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BR Ventures Invests in Semprae Laboratories
Date:3/10/2010

Student-run venture fund joins Quaker BioVentures in Series A round

ITHACA, N.Y., March 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- BR Ventures (BRV), an MBA student-run venture fund of the Johnson School at Cornell University, today announced that it has invested in Semprae Laboratories, joining Quaker Biosciences, which led the Series A round. Semprae is the maker of Zestra® Essential Arousal Oils™, the only topical, non-prescription product clinically proven to improve desire, arousal and satisfaction in women.

Started by brand experts, CEO Mary Wallace Jaensch and President Rachel Braun Scherl, Semprae is focused on providing women with real solutions for sexual satisfaction. BRV recognized the opportunity to invest in a market-leading, revolutionary product that improves women's lives. The deal represents BRV's first co-investment with Quaker BioVentures, a leading life sciences venture fund headquartered in Philadelphia.

"BR Ventures' investment is yet another endorsement of the great strides we are making to bring Zestra into the homes of women around the world," said Mary Wallace Jaensch, CEO of Semprae Laboratories. "We are igniting the conversation among women and, with the help of our investors, we are expanding our reach and impact."

Semprae Laboratories is a unique investment for BRV, which typically invests in seed stage companies. The deal is the second of the year for the Fund, following an investment in biotechnology company, Adenios, in January.

"We are thrilled to join Quaker BioVentures in this round," said Uma Kakde, Manager of BR Ventures. "This is a one of a kind deal for us. Semprae is addressing an enormous market – over 30 million women in the United States - with a very real need. With proven management and demonstrated execution, we are confident that Zestra will become the standard in this category."

BR Ventures is committed to sourcing and investing in the best deals from within Cornell University and beyond. Co-investing with other venture capital firms—in this case, Quaker BioVentures—is key to BRV's strategy, both from the perspective of the Fund's investment philosophy as well as for the educational mission that the Fund serves.

About BR Ventures

BR Ventures (BRV) is an MBA student-run, evergreen, early stage venture fund of the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. With over eight portfolio companies spanning high-tech, healthcare, biotech and sustainable technologies, BRV's investments represent the cutting edge research at Cornell University. BRV is committed to promoting entrepreneurship at Cornell and in the local community. It has several partnerships with prominent angel VC groups in upstate New York and with bigger firms in the Northeastern region of the United States. For more information, visit: www.johnson.cornell.edu/brv.

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