEO of Ortel, replaces Dr. Isreal Ury, CTO, as the Ortel representative on the board. Tellium designs and manufactures networking products that create intelligent optical networks.
STAMFORD, CT– Intelligent Information Inc. raised $32.7 million in a new round of preferred stock financing. New strategic investors include Bowman Capital Management, Clearnet Communications Inc., GE Equity Investments Inc., Keystone Venture V L.P., NBC Interactive Media Inc., Sony Corp. of America, Sony Music Entertainment Inc. and Susquehanna Partners GP. Intelligent Information is a provider of timely personalized information to users of wireless communications devices, such as mobile phones, pagers and personal digital assistants in North America.
NEW YORK — Mondera.com, a vertically integrated luxury e-tailer, completed its second round of venture financing. This $25 million dollar round was led by the Sprout Group, the venture capital affiliate of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (NYSE:DLJ). @Ventures, the venture capital affiliate of CMGI (Nasdaq: CMGI) and the lead investor in Mondera.com’s initial $13 million round of investment, also provided additional backing in this subsequent round.
COLUMBIA, Md.– InfoVista, a global leader in business-oriented service level management reporting and analysis solutions, announced that its current group of investors has exercised its option to supply InfoVista with a next round of funding in the amount of ten million euros/dollars. Among the group of investors that demonstrated their unanimous support of InfoVista are Innovacom, Cv Sofinnova Ventures Partners Iii, Dassault Development, Paribas Affaires Industrielles, Technologie Holding and Vertex Technology. InfoVista provides a reporting and knowledge management tool that renders a uniform view of service level achievements across every component within an information system, as well as the ability to correlate that information with other business information throughout an organization.
LOS ANGELESTelePacific Communications, a business-to-business telecommunications and Internet service provider in the Western U.S., will receive a $10 million equity investment from GE Capital. In September, TelePacific closed a $50 million credit facility with GE Capital that will help expand TelePacific’s operations throughout California and Nevada. The financing and equity investments will be used to further expand TelePacific’s state-of-the-art telecommunications infrastructure, hire more telecommunications customer service and technical professionals, and buy additional switches in preparation for year 2000 market openings.
AUSTIN, Texas — HealthAnswers Inc., formerly Healthway Communications International Inc., completed a $10 million financing of Preferred Series B stock.Investors participating in the current round of funding included Vulcan Ventures and CODITEL S.A. The company received $31.5 million in financing during the third quarter of 1999 from investors including Vulcan Ventures, CODITEL S.A., Union Bancal Equities Inc. and an affiliate of Prime New Ventures, Inc.
RENSSELAER, NY– PowerAdz.com, a large provider of Internet products and services for newspapers in North America, raised approximately $9 million in private equity in December. PowerAdz’ current investors First Albany Enterprise Funding and Advantage Capital Partners were joined by Hudson Venture Partners LP in the funding which includes $7.5M in new capital and $1.5M in fully exercised warrants. Early investors Exponential Business Development, TS Capital and several private investors also joined the round. PowerAdz provides affiliates with a turnkey Internet infrastructure, online business models, national advertising platform and e-commerce capabilities.
HAPPAUGE, N.Y.– Skyway Partners Inc., a full-service provider of broad-band communications services, including high-speed Internet, digital TV and telephone services to multi-unit housing and commercial property industries, completed a $5 million round of equity financing which consisted of series A preferred stock. The offering was purchased by individuals and institutional investors.
ATLANTA– GlobalFoodExchange.com closed a first round of funding, raising $810,000 in seed funding to support its vision of an Internet marketplace. Global Food Exchange connects buyers and sellers of seafood, produce, meat, poultry, specialty commodities and processing ingredients, allowing trading partners to directly interact, strengthening relationships and lowering transaction costs.
LOUISVILLE, Ky.– The Construction-Zone, an Internet-based interface between manufacturers of construction materials and users of those materials in commercial construction, announced that initial financing is in place to provide for rapid expansion of the site, known as c-z.com. Phase I investment, in the amount of $750,000, was provided by Resource Alliance Partners, a Kentucky-based investment group headed by John Leehy and Greg Sahrmann. Financing for Phase II of the Construction-Zone’s development, in the amount of $2.4 million, was led by Chrysalis Ventures of Kentucky and Bailey Capital of Palm Beach, Florida. Other investors include David Grissom, Mayfair Capital; Greg Fischer, Iceberg Ventures; and Michael Grisanti.
PORTLAND, Ore. — Mac Publishing and Creativepro.com Inc. announced a strategic business relationship in which the two companies will serve the Mac-based creative professional community. The companies will cross-link the front pages of their respective sites and cross-license selected content targeted at the professional audience. In addition, Mac Publishing will also make an equity investment in Creativepro.com. Specific terms of the agreement have not been disclosed. Creativepro.com is a portfolio company of Adobe Ventures LP, the investment arm of Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq:ADBE).
LOS ANGELES — Liberty Digital Inc. (Nasdaq:LDIG) has entered into a strategic and financial partnership with OrderTrust Inc., a provider of integrated order management services for e-commerce. The relationship includes a significant investment by Liberty Digital in OrderTrust. The OrderTrust transaction is the latest in a series of strategic investments Liberty Digital is making in the Internet e-commerce and infrastructure and interactive television arenas.
NEW YORK– THCG Inc. (NASDAQ:THCG) formed THCG Venture Partners I LLC, an early stage Internet venture funding vehicle. THCG Venture Partners I has approximately $23 million of committed equity. THCG has a 9.9% equity interest in Venture Partners I and manages Venture Partners I through its wholly-owned venture funding arm, THCG Ventures LLC. THCG is in discussions to form a related venture funding vehicle which it will manage and to increase the committed equity of Venture Partners I. The goal for the two vehicles is a combined total of $100 million of committed equity. GSC Partners, which manages $2 billion of private equity, committed $15 million to Venture Partners I, and has the option to increase its commitment to Venture Partners I by $20 million upon the formation of the related fund.
Who’s Who & Where
ALPHARETTA, Ga. — Elastic Networks Inc., a provider of next-generation DSL hardware and innovative connectivity software solutions for the carrier and enterprise markets, appointed Gary S. Palmer to the position of vice president, professional services. Prior to joining Elastic Networks, Palmer served as vice president, operations, AT&T Global Accounts. Elastic Networks is funded by Nortel Networks, Texas Instruments and Pequot Capital.
SUNNYVALE, Calif. — Chain Link Technologies Inc., a provider of eBusiness infrastructure management software, appointed Bryan Plug as CEO. Prior to his appointment at Chain Link, Plug was president and CEO at Pandesic LLC, the internet company from Intel and SAP, and SMART Technologies (now part of i2 Technologies). The company received $10 million in mezzanine funding in June 1999 from TA Associates.
NEWTON, Mass. — HomePortfolio.com, an Internet destination for premium home design products, announced that Richard Morrison will join the company as executive vice president of the business solutions. Morrison joins HomePortfolio from IMA, a call center e-business software solutions company. HomePortfolio.com recently completed a $20 million second round of funding led by Oak Investment Partners.
FAIRFAX, Va.– NextGen Capital LLC, a venture capital fund providing equity financing to early stage companies in the Mid-Atlantic region, appointed Stefan A. Strein as a director. Prior to joining NextGen Capital, Strein served as director of licensing at the National Audubon Society in Washington, DC. Before that Strein spent five years at Triad Investors Corp. in Baltimore, MD.
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