Pantheon buys secondary tech investments

The fund-of-funds firm has acquired a controlling stake in US Quantum Technology Ventures in an $11m secondary transaction.

Pantheon Ventures, the European fund-of-funds manager with over $5.5bn under management worldwide, has completed a secondary acquisition in the US, taking a controlling stake in Quantum Technology Ventures, a Californian corporate venture subsidiary of struggling Quantum Corp.

Pantheon has agreed to pay $11m for its controlling stake in Quantum TV, which has investments in 18 private companies in the storage technology sector, reports the Daily Deal. The acquired interests include Alvesta, middleware solutions provider enScaler and broadband digital content distribution network Dotcast.

QTV, founded near the peak of the stock and private equities bubble in March 2000, was formed to invest in early-stage data infrastructure companies. The sale of the unit was part of Quantum's restructuring following a steep decline in its business during the last two years.

As part of the agreement, QTV will continue to make investment decisions and Quantum and Pantheon will each add more money for follow-on investments.

Pantheon, investing from its $418m Pantheon Global Secondary Fund, becomes a dominant shareholder in the fund and will receive a percentage of any profits from portfolio companies or exits.

The deal reflects the increase in secondary players looking to buy direct venture capital portfolios from companies who consider their corporate venture programmes as non-core. Late last year, secondary specialist Coller Capital acquired an 80 per cent stake in the venture capital portfolio of Lucent Technology in a groundbreaking transaction. 

Pantheon, which has offices in London, San Francisco, Hong Kong and Brussels, manages investments in more than 485 private equity funds in over 30 countries.

News of the deal comes in the week after Pantheon announced the departure of its chief executive, Richard Bowley, who left after 16 years with the firm.