Private Equity Week Wire for Wednesday 3/21

BOULDER, CA — Walter T. G. Lee, General Partner of the Silicon Valley venture capital firm AltoTech Ventures, LLC., has been named to the Board of Directors of Pure Matrix, Inc. (, effective immediately. The appointment of Mr. Lee was announced today by Douglas W. Holbrook, Senior Vice President of Pure Matrix, Inc., a developer of next-generation products and services for the Mobile Internet.

TORONTO – Ontario Power Generation announced today the launch of a subsidiary company, OPG Ventures Inc. that will invest in new emerging energy and related energy technology companies. The new company plans to make up to $100 million worth of investments over the next three years in viable companies that have alternative generation or related energy technologies in the advanced start-up or later stage of growth. Target investments, of approximately $2-3 million, will be made to create a portfolio of 20-25 companies. In addition, up to 25 per cent of the fund will be invested in established energy related venture funds with a predominately North American focus.

SUDBURY, MA — Mitchell Russo, CEO of FurnitureFan Inc., a web-based marketing services company for the furniture industry, and Zero Stage Capital, a venture capital firm investing in emerging growth sectors including information technology and the Internet, announced today a major financial commitment though year-end to the online company. In this third round of funding, FurnitureFan has secured a total of $4.1 million in additional equity financing.

IRVINE, CA — Y Media Corp. announced today it has closed $3.4 million in venture financing. This latest infusion is its second round of Series B funding, bringing its total Series B funding to $10.7 million. With this round, Y Media attracted new strategic investors, including InveStar Capital, a technology focused capital fund management company with offices in San Jose and Taipei, and SQ Corporation, a key pan-pacific import and export operation for consumer electronics, headquartered in Japan. This new round brings Y Media’s total venture backing to $15.7 million since its inception in March 1999. Other investors include Enterprise Partners, Chase Capital (now J.P. Morgan Partners) and TechFund Capital.

ATLANTA — ServiceCentral Technologies Inc., a provider of service chain managementsolutions, today announced that it has closed a Series A round of funding raising $4 million from venture capital firmLiveOak Equity Partners and Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A). The capital raised will be used to support the sales, customer support and product development of the company’s flagshipproduct, ServiceCentral Enterprise.

WAYNE, PA — PA Early Stage, a family of venture funds that makes investments inseed, start-up, and early stage technology-based companies, announced today that it has taken an equity stake in LoanAuction, aleading provider of business-to-business e-commerce auctions for commercial loans. PA Early Stage, an affiliated private equity fund of Safeguard Scientifics (NYSE:SFE), leads the financing series and is joinedby Wynnefield Private Equity Partners I, L.P. and Resolution Capital, the latter of which led LoanAuction’s initial funding round.In addition, the LoanAuction Board of Directors has gained two strategic members, PA Early Stage principal, Scott Nissenbaumand Wynnefield partner and former Philadelphia Mayoral candidate, Sam Katz.

BOSTON — Bain & Co. today announced thatit named 13 individuals to the position of vice president. Among the names were a handful of individuals with private equity experience, including Norbert Hultenschmidt (Munich), Heidi Locke Simon (SanFrancisco), Miwa Suto (Tokyo) and Fredrik Wilhelmsson (Stockholm). Hultenschmidt is a vice president in Bain’s Munich office. He joined Bain in 1997 and has worked with clients inhealthcare, consumer goods, industrial foods, and private equity across a broad range of strategy and operational issues. Heidi Locke Simon is a vice president in the San Francisco office. Since joining Bain in 1993, she has contributed to clients in telecommunications/high tech industries across a broad range of strategy and operations issues. She also spent over a year working in the Private Equity Practice on deal generation and evaluation as well as portfolio strategy projects for LBO and Venture Capital investors across a wide variety of industries. Miwa Suto previously worked for Arthur Andersen and for Schroder Ventures, where she contributed to the creation of the equity stories of various financial restructuring. Fredrik Wilhelmsson is a vice president in Bain’s Stockholm office. He joined Bain in 1994. He has experience in the high-tech,Internet, private equity, media and manufacturing industries. Recent assignments include advising a leading VC firm through investment appraisals, deal generation and venture support in Europe and the U.S., as well as growth, mergers & acquisitions and corporate strategy assignments for companies in media, Internet and other industries.

CHICAGO — KnowledgeAdvisors, a global knowledgeintegrator focused on the design, management and evaluation of corporatelearning programs, today announced the closing of a $2 Million Series Afinancing. The oversubscribed round was led by Mosaix Ventures and eBlastVentures, with the participation of several strategic investors. This roundfollows a highly oversubscribed seed round late last year.

NORCROSS, GA — MyBenefitSource, a provider ofInternet-based payroll and benefits services for businesses, today announcedit has received $6.0 million in Series A round funding. Investors includeAUSA Holding Company, an affiliated company of the AEGON insurance group ofcompanies, one of the world’s largest insurance organizations measured bymarket capitalization; Habif, Arogeti & Wynne, LLP, a leading accounting andfinancial services firm; and Molton, Allen and Williams, a leading propertyand casualty insurance agency. Prior to its Series A round which closed inJune 2000, MyBenefitSource operated on funding from its founders, angelinvestors and revenues from the business.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA — Cards etc.,developer of Arterium — the transaction infrastructure management system formulti-application smart cards — has finalised a funding round which hasprovided a $16 million cash injection. Citicorp Equity Capital successfully acted as lead manager for theraising. The funding round involved an additional investment from existingshareholders Citigroup (NYSE: C) and First Data Corp. (NYSE: FDC).

For yesterday?s complete Wire, click here..