Ex-Insight Venture pros form Level Equity

Insight Venture Partners is one of the darlings of the VC community, having taken two portfolio companies public in the past month.

But a partner on one of those investments, George McCulloch, has left the firm to hang his own shingle. Joining him are fellow Insight Managing Director Ben Levin and Senior Associate Sarah Haas.

McCulloch declined to comment.

The new firm, called Level Equity, is based in New York. No word yet on firm strategy, although both McCulloch and Levin have historically focused on the IT sector.

Prior to joining Insight in 2002, McCulloch worked on growth equity deals for Summit Partners in software, semiconductor and communications companies, while Levin concentrated on data networking deals for Greenwich Technology Partners.

“They are good, talented guys who saw an opportunity to scratch their entrepreneurial itch,” says Jeff Horing, a co-founder and managing director with Insight. “It’s actually not a bad time to start a firm, if you’re able to raise money.”

No word yet on how much Level Equity is hoping to raise, or if offering documents have even been drawn up. Horing says that the split has been in the works for several months.

McCulloch will retain his board seat with Medidata, which went public at $14 per share on June 25 and closed at $17.20 a share last Wednesday. —Dan Primack