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Google Cloud’s LA region goes online

TechCrunch LA

Google Cloud’s new region in Los Angeles is now online, the company announced today. This isn’t exactly a surprise, given that Google had previously announced a July launch for the region, but it’s a big step for Google, which now boasts five cloud regions in the United States.

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Joybird Acquired By La-Z-Boy


Commerce, California-based Joybird , an online retailer and manufacturer of furniture, has been acquired by La-Z-Boy Incorporated , La-Z-Boy said on Monday. Financial terms of the deal were not announced. Joybird (Stitch Industries) was founded in 2014 by Alex Del Toro, Andres Hinostroza, Joshua Stellin and Christopher Stormer, and manufactures mid-century modern upholstered furniture, which it sells online through its own brand.

Silicon Beach Report July 16: Netflix Shares Plummet

L.A. Business Journal

Netflix subscribers up, stock prices down; Google gets is cloud online in L.A.; Musk tweet could bring libel charge

E-Retail Startup Pointy Raises $12M, Helps Small Shops Be Found Online


Mark Cummins wondered why online search engines could help you locate a landmark halfway around the world in a second but couldn’t tell him whether the corner store had a craft beer he liked.

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Silicon Beach Report July 13: Spotify Moves to L.A.

L.A. Business Journal

Spotify moves to L.A., Cylance offers commercial antivirus; Dollar Shave Club leaving traditional ads

Best Friday Reads: Social Media Rules Us All, and Mints Billionaires


Humans have had a drastic physical evolution recently—one that has notably taken only a few years.

BizBash Live: Los Angeles 2018

SoCal Tech Calendar

Wednesday, July 18, 2018 -- BizBash Live Los Angeles. BizBash Live: Los Angeles returns to the California Market Center with the most important experience for event and meeting professionals. These event organizers will connect, collaborate, and cultivate new relationships with industry vendors from across Southern California and North America, and learn from the leading names in live experiences. See [link] (more

SmartDrive Wins Paving Company


San Diego-based driving safety and monitoring systems provider SmartDrive Systems announced this morning that it has signed up Superior Paving, a large asphalt paving company on the East Coast, as a new customer. Financial impact of the win was not announced. SmartDrive provides video-based safety and transportation monitoring products, which are used to monitor driving fleets, help encourage better driver safety, and also help reduce collisions and liability. READ MORE>>.

Pelican Products Names Consumer Marketing Chief


Torrance-based Pelican Products said on Monday that it has named Jennifer Lim as its Director of Marketing for its Consumer Division. Pelican, best known for its protective cases, develops a range of products for the huntin and fishing, adventure, personal electronics, photography, and other markets. Lim has previously worked at Hyundai, Harmon/Karon, and Beats by Dr. Dre. Pelican says that Lim will be based out of its Long Beach office.

AutoGravity Names New CEO, CTO


Irvine-based online car shopping and financing provider AutoGravity announced both a new Chief Executive Officer and Chief Technology Officer this morning, saying that it has named Alex Mallmann named CEO and Jason Bonifay as CTO. Mallmann also joins AutoGravity's board of directors. Mallman was most recently President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Auto Finance China, having served at Mercedes-Benz sine 1998.

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Crinetics Sets Estimated IPO Range


San Diego-based Crinetics Pharmaceuticals , a pharmaceuticals firm focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of novel therapeutics for rare endocrine diseases and endocrine-related tumors, has set its estimated IPO range, saying in a filing that it is looking to sell 5,000,000 shares of its stock at between $15.00 and $17.00 per share. Crinetics has applied to list on the Nasdaq Global Market as CRNX.

Surf Air Aims At Weekend Travelers With New Experiences


Santa Monica-based air travel provider Surf Air --which got its start offering up low cost "all you can fly" travel between Silicon Beach and Silicon Valley--has lauched a new offering which hopes to attract its members for weekend getaways. According to Surf Air, its new Surf Air Experiences, which it is running in conjunction with partner All Roads North, will offer up special, three-day weekend trips to its Surf Air Members only.

Octi Finds $7.5M For Augmented Reality Software


Los Angeles-based startup Octi , which is developing augmented reality software, has raised $7.5M in a seed funding, the company disclosed recenly. The funding came from Shasta Ventures, I2BF Ventures, Bold Capital Partners, Day One Ventures, Human Ventures, Live Nation and AB InBev, along with angels. the company offers up mobile apps which recognize the movements of users, allowing those usrs and movements to be used in augmented reality displays. Octi is led by co-founder and CEO Justin Fuisz.

MEI Pharma Names COO


San Diego-based MEI Pharma announced this morning that it has named David M. Urso, J.D, as the company's new Chief Operating Officer. Urso was most recently Senior Vice President of Corporate Development and General Counsel at the company.

Quest Software Launches New Microsoft Migration Tool


Aliso Viejo-based Quest Software has rolled out a new software package today, saying this morning that it has rolled out a new migration tool aimed at Microsoft Office 365. According to Quest, the new tool provides tenant-to-tenant migration of accounts, email and OneDrive, and can be used for merging and consolidating Office 365 tenants. Quest said the software will be available on a "flexible" pricing plan, but did not announce any details on that pricing.

