Atlas Venture Raises $950 Million International Early-Stage Venture Capital Fund

New Fund Focuses Investments on Communications, Information Technology and

Life Sciences



Apr 26, 2001, 01:00 ET from Atlas Venture

    BOSTON, April 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Atlas Venture, the international venture
 capital firm, announced today that it has raised a $950 million venture
 capital fund, Atlas Venture VI, from institutional investors for investment in
 early-stage technology companies in the United States and Europe.  A parallel
 fund for entrepreneurs and other individual members of Atlas Venture's
 network, which will invest alongside the main fund, is also currently being
 raised.  Atlas Venture will maintain its traditional focus, primarily on
 early-stage companies in communications, information technology and life
 sciences.  Atlas Venture's sixth international fund brings total funds under
 management to over $2.5 billion, with active investments in more than 100
 portfolio companies worldwide.
     "Our core strength is the enormous depth and breadth of our portfolio,"
 says Christopher Spray, a Senior Principal of the firm.  "We are diversified
 across sectors, geographies and stages of investment.  This diversification
 helps us to deliver stable performance even during turbulent times in
 financial markets."
 
     Strong Performance
     The new fund comes on the heels of a strong year for Atlas Venture's
 portfolio.  During 2000, fourteen companies in the portfolio completed IPOs,
 and a further eleven companies were acquired.
     Notable among the successes in the communications portfolio were
 Orchestream Holdings plc, which went public on the London Stock exchange in
 June; Element 14, Inc, which was acquired by Broadcom Corporation in October;
 Cerulean Technology, Inc, acquired by Aether Systems, Inc; T.sqware, Inc,
 acquired by GlobeSpan, Inc; and The industree BV, which merged with BarcoNet
 NV.
     Returns in the information technology sector came mainly from enterprise
 software companies such as RightPoint Software, Inc, acquired by E.piphany,
 Inc; Trading Dynamics, Inc, acquired by Ariba, Inc; OnDisplay, Inc, acquired
 by Vignette Corp. in July; and SpeechWorks International, Inc, which completed
 its IPO in August.
     The largest number of IPOs, eleven in total on eight different stock
 exchanges, came from the life sciences portfolio.  These included: Actelion
 Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Ciphergen Biosystems, Inc, Crucell NV, deCODE genetics,
 Inc, Exelixis, Inc, IsoTis NV, MediGene AG, Modex Therapeutics SA, Neurochem,
 Inc, Novuspharma SpA, and Variagenics, Inc.
 
     Outlook for 2001
     "While the prospects for 2001 are, of course, less certain," says
 Christopher Spray, "we have many companies that are well placed to take
 advantage of the IPO markets whenever they reopen and a number of our
 portfolio companies are in merger discussions."
     Atlas Venture has traditionally invested in communications, information
 technology, and life sciences.  In the information technology sector, Spotfire
 Holdings, Inc, a leading provider of eAnalytic applications and services,
 maintains US headquarters in Cambridge, MA and European headquarters in
 Goteborg, Sweden.  eRoom Technology, Inc, which provides Internet-based
 software and services for collaboration in the extended enterprise, has
 recently been publicly recognized by press and peers for its product and
 leadership excellence.  Phase Forward Incorporated, a pioneer in software and
 services for Web-based clinical trial management, last month reported record
 growth through both software licensing and services and extended its
 relationships with twelve of the top fifteen global pharmaceutical companies.
     In the communications sector, Atlas Venture has built up a well-regarded
 portfolio of optical components and systems companies. Quantum Bridge
 Communications, Inc is a leader in the metro systems market, and OMM, Inc is a
 leader in the optical components market.  More recent portfolio additions such
 as Telephotonics, Inc and WaveSmith Networks, Inc, both started during 2000,
 are also attracting widespread attention.  Meanwhile, in Europe, Atlas Venture
 has been adding to its portfolio of companies addressing different aspects of
 the wireless marketplace.  Systemonic AG, located in Dresden, develops
 programmable DSP solutions for broadband wireless communications markets as a
 fabless semiconductor company.  Originally funded by Atlas Venture in 1998,
 Systemonic raised a large second round late last year to fund expansion, and
 RadioScape Ltd, focused on embedded software for several segments of the
 wireless market, announced major partnerships with Texas Instruments.  More
 recent additions are Digital Rum Limited, wireless infrastructure software;
 Netonomy, Inc, self-service e-care solutions for telecommunications companies;
 and Cognima Limited, wireless personal information management software.
     Atlas Venture was one of the few venture capital firms to maintain a
 significant commitment to life sciences investing during the late 1990s.  A
 steady, consistent, long-term approach, which paid off last year in a record
 number of IPOs, is also expected to produce a further healthy crop of
 companies benefiting from the "post-genomics" era.  Significant among these is
 Structural GenomiX, Inc, based in San Diego, an ambitious seed project
 originally funded by Atlas Venture in 1999, and now emerging as a well-
 capitalized leader in Proteomics.  Promising new companies added to the
 portfolio last year include CellZome GmbH in Germany and Signature BioScience,
 Inc in California.
 
