Private Equity Week Wire for Monday 2/26

NEW YORK — Peter J. Solomon Company (PJSC) announced today that Bradley I.Dietz had joined the firm as a Managing Director to lead its Restructuring activities.A Managing Director at Citigroup for the last ten years, Brad Dietz comes to PJSC withbroad based experience in complex restructuring and reorganizations matters across a variety of industries. Most recently, he has been involved in the restructuring activities at Finova, Inc., a large Arizona based finan-cialservices company involving $11 billion of bank and public debt.

NEW YORK — Vencast, a web enabled financial services firm focused on the distribution of alternative funds, has named Don Ceglar Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Don succeeds Vencast founder Jeffrey Dyment, who will assume an advisory role as Chairman Emeritus. Prior to joining Vencast, Mr. Ceglar served as a Managing Director at Weiss Peck and Greer LLC, where he was responsible for institutional sales, marketing and account management. Don served on the firm’s Executive Committee and was Co-Chairman of the firm’s Product Review Committee, which was responsible for risk management and new product development.

AUSTIN, TEXAS — Al Schuele has been named a general partner by early stage, tier-one venture capital firm Sevin Rosen Funds. Schuele, who joined Sevin Rosen in March 2000, will spearhead investments in semiconductors, communications and wireless Internet application companies. A 32-year high-tech industry veteran, Schuele has held top executive and sales positions in several semiconductor companies, played key roles in mergers and acquisitions and worked overseas serving the diverse Asian market. Formerly, he was CEO of Benchmarq Microelectronics where he managed the company through the turbulent Asian financial crisis and then negotiated a merger with Unitrode Corporation where he served as president and COO. In the 12 years prior, Schuele held key positions at Crystal Semiconductor in Austin, which later was acquired by Cirrus Logic. He is currently working closely with Sevin Rosen portfolio clients such as Cicada Semiconductor, Clarendon Photonics, Ethertronics, Monterey Design and Site Stuff.

AUSTIN, TEXAS – TL Ventures, a nationally focused, early-stage venture capital firm, today announced that IBM has invested in TL Ventures? sixth fund, TL Ventures V, as a limited partner.  This fund will focus on investing in category defining, seed and early-stage companies in information technology, communications and life sciences across the country.  In addition, TL Ventures and IBM have formed a  technology alliance that  will provide TL Ventures? portfolio companies with access to IBM?s dedicated relationship and technical managers and offers preferential pricing and financing terms for their acquisition of e-business products and services.

NEWTON, MA — Navic Networks Inc., a technology service provider offering cable and satellite operators comprehensive data collection and distribution services, today announced that it secured $20 million in new venture financing led by Pilot House Ventures Group and Pequot Private Equity, the direct venture capital arm of Pequot Capital Management, Inc. Previous investors, Highland Capital Partners and Himalaya Capital also increased their investments in Navic Networks, resulting in total financing of $43 million to date.

BOSTON, MA — TA Associates, a leading private equityfirm, announced today that Philip C. Rueppel has joined the firm as aPrincipal in the Boston office focusing on Internet infrastructureinvestments, including storage, content management and systems management. Rueppel joins TA from Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown where he was a Senior Systems Analyst and Managing Director covering the Internet infrastructureand computer systems segments. Prior to his eight-year tenure at DeutscheBanc Alex. Brown, Rueppel was an Equity Research Analyst at Sanford C.Bernstein & Co. covering computer systems companies. Before Sanford C.Bernstein & Co., he spent five years at Hewlett-Packard Company inengineering and marketing roles.

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC — Bloodhound Software Inc., an application service provider focused on medical claims overpayment protection services for insurers, TPAs, HMOs, IPAs and other at-risk medical payment organizations, today announced that it has obtained a commitment for up to $11 million in additional capital through the successful completion of Series C Preferred Stock Financing activities. Led by Noro-Moseley Partners, Atlanta, Ga., this third round of funding will be used by Bloodhound to build its internal production infrastructure, expand its staff and facilities, extend the sales distribution of its ClaimsGuard(SM) Overpayment Protection Services, and develop ancillary offerings that will complement and enhance the value of ClaimsGuard.

