CMEA Ventures Raises $400 Million Seventh Fund

Investors Highlight Track Record and Strength of Multidisciplinary Approach to Venture Investing

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CMEA Ventures today announced it has closed CMEA Ventures VII, L.P. (“CMEA VII”), a $400 million venture fund, and the firm’s largest to date, bringing CMEA’s total funds under management to over $1 billion. CMEA VII will continue the firm’s focus on energy & materials, information technology, and life sciences, with a bias towards deep-technology and multidisciplinary investments -- CMEA’s specialty.

“The great challenge in venture capital today is finding truly disruptive opportunities,” said Jim Watson, managing director of CMEA. “We strongly believe that among the best and most interesting investments are those with a great team and very complex technology across various disciplines and markets; this is our key focus for CMEA VII.”

The managing directors of CMEA VII are all returning team members. In addition to Watson, who invests in technology &ndash particularly strategic outsourced services, they include: Tom Baruch &ndash CMEA’s founding partner and head of the energy & materials practice; Faysal Sohail, who focuses on high performance electronics; and David Collier, M.D. and Karl Handelsman, who work together on life sciences investments, including biotechnology, drug development, and medical devices.

Also on the energy & materials team are Maurice Gunderson, senior partner, and Jim Kim, partner, as well as venture partners David Tuckerman and Bruce Pasternak. Saad Khan is a partner with the IT Team, and Rod Altman is senior partner investing in medical devices.

“All successful venture funds we invest in have common attributes built around creating value and exceptional performance but I think CMEA stands out even in this elite company,” said David Turner of Guardian Life Insurance Company. “Over the years, CMEA has learned to trust its vision of where the varied technologies they know well are heading and at the same time keeping the right perspective and applying their rigorous process to build great relationships and important companies in the first place. We look forward to the top performance that the team intends to produce. I consider it an honor to be an investor with this partnership."

“Multidisciplinary investments are those that apply novel ideas or cutting-edge science and technology from one discipline to new products, processes or procedures in another field,” explained the firm’s founder, Tom Baruch. Examples of such investments include A123, Codexis, Ensemble, InSound, Intermolecular, and Luminus.

“Technologies &ndash particularly in IT, energy & materials, and life sciences &ndash have matured to the point that future disruptions will come principally from applying technology in unusual and unexpected ways, such as biotech in energy, IT in life sciences, and material sciences in both energy and IT,” said Baruch. “This is why multidisciplinary investing is a key thrust of our new fund.”

CMEA has seen a number of recent successes among its funds, including the acquisition of RF Magic by Entropic and Entropic’s subsequent IPO. Bayhill Therapeutics and Phenomix also filed for IPOs in January of this year. Moreover, Codexis announced in late 2007 that Shell Oil has extended its collaboration with Codexis for five years. This is expected to reap great benefits in the biofuel arena.

“We are in the middle of a very interesting and exciting era where innovation and convergence will be the cornerstone of venture investing,” concluded Watson.

About CMEA Ventures

CMEA Ventures ( is a venture capital firm focused on life sciences, high technology, and energy and materials investments. CMEA believes that the most successful venture backed companies are science focused, with experienced teams intent on winning. As a result, CMEA's portfolio companies typically have cutting edge, highly differentiated, and often multidisciplinary technology at their core, with founding teams of the highest caliber.

CMEA invests in both early and late stage ventures, and has a strong network of corporate, investment, and entrepreneurial relationships that it leverages on behalf of its portfolio companies. The firm currently manages six funds representing investments in excess of $1 billion. CMEA has been an early stage investor in many successful companies, including Aclara Biosciences (merged with MGRM), Codexis, Entropic (ENTR), Flextronics (FLEX), Ilypsa (sold to Amgen), Intermolecular, LiveOps, MailExpress, Silicon Spice (BRCM), Symyx (SMMX), Syrrx (purchased by Takeda), and Xenoport (XNPT).

CMEA Ventures was founded in 1989 and maintains offices in San Francisco and Menlo Park. CMEA’s partners and associates have extensive science, engineering, and operational backgrounds that particularly suit CMEA's focus on technology and teams &ndash an effective differentiator for entrepreneurs and venture investment partners who dare to change the world, one great company at a time.

Editors, note: All trademarks and registered trademarks are those of their respective companies.

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