After years spent counseling venture-backed companies as senior partners with Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison (BPH), attorneys Rick Fink and Bruce Hallett late last year teamed up with former First Consulting Group senior executive Bob Holmen to launch an early-stage investment firm of their own.
The result was Miramar Venture Partners, which on July 1 held a $62 million first close for its inaugural fund, and is targeting a $100 million final close by year-end with a $200 million maximum capitalization.
The official announcement was delayed until last week so that the news could coincide with the firm?s Web site launch.
“The type of work we were doing [at BPH] was as counsel to emerging companies, and it was really much more handholding and being a strategic venture-like advisor than it was corporate lawyering,” Fink said. “So we really just examined what we were doing and said that VC was the next logical step.”
The fund will mostly back early-stage technology plays based in Southern California, with each company receiving an initial investment of between $1 million and $3 million.
Although Miramar has yet to make a deal, Fink said he and his team are seriously eyeing a trio of networking plays, two companies in the information storage space and an enterprise software developer.
As with most first-time funds, Miramar?s limited partner roster is littered with high-net-worth individuals like lead investor Henry Sameuli, co-founder and chief technical officer of Broadcom Corp. It has also brought in a small handful of institutional players, like VantagePoint Venture Partners, and is hoping to add to that list before the fundraising period expires.
“Money is obviously important, but we actually turned away some people who we didn?t feel would add anything in terms of strategic value from a deal-flow or portfolio [company] management perspective,” Fink said. “Now, though, we are looking more at the traditional LP space.”
The Miramar fund is expected to be invested over a three-year to four-year period, and is being marketed with a 20% carried interest structure.