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Lynx invests in Web biz

Campus Pipeline swept up in $55 mil financing frenzy

Michael Ovitz’s Lynx Technology Group has invested an undisclosed amount in Web platform provider Campus Pipeline Inc., as part of the company’s $55 million round of private financing that includes investors Meritech Capital Partners, General Motors, Hewlett-Packard and National Discount Brokers.

Venture capital fund Meritech led the round, which provides the Salt Lake City-based dot-com working capital and general operating needs.

Customized for each institution and personalized for individual students, faculty and staffers, the Campus Pipeline Web platform provides secure online access to the campus community (chats, accessing Web-based e-mail), online learning resources (class registration, viewing grades) and back office systems that run a school’s administrative services.

Company collaborates with colleges to create, develop and strengthen online relationships within the campus and higher education communities, while preserving and enhancing existing technology investments.

But more than daily management duties, Campus Pipeline already has deals with Amazon.com, Dell Computer Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., SCT Corp., Sun Microsystems, and Inktomi to provide other offerings.

And it’s the other offerings that Lynx is most interested in.

Investment will enable Lynx to ultimately reach 3 million college students with syndicated content created by its clients Scour.net, AskJeeves.com, CheckOut.com and GameSpy Industries, as well as Artists Management Group’s clients.

“Music and entertainment are an integral part of the college experience,” said Ovitz, principal of Lynx. “Eighteen- to 24-year-olds are an influential demographic and one of the key arbiters of success in the entertainment industry. The Campus Pipeline Web platform is well positioned to become a valuable online community for this influential group.”

So far 14 campuses, including Appalachian University, Northwestern State U, U of Idaho and Mercer College, have launched the system at their campuses. A total of 500 colleges have licensed the software service, with 100 expected to go online with the service before the end of the year.

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