In this week’s installment of Job Moves, we look at Kleiner Perkins’ latest hire and the firm he left; a key private equity appointment for the nation’s largest pension fund; a new fund for two former Insight GPs; a Brazilian expansion; and another very large pension fund that looks to be hiring.
KP HIRES HUANG FROM VIVO
Just a few days after Vivo Ventures announced the promotion of a partner to head its China operations, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers announced that it has hired former Vivo partner James Huang to advise on life science investments as a partner in its Shanghai office.
Huang was a managing partner at Vivo and, previously, president of Anesiva, a biopharmaceutical company focused on pain management. He’s also held senior roles with Tularik Inc., GlaxoSmithKline LLC, Bristol-Meyers Squibb and ALZA Corp. He received an MBA from Stanford and earned a BS in chemical engineering from University of California at Berkeley.
Vivo’s not leaving itself understaffed. As we reported last week, the firm promoted James Zhao, who began working with Vivo in 2005, to lead its China team, which has offices in Shanghai and Chengdu.
Vivo credits Zhao with being instrumental in assisting in the formation of Vivo’s RMB-denominated fund in partnership with the Chengdu Hi Tech Yinke Fund. Zhao will also serve as the lead Vivo representative for Shanghai Hile, Sundise and IMH.
Zhao received his medical degree from West China University of Medical Sciences in Chengdu, his MS in molecular biology from Vrije University in Brussels, and his MBA from Washington University in St. Louis.
CALPERS GETS REAL
The California Public Employees’ Retirement System, the largest U.S. pension fund, has appointed Réal Desrochers as the senior investment officer of its private equity program.
Desrochers will be responsible for managing a portfolio of private equity investments representing approximately $49 billion of committed capital, $33 billion of which is invested in the funds of partners of the Alternative Investment Management (AIM) program. He will also oversee CalPERS’ private equity investment team and external advisors.
The new job isn’t too different from Desrocher’s old one, in which he oversaw the private equity program the California State Teachers’ Retirement System. He left CalSTRS in 2009.
Desrochers has advised Blackstone Capital, J.H. Whitney, Texas Pacific Group, Permira, and China Renaissance Industries. Prior to joining CalPERS, he was the chief investment officer of the Saudi Arabian Investment Co. He also worked for Caisse de Depot of Quebec, Canada’s largest pension plan.
Desrochers earned an MBA at Laval University in Canada. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in London.
NEW FUND FOR FORMER INSIGHT PARTNERS
Nearly three years after splitting off from Insight Venture Partners, Benjamin Levin and George McCulloch have raised $120 million for what appears to be their first fund, as peHUB reported earlier this week.
Levin and McCulloch, who were previously partners at Insight, are listed in an SEC regulatory filing as co-CEOs of Level Equity Partners. The capital was raised for a fund called Level Equity Growth Partners I LP. Levin and McCulloch left Insight in July 2009, along with senior associate Sarah Haas, to start Level Equity. Levin lists himself on his LinkedIn page as a partner at Level Equity.
FROM FOUNDERS FUND TO INDUSTRY VENTURES
Robert May, formerly the CFO of The Founders Fund, has joined Industry Ventures as chief financial officer and chief compliance officer. He also will be responsible for a fund of funds focused on VC funds smaller than $250 million.
Prior to Founders Fund, May held similar positions with Thomas Weisel Venture Partners and Mohr Davidow Ventures.
May had earlier careers as both a commercial pilot and studio guitarist. May graduated from San Jose State University with a BS in Business Administration with an emphasis in finance.
NY TEACHERS SEEKS PE MANAGER
The New York State Teachers’ Retirement System is seeking a manager for its international private equity investments, according to a posting on the site of the National Council on Teacher Retirement.
The manager will be responsible for managing the international, special situations and venture capital components of the private equity portfolio and overseeing its growth, consistent with the asset allocation approved by the board. The position’s role encompasses 70% on new investment strategy analysis and 30% on monitoring existing private equity investments.
Founded in 1921, the New York State Teachers’ Retirement System is responsible for administering the fund from which all New York public school teachers, outside of New York City, receive their retirement allowance. As of June 30, 2010, the fund’s net assets available for pension benefits totaled $76.8 billion.
LA FIRM MOVES INTO BRAZIL
Crescent Financial Partners, a Los Angeles-based private equity merchant banking firm, has opened a new office in Rio de Janeiro, together with Outsource Brazil Ltd., a business development advisory firm. It has also appointed Robert Janssen, founder and managing partner of Outsource Brazil, as director for the new office.
Janssen, a dual citizen of the United States and Brazil, is creator of the Brasil IT VC Meet program, a series of events focused on connecting Brazilian startups with potential investors. Over the coming months, Crescent says it will review investment opportunities and provide strategic planning and funding to innovative Brazilian companies through Outsource Brazil’s Boot Camp event, which focuses on preparing companies to pitch themselves to the capital markets. Janssen also blogs about the Brazilian startup scene.