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Consolidation is coming to gaming, and Jam City raises $145 million to capitalize on it

TechCrunch LA

A slew of banks are coming together to back a new roll-up strategy for the Los Angeles-based mobile gaming studio, Jam City and giving the company $145 million in new funding to carry that out.

What would you do if told to “fail fast?”


Here’s a question that should strike close to home. Professional investors like to quote this mantra to anyone who will listen. Fail fast,” they say. But what if you believe so strongly in your budding enterprise that this seems to be the most ill-advised directive you’ve ever heard?

Nfusz Inc. Enters Partnership With Instapage

L.A. Business Journal

Hollywood-headquartered sales intelligence software outfit Nfusz Inc. announced Jan. 11 it entered a strategic partnership with Instapage Inc., based in San Francisco, to bring Nfusz’s interactive video

Relativity Inks Deal For Canaveral Launch Site


Los Angeles-based Relativity , a space launch startup which is developing automation technology designed to automate construction of rockets, said on Thursday that it has signed a deal for a launch site at Cape Canaveral. According to Relativity, the company gains own rocket launch facilities at Launch Complex 16 (C-16), based at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Relativity is venture backed by Playground Global, Y Combinator, Social Capital, Phillip Spector, and Mark Cuban.

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Merck And The Future of Immuno-Oncology: A Chat With Roger Perlmutter


Cancer immunotherapy is, in a word, tantalizing. It might save the life of someone at death’s door and keep the cancer at bay for years. Or it might not work at all. There’s no telling what a patient will experience.

More investors are betting on virtual influencers like Lil Miquela

TechCrunch LA

Brud , the company behind the virtual celebrity Lil Miquela , is now worth at least $125 million thanks to a new round of financing the company is currently closing.

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SpaceX Plans 10 Percent Workforce Reduction

L.A. Business Journal

Approximately 10 percent of Hawthorne-based Space Exploration Technologies Corp.’s s estimated 6,000 employees will be laid off

Google's Machine Learning Tools Used To Identify LA Potholes


Machine learning and artificial intelligence are two of the biggest buzzwords in technology today--but how are they being used to help you in everyday life? Google said on Wednesday that a team at Loyola Marymount University is using its open source, machine learning tool--TensorFlow--as part of a project to help identify potholes and cracks in Los Angeles, in an attempt to perhaps improve the flow of traffic through the city.

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Teradata Names Oliver Ratzesberger as New CEO


Teradata on Monday announced that Oliver Ratzesberger, its chief operating officer, has been tapped as president and CEO Victor Lund’s successor.

Dreaming of Mars, the startup Relativity Space gets its first launch site on Earth

TechCrunch LA

3D-printing the first rocket on Mars. That’s the goal Tim Ellis and Jordan Noone set for themselves when they founded Los Angeles-based Relativity Space in 2015.

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CTO Mixer Cruise: Brian Sletten will speak about Web Assembly

SoCal Tech Calendar

Tuesday, January 22, 2019 -- CTO Mixer Cruise: Brian Sletten will speak about Web Assembly. On Tuesday, January 22nd @ 6pm, CTO Mixers will set sail with Brian Sletten who will be giving a presentation on Web Assembly, preceded by a brief talk by Joe Devon called Accessibility IS Innovation. See [link] (more

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Silicon Beach Report Jan. 11: Blizzard, NetEase Expanding Publishing Deal

L.A. Business Journal

Instapage and Nfusz partner; Neftlix sued for $25 Million; Netease continues publishing for Blizzard

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Heal Names Qualcomm's Paul Jacobs As Chairman, Adds Jeb Bush To Board


Los Angeles-based, on-demand doctor house call service Heal has named former Qualcomm Chairman and CEO Dr. Paul E. Jacobs as its Chairman, and named former Florida Governor Jeb Bush to its board of directors, the company said on Wednesday. The startup lets clients schedule in-home visits by doctors for both routine visits and other checkups. Jacobs is currently founder and CEO of XCOM, a mobile technology company, and had been CEO and Chairman of Qualcomm.

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AlwaysAI Adds $4M to Bring Deep Learning to Embedded ‘Edge’ Devices


Many of our devices, from wearables to medical instruments to drones, can capture reams of images. Using algorithms to analyze those images on the devices, in turn, generally takes loads of computing power and energy—sometimes more than is feasible.

IDrive Takes On Remote Help Desk Services


Los Angeles-based IDrive Online Backup , which provides cloud backup and storage services, has launched a new, remote help desk service, which it is offering up to MSPs and IT specialists. According to IDrive its new remote access solution, RemotePC HelpDesk, provides on-demate remote support, letting IT administrators manage and monitor all service requests and manage their technicians from a single dashboard. According to IDrive, the cost of the new product starts at $49.50

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HyperX Taps Celebrity Power For New Ad Campaign Tied To NBA Finals


Fountain Valley-based HyperX , the videogame accessory maker which is part of Kingston Technology, has launched a new ad campaign, which taps the celebrity power of Post Malone, Gordon Hayward, Joel Embiid, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Pokimane, Shroud, Daigo, De'Aaron Fox and Rush. The company--which has had celebrity endorsement deals with all of those celebrity influencers--said its new "We're All Gamers" ad campaign is part of its presenting sponsorship of NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC.

j2 Global Adds Two Companies In Q4


Los Angeles-based Internet services and publishing giant j2 Global has acquired two companies, saying this morning that it acquired Ekahau , a company in the digital media space, and Castle Connolly , a company in the digital media and healthcare industry. Financial details of the two acquisition were not announced, although the company said the financial impact of those acquisition is not expected to be material to the publicly held company.

