Metcalfe Reflects on $2.7B 3Com Buyout, MyPunchbowl Parent Adds New Punch, $30M More for Fate Therapeutics, & More Boston Deals News

11/20/09

Dealmakers appear to be getting their business done before the week of Thanksgiving—because we’ve seen a decent stream of deal closings involving Boston-area life sciences and tech companies over the past week or so.

—Framingham, MA-based Punchbowl Software, which operates the party planning website MyPunchbowl.com, said it acquired technology assets of a group vacation website called I’m In. Punchbowl founder and CEO Matt Douglas provided details on why the transaction made sense for his startup.

—After months of operating quietly, seed-stage venture fund Founder Collective officially debuted last week. Eric Paley, a managing partner and co-founder of the firm, told us why he and other software entrepreneurs came together to form the new venture outfit, which has offices in Cambridge, MA and New York City. Here’s a hint: They were a bit frustrated with the status quo in the venture industry.

Fate Therapeutics, the San Diego-based biotech startup focused on developing techniques that make stem cell research practical for the pharmaceutical industry, reeled in $30 million in a Series B round of venture financing. Kirkland, WA-based OVP Venture Partners led the new round of investment in Fate, which was founded by top academics at Harvard University, Stanford University, The Scripps Research Institute, and the University of Washington.

ImmunoGen (NASDAQ:IMGN), a Waltham, MA-based biotech firm, reported this week that the firm sold a second license to its technology—which is for linking targeted antibodies to cell-killing molecules—to industry giant Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) for $1 million upfront, plus potential milestone payments.

Corindus, a Natick, MA-based startup developing a robotic system for implanting vascular stents, collected $5.3 million of a planned $10 million in venture dollars, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

—Cambridge -based Ligon Discovery found $1 million in a seed round of financing from incTANK Ventures, with plans to validate its small molecule microarray system for drug discovery that was developed at Harvard. The company was founded by folks from Harvard Medical School and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.

—We spotted Angus Davis, a co-founder of Microsoft’s voice-based Internet search subsidiary Tellme Networks, at Polaris Venture Partners’ Dogpatch Labs recently and wondered what he was up to. It looks like he’s been working on a new Providence, RI-based startup called Swipely, which quietly swept up a cool $1 million from First Round Capital.

—Jealous? Highland Capital Partners, the Lexington, MA-based venture powerhouse, closed its eighth fund, worth a whopping … Next Page »

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