NEWPORT BEACH, CA — MyDrugRep, Inc., an innovative pharmaceutical technology services company specializing in marketing to physicians, today announced the closing of a $9 million funding round led by Sprout Group. Previous investors include Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, which also participated in this latest round, and Siebel Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq:SEBL), the world’s leading supplier of eBusiness applications software.

NOSTON — Thomson Financial Ventures, the venture arm of Private Equity Week publisher Thomson Financial, has announced a US$2M minority equity investment in creditex, Inc., a global electronic and informational exchange for over the counter derivatives. This investment follows a third-round $10-million raise from five major market participants that included strategic investors Bank of America, Credit Suisse First Boston, Dresdner Kleinwort Benson, SG and UBS Warburg Credit Suisse First Boston. Thomson Financial is the only non-dealer equity investor in creditex , and executed a data and content agreement with the company through its IFR division simultaneously with the funding. Proceeds will be used for international expansion, product development and general corporate purposes.

NEW YORK — Coreon Inc., the nation’s premier Operations Service Provider (OSP) for broadband telecommunications service providers, announced today that at the conclusion of its Series C round of funding it had secured $73 million in new equity and debt financing. Participating in this round were Bowman Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Telesoft Partners, KMF Partners, Comdisco, Western Technology, Imperial Ventures, Sands Brothers, and Cabletron.

CHICAGO — Cambia Networks, a provider of open data gateway platforms forwireless service providers, today announced that it has secured $11million in its first round of funding from Benchmark Capital, SkymoonVentures and Eagle Technology Ventures. Benchmark Capital led thefirst round of funding as the largest investor, joined by MikeFarmwald’s Skymoon Ventures and Craig McCaw’s Eagle TechnologyVentures. The company, which will target the $30 billion wirelessinfrastructure market, will deliver the first open architecture datacommunications platform that connects wireless networks to IP datanetworks.

SAN DIEGO — Astute Networks Inc., San Diego’s newest network semiconductor startup, today announced it has secured $16 million in first-round venture capital funding from top tier investment firms U.S. Venture Partners, Bank of America Venture Partners and Windward Ventures. The financing will be used to develop a new class of network content processors deployed in multiple Gigabit and 10 Gigabit network systems.

NEW YORK — Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. announced today that Jerry Newman has joined the Investment Banking Division as a senior managing director and head of its venture capital coverage effort. Mr. Newman joins Bear Stearns from J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. where he was head of venture capital services. Prior to that he was a managing director at SG Cowen Securities working in that firm’s Institutional Sales and Trading Department and then as head of the Corporate and Venture Services Group. From 1984 to 1989 he was a managing director at Hambrecht and Quist where he was head of Nasdaq Trading and a member of the Executive Committee. Mr. Newman holds a BA in public administration from San Francisco State University and an MPA in public administration from Golden Gate University.

FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA — Mitsubishi International Corporation, a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation, one of Japan’s foremost trading companies, has opened a venture capital office in Fairfax County and will invest $10 million in Washington, D.C.-area venture capital funds and technology companies, the company and the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) announced.
SUPERIOR, CO — MessageMedia Inc. (Nasdaq:MESG), a worldwide leader in permission-based, e-mail marketing and messaging solutions, today announced that it has received $11.0 million of new financing, including an $8.0 million private placement of 11.268 million shares of common stock. New investor REBAR, a global technology operating and holding company, joined current investors SOFTBANK Venture Capital and Pequot Private Equity in the private placement. MessageMedia also secured a $3.0 million collaterized loan from Wells Fargo Equipment Finance Company in December 2000.

MILPITAS, CA — noHold Inc., a privately held developer of interactive knowledge portals for corporate information, today announced the company has successfully completed a $4 million bridge financing. Participating in the round was Celtic House International, a venture capital firm based in Canada and MyQube, an international early stage venture capital firm.

SAN JOSE, CA — Onetta Inc., an emerging leader in the optical networking industry, announced today it has secured $56 million in Series B financing. HarbourVest Partners led the financing round, with additional investments from Sumitomo Corporation, JP Morgan H&Q, J.&W. Seligman and Series A investors, Sequoia Capital and Matrix Partners. Onetta will use the funding to expand production capacity of high-end intelligent optical amplifiers and next-generation intelligent optical engines.