Deal round-up 26/11/03

Global Life Science Ventures leads $13m biotech round; VCs back French semiconductor company; UK Web filtering firms lands £7.3m round; DVC leads $8.5m Klotz Digital investment; NBG exits Bulgarian DIY chain;

Global Life Science Ventures leads $13m biotech round


Global Life Science Ventures has led a series A investment round in Glycart Biotechnology, a Zurich-based biotechnology company. Other co-investors in the $13.6m round included Gilde Investment Management, DVC Deutsche Venture Capital, ABN AMRO Capital, Quester Capital Management, BioMedinvest, and the Novartis Venture Fund.


Funds from the series A financing round will be used to advance the company’s antibody development programs. Glycart currently has several next-generation therapeutic antibody programs at various stages of preclinical development for a number of disease indications.


VCs back French semiconductor company


Global venture capital firm Atlas Venture has led a E12.5m series B round of financing for Soisic, a French semiconductor intellectual property company based in Grenoble. The round also included co-investments from KT Venture Group and all existing investors including Crescendo Ventures, CDC-PME, Emertec, Siparex Ventures and Soitec, a manufacturer of silicon on insulator (SOI) wafers.


Soisic also announced that it had appointed Wayne Cantwell as CEO. In a statement, Cantwell commented: “The initial financing was used to establish the company’s infrastructure and to complete the automation of the product design flow. This new capital will allow the company to continue to expand its product and patent portfolio, as well as expand the sales and marketing efforts of the company.”


UK Web filtering firms lands £7.3m round


Amadeus Capital Partners, BA Capital Partners, Cazenove Private Equity and Kennet Venture Partners have provided £7.3m in financing for Clearswift, a provider of software for managing and securing electronic communications based in London. Clearswift’s technology is used by organisations such as AT&T, Bank of America, Cadbury Schweppes, Chase Manhattan, Continental Airlines, HSBC, JP Morgan, Glaxo SmithKline and Marks & Spencer.


Clearswift said in a statement that it would use the funds to support its ongoing investment in email and web filtering and management solutions, and to investigate new opportunities arising from emerging communication channels.


DVC leads $8.5m Klotz Digital investment


Munich-based venture capital firm DVC Deutsche Venture Capital has led a E8.5m round of financing for Klotz Digital, a developer of audio/media platform technology. The new financing will allow the company to develop its role in the broadcast sector and the paging/public address business. A number of undisclosed co-investors also backed the round.


NBG exits Bulgarian DIY chain


NBG Venture Capital has exited Doverie Brico, a Bulgarian chain of DIY retail stores in Bulgaria. NBG Emerging Europe Fund, a private equity fund advised by NBG Venture Capital which invests in Central and Eastern Europe with a primary focus on the Balkan region, sold its stake in Doverie Brico to Mr Bricolage, the French DIY chain listed on the Euronext Paris Second Marché


Doverie Brico currently operates stores in the cities of Sofia and Plovdiv with an estimated annual turnover of approximately E25m. Full financial details of the deal have not been disclosed, although NBG said the investment had generated an overall return of approximately two times the total amount invested, with the largest tranche having been invested in the company two years ago.


NBG Venture Capital, the private equity/venture capital arm of the National Bank of Greece, manages or advises capital commitments of almost E150m. It pursues investment opportunities across industries primarily in Greece and in the neighboring countries of Southeastern Europe.