June 23, 2008 |
Michael DiPiano and Marc Lederman did what investors are supposed to do: they bought low, almost at the bottom of the dot-com bust in 2000. Today, thanks to their nerve back then and a lot of time spent picking over local start-ups, their Radnor-based NewSpring Capital L.P. has grown into a $500 million venture firm with holdings ranging from online technology to food packaging, while staying rooted in a region not known as a venture capital center....
June 8, 1998 |
A new class of extra-patient, risk-tolerant investors is scouring the Philadelphia area, looking for businesses once deemed too small and risky even for venture capitalists. Financed by wealthy institutions such as Safeguard Scientifics of Wayne, MBNA Corp. of Wilmington, and the Pennsylvania teachers' pension system, and at times by tax dollars, new "early stage" venture capital funds have raised more than $70 million so far this year to back fledgling Philadelphia-area companies they hope will strike it rich.
October 5, 1998 |
The pictures haven't been hung and some boxes remain unopened, but the research continues at Message Pharmaceuticals Inc. In August, the 9-month-old biotechnology company bought several patents from its former parent, Bearsden Bio Inc., for an undisclosed amount. It relocated from Bearsden's Aston offices to its own digs in Charlestown. Last week it raised $6.3 million from five venture capital firms. Now, all it has to do is prove its drug-discovery technology will work. Message Pharmaceuticals is testing a method of using proteins to create drugs.
February 3, 2003 |
Like a doctor consoling a patient, Gerald A. Schaafsma emphasizes the positives in the state of private investing in the Philadelphia region. "I can't say our region is suffering any more than any other part of the country," said Schaafsma, chairman of the Greater Philadelphia Venture Group, one of the area's largest associations of private investors and related professionals. Schaafsma, general partner of Anthem Capital L.P., of Rosemont, even detects signs of a possibly quick return to health: More than 30 percent of the region's private financing went to "early stage" companies last year, versus about 20 percent nationally, suggesting a renewed appetite for these investments, which are considered riskier than financing company expansions.
March 22, 2000 |
The Pennsylvania teachers' pension system has accelerated its push into the high-risk, global venture capital markets by committing $135 million to a new, Radnor-based private equity fund. The Co-Investment 2000 Fund will be managed by Radnor-based Cross-Atlantic Capital Partners and by Richard M. Fox, who until January was head of the investment banking arm of Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co. and its Janney Montgomery Scott brokerage. The new fund will invest in some of the privately held companies belonging to 25 venture capital firms that already manage money for the state-subsidized Pennsylvania Public School Employees Retirement System, according to Fox and John C. Lane, the pension system's chief investment officer.
March 5, 2001 |
Despite investors' anxiety over the nation's technology sector, venture capital was abundant last year. Philadelphia-area companies received $914 million in 78 deals. More than three-quarters of the money went into Internet-related ventures - about the same as in 1999. The amount invested locally in 2000 declined slightly from 1999, when venture capitalists put $929 million into 56 deals. Nearly half of the 1999 amount, $450 million, went to one firm, Digital Access Inc., of Bala Cynwyd, which announced last week that it was shutting down.
September 6, 1998 |
When Wall Street went ballistic last week, observers said the window had slammed shut on small companies that want to go public. However, for the venture capital firms that back these start-ups before they hit the big time, the downturn may not be so bad in the long run. "The [entrepreneurial] companies themselves probably view this quite negatively. The venture funds view this in more of a balanced or neutral way," said Jim Buck, general partner of TDH, a venture-capital firm in Rosemont with $70 million under management.
August 7, 2015 |
iPipeline, a life-insurance and financial-services software maker based in Exton, has been sold to Thoma Bravo L.L.C., a private-equity firm with offices in San Francisco and Chicago, the companies announced Wednesday. The price was not disclosed. iPipeline, founded in 1995, employs more than 400 and had $60.7 million in revenue in 2013, according the 2014 Inc. 5000 ranking of fast-growing companies. The sellers were venture-capital firms NewSpring Capital, of Radnor; Technology Crossover Ventures, of Palo Alto, Cal.; and Volition Capital, of Boston.
July 19, 2016 |
What does Boston have that Philly lacks? Merck told workers last week it was moving more than 300 jobs out of Montgomery County and New Jersey, and "increasing our investment in areas where biomedical research is converging, specifically in Cambridge, Mass. " Adderall maker Shire Plc moved more than 500 jobs from Chester County to Massachusetts last year because "Boston is a biotech center," a spokeswoman said. AstraZeneca has demolished labs and sold the former high-rise tower and South Campus at its U.S. headquarters just north of Wilmington, and is building its Innovative BioHub next to Cambridge.
July 11, 2016 |
Stephen Zarrilli, 55, needs a lot of patience or nerves of steel, or both. Zarrilli heads Safeguard Scientifics Inc., the firm that made its reputation in the 1990s as Philadelphia's answer to Silicon Valley's venture capital giants, pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into tech start-ups. When the tech bubble burst in 2000, it crushed Safeguard's stock and forced Safeguard's founder, Warren "Pete" Musser, to retire. These days, Zarrilli, who joined Safeguard in 2008 and became CEO in 2012, leads a more modest firm, investing tens of millions, not hundreds.