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Venture Investors to open Michigan office

Madison, Wis. - In a move that could bring additional investment partners to Wisconsin deals, Venture Investors of Madison will open an office in Ann Arbor, Mich. after receiving money from a Michigan venture fund.

The Madison venture capital firm, which recently moved into a larger space in the MGE Innovation Center in University Research Park, was one of three venture firms selected to receive funding through a competitive bidding process conducted by Venture Michigan Fund I. The three firms, which also include Arboretum Partners of Ann Arbor and Nth Power of San Francisco, will receive investment commitments of $95 million over the next three years.

John Neis, co-founder and senior partner of Venture Investors, said the action will create an expanded network of contacts and co-investors, enhancing Venture Investors' ability to successfully syndicate rounds of investment. He also said the move increases the firm's total capital under management to $180 million, which also will increase its per-transaction capacity.

He said Venture Investors has selected someone to staff the Michigan office, but is not ready to announce who it is. Asked if a member of Venture Investors Madison office will be relocated to Ann Arbor, he said the person selected to staff the office has extensive contacts in Michigan.

The new office will put Venture Investors in close proximity to the nation's third and fourth largest research institutions, the University of Michigan and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, respectively.
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Venture Investors, which established a new, $69 million investment pool last year, includes the likes of TomoTherapy, Virent Energy Systems, and NimbleGen Systems in its portfolio of companies.

Venture Michigan Fund I was established after Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm called for a new source of start-up funding for new businesses and entrepreneurs.

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