Thong Le Takes Over at Accelerator, With Eyes on Seattle and NYC
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funds that don’t have a glittering track record.
“The jury is still out on Accelerator funds 1, 2, and 3,” Le says, adding that alumni companies such as Theraclone Sciences and Allozyne are still in business. Another Accelerator company of the past, Homestead Clinical, was shut down and later restarted as Integrated Diagnostics, which continues to operate.
Weissman said he still thinks the earlier Accelerator funds have a chance to improve their returns. “I’m very hopeful about Theraclone, and VLST is a much more positive exit than is publicly known. It returned multiples of capital. And the biggest is yet to come. Oncofactor has a chance to be by far the biggest of all the projects.”
If any of those companies get acquired, it certainly would help Accelerator continue to justify its existence. But Le says he’s confident he’ll nail down the fourth fund and get Accelerator back in its groove, starting one or two new companies per year and seeing where the chips fall.
“This is my opportunity to take the bull by the horns, with all the great work that’s been done here, and with a great team I’m inheriting, to do some really cool deals,” Le says. “We’re not here for economic development. We’re here to make strategic investments for our investors that make them money.”