VC Firms Changing Promotional Tactics
Nicole Perlroth wrote an interesting article in the New York Times this week on the changing approach VC firms are taking to public relations.
“A number of V.C. firms ranging from some of the oldest, like Bessenmer Venture Partners to some of the youngest, like Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund, are now seeking full-time marketing experts. Even Sequoia, which sniffed at the notion when the trend began, has hired P.R. staff.”
Ms. Periroth suggests that the paradigm shift is the result of a few different forces: (1) the approach has been massively successful for firms such as Andressen Horrowitz; and (2) the V.C. industry has consolidated–there are 50% fewer V.C. firms now as compared to 2000, and as a result the most promising new companies are now courted by V.C.’s rather than it being the other way around.
Mergers and Acquisitions
Mergers and Acquisitions That Should Have Received More Attention
Ohio State University Law Professor Steven Davidoff had an excellent post this week on a few mergers and acquisitions that should have been more well-noted. Two of the deals highlighted by Professor Davidoff are particularly interesting:
- PPG Industries spun off its commodity chemical business and merged the spin-off with Georgia Gulf. The companies used an uncommon merger structure, and the merger had the uncommon result of being owned 50-50 by stockholders of both PPG and Georgia Gulf.
- WellPoint agreed to a modified “hell or high water” clause in its acquisition of Amerigroup; WellPoint has agreed to be responsible for all actions required for regulatory clearance except those that materially and adversely effect WellPoint or deprive it of the benefits of the acquisition.
Pennypacker Gets $1.38 Million Severance Package
Barry Pennypacker, former CEO of Gardner Denver, received a lump sum cash severance package worth almost $1.38 million. Pennypacker had successfully transformed the industrial equipment manufacturer during his four and a half year tenure as CEO, but he had an aggressive style that created conflicts with directors and other executives. You can read the waiver and release (“severance”) agreement here.