Executive moves, week of Aug. 4, 2008

Velidi leaves Sevin Rosen to start own fund

Ram Velidi

has left Sevin Rosen Funds (SRF) where he was a partner. He had been with the firm since 2001. An automated reply from Velidi’s SRF email address last week said that he had “transitioned out of Sevin Rosen Funds.”

Private Equity Insider had previously reported that Velidi plans to soon try to raise $50 million to $100 million for a venture fund called Peroba, which would invest in foods with health benefits. Velidi did not respond to a request for comment from PE Week.

Velidi worked in the firm’s office in Dallas, Texas. Earlier this year, the partners in the Dallas office said they planned to raise a new fund without their partners in Palo Alto, Calif., according to press reports at the time. The move came about 15 months after the longtime firm halted plans to raise a 10th fund and Palo Alto-based GP Steve Dow said the early stage venture model was broken.

Velidi’s departure follows that of Palo Alto-based Partner Nick Sturiale, who joined The Carlyle Group in January to be a managing director with its venture capital and growth funds. Sturiale remains an “affiliated partner” with SRF.

Voyager poaches Ahn from Woodside

Longtime Woodside Fund Managing Director Daniel Ahn has left to join IT venture firm Voyager Capital. Ahn joins Curtis Feeny as one of two managing directors in Voyager’s office in Menlo Park, Calif. Ahn will focus on Web, enterprise infrastructure, wireless and core technology investments. He had been with Woodside for nine years, where he backed such companies as Analogix Semiconductor and Berkeley Design Automation.

Cohen retires from Hellman

Mitch Cohen

has retired as a managing director with Hellman & Friedman, according to a report in LBO Wire. Cohen had been with the firm since 1989, most recently serving as head of media relations. The move comes as Hellman & Friedman gets ready to begin marketing a new $10 billion fund.

Paul Capital promotes Macleod

Paul Capital Partners has promoted Ken Macleod to partner. He is based in the firm’s London office, and focuses on European and Asian health care opportunities. He joined the firm four years ago.

Norton moves up at CoPERA

The Colorado Public Employees’ Retirement Association has promoted Aaron Norton as a senior portfolio manager for private equity. He replaces David Martus, who recently left to join Pegasus Capital Advisors.

Flowers sprouts partner in Australia

David Morgan

has joined New York-based private equity firm J.C. Flowers & Co. as an operating partner and chairman of Australian operations. He is the former CEO of Westpac Banking Corp. and currently serves as a director of BHP Billiton.

Quaker names new partner

Geeta Vemuri has been promoted from principal to partner at life sciences venture investor Quaker BioVentures. She joined the firm as a senior associate in 2003.

VMware manager joins L Capital

John Gannon

has joined venture firm L Capital Partners as an associate. He previously was with virtual server company VMware as senior manager of professional services.

Moore foundation promotes Barad

The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation has promoted Alison Barad to associate director of private equity. She succeeds Denise Strack, who was recently named the foundation’s chief investment officer.

Golub gravitates two

Gregory Cashman and Andrew Steuerman have each been promoted to senior managing director at Golub Capital, a middle market lender. Prior to joining Golub in 2004, Steuerman was a managing director at Albion Alliance. Cashman has been with Golub since 1996. Prior to that, he reported to the CFO at Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

Gotham rings Bell

DFJ Gotham Ventures, an early stage technology venture capital firm based in New York, has promoted Thatcher Bell to principal and has added Mark Davis as an associate. Bell has been with the firm since 2005 and has worked closely with portfolio companies Worktopia, Lumeta and Monitor 110.

Hudson makes power play with O’Neill

Private equity firm Hudson Clean Energy Partners has brought aboard Mike O’Neill to help launch Element Power, a new portfolio company that will focus on utility-scale wind and solar power generation. O’Neill was formerly commercial director of Renewable Energy Systems Group.

Four new American presidents

American Capital has expanded its senior management team to include four presidents. Steven Burge will serve as president of North American finance, Ira Wagner as president of European private finance, John Erikson as president of structured finance and CFO, and Gordon O’Brien as president of special finance and operations. Malon Wilkus remains American Capital’s chairman and CEO.

It’s all Goodall for SVG

Kate Goodall

has joined the investor relations team for SVG Capital, the largest investor in funds from Permira, a large European private equity firm. Goodall was formerly vice president at Capital Dynamics, a specialist private equity asset manager. She founded the Private Equity Investor Relations Association in 2007.

Irish pension fund names manager

Nick Ashmore

has been named private equity portfolio manager for Ireland’s National Pensions Reserve Fund, according to Dow Jones. Ashmore joined the group in 2006 after serving with Adams Street Partners.