     International Scale
     Atlas Venture is the only large, early-stage technology venture capital
 firm to be fully established on both sides of the Atlantic.  The benefits of
 the international venture capital model were not widely acknowledged when
 Atlas Venture pioneered the model in the mid 1980s, but it is now becoming
 accepted as a critical factor for future growth and success.
     "We are now seeing the same scale factors become important in venture
 capital as we see in other businesses," says Christopher Spray.  "The industry
 is moving away from the 'cottage industry' phase -- when everything depended
 on small local networks -- and moving to an 'industrialization' phase when
 scale and scope of international coverage become key.  We have seen this
 happen in the buyout part of the private equity business, we've seen it happen
 to technology investment banking, and now we're seeing it in venture capital.
 We expect quite rapid consolidation in the venture capital business over the
 next few years, particularly in Europe, where the more fragmented nature of
 the market, and the key importance of access to the US market, will pose an
 increasing challenge for firms focused only on a particular vertical sector or
 geographic region."
 
     Team Building
     During 2000, Atlas Venture added two new investment Senior Principals,
 Bernard Gautier, former head of Bain's European IT and Communications
 practices, to head up its Communications team in Paris; and Laura Jennings, a
 former senior Microsoft executive who had run the MSN Network and led
 Microsoft's own strategic planning process.  Ms. Jennings is leading Atlas
 Venture's West Coast activity, and has opened an office for the firm in
 Seattle, an area of the US with remarkably few well-established international
 venture capital firms, given its importance as a technology center.  "There
 are some excellent seed stage VCs in Seattle," says Laura Jennings.  "I saw an
 opportunity through Atlas Venture to work with them, and provide international
 reach to their fastest-growing companies."
     Atlas Venture has also added a small team of seasoned executives and
 younger investment associates to develop Atlas Venture's internal support
 infrastructure, and to deliver more extensive systematic support to portfolio
 companies.  Atlas Venture focuses its work with early-stage portfolio
 companies in three key areas:  defining the product and corporate strategy;
 recruiting the senior management team; and providing access to other sources
 for strategic and venture capital financing.
 
     About Atlas Venture
     Atlas Venture is the leading international, early-stage venture capital
 firm investing in communications, information technology and life sciences
 companies.  With offices in Amsterdam, Boston, London, Menlo Park, Munich,
 Paris, and Seattle, Atlas Venture's investments are split evenly between the
 United States and Europe.
     Founded in 1980, Atlas Venture has organized six international funds, and
 currently manages over $2.5 billion in committed capital.  The Atlas Venture
 investment team is comprised of seasoned operating executives and career
 venture capitalists who have been deeply involved in the formation and
 development of more than 300 companies worldwide.
 
     Contact Information
     For further information please call Davia B. Temin of Temin and Company at
 (212) 588-8788.  On the web, Atlas Venture can be visited at
 http://www.atlasventure.com.
 
