There are not a lot of venture capitalists looking to flood Internet start-ups with cash these days, but that doesn't mean the well is completely dry. In fact, after a long drought, a few deals are getting done.
In July, FurnitureFind Corp., which runs the site FurnitureFind.com, secured a seven-figure round of financing from HQ Venture Capital, based in Austin, Tex. "The smart VC money realizes that the cycle has been down for so long that the [Internet] companies that have survived must be doing something right," says Stephen Antisdel, CEO of FurnitureFind. But, he says, getting the infusion wasn't easy. HQ conducted four months of due diligence before committing the funds.
Other recent deals include Servicebench.com Inc., a maker of Internet-based software, which raised $1.25 million; and Nextone Communications Inc., which raised $3.5 million from Core Capital Partners and other investors.
Erik Brown, president of CGI Capital Inc., in Mundelein, Ill., says that VC firms are starting to put a toe back in the water. "There is so much money out there that has been on the sidelines for the last two and a half years," he says. --J.McC.