Rick Snyder's venture capital companies hit with liens for unpaid taxes
Michigan Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Snyder's Ann Arbor venture capital firms were hit with tax liens from the states of California and Michigan over unpaid taxes, according to a Detroit News story published today.
The Detroit News reported that the state of California filed a tax lien tied to $1,265 in business taxes that were not paid in 2008 by Snyder's Avalon Ventures LLC. The story also reported the state of Michigan filed a tax lien against Snyder's Avalon Investments LLC for some $13,000 in unpaid employee withholding taxes from 2001.
Melanie Maxwell I AnnArbor.com
Snyder's two Ann Arbor venture capital firms, one founded in 1997 and another in 2004, raised $100 million apiece for investments in high-tech companies in Michigan and elsewhere.
A recent Wall Street Journal analysis of Snyder's venture capital record found that 10 of the 36 startup firms that received funds from Snyder's firms were based in Michigan. Of all the investments, four companies went public, 13 were acquired or merged with other companies, 11 are still private companies and seven went out of business, WSJ reported, citing data from VentureSource.
Two Michigan companies went out of business but "that doesn’t indicate poor fund performance since venture-backed companies have a high failure rate," WSJ said.
In the Ann Arbor area, University of Michigan startups HealthMedia, sold to Johnson & Johnson in 2008, and HandyLab, which was sold for $275 million in 2009 to Becton, Dickinson and Co., are "among Snyder's successes," the WSJ reported. Those companies collectively employ nearly 300 workers in the Ann Arbor area.