A bunch of notes to kick off your Wednesday…
• Long date: The Carlyle Group this morning announced that it has closed its first long-dated fund at $3.6 billion. I spoke briefly with fund co-heads Eliot Merrill and Tyler Zachem, who say the vehicle will focus on companies that normally would be on Carlyle’s buyout radar, but where the ownership structure (family-owned, etc.) makes a longer hold period more attractive to sellers (8-10 yrs vs. 3-5 yrs). In fact, Zachem says the initial impetus was seeing such opportunities come through the door, but not ultimately get done.
To be clear, this isn’t a Berkshire-like permanent capital vehicle, as it is structured for eventual exits. Moreover, fundraising cycles may actually be similar to that of traditional private equity, with $1.1 billion of the fund already committed to four deals (3 closed, the final one closing next month).
• Fund scoop: Bowery Capital has closed its second fund with $60 million in capital commitments. For the uninitiated, this is the seed and early-stage firm launched in 2013 by Mike Brown, who previously co-founded and led AOL’s corporate venture program. The investment thesis remains focused on enterprise software startups benefiting from (and enabling) broader corporate tech adoption, with a heavy platform emphasis on helping portfolio companies scale up early revenue.
New York-based Bowery raised $33 million for its debut fund (including a small slug from AOL, which wasn’t invited back in), and Brown says the larger fund size mostly reflects a desire to increase check sizes (“more because of the paid-in capital side than the valuation side”), plus continue to build out its support staff (including on the West Coast, where Bowery currently has two venture partners). Existing portfolio companies include mParticle, Premise, Transfix and TrackMaven.
• Meet the new boss… Money.net, an upstart financial terminal company with aspirations of someday besting Bloomberg, yesterday announced the addition of Norm Pearlstine as chief information architect.
It’s an intriguing hire for the financial info world given that Pearlstine is the onetime chief content officer for Bloomberg, where he first got to know Money.net founder and CEO Morgan Downey. And it’s of particular interest in this space because Pearlstine: (a) Spent time with The Carlyle Group after leaving Bloomberg; (b) Was until recently my boss’ boss, as chief content officer of Time Inc. (where he remains vice chairman). And that latter connection is of additional interest here, given that Pearlstine tells me that he once tried to bring Money.net into Time Inc., “but for understandable reasons it didn’t work out, since it’s a bit far afield for a consumer media company.”
Pearlstine also tried to downplay the Bloomberg competition, pointing out that Money.net is still in its relative infancy and that he needs to build out a team of journalists to work with the company’s developers and better understanding client needs. At the same time, however, he sees parallels to Bloomberg’s early days: “Today they have a formidable news organization, but they started in 1990 with six employees getting up early and summarizing what was in the newspapers. We now have tools available to us that are far superior.”
• Thanks: Tons of feedback yesterday on the Y Combinator/Thiel/Trump/Altman stuff. Hope to address tomorrow.
• Media pet peeve: “Leaked” and “hacked” are not synonyms.
• Long garden leave: Warburg Pincus today announced that it has hired Goldman Sachs vet TJ Carella as a managing director focused on healthcare investments. If that sounds familiar, it’s probably because we first reported on the move back in March.
THE BIG DEAL
• Utz Quality Foods Inc. of Hanover, Penn. has raised an undisclosed amount of private equity funding from Metropoulos & Co., representing the first outside investment ever in the 95 year-old maker of potato chips and other snack foods. Read more.
VENTURE CAPITAL DEALS
• Oblong Industries, a Los Angeles-based developer of visual collaboration software, has raised $65 million in growth equity funding. Greenspring Associates, Industry Ventures and UTIMCO were joined by return backers Foundry Group and Morgan Stanley. www.oblong.com
• Zumper, a San Francisco-based home and apartment rental platform, has raised $17.6 million in Series B funding. Breyer Capital and Foxhaven Asset Management co-led the round, and were joined by return backers Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), Goodwater Capital, xfund, Scott Cook and Marcus & Millichap. www.zumper.com
• Leanplum, a San Frsncisco-based mobile marketing startup, has raised $29 million in Series C funding. Canaan Partners led the round, and was joined by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Shasta Ventures. www.leanplum.com
• Oryx Vision, an Israel-based developer of solid state depth sensing solutions for autonomous vehicles, has raised $17 million in Series A funding. Bessemer Venture Partners led the round, and was joined by Maniv Mobility and Trucks VC. www.oryxvision.com
• Furlenco, an Indian online furniture rental platform, has raised $15 million in Series B funding led by existing shareholder LightBox Ventures. The company also secured $15 million in new debt funding. www.furlenco.com
• EMS Drive Inc., developer of a MEMS optical image stabilization actuator for smartphone cameras, has raised $11 million in Series B funding led by Walden International. www.memsdrive.com
• Ibanfirst, a French provider of foreign exchange and other corporate banking services, has raised €10 million in VC funding led by Xavier Niel. Read more.
