MPM Collects $140M for Fifth Fund, NEXX Files for IPO, Nuance Advances on Mac Market, & More Boston-Area Deals News

2/17/10

New England’s tech and life sciences firms inked lots of deals in the last week, with the software sector being particularly active.

Advanced RenewableEnergy Company of Nashua, NH, raised $5 million of a $10 million equity round, according to regulatory filings. Nicknamed ARC Energy, the company makes equipment for growing and processing the sapphire crystals used in LEDs.

—Woburn, MA-based Excelimmune, a developer of human antibody-based drugs, raised $1 million in a Series B financing.

—Semiconductor equipment maker NEXX Systems of Billerica, MA, filed for an initial public offering worth as much as $42 million.

—MPM Capital, a Boston-based life sciences investment firm, raised $140 million for its fifth BioVentures fund, according to regulatory filings.

—Cambridge, MA-based GenArts, a provider of visual effects software, acquired two widely used plug-in collections, called Tinder and Tinderbox, from The Foundry, a London-based rival. Wade wrote about how the deal fits into GenArts’ plans to become a leading special effects plug-in vendor.

—Ironwood Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: IRWD) raised an additional $28 million when the underwriters of its February 2 IPO exercised their options to buy 2.5 million additional shares. All told, Ironwood raised $203 million from its debut, after expenses and fees.

—A syndicate of private equity firms including Advent International, Bain Capital, and Berkshire Partners bought out Dublin, Ireland-based SkillSoft (NASDAQ:SKIL) software maker for about $1.1 billion. SkillSoft’s U.S. headquarters are in Nashua, NH.

—Cambridge-based PatientsLikeMe, which runs a social networking site for patients with a variety of ailments, acquired Hungarian online pain management firm ReliefInsite for an undisclosed sum.

—Burlington, MA-based voice and imaging software maker Nuance Communications (NASDAQ: NUAN) acquired Salem, NH’s MacSpeech. The deal will help Nuance expand into the Mac market.

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