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TC Technology Acquired By SSP Innovation


Carlsbad-based TC Technology , an IT services provider which develops mobile software for the utility market, has been acquired by SSP Innovation , a provider of IT services and software to the electric, gas, and water utilities, the two said on Friday. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced. SSP Innovation is backed by private equity investor Warren Equity.

AMPAC Fine Chemicals Acquired By SK Holdings


Rancho Cordova-based AMPAC Fine Chemicals , a contract development and manufacturing organization for the pharmaceuticals industry, has been acquired by SK Holdings , the holding company run by South Korean company SK Group. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced by AMPAC, which says the deal is the "largest M&A transaction announced in the Korean pharmaceutical industry." AMPAC Fine Chemicals was previously owned by private equity investor H.I.G. Capital.

Human Longevity Names Interim CEO and COO


San Diego-based Human Longevity , which is developing genomics-powered, health intelligence software, said on Friday that it has named David Karow, M.D., Ph.D., as its Interim CEO. Karow was previously Human Longevity's Chief of Radiogenomics. Karow has previously been a researcher at UC San Diego, UCLA, and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Elon Musk's Weekend: Submarine Spat, Political Scandal


Think it's all roses being a technology mogul and billionaire? Elon Musk , the founder and CEO of Hawthorne's SpaceX , had a rather busy and scandal-ridden weekend. Among Musk's woes: the lead diver that helped lead the rescue of the trapped Thai soccer team called Elon Musk's attempt to create a submarine to rescue the trapped team "just a PR stunt" , which sparked a now-deleted angry Twitter response from Musk calling the diver a "pedo".

The Irvine Company Caught Up In Privacy Struggle Over License Plate Data, ICE


The Irvine Company , which operates a huge list of shopping centers in Orange County and elsewhere, including Fashion Island and the Irvine Spectrum, is in the midst of a flap over license plate data sharing. The real estate development firm was accused of sharing license plate scanning data with ICE , according to a report from the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Silicon Beach Report July 10: Bird Scooters Banned in Milwaukee

L.A. Business Journal

Netflix spending billions on programming, Surf Airlines launches weekend getaways, Bird sued in Milwaukee

Illuminate Education Gets Backing From Insight Partners, Rolls Up Five Companies


Irvine-based Illuminate Education , a brand new startup backed by Insight Venture Partners, said today that it has merged five different companies-- Illuminate Education , IO Education , SchoolCity , Alpine Achievement , and Key Data Systems --to create a new company focused on data platforms, data, analytics, and formative assessments of K-12 students. Financial details of the five way merger were not announced.

Jam City Extends Harry Potter Game To Hong Kong, Taiwan


Los Angeles-based mobile game developer Jam City is extending the availability of its popular game, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery , to both Hong Kong and Taiwan. According to Jam City, the game is now available in fully localized Traditional Chinese via both Google Play and the App Store. The mobile game--which has users acting as a student at Hogwarts School of Magic, the main setting for the popular Harry Potter stories from J.K. Rowling--launched in April.

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Cylance Extends to Consumer Market


Irvine-based cybersecurity software developer Cylance has launched a new product, aimed at the consumer market. Cylance said it has launched Cylance Smart Antivirus, which takes the company's enterprise, artificial intelligence-driven antivirus technology and applies it to home users. The software is the first for the consumer market for Cylance, which supplies its AI antivirus software to corporate users under the name CylancePROTECT.

Silicon Beach Report July 12: Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures’ New Funding Round

L.A. Business Journal

Ashton Kutcher’s VC opens $150 million funding round; Cleantech and Clean Energy kick off climate-change challenge; $9.75 million for UCLA rechargeable research

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Ashton Kutcher's Sound Ventures Aims At New $150M Fund -


Sound Ventures , the venture capital firm run by Ashton Kutcher and Guy Oseary , has filed to raised a new, $150M fund called Sound Ventures II. According to a regulatory filing, no commitments have yet been made to the new fund, which will be managed by Effie Epstein, Kutcher, and Oseary. Kutcher and Oseary have managed to make a number of very successful investments in technology companies, including Skype, Airbnb, Foursquare, Flipboard, Ooma, and, just to mention a few.

New Competition Looks For Startups Combating Climate Change


A new, startup competition, called the California Climate Cup --run by te Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and the California Clean Energy Fund (CalCEF)--says it is looking to identify the most promising startups, globally, who are working on innovations for megacities for zero emission transportation and clean energy. The new competition will offer up cash prizes and an opportunity to pitch those startups to investors.

Turo Sues LAX Over Car Rental Classification


Peer-to-peer car sharing site Turo has filed a lawsuit against the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), over difficulties Turo has been having in launching at LAX. Turo said it filed a lawsuit today at the U.S. Central District Court of California in Los Angeles. Turo said that it blames its lawsuit against collusion between LAX and car rental company Enterprise to keep it out of LAX. READ MORE>>. turo angeles rental sharing airport travel legal lawsuit