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Term Sheet — Tuesday, November 24

Random Ramblings

Some quick notes to kick off your Tuesday…

• Dogs and cats, living together: CVC Capital Partners and the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board yesterday announced that they will acquire pet supplies retailer Petco for $4.6 billion. Not a bad return for sellers TPG Capital and Leonard Green & Partners, which paid just $1.8 billion to take Petco private back in 2006.

Petco is the nation’s second-large pet supplies retailer behind Petsmart, which itself was acquired late last year by BC Partners. The Petco purchase price is just above a 10x multiple on EBITDA, whereas Petsmart was sold for around 9.1x. There had been reports earlier this summer that Petsmart was interested in acquiring Petco, but word is that talks didn’t go too far due to concerns about a drawn-out FTC process whose conclusion would be uncertain (the ongoing Staples-Office Depot situation played a role in the thinking here).

It’s also worth noting that Petsmart had taken a look at Petco back in 2006, before TPG and Leonard Green ultimately won the deal. At the time, anti-trust concerns also were raised — although that was a much different environment vis-à-vis the Internet (as, of course, is Staples-Office Depot).

• Fiduciary duty: I got some email push-back yesterday from readers on the “morality” of tax inversions, and will include some in tomorrow’s mailbag. But while we wait: A lot of it centered on the notion of “fiduciary duty” — arguing that the bottom line trumps all.

For those who feel that way, a question: Are companies breaching their fiduciary duty when they engage in philanthropic activities — either financial donation or encouraging employee volunteerism during regular work hours? If not, please do explain the distinction in corporate citizenship vis-a-vis a company’s core responsibility to shareholders.

• Interesting carry: Joe Lonsdale last night sent an email out to his “friends and allies,” in order to provide an update on his new VC firm (Eight Partners) in the aftermath of Formation 8 deciding not to raise a third fund. It included some performance data (Lonsdale writes that F8’s $448 million Fund 1 has a net IRR of around 90% to date), some details about the debut Eight Partners fund being raised next year ($400m target) and an existing $60 million special purpose vehicle that “will take big stakes in the companies I’ve been most heavily involved in on the entrepreneurial side in the past five years” (i.e., Anduin, Addepar, Affinity and Blink).

But the real interesting piece, from my perspective, is that Eight Partners will provide 10% of the fund’s carried interest to recipients of the email, based on either formal or informal help they give with portfolio companies. In other words, if one of Lonsdale’s friends helps make an introduction to a company or to a potential portfolio company executive, you’ll get some per deal upside (something that F8 and Lonsdale’s SPV had already been doing on an ad hoc basis).

More importantly, if the advisor chooses to donate their upside to a nonprofit rather than to their personal bank account, Lonsdale will personally match the donation 1:1. This all reminds me a bit of the Andreessen Horowitz nonprofit pledge with their fund carry, and it’s a welcome development within a VC world where a lot of general partners are wealthy enough that they’re no longer in it primarily for the payday.

• Sharing is caring: Just a reminder that you always can send me an anonymous message by using this tip function.


• Deliveroo, a London-based on-demand delivery service for restaurant meals, has raised $100 million in Series D funding. DST Global and Greenoaks Capital co-led the round, and were joined by Accel, Hummingbird Ventures and Index Ventures. Read more.


• Placester, a Boston-based marketing platform for the home-buying process, , has raised $27 million in Series C funding from existing backers New Enterprise Associates and Romulus Capital.

• Shiftgig Inc., a Countryside, Ill.-based mobile job marketplace, has raised $22 million in Series B funding. Renren Inc. led the round, and was joined by Chicago Ventures, DRW Venture Capital, GGV Capital, Garland Capital Group, KGC Capital, Pritzker Group and Wicklow Capital.

• Harvest Power Inc., a Waltham, Mass.-based provider of renewable energy and fertilizer products from organic waste, has raised $20 million in new VC funding. Return backers include True North Venture Partners, Industry Ventures and Generation Investment Management. The company has now raised around $225 million in total VC funding, and announced that CFO Chris Kasper has been promoted to CEO, as prior CEO Kathleen Ligocki has “accepted a CEO role at another company.”

• MindTickle, an India-based sales readiness platform, has raised $12.5 million in Series A funding from New Enterprise Associates and return backer Accel.

• PatientPop, a Santa Monica, Calif.-based healthcare practice growth platform, has raised $10 million in Series A funding led by Toba Capital. It previously raised a $3.3 million seed round led by AthenaHealth.

• Fortscale Security Inc., a San Francisco-based provider of user behavior analytics for enterprise security, has raised $6 million in new VC funding from CME Ventures and UST Global. The company previously raised $10 million from Blumberg Capital, Intel Capital and Swarth Group.

• HealthCrowd, a San Mateo, Calif.-based provider of healthcare mobile messaging solutions, has raised $2.1 million in new seed funding. Backers include Startup Capital Ventures, Herlitz Capital, Healthy Ventures, Band of Angels, Berkeley Angel Network, and 37 Angels.

• Homie, a Salt Lake City-based peer-to-peer marketplace for home buyers, builders and sellers, has raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding led by Peak Ventures.

