Venture funding is off to a slow start in the Carolinas and Georgia so far this year.

In fact, were it not for a $63.5 million blockbuster deal announced by NewSouth Communications, VC funding would be downright anemic.

Through March 16, a mere 14 venture deals worth a paltry $149.6 million have been disclosed and tracked by Local Tech Wire.

As of March 16 in 2002 — which, nationally, proved to be the slowest year since 1997 — 41 deals worth some $300 million were closed in the Carolinas and Georgia. The three-state area closed on nearly $1 billion for all of 2002.

Deals have been especially slow in North Carolina — only seven worth $46.4 million.

LTW is not reporting yet one VC deal disclosed in the Triangle area by another publication. One of the VCs involved in the deal said the announcement was “premature.”

Even without that closing, North Carolina still leads Georgia (six deals, $39.9 million) and the one South Carolina closing.

(If LTW has missed a deal, please notify Managing Editor Rick Smith via e-mail, ).

Here is LTW’s exclusive list, which will be updated and published each Monday, for the three-state area:

Investment size; company; focus; location; investors

1. $63.5 million; New South Communications; telecommunications; Greenville, SC; Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts; Wachovia Partners; Quadrangle Group; Vaxa Corporate Partners; M/C Ventures.

2. $24.5 million; TransTech Pharma; High Point, NC; pharmaceutical; MacAndrews & Fowles, Novo Nordisk A/S and Caphalon

3. $15.5 million; Prenova; services; Atlanta; Frontenac, Austin Ventures, River Cities Capital.

4. $11 million; nuBridges; software; Atlanta; C&B Capital, GMT Capital, Noro-Moseley, hf Flagship Investments, Tycho and Marie Hawle Foundation plus 24 individuals.

5. $8.5 million; OrthoNeuro; Charlotte; specialty hospital; New Enterprise Associates.

6. $7 million; Venetica; software; Charlotte; Charles River Ventures, General Catalyst Partners (1st)

7. $5 million; Lancope; security; Atlanta; HIG Ventures, GMG Capital Partners (2nd)

8. $3.3 million; Q1 Labs; Atlanta; software; Business Development Bank of Canada, New Brunswick Investment Management Corp. (1st)

9. $3 million; Flexlight; Atlanta; optics/networking; Coral Ventures, Concord Ventures (2nd)

10. $2.1 million; Qcept; Atlanta; manufacturing; Pittco Capital Partners, Atlanta Technology Ventures, Bergman & Associates.

11. $2 million; Relativity; Cary, NC; software; Wakefield Group, Noro-Moseley

12. $1.6 million; RSS Solutions; Greenville, NC; software; Edgestone Capital Partners.

13. $1.5 million; LiveWire Logic; Morrisville, NC; software and services; Research Triangle Ventures, Gray Ventures

14. $1.3 million; Tranzyme; RTP; biotech; Research Triangle Ventures, Paradigm Venture Partners, Green & Associates. Pacific Rim Ventures