Iteris Partners With Cisco On Traffic Cameras, Smart City Effort


Santa Ana-based Iteris , which develops data analytics software used for the transportation and agriculture industries, has entered into a strategic partnership with Cisco , the two announced this morning. The companies said that Iteris will promote Cisco's "Connected Roadway" products, aimed at the pedestrian safety and connected vehicle applications. Financial details of that strategic relationship were not announced.

Dow Jones VentureSource: Southern California Gets $2.96 Billion In VC In Q4


Southern California raised $2.96 billion in venture capital in Q4 of 2018, according to data from Dow Jones VentureSource , released on Friday. According to the report, Los Angeles garnered the lion's share of the local funding, with $1.77 billion in deals, followed by $0.77 billion in San Diego and $0.42 billion in Orange County. The region had a total of 124 deals logged by Dow Jones VentureSource, split between 75 in Los Angeles, 29 in San Diego, and 20 in Orange County.

Renovis Surgical Acquired By KYOCERA


Redlands-based Renovis Surgical , a manufacturer of orthopedic and spinal medical devices, has been acquired by Japanese company Kyocera Corporation , Kyocera said very late Tuesday evening. Financial terms of the acquisition were not announced. According to Kyocera, it agreed to purchase the major assets of Renovis, relating to its artificial joint and spinal products. Renovis, which was founded in 2009, will become Kyocera Medical Technologies. Kyocera said it plans to expand its U.S.

EDF Renewables North America Buys Wind Project In Nebraska


San Diego-based renewable energy developer EDF Renewables North America said Thursday that it has acquired another wind project, this time in the state of Nebraska. According to EDF Renewables, it purchased 100 percent of the interest in the 300 megawatt (MW) Milligan 1 Wind Project, which is expected to go into operation in 2020. The company purchased the wind development from a partnership owned by Aksamit Resource Management, LLC and York Capital Management.

CoreLogic: 2018 Again Above Average For Catastrophes


Irvine-based property information provider CoreLogic said this morning that 2018 was indeed another, above-average year for catastrophic events, the third consecutive year of above-average catastrophe activity. The company--which tracks those events for insurers--issued a Natural Hazard Report detailing its analysis. The company said its report addresses the recent wildfires in California and severe rainfall- and hurricane-induced flooding throughout the nation. READ MORE>>.

PatientSafe Solutions Names Chief Clinical Officer


San Diego-based PatientSafe Solutions , a developer of communications and collaboration software for the healthcare industry, annoucned this morning that it has named Kathleen Harmon, MS, RN, CENP as Chief Clinical Officer. Harmon was most recently Chief Nurse Executive at Sphere3, and also had served at Burwood Group. PatientSafe is backed by HighBar Partners, Merck Global Health Innovation Fund, Camden Partners, Psilos Group, and TPG. READ MORE>>.

Match Sues Tinder's Sean Rad Over Trade Secrets


Match Group , the parent company of dating- and hookup- app Tinder , has sued Tinder co-founder Sean Rad over trade secret protection agreements. The lawsuit claims Rad "surreptitiously" copied a vast number of documents and emails belonging to Tinder employees, "in order to advance his personal interests." The lawsuit is seeking $250M from Rad.

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Wiliot Finds $30M More From Amazon Web Services, Others


Wiliot , an Israel- and San Diego-based RFID technology developer, has received $30M more in a funding round, the company said on Monday. The funding, a Series B, came from Amazon Web Services, Samsung Venture Investment Corp., and Avery Dennison Corp. Wiliot is developing disposable, RFID tags which do not require batteries, and are aimed at use in the tracking of consumer products during the manufacturing process. The company's tags are aimed at use in such products as clothing.

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CareerArc, Led By Longtime Technology Vet, Connects With $30M


Los Angeles-based human resources (HR) technology developer CareerArc --part of an ever growing number of Los Angeles area enterprise software companies--said this morning that it has raised $30M in a growth equity funding. According to CareerArc, the new round was led by PeakEquity Partners. CareerArc says its developing HR software that specifically address two parts of the hiring software market--hiring new talent and transitioning employees out of the organization.

Bird Backs Off On Legal Threats Against Journalist, Apologizes


Santa Monica-based on-demand scooter rental startup Bird has backed off on legal threats against a local, LA journalist, Cory Doctorow, after widespread outroar over what was perceived as a censorship threat , saying that the company's legal team "overreached" in issuing a takedown letter.

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SpaceX Moving Some Starship Prototyping To Texas


Hawthorne-based SpaceX is reportedly getting set to move some parts of the prototyping of its big, Mars-bound passenger rocket--the Starship (formerly known as the BFR)--to Texas, according to reports on Wednesday.

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Jam City Raises $145M


Los Angeles-based mobile game developer Jam City has raised $145M in a strategic financing round, the company said today, to grow its global business. The funding was led by JPMorgan Chase Bank, NA and Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and also included Silicon Valley Bank, SunTrust Bank and CIT Bank, N.A. According to Jam City, the new funds will go to fuel its "consolidation and growth initiatives", including its recent multi-year game development deal with Disney and expansion to Toronto.

HyreCar Names New Chairman


Los Angeles-based HyreCar , which operates a marketplace that connects car fleet owners with ridesharing drivers, said on Tuesday afternoon that it has named Grace Mellis as its new Chairman of the Board of Directors. Mellis already was on the company's board of directors. HyreCar said Mellis takes over for Anshu (Andy) Banshal, who the company says has left its board to "pursue a new start-up opportunity". Mellis is founder and managing director of IGA Capital.

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