In one of my previous blogs, I described how I bought Apple Computer stock before it went public by buying shares of a closed end venture capital fund. I've come up with a list of publicly traded closed end funds that specialize in investing at least a part of their portfolio in companies that are privately held. Unfortunately, not all privately held companies have closed end funds that are invested in them. You almost have to work backwords: look at the various funds to see what their investments are and decide if those investments are favorable (which is probably what you should do anyway, even if you are not looking for a fund with a company that may go public soon). For example, if you check out American Capital Strategies, Ltd. (ACAS), you would find out that they invest in Piper Aircraft. If you look at Allied Capital Corporation (ALD), you will see that they invested in the Elephant Bar, a popular restaurant in California, Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, and Nevada. They also invested in Meineke Car Care Centers.
A list of some of the closed end funds are:
Allied Capital Corporation (ALD)
American Capital Strategies, Ltd. (ACAS)
Harris & Harris Group (TINY)
MCG Capital Group (MCGC)
MVC Capital (MVC)
Remember, these are not investment recommendations.