• Chorus.ai, an AI platform for improving sales conversations, has raised $6.3 million in first-round funding led by Emergence Capital. www.chorus.ai
• Workspot, a Cupertino, Calif.-based provider of enterprise mobility and remote access solutions, has raised $6.2 million in Series B funding. Presidio Ventures led the round. www.workspot.com
• TravelTek, a Scottish provider of dynamic tour pricing technology, has raised £5.3 million in VC funding from YFM Equity Partners. www.traveltek.com
• Ravelin, a London-based machine-learning fraud detection startup, has raised £3 million in new VC funding. Playfair Capital led the round, and was joined by fellow return backers like Amadeus Capital and Passion Capital. www.ravelin.com
• TrakCell, a Wales-based provider of cellular orchestration technology to aid in the delivery of regenerative therapies, has secured a “multi-million dollar investment” from Telegraph Hill Partners. www.trakcel.com
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
• Aavid Thermalloy LLC, a Laconia, N.H.-based portfolio company of Audax Group, has acquired Thermacore, a Lancaster, Penn.-based provider of performance thermal management, electronics cooling and materials solutions. No financial terms were disclosed. www.thermacore.com
• BC Partners has agreed to acquire 22 mental health hospitals from Priory Group, owned by Acadia Healthcare (Nasdaq: ACHC), for around £300 million. Read more.
• BelHealth Investment Partners has acquired AHS Staffing, an Edmond, Okla.-based provider of healthcare staffing services focused on placing pharmacy professionals and dialysis travel nurses. No financial terms were disclosed. www.ahsstaffing.com
• The Blackstone Group is the “lead bidder” to acquire Team Health Holdings (NYSE: TMH), a Knoxville, Tenn.-based provider of outsourced healthcare professional staffing and administrative services to hospitals and other healthcare providers, according to Reuters. Bain Capital was mentioned in an earlier WSJ report as having interest in Team Health, which has a current market cap just south of $3 billion. Read more.
• Connexion Point LLC, a Salt Lake City-based provider of communication lifecycle services for the healthcare industry, has raised an undisclosed amount of private equity funding from VSS. www.connexionpoint.com
• Good Sports Marketing, a Dallas-based hunting accessories company owned by Huron Capital Partners, has acquired HME Products LLC, a Minnesota-based maker of accessory hooks, deer gambles, tree-stand accessories, gloves and other hunting products. No financial terms were disclosed. www.gsmoutdoors.com
• The Hilb Group, a Richmond, Va.-based portfolio company of ABRY Partners, has acquired Indianapolis-based insurer Fundamental Insurance & Retirement Planning Inc. for an undisclosed amount. www.hilbgroup.com
• L Catterton is the frontrunner to buy a majority stake in Italian bicycle maker Cicli Pinarello SpA from the founding Pinarello family, according to Bloomberg. Read more.
• Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan has agreed to acquire the Canadian business of Constellation Brands Inc. (NYSE: STZ), including both wineries and retail stores, for C$1.03 billion. Read more.
• Orangewood Partners has acquired a majority stake in George Industries LLC, an Endicott, N.Y.-based designer and manufacturer of engineered components for the aerospace, defense, transportation and industrial end markets. No financial terms were disclosed. www.georgeindustries.com
• PayCommerce, an Edison, N.J.-based enterprise cross-border network for payments disbursement and acceptance, has raised $22 million in private equity funding from Tritium Partners. www.paycommerce.com
• Wellspring Capital Management has agreed to acquire Hoffmaster Group Inc., an Oshkosh, Wis.-based manufacturer of disposable tableware, from Metalmark Capital. No financial terms were disclosed. www.hoffmaster.com
• CRISPR Therapeutics AG, a Swiss gene editing company, raised $56 million in its IPO. The company priced 4 million shares at $14 per share, compared to plans to sell 4.7 million at between $15 and $17 per share. The company will trade on the Nasdaq under ticker symbol CRSP, while Citigroup, Piper Jaffray and Barclays served as lead underwriters. Crispr has raised around $160 million in VC funding, from firms like Versant Ventures (20.74% pre-IPO stake), Celgene (12.4%), S.R. One (9.69%), New Enterprise Associates (9.69%), Bayer AG (8.01%), Abingworth (7.82%), Vertex Pharmaceuticals (7.6%), Franklin Templeton Investments, New Leaf Venture Partners, Clough Capital Partners and Wellington Capital Management. http://www.crisprtx.com
• Ergon Capital Partners has hired Lazard to find a buyer for Golden Goose Deluxe Brand, an Italian maker of luxury sneakers that could be valued at more than €400 million, according to Bloomberg. Read more.
• Triton is seeking a buyer for Europart, a Germany-based truck spare parts wholesaler, according to Reuters. The deal could be worth around €300 million. Read more.
• Malwarebytes, a San Jose, Calif.-based behavior-based detection engine for computer threats, has acquired French adware tracker and remover AdwCleaner for an undisclosed amount. Malwarebytes has raised around $80 million in VC funding from Fidelity and Highland Capital Partners. Read more.
FIRMS & FUNDS
• Atlantic Street Capital has closed its third private equity fund with $210 million in capital commitments. http://www.atlanticstreetcapital.com
• Rethink Education, an education-based VC firm, has closed its second fund with $107.5 million in capital commitments. www.rteducation.com
• Sofinnova Ventures has closed its tenth biotech-focused VC fund with $650 million in capital commitments. www.sofinnova.com