Exit watch. July 9, 2007

Google acquires GrandCentralGoogle Inc. last week acquired GrandCentral Communications, a Fremont, Calif.-based online voice communications management startup. The terms of the deal were not disclosed though some news websites, including InformationWeek.com, reported the acquisition price was $50 million.

Calls to GrandCentral were not returned before PE Week’s deadline last week.

GrandCentral is beta testing a “One Number for Life” telephone number in which multiple phone numbers and voice mailboxes are routed to a single umbrella account, accessible by the user from anywhere via the Web or any phone. TechCrunch late last month reported that the deal was imminent. TechCrunch also reported that GrandCentral had raised $6 million in venture funding from Minor Ventures, the venture capital firm founded by CNet pioneer Halsey Minor. Altogether, GrandCentral had raised about $46 million in early and late stage funding from Benchmark Capital, Cargill Ventures, Court Square Ventures, Eastman Ventures, Goldman Sachs & Co., Gryphon Ventures, JGE Capital Management, Merrill Lynch Capital Partners and Morgan Stanley Private Equity, according to Thomson Financial (publisher of PE Week).

In buying GrandCentral, Google has now completed 12 acquisitions in 2007, including its pending $3.1 billion purchase of DoubleClick (which is awaiting regulatory approval). Throughout 2006, Google bought nine companies, including its $1.65 billion purchase of video sharing website YouTube.

Citigroup buys Automated Trading Desk

Citigroup Inc. announced that it has agreed to buy Automated Trading Desk $680 million, including more than $102 million in cash. Automated Trading Desk is a Mount Pleasant, S.C.-based developer of automated trading and customized equity execution solutions. The company raised $60 million in equity earlier this year from Technology Crossover Ventures. Founded in 1988, Automated Trading Desk has about 120 broker-dealer customers and trades, on average, more than 200 million shares daily, which is about 6% of the volume of the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq combined.

Nielsen scoops up Telephia
The Nielsen Co. has agreed to acquire Telephia Inc., a San Francisco-based provider of syndicated consumer research to the telecom and mobile media markets. No financial terms were disclosed. Telephia has raised more than $102 million in total VC funding since 1999 from such firms as AEA Investors, Centennial Ventures, Oak Hill Venture Partners, The Megunticook Fund, Cedar Grove Investments and Prime New Ventures.

American Lawyer unloaded

The publisher of American Lawyer magazine is set to be acquired for $630 million by Incisive Media, a British publisher backed by Apax Partners, according to a report late last week by the Associated Press.

The seller is New York-based buyout firm Wasserstein & Co., which formed American Lawyer Media Holdings in 1997. Last year, the company was reportedly earning annual revenue of about $200 million. ALM produces some 14 magazines and 12 newspapers, along with books, newsletters, websites and events. Among its magazine titles are Corporate Counsel, IP Law & Business and IP Magazine.

Carlyle sells Intelistaf
The Carlyle Group has sold Intelistaf Holdings, an Illinois-based medical staffing business, to Medical Staffing Network Holdings for $92 million. The sale marks end of an investment which began in 2000 when Carlyle acquired a majority stake for $67.5 million. —PE Week staff