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28 April, 2011 - 12:38 By Tony Quested

US VC seeks partner to co-invest in €50m fund

Cambridge lawyer, Graeme Menzies of Mills & Reeve

A US VC establishing a new €50m healthcare fund targeting Cambridge, uk and other European medtech clusters is inviting co-investment from a strategic partner.

Cambridge lawyer, Graeme Menzies of Mills & Reeve, issued the invitation exclusively through Business Weekly on behalf of his American Venture Capital client.

Menzies says the new fund will specialise in services and products in the health sector and will build on a strong platform portfolio.

“Current investments include companies with interests in clinical engineering, telecare/telehealth, day surgery (orthopaedics, ophthalmology and GI), and flexible surgical cement.

“Our client is now looking for a strategic partner to co-invest in the new European fund and interested parties are welcome to contact me by email in the first instance.”

Menzies can be contacted at Graeme.Menzies [at] Mills-Reeve.com

As Business Weekly previously reported, the US-based VC firm has been keen to establish itself in Europe for some time.

Menzies said previously: “It is an interesting time for investors if you have the bottle and the knowledge – and the right product. There are all kinds of opportunities.

“The firm has spent quite a lot of time in the UK and is well aware of the opportunities that exist in Cambridge.”

With Silicon Valley Bank stepping up its Cambridge presence and moving from a debt to equity model, Menzies and Bill Sellay – of Mills & Reeve US partner firm, Robinson Cole – believe Cambridge would prove an excellent fulcrum for more American investment activity.

Sellay, whose firm has operations in Stamford, Boston, Hartford and New York, said: “There are a lot of investment vehicles in the US right now looking internationally. Cambridge should make a serious and concerted pitch to get some of these funders to set up offices in the city.

“If you get one or two of these you will find others following in short order. Cambridge would be an ideal UK hub for a lot of outward-looking US investors and I would urge the city to focus on promoting itself as THE place for a UK headquarters – Cambridge, not London.

“Being right there at the heart of the Cambridge technology community would be fantastic for US investors rather than basing themselves in London or other areas of the UK. They can leverage the significant Cambridge cachet.

“American VCs used to be quite inward-looking. They had enough business on their own doorstep and could walk across the road to visit their portfolio companies. But with the last couple of recessions the pool of opportunities has dwindled and that’s why so many are looking to Cambridge and the UK.”

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