 

SOURCE Atlas Venture
    BOSTON, April 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Atlas Venture, the international venture
 capital firm, announced today that it has raised a $950 million venture
 capital fund, Atlas Venture VI, from institutional investors for investment in
 early-stage technology companies in the United States and Europe.  A parallel
 fund for entrepreneurs and other individual members of Atlas Venture's
 network, which will invest alongside the main fund, is also currently being
 raised.  Atlas Venture will maintain its traditional focus, primarily on
 early-stage companies in communications, information technology and life
 sciences.  Atlas Venture's sixth international fund brings total funds under
 management to over $2.5 billion, with active investments in more than 100
 portfolio companies worldwide.
     "Our core strength is the enormous depth and breadth of our portfolio,"
 says Christopher Spray, a Senior Principal of the firm.  "We are diversified
 across sectors, geographies and stages of investment.  This diversification
 helps us to deliver stable performance even during turbulent times in
 financial markets."
 
     Strong Performance
     The new fund comes on the heels of a strong year for Atlas Venture's
 portfolio.  During 2000, fourteen companies in the portfolio completed IPOs,
 and a further eleven companies were acquired.
     Notable among the successes in the communications portfolio were
 Orchestream Holdings plc, which went public on the London Stock exchange in
 June; Element 14, Inc, which was acquired by Broadcom Corporation in October;
 Cerulean Technology, Inc, acquired by Aether Systems, Inc; T.sqware, Inc,
 acquired by GlobeSpan, Inc; and The industree BV, which merged with BarcoNet
 NV.
     Returns in the information technology sector came mainly from enterprise
 software companies such as RightPoint Software, Inc, acquired by E.piphany,
 Inc; Trading Dynamics, Inc, acquired by Ariba, Inc; OnDisplay, Inc, acquired
 by Vignette Corp. in July; and SpeechWorks International, Inc, which completed
 its IPO in August.
     The largest number of IPOs, eleven in total on eight different stock
 exchanges, came from the life sciences portfolio.  These included: Actelion
 Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Ciphergen Biosystems, Inc, Crucell NV, deCODE genetics,
 Inc, Exelixis, Inc, IsoTis NV, MediGene AG, Modex Therapeutics SA, Neurochem,
 Inc, Novuspharma SpA, and Variagenics, Inc.
 
     Outlook for 2001
     "While the prospects for 2001 are, of course, less certain," says
 Christopher Spray, "we have many companies that are well placed to take
 advantage of the IPO markets whenever they reopen and a number of our
 portfolio companies are in merger discussions."
     Atlas Venture has traditionally invested in communications, information
 technology, and life sciences.  In the information technology sector, Spotfire
 Holdings, Inc, a leading provider of eAnalytic applications and services,
 maintains US headquarters in Cambridge, MA and European headquarters in
 Goteborg, Sweden.  eRoom Technology, Inc, which provides Internet-based
 software and services for collaboration in the extended enterprise, has
 recently been publicly recognized by press and peers for its product and
 leadership excellence.  Phase Forward Incorporated, a pioneer in software and
 services for Web-based clinical trial management, last month reported record
 growth through both software licensing and services and extended its
 relationships with twelve of the top fifteen global pharmaceutical companies.
     In the communications sector, Atlas Venture has built up a well-regarded
 portfolio of optical components and systems companies. Quantum Bridge
 Communications, Inc is a leader in the metro systems market, and OMM, Inc is a
 leader in the optical components market.  More recent portfolio additions such
 as Telephotonics, Inc and WaveSmith Networks, Inc, both started during 2000,
 are also attracting widespread attention.  Meanwhile, in Europe, Atlas Venture
 has been adding to its portfolio of companies addressing different aspects of
 the wireless marketplace.  Systemonic AG, located in Dresden, develops
 programmable DSP solutions for broadband wireless communications markets as a
 fabless semiconductor company.  Originally funded by Atlas Venture in 1998,
 Systemonic raised a large second round late last year to fund expansion, and
 RadioScape Ltd, focused on embedded software for several segments of the
 wireless market, announced major partnerships with Texas Instruments.  More
 recent additions are Digital Rum Limited, wireless infrastructure software;
 Netonomy, Inc, self-service e-care solutions for telecommunications companies;
 and Cognima Limited, wireless personal information management software.
     Atlas Venture was one of the few venture capital firms to maintain a
 significant commitment to life sciences investing during the late 1990s.  A
 steady, consistent, long-term approach, which paid off last year in a record
 number of IPOs, is also expected to produce a further healthy crop of
 companies benefiting from the "post-genomics" era.  Significant among these is
 Structural GenomiX, Inc, based in San Diego, an ambitious seed project
 originally funded by Atlas Venture in 1999, and now emerging as a well-
 capitalized leader in Proteomics.  Promising new companies added to the
 portfolio last year include CellZome GmbH in Germany and Signature BioScience,
 Inc in California.
 
