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Hensley Helps Screen Companies for Venture Capital Investor

Greg Johnson, a founder and managing director of St. Louis-based Prolog Ventures LLC, is working as an investment partner with the Iowa Fund of Funds, a statewide venture capital development program. Prolog, which specializes in early-stage life-sciences companies, was chosen in June as the first of up to 15 funds expected to be selected by the program.

Authorized by the Legislature in 2002, the Iowa Fund of Funds' goal is to build a portfolio of venture funds seeking deals with companies ranging from start-ups to mature businesses that are nearing the buyout stage, and to build a mechanism for venture funds to consider Iowa companies as investments. "We would have looked at deals in Iowa anyway, because there are life-sciences deals here anyway and it's within our general mission and geography," said Johnson, who was in Des Moines last week to attend the Iowa Venture Capital & Entrepreneurial Conference. "But with this program, we'll take a much more proactive approach than we would have just on our own." Working with Prolog to screen prospective Iowa companies to invest in will be Des Moines-based Emerging Growth Group, a business incubator headed by Gregg Barcus. Additionally, Prolog's "eyes and ears" in Iowa will include Steve Carter, director of the Iowa State University Research Park, as well as Dr. Mike Kienzle, director of economic and business development with University of Iowa Healthcare, and DAVID HENSLEY, director of the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center at the University of Iowa.

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