Google Shuts Urchin, Other Services


Internet giant Google said Friday that it will be shutting down web analytics service Urchin , the onetime San Diego startup which had been acquired by Google in April of 2005. Urchin is getting the axe along with a number of other Google services, including photo editor Picnik, Google Message Continuity, Google Sky Map, Needlebase, and the Social Graph API.

Google Follows MP3tunes With Music Locker Service


Mountain View-based Google has followed the lead of San Diego-based MP3tunes , and debuted its own "music locker" service today at its Google I/O developer conference. The service is a direct competitor to MP3tunes, which offers its own, streaming "music locker" service. MP3Tunes--one of the many companies founded by Michael Robertson, who was founder of been around since 2005. google mp3tunes music locker service streaming content hollywood

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MindTouch Picks Up