QuestMark Seeks More for First Fund –

BALTIMORE – Although hoping to raise an additional $40 million before a June 30 final close, QuestMark Partners L.P. had begun investing the $210 million already committed to its first fund.

QuestMark in late May invested $10 million in ZapMe!, a provider of Internet and interactive services to schools. Earlier that month, the fund invested $11 million in SpeechWorks Inc, and Aspect Medical Systems, a developer of equipment that measures patient’s consciousness in operating rooms, received the first capital commitment from the new fund.

The fund is managed by former BT Alex.Brown managing directors Benjamin Schapiro and Thomas Hitchner. The Invus Group Ltd. of New York is the fund’s other general partner. Together, the three general partners put up more than 25% of the fund.

Limited partners include BT Alex.Brown L.P. and its employees, university and church endowments and high-net-worth individuals, Mr. Hitchner said.

The fund will invest in technology and technology-applied companies in the communications, software and software services, consumer, health-care and Internet industries, Mr. Hitchner said. Although QuestMark will invest mostly in U.S.-based companies, Mr. Hitchner said the fund will look at international opportunities as they arise.

“With the Internet, we will have to be cautious in our valuations,” he said. “We will invest in a disciplined fashion in companies whose business models can stand the test of time.”

QuestMark will invest between $5 million and $15 million in later-stage venture opportunities and will look to work with other venture firms in its investments, Mr. Hitcher said. The vehicle may take up to four years to be fully invested.