A former venture capital pro is charged with breaching his fiduciary duty and usurping his ex-employer's funds to launch a separate investment vehicle, according to an SEC complaint and revealed through a bombshell report by Jonathan Marino, editor of peHUB.com.
According to the SEC complaint, in 2006, Matthew Crisp was then a partner with Adams Street Partners, an international private equity firm with operations in Chicago. Crisp worked on a $15 million investment in TicketsNow with Adams Street, and, with cash he allegedly usurped from Adams Street, in 2007 sought to make an additional investment, according to the complaint. TicketsNow is an online secondary market ticket exchange.
In his column, Marino writes that among the allegations presented against Crisp by the SEC are that he purposely concealed his involvement with AV Partners (his separate investment vehicle) telling TicketsNow it was the investment vehicle of a friend, according to the SEC complaint. In 2008, according to the complaint, Crisp received a $150,000 transaction bonus that reduced Adams Street's buyout proceeds, according to the complaint.
After discovering Crisp's misconduct and conducting an internal investigation, Adams Street terminated Crisp on or about March 20, 2008, according to the complaint. Adams Street then self-reported the matter to the SEC. The peHUB.com Web site reports that it could not reach Crisp for the story; Adams Street did not immediately respond to requests seeking comment.