High profile private equity shop appears to be chatting up a new fund despite string of struggling investments.
As surely as dogs chase rabbits or night follows day, PE shops raise more money when the existing fund is mostly used up. (Elevation's is about 70% invested.) Yet when all you have to show for your first effort are embarrassing misses -- no rabbits caught, mostly grim darkness, metaphorically speaking -- it's got to be tough to collect fresh cash.
This is the tough position in which Elevation finds itself. Despite having raised $1.9 billion in 2004, the ballyhooed firm is far from a successful experiment. It's got all of one exit, a gaming-company sale to Electronic Arts (ERTS), headed by an Elevation co-founder.
Two of its investments are seriously sick. One is the online real estate dog Move.com (MOVE), better known by its scandal-ridden former name, Homestore.com. The other is Forbes Media, the parent for FORTUNE competitor Forbes Magazine, in which Elevation invested at perhaps the worst time in decades for media enterprises.
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