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Company and tech news from the region.

$100 million seeds new tech fund

Investors have committed more than $100 million to Chicago-based MK Capital. The new fund was launched by Bret Maxwell and Mark Koulogeorge, longtime managing partners at Chicago’s First Analysis Venture Capital. They continue to manage investments at First Analysis, one of the area’s first funds to invest in Internet-related companies, while running MK Capital. The latter fund, which has funded two companies, seeks to invest $2.5 million to $4 million in established businesses within the outsourcing and business-services sectors.

Interface promotes Flynn

Oak Brook-based Interface Software, a provider of CRM solutions for professional services and similar relationship-based organizations, announced the promotion of David Flynn to the position of vice president of sales for North America. Flynn is responsible for all sales of InterAction and related products in the legal and accounting markets within the United States and Canada.

PalmOne chooses Element 5

Chicago-based Element 5, an e-commerce specialist for Internet-based software sales, in partnership with PDA maker PalmOne, Inc., announced the creation of Addit, a database and e-commerce application that allows customers to find and download popular Palm OS applications on their handheld device or smartphone.

Addit features a catalog of Palm OS software. After the user downloads the application to their computer and synchronizes it to their PDA, the catalog is subsequently available directly via PDA at any time. The application was developed by Bluefish Wireless, Inc., a platform provider for PDA applications. Bluefish and element 5 collaborated on integrating the order process into the application.

Blackwell announces promotion

Chicago-based Blackwell Consulting Services said Pamela Blackwell was promoted to president and chief operating officer. Blackwell was previously vice president of human resources and CFO. Blackwell was directly responsible for the financial stability and overall administration of the company. In addition, she was charged with managing revenues in excess of $28M as well as the deployment of HR policies and procedures for a workforce of nearly 300.

EDS, ex-Kearney chief settle suits

Electronic Data Systems Corp. (EDS) and Fred Steingraber, former CEO of Chicago-based consultancy A. T. Kearney Inc., settled their lawsuits late last month, shortly before a trial on the dispute was slated to begin in a federal District Court in Texas. In 2002, Texas-based EDS fired Mr. Steingraber as chairman emeritus of subsidiary A. T. Kearney and sued, accusing him of embezzling about $100,000 by falsifying expense reports. In a countersuit, Steingraber claimed EDS inflated the bookkeeping errors in question to justify terminating him.

Initiate releases data application

Chicago-based Initiate Systems, Inc., a provider of customer data integration (CDI) software and services, released new Initiate software developer kits (SDKs). With Initiate’s SDKs, organizations have access to Initiate’s software, enabling them to leverage existing enterprise applications, such as CRM, call centers, Business Intelligence, Business Performance Management, and many others, by instantly finding and accurately linking all the records pertaining to a person, corporation or other entity across disparate systems and data sources.

Manka new Andrew group president

Orland Park-based Andrew Corp. named Roger J. Manka as group president of worldwide sales. Manka will lead the Andrew worldwide sales and service organization responsible for business growth, and customer relationships with telecommunications equipment manufacturers, service providers and distributors in all regions of the world. Manka previously was with Commworks, a 3Com company, where he was vice president of worldwide sales.

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