Last February I suggested a possible hybrid-model for venture capital firms: locating pre-VC backed technology plays, buying them on the cheap, then augmenting the companies with a pre-assembled all-star team of managers.
Looks like Austin Ventures was listening:
Today, Austin Ventures announced its second $50 million investment to back a seasoned entrepreneur to head this very model. Austin Ventures entered into a partnership with Sherman Atkinson to form ATCOR Holdings, Inc. The new company will focus on acquiring and operating businesses in high-growth sectors of online advertising, marketing and digital media. AV has committed $50 Million of equity capital to support management’s strategy to build a leading new media franchise through both organic growth and acquisition. Mr. Atkinson will serve as Chief Executive Officer of ATCOR.
This is the second $50M new entity that Austin Ventures has created in the last few months. The idea for both companies appears to be using a series of acquisitions to create a network of proprietary technology assets bolstered by top minds and consultants. Rather than taking a piece-meal approach, the rollup strategy would offer a sort of ‘one-stop solution’ with the potential to provide a prospective client everything from workshops, to software to human customer service.