VC fund briefs, week of July 14, 2008

Kleiner Perkins loses partner in ChinaDavid Su, one of the founding partners of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byer’s $360 million China Fund, which closed in April 2007, has left the firm. His departure comes just five months after another founding partner, Joe Zhou, departed to launch his own venture fund.

Zhou is still listed at the firm’s website as an “affiliated partner.” That is not the case for Su. The remaining partners consist of Tina Ju, Forrest Zhong and Ian Goh. Ju and Zhong, along with Zhou and Su were co-founding partners of KPCB’s China Fund.

Zhou came from Softbank Asia Infrastructure Fund, while Su, Ju, and Zhong worked together at TDF Capital Partners.

No official word on why Su and KPCB have parted ways. Separately, the fund’s most recent announced investment came last week: KPCB, along with Zero2IPO Group, invested $30 million in, a Hangzhou City-based business site for travelers. The startup aims to lower travel expenses for business travelers by inking deals with airline companies and hotels. —Constance Loizos

VC partners nix life sciences fund

The venture capitalists who struck out on their own earlier this year to start a life sciences investment firm, have halted their efforts, according to Private Equity Insider.

Paul Grayson, formerly a managing director at Sanderling Ventures, and Jay Hagan, the former managing director of Amgen Ventures, had formed Access Bioventures early this year in San Diego, but closed operations recently when Grayson joined stem cell research company Fate Therapeutics as president.

Private Equity Insider reported that Grayson and Hagan tried unsuccessfully to recruit a third senior member to Access. It is unclear how far the partners progressed in raising the debut fund for Access.

DFJ DragonFund seeks $200M

DFJ DragonFund, the Chinese affiliate of Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ), has been pitching limited partners for the past two months as it has been seeking to raise at least $200 million for its second fund, according to Private Equity Insider.

Shanghai-based DragonFund, which invests in early stage China-based companies, raised about $100 million for fund I in 2006.

The firm is led by Managing Directors K. Bobby Chao, Larry Li, Tony Luh and Andy Tang, according to its website, which also lists DFJ’s Tim Draper as managing director.

Private Equity Insider reports that the firm is poised to add staff as it wraps up fund II, which is likely to continue to invest in early stage tech companies.

GCube game to raise new fund
Shiraz Akmal, a former executive at game publisher THQ, and Jawad Ansari, founder and former general partner of Miven Venture Partners, last week announced the launch of GCube Ventures.

The Los Angeles-based firm will invest in early and growth stage companies in the gaming industry. The firm’s initial focus is on U.S. and Asia-based companies.

The firm has not yet disclosed the target of the new fund, but the two co-founders are currently investing their own money in syndicated venture deals.