peHUB Wire: Friday, July 31, 2009

Newbie venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz is a bit of an enigma, when it comes to its public profile.

On the one hand, it’s impossible to say the firm is in stealth mode, given that Andreessen has done more interviews in the past month than Barack Obama. On the other, Horowitz is apparently in some sort of witness protection program, the firm has no website and doesn’t comment at all about employees whose names aren’t in the masthead. In fact, the only other employee we even know about is Ronnie Conway, and that’s only because poppa Ron told some people about it last week at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference.

But thanks to LinkedIn, we know now at least two more members of the Andreessen Horowitz family: Scott Kupor, chief operating officer, and Shannon Callahan, director of human resources and recruiting.

Both are veterans of Opsware, the company Andreessen co-founded (as LoudCloud) and Horowitz ran (before s! elling it to Hewlett-Packard for $1.6 billion in 2007). Kupor had stayed with HP as vice president and GM of software-as-a-service, while Callahan was director of human resources.

If you know of any additional Andreessen Horowitz hires, drop me a note… Word back in the spring was that it was looking to build a decent-sized junior staff.

*** Today is the last day of July, so the Thomson Reuters data team sent over some monthly M&A deal activity info. It shows one of three things: (1) Most deal-makers spent the past 31 days on vacation; (2) There were no good deals left after June’s relative bonanza; or (3) The July numbers will increase over time, as new data gets entered into the system (i.e., deals not yet disclosed).

Thomson Reuters reports that global M&A fell to just $99 billion in July, compared to $287.9 billion in June and $357 billion in July 2008. All of the decrease, however, was on the strategic side. Private equity-sponsored d! eal volume actually increased from $7.36 billion in June to $13 billio n in July. It was the industry’s busiest month since last August, although the vast majority of deals were still outside of the U.S.

I’ve posted the charts here for your viewing/downloading pleasure.

*** Quick update on yesterday’s item about the placement agent lobbying group. Charlie Eaton, who did this Q&A with us, writes in to say the following: “You make it sound as though I and our competitors believe a lot of our competitors are shady, which is not true at all. I believe the shady characters are few and far between and mostly operate as two bit players confined to a few states where politicians are able and willing to influence decisions made by their p! ublic pension funds.”

*** I had originally planned to eat dinner this evening at Big Papi’s Grill, which opened this week just a mile or so from the home office. But now I don’t know. Maybe I should still go, order a steak and ask the waiter about any chemicals that were used to increase the cow’s size…

*** Have a great weekend…

Top Three

McAfee Inc. (NYSE: MFE) has agreed to acquire MX Logic Inc., a cloud-based email and Web security and email archiving and continuity services. The deal is valued at up to $170 million in cash, including a $140 payment at closing, andup to $30 million in earn-outs. Englewood, Colo.-based MX Logic has raised around $34 million in VC funding, from firms like Adams Street Partners, Axiom Venture Partners, Grayhawk Capital, River Cities Capital Funds, UV Partners and Vista Ventures. A Series D round back in 2004 valued the company just short of $25 million.

RailAmerica Inc., a Jacksonville, Fla.-based short line and regional rail service provider, has filed for a $300 million IPO. It plans to trade on the NYSE under ticker symbol RA, with JPMorgan, Citi, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley serving as underwriters. Fortress Investment ! Group took the company private in 2007 for $1.1 billion, including $450 million in equity.

FBR Capital Markets (Nasdaq: FBCM) has agreed to acquire Watch Hill Partners, a New York-based corporate advisory boutique founded in 2003. No financial terms were disclosed for the deal, which isexpected to close in thethird quarter.

VC Deals

QuikR, an Indian provider of online classifieds, has raised Rs 200 million ($4m) in new VC funding. Omidyar Network was joined by return backer Matrix Partners India.

Acrobot, a UK-based developer of medical devices for computer-assisted orthopedic surgery, has raised an undisclosed amount of new VC funding from return backers the London Technology Fund, Imperial Innovations Group plc and PUK Ventures. The firm have now invested a total of more than £3 million.

Micromet Inc. (Nasdaq: MITI), a -based developer of therapeutic antibodies, has filed to sell $70 million worth of common shares in a PIPE offering. VentureWire reports that Abingworth Management and SV Life Sciences, past venture backers of Micromet, will purchase some of the shares.

Buyouts Deals

Apollo Management, CVC Capital Partners and General Electric are in talks to partner on a joint bid for French nuclear group Areva’s transmission and distribution unit, according to La Tribune. Areva is looking for bids of at least €3.5 billion.

Ford Motor Co. is slowing down the bidding process for its Volvo car unit, according to the Wall Street Journal. Specifically, it plans to wait for GM to pick an Opel winner, with hopes that the loser will enter the Volvo process.

Oak Hill Capital has agreed to invest £100 million of new equity into Firth Rixson, a UK engineering firm that Oak Hill acquired in 2007. The deal is part of a loan waiver agreement with Fir! th Rixson lenders.

A U.S. bankruptcy court judge ruled that Delphi Corp. can sell itself to a group of lenders, including Elliott Management Co. and Silver Point Capital. The bankrupt auto parts maker had originally agreed to sell itself to Platinum Equity Partners.

PE Exits

Summit Business Media, a portfolio company of Wind Point Partners, has sold contemporary art fair Art Miami to theannual event’sorganizers. No financial terms were disclosed.

Vought Aircraft Industries Inc., a Dallas-based portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, has sold its South Carolina facility to a subsidiary of The Boeing Co. The deal was valued at approximately $580 million.

PE-Backed M&A

Asset International Inc., a financial information provider acquired late last year by Austin Ventures, has agreed to acquire Strategic Insight, a provider of research and technology services to the investment management market. No financial terms were disclosed.

PlayCore Holdings Inc., a Chattanooga, Tenn.-based portfolio company of Irving Place Capital, has acquired GT Grandstands Inc., a Plant City, Fla.-based maker of grandstands and bleachers. No financial terms were disclosed.

PE-Backed M&A

China Investment Corp. has finalized a $500 million allocation to The Blackstone Group. ! Read more…

Human Resources

Bob Leggett has retired as chief investment officer ofthe Teachers’ Retirement System of Louisiana, according to LBO Wire. The system is searching for a replacement. Leggett joined Louisiana TRS in 2007, after having served as CIO of the the New Hampshire Retirement System.

Wang Bing has agreed to rejoin Bank of America-Merrill Lynch as a managing director, and head of the firm’s corporate finance business in China.