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- Baird Venture Partners
, a venture capital arm of Baird Private Equity, has announced close of its third venture fund, which raised a total of over $170 million in capital.
BVP III exceeded the company's target of $150 million, and was raised with support from institutions, foundations, and family offices.
Contributing to the fund were institutional (and returning) investors like the State of Wisconsin Investment Board
, Lurie Investments, the A. O. Smith Retirement Plan, Northwestern Mutual
, and Marshall & Ilsley Corp.
, and new investors like American Family Insurance
, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, Sentry Insurance, and the Illinois State Treasurer's Technology Development Account.
While much of the money was raised from Wisconsin institutions, Baird Venture Partners has a global investment strategy; it invests in companies beyond Wisconsin and the Midwest.
The fund already has made two investments - Latin Vest Investment Co. in Atlanta and Inside Track, Inc. of San Francisco.
LatinVest, a transaction processing company, provides funds transfer services that allow consumers to wire money to friends and family worldwide. CEO Mario Trujillo has been a member of BVP's advisory board since 2005.
Before investing in Inside track, a provider of student coaching services to colleges and universities, BVP followed the company's management team as part of a proactive sourcing effort in the education services sector.
Pete Shagory, a partner in BVP, said the company's experience in the medical devices and research tools/diagnostics spaces has enabled it to become a more significant investor the sub-sector industries that LatinVest and Inside Track operate in.
When the company makes a commitment, it typically invests up to $10 million in equity over the life of an investment.
Its recent exits include Madison research tool-maker NimbleGen
, which was sold to pharmaceutical and diagnostic giant Roche for $272.5 million, and TomoTherapy
, the Madison-based developer of the Hi-Art radiation treatment systems. TomoTherapy's May 2007 initial public offering, which netted $180 million, was one of the largest U.S. venture-backed medical device IPOs in history.