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February 14th, 2005

Public Markets

One of the more anticipated events in the tech world turned out to be a nonevent. Or perhaps it was more of a reality check. Late last summer, Nanosys, a leading venture-backed nanotech company that is developing materials for electronics, withdrew the IPO it had planned for August 2004. [Disclosure: Robert Metcalfe is also an investor in Nanosys.] While some had hoped that the Nanosys IPO would open a window through which other nanotech startups might access the public markets, investors were clearly deterred by the Palo Alto companyís warning that it would be several years, if ever, before it had any commercial products. Warren Packard of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, a venture capital firm known for investing in nanotech, says Nanosys made a smart business decision in pulling its IPO. The market isnít ready for nanotech, suggests Packard.


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