Marco Polo ends its trip

Venture capital outfit backed film, TV companies

Spanish venture capital firm Marco Polo Investments, launched six years ago to take equity stakes in media, telco or high-tech sectors, will shutter in September.

The closure was announced Wednesday in Spain’s Commercial Registry, a state-backed record of corporate activity.

Marco Polo was launched at the height of the tech bubble with startup capital of E100 million ($129 million). The implosion of high-tech values is the main reason for its failure.

In 2001, Marco Polo Investment teamed with Universal Pictures and Santiago Pozo’s marketing firm Arenas Group to create Arenas Entertainment, a now-defunct production and distribution label focused on the Latino marketplace.

It also took an 11% stake in Localia, a local TV network created by Spanish publishing group Prisa, for $10.6 million.

According to Spanish financial newspaper Cinco Dias, Marco Polo has sold its stakes in at least eight companies in which it had invested since 2000. The Localia stake has been distributed among Marco Polo investors.

Marco Polo board prexy Ricardo Marti Fluxa has called a shareholders’ meeting for Sept. 11. Company’s dissolution is the fourth point on the agenda.

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