Uniscape Tries For Series C VC Round

Uniscape Inc., a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based developer of e-business software and Web globalization services in 42 languages, is in 11th-hour negotiations for a third round of venture capital financing ? almost one year to the day after closing on a $10 million investment from Sequoia Capital.

While Sequoia was the only investor in Uniscape?s Series B deal last May (see PEW 5/15/00), the upcoming round will include some existing venture backers alongside new, strategic investors, said Steve Adams, the company?s newly appointed president and chief executive. Among the new investors will be a list of consulting firms and systems integrators ? funders whose own clients could logically partner with Uniscape. Still, Adams would not disclose the round?s final tally, saying that most likely the deal would close in two tranches within the next 45 days.

Although the company was successful in raising capital in a difficult climate for enterprise software, its growth expectations ? and those of its investors for a near-term liquidity event ? have fallen in line with the market correction.

After the company closed its Series B round, Maggie Fong, Uniscape?s chief financial officer, spoke of a possible initial public offering within 12 to 18 months and predicted revenue for 2000 to be four times that of the previous year. While Adams said that revenue for 2000 did, in fact, grow 300% over the previous year, instead of concentrating on the public markets, the company is looking to shift its balance of revenue drivers away from value-added services to its translation software packages. At the same time, the latest capital infusion will be used to fund an expansion into Asia and Europe and build the company?s sales and consulting. Now, the company expects to reach profitability by 2002 without seeking further venture financing.

In previous rounds of funding, the company has raised approximately $15 million from a list of both domestic and international investors, including Acer Capital of Santa Clara, Calif., Fortune Venture Management Pte. Ltd. of Singapore, Honho Consulting Co. Ltd. of Taiwan, Jin Sun Security of Taiwan, the National Computer Board of Singapore, Sequoia of Menlo Park, Calif., Star Capital Group Inc. of Taiwan and Los Angeles-based Technology & Internet Capital.

Contact Carolina Braunschweig: Carolina.Braunschweig@tfn.com