The Council for Entrepreneurial Development (CED) has chosen six companies to present at Venture 2004, and encouraged other interested companies to apply by Jan. 9 for consideration in the next selection round.

Scheduled for April 27-28, 2004, in Chapel Hill, Venture 2004 will showcase investment opportunities in North Carolina to hundreds of venture capitalists and financiers from across the country.

The six Venture 2004 presenters selected by the CED to date include the following companies:

Affinergy, based in RTP, develops “biological glues” which can selectively bond or repel specific materials and regulate biology at the surface of synthetic materials. They can be used for bone ingrowth on orthopedic devices or repelling bacterial infections on medical devices.

Constella Group of Durham is a provider of professional health services worldwide. Its three business units — Health Sciences, Clinical Informatics and Health Strategies — conduct health research and provide a variety of technical, professional and strategic consulting services to pharmaceutical, biotechnology and government clients.

Datacraft Solutions, also of Durham, delivers process automation solutions to lean manufacturers through a secure Internet gateway. Clients include small and mid-size companies.

Metabolon, another Durham company, specializes in metabolomics, a new scientific approach for the discovery, development, and repositioning of drugs. The company measures the total content of biochemicals in the cell or body fluid and displays results in physiological context by mapping them to metabolic pathways to uncover the underlying causes of disease.

Overture Networks in Morrisville allows carriers to move towards a data-optimized network that can keep pace with the increasing need for intelligence and speed at the edge of the network.

StrikeIron, yet another company from Durham, is developing products and subscription-based online services. Its products allow clients to take advantage of web services for access to information, integration with existing applications, and the development of new applications.

The Venture 2004 Selection Committee includes professional venture capitalists and angel investors from throughout the Southeast. Mike Elliott, partner with Wakefield Group and chairman of the Venture 2004 Selection Committee, said the committee is seeking high growth companies from an array of industries that are looking to raise either initial or subsequent rounds of professional equity capital.

“We all feel excited with the positive turn in our sector, and I believe this year’s companies and entrepreneurs reflect that energy and optimism,” Elliott said. “This conference has always been an energizing point for entrepreneurs and investors, and Venture 2004 is shaping up to be another outstanding event.”

Because selection is highly competitive, companies are encouraged to submit their presenter applications as early as possible so that they will have the opportunity to receive full consideration during as many of the selection stages as possible. Venture 2004 has three selection stages with two remaining application deadlines: the updated second deadline of Jan. 9 (previous deadline was Dec. 31) and the final deadline of Jan. 31.

In addition to company presentations, Venture 2004 will include leading industry speakers, networking opportunities and exclusive investor-only events. The overall conference co-chairs for Venture 2004 are Les Bethune of Ernst & Young LLP and Bill Gwyn of Maupin Taylor.

For more information on applying to present or general registration, visit