Private Equity Week Wire for Wednesday 10/31

BOCA RATON, FL — Medical Staffing Network Inc. (MSN), a leading provider of temporary nurses and staffing solutions for the healthcare industry, announced today that it completed the previously announced recapitalization of the Company led by the investment firm Warburg Pincus. MSN’s current major shareholders, including Navis Partners, Piper Jaffray Ventures, and management reinvested capital in order to maintain significant ownership stakes. Warburg Pincus and existing shareholders committed approximately $185 million of equity, giving the Company an enterprise value of almost $300 million. Following the transaction, Warburg Pincus owns approximately 60% of the Company. The existing management team will continue to lead the Company.

Concurrent with the recapitalization, MSN entered into a new $120 million senior debt facility. Bank of America acted as Administrative Agent and Co-Arranger on the transaction together with General Electric Capital Corporation. LaSalle Bank was the Syndication Agent and other participants in the deal include Antares Capital Corp., Barclays Bank, The Chase Manhattan Bank and UBS Warburg.

LONDON — British venture capital firm 3i Group PLC said Tuesday that it will cut 185 jobs, about 17 percent of its staff, and close seven offices in Britain and Europe. It says it does not plan to cut any U.S.-based jobs.That will leave 36 offices operating in 16 countries.

In related news, Standard & Poor’s Corp said it placed its ratings on 3i Group PLC and related entities on CreditWatch with negative implications, including the AA- long-term and A1+ short-term counterparty credit ratings.

PLEASANTON, CA — Again Technologies will announce today that it has secured $15 M in venture capital. This marks the company’s third round of funding, led by InterWest Partners. Other investors include Palomar Ventures, Sierra Ventures, Staenberg Venture Partners and Artemis Ventures.

PRINCETON, NJ & LOD, ISRAEL — InterCure announced that it has closed a $4.5 million Series B round of financing.The round was led by Medica Venture Partners, one of the premier healthcareinvestment firms with offices in Tel Aviv, Israel and Boston, Massachusetts,and included The Investment Company of Mizrahi Bank, which had an earlierinvestment in the company that was consolidated into this round. Currentinvestors include New York-based True North Partners and Palladin CapitalPartners, and Israeli-based Yaacov Shachar, Dr. Arie Ovadia and DanielPlotkin, Chairman of InterCure. InterCure is planning to raise one final roundof private financing in anticipation of an initial public offering.

ATLANTA — Magnet Communications Inc. today announced that the company has obtained $8 million in equity financing from several investors as well as a $5 million credit facility from Silicon Valley Bank. Equity investors include CORALVentures, Cordova Ventures, LiveOak Equity Partners and Saints Ventures as well as current Magnet customers SunTrust Banks Inc., Washington Mutual Inc. and Silicon Valley Bank.

TOKYO — Nomura Holdings Inc., the parent company of Japan’s largest securities firm, announced today that Nomura affiliates have entered into an alliance with Thomas Weisel Partners whereby the two firms will coordinate cross-border M&A activity between the U.S. and Japan and Nomura will make a $200 million strategic investment in Thomas Weisel Partners Group LLC and its affiliates. That investment includes a $125 million investment in private equity initiatives sponsored by Thomas Weisel Partners and an undertaking to raise up to an additional $500 million for future Thomas Weisel Partners’ private equity funds.

SEATTLE — Copan, a private venture capital firm specializing in strategic capital for global expansion, today announced it has hired Jonathan Spencer as an associate. Spencer will be responsible for sourcing and evaluating new investment opportunities in the Pacific Northwest and the San Francisco Bay area, and assisting portfolio companies with their international expansion strategies. He will work out of the firm’s Seattle office headed by Patricia Atkinson, managing director.

MONTREAL — Mr. Alban D’Amours, President and Chief Executive Officer of the “Mouvement des caisses Desjardins”, is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Bruno Riverin, President of “Investissement Desjardins”, to the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Capital regional et cooperatif Desjardins”, a new venture capital company devoted to regional development and support for the cooperative milieu.

ANDOVER, MA — CMGI Inc. (Nasdaq: CMGI), and majority-owned subsidiaries AltaVista Co. and NaviSite Inc. (Nasdaq: NAVI), today announced the signing of an agreement with Compaq Computer Corporation and Compaq Financial Services (CFS, a wholly owned subsidiary of Compaq) to retire, restructure and realign key financial obligations.

As part of the financial restructuring between the companies, Compaq will retire two CMGI promissory notes, representing total outstanding amounts of $220 million, issued by CMGI in 1999 related to the company’s acquisition of AltaVista. In exchange, CMGI will transfer to Compaq a combination of cash, CMGI common stock and CMGI’s interest in B2E Solutions LLC, a joint enterprise formed by Compaq and CMGI last year. The agreement also terminates AltaVista’s existing equipment leases with Compaq Financial Services, effectively freeing AltaVista from the remainder of future lease obligations in exchange for a one-time payment.

For yesterday’s Wire, click here