     International Scale
     Atlas Venture is the only large, early-stage technology venture capital
 firm to be fully established on both sides of the Atlantic.  The benefits of
 the international venture capital model were not widely acknowledged when
 Atlas Venture pioneered the model in the mid 1980s, but it is now becoming
 accepted as a critical factor for future growth and success.
     "We are now seeing the same scale factors become important in venture
 capital as we see in other businesses," says Christopher Spray.  "The industry
 is moving away from the 'cottage industry' phase -- when everything depended
 on small local networks -- and moving to an 'industrialization' phase when
 scale and scope of international coverage become key.  We have seen this
 happen in the buyout part of the private equity business, we've seen it happen
 to technology investment banking, and now we're seeing it in venture capital.
 We expect quite rapid consolidation in the venture capital business over the
 next few years, particularly in Europe, where the more fragmented nature of
 the market, and the key importance of access to the US market, will pose an
 increasing challenge for firms focused only on a particular vertical sector or
 geographic region."
 
     Team Building
     During 2000, Atlas Venture added two new investment Senior Principals,
 Bernard Gautier, former head of Bain's European IT and Communications
 practices, to head up its Communications team in Paris; and Laura Jennings, a
 former senior Microsoft executive who had run the MSN Network and led
 Microsoft's own strategic planning process.  Ms. Jennings is leading Atlas
 Venture's West Coast activity, and has opened an office for the firm in
 Seattle, an area of the US with remarkably few well-established international
 venture capital firms, given its importance as a technology center.  "There
 are some excellent seed stage VCs in Seattle," says Laura Jennings.  "I saw an
 opportunity through Atlas Venture to work with them, and provide international
 reach to their fastest-growing companies."
     Atlas Venture has also added a small team of seasoned executives and
 younger investment associates to develop Atlas Venture's internal support
 infrastructure, and to deliver more extensive systematic support to portfolio
 companies.  Atlas Venture focuses its work with early-stage portfolio
 companies in three key areas:  defining the product and corporate strategy;
 recruiting the senior management team; and providing access to other sources
 for strategic and venture capital financing.
 
     About Atlas Venture
     Atlas Venture is the leading international, early-stage venture capital
 firm investing in communications, information technology and life sciences
 companies.  With offices in Amsterdam, Boston, London, Menlo Park, Munich,
 Paris, and Seattle, Atlas Venture's investments are split evenly between the
 United States and Europe.
     Founded in 1980, Atlas Venture has organized six international funds, and
 currently manages over $2.5 billion in committed capital.  The Atlas Venture
 investment team is comprised of seasoned operating executives and career
 venture capitalists who have been deeply involved in the formation and
 development of more than 300 companies worldwide.
 
     Contact Information
     For further information please call Davia B. Temin of Temin and Company at
 (212) 588-8788.  On the web, Atlas Venture can be visited at
 http://www.atlasventure.com.
 
 SOURCE  Atlas Venture