Bruce Steel has managed to stay more or less off the radar screen since the fall of 2010, when he was named as managing director of BioMed Ventures, an investment arm of BioMed Realty (NYSE: BMR), the San Diego-based real estate investment trust (REIT).
But as I’ve noted many times, San Diego is not exactly awash in local venture investors. So my curiosity was aroused when the San Diego Venture Group listed BioMed Ventures among San Diego’s investors during its recent summit. Steel also was elected to the venture group’s board at the end of last year, and he’s been turning up elsewhere too. BioMed Ventures was listed as a participating VC at the Rock Stars of Innovation Summit (organized in San Diego by Connect and Xconomy), and at the 2011 BIO Investor Forum in San Francisco.
When I caught up with Steel by phone, he told me he approached BioMed Realty CEO Alan Gold in 2010 with the idea of establishing an in-house venture arm at the company.
At the time, Steel was the chief business officer at San Diego-based Anaphore, which pays its rent to BioMed rival Alexandria Real Estate Equities. Before that, though, he served as a co-founder and CEO of San Diego’s Rincon Pharmaceuticals and as head of corporate development at Ambit Biosciences, where he says he got to know Gold and other members of BioMed’s team. Steel said his proposal “fit pretty well with some of the ideas they already were thinking of doing in terms of adding to the team.”
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