• Movago, a Berlin-based operator for professional moving services, has raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding. DN Capital led the round, and was joined by return backers Holtzbrinck Ventures and Piton Capital.

• Sunfire GmbH, a German provider of reversible high-temperature electrolysers and high-temperature fuel cells, has secured an “eight-digit investment” from firms like Inven Capital, Total Energy Ventures and Electranova Capital.


• Alothon Group has acquired a controlling interest in Grupo MPR, a Brazilian producer of industrial alcohol and alcohol-based cleaning products. No financial terms were disclosed.

• Calverton Holdings has acquired Kerkhoff Associates Inc., an Otterbein, Ind.-based manufacturer of structural components and related wood and steel products for residential, commercial, and agricultural construction applications. No financial terms were disclosed.

• Cinven has agreed to acquire ERGO Italia, a Milan-based provider of both life and non-life insurance products, from German insurance company ERGO Group. No financial terms were disclosed.

• General Electric (NYSE: GE) has agreed to sell its £3.9 billion portfolio of British residential loans to an investor consortium led by The Blackstone Group. Other buyside participants include TPG Special Situations Partners and CarVal Investors. Read more.

• H.I.G. Capital has acquired a portfolio of 16 predominantly grocery store-anchored retail assets in Norway. No financial terms were disclosed.

• Irving Place Capital and New Value Capital have acquired Dynojet Research Inc., a Las Vegas-based manufacturer of aftermarket performance-enhancing parts, accessories and diagnostic equipment for the powersports industry. No financial terms were disclosed. Sellers include American Capital.

• Kinderhook Industries has acquired Sumter Transport Co., a Sumter, S.C.-based provider of waste removal, transportation and disposal solutions. No financial terms were disclosed.

• Lightyear Capital has acquired a majority equity stake in Pathlight Capital LLC, a Hingham, Mass.-based commercial finance company focused on the consumer and retail sectors. No financial terms were disclosed.

• Partners Group has acquired a minority equity stake in Aiyingshi, a Chinese chain retailer in the maternity and baby sector, from China New Enterprise Investment and two undisclosed shareholders. No financial terms were disclosed.

• QualaWash Holdings LLC, a Tampa, Fla.-based provider of bulk transportation container cleaning services, has acquired Gator Environmental & Rentals Inc., a Port Allen, La.-based provider of waste water collection, transportation and disposal services in the Gulf Coast region. No financial terms were disclosed. QualaWash is a portfolio company of Roark Capital Group.

• ShelterLogic, a Watertown, Conn.-based portfolio company of RFE Investment Partners and Charter Oak Equity, has acquired Arrow Storage Products, a Breese, Ill.-based provider of outdoor steel storage solutions. No financial terms were disclosed.

• Wellspring Capital Management has acquired AdvoServ, a Bear, Del.-based behavioral healthcare provider focused on clinical, educational and residential services services for children and adults with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities and dual diagnoses. No financial terms were disclosed. The seller was GI Partners.


• No IPO news this morning. 


• Greenhouse Software, a New York-based recruiting platform, has acquired Parklet, a San Francisco-based employee onboarding and experience cloud software company. No financial terms were disclosed. Greenhouse Software has raised around $60 million in VC funding from firms like Thrive Capital, Benchmark, Resolute Ventures and Social+Capital Partnership. Parklet had been seeded by FundersClub, Greylock and Storm Ventures.

• Mad Mobile Inc., a Tampa, Fla.-based mobile platform company for Fortune 2000 companies, has acquired the assets of KidoZen Inc., a Miami, Fla.-based platform for powering enterprise mobile apps. No financial terms were disclosed. KidoZen had raised $5 million in VC funding from Third Point Ventures.

• Sabre Corp. (Nasdaq: SABR) has agreed to acquire the Trust Group of Cos., a provider of hotel reservations, revenue management and marketing solutions, from Battery Ventures. No financial terms were disclosed.

• TSG Consumer Partners has agreed to sell DenTek Oral Care Inc., a Maryville, Tenn.-based provider of oral care products like dental picks, to Prestige Brands Inc. (NYSE: PBH) for $225 million (on a cash-free, debt-free basis).


• Carl Icahn disclosed a 7.1% stake in Xerox (NYSE: XRX), after which Xerox stock climbed nearly 9% in the aftermarket. Read more.

• Publicis Groupe (Paris: PUB) has acquired a majority stake in Israeli creative agency Glickman Shamir Samsonov for an undisclosed amount.

• Skyworks Solutions (Nasdaq: SWKS) has canceled its $2 billion agreement to acquire rival chipmaker PMC-Sierra Inc. (Nasdaq: PMSCS), rather than getting into a bidding war with Microsemi Corp. (Nasdaq: MSCC), which has offered around $2.4 billion in cash and stock. The deal termination entitled Skyworks to an $88.5 million breakup fee. Read more.


• No firm or fund news this morning.


• Tim Lambert has joined London-based Octopus Investments as a member of its strategic partnerships team. He previously was with Parallel Capital.

• Jonathan Pollock has been named co-CEO of Elliott Management, alongside firm founder Paul Singer. Pollack has been with the activist investment firm for 26 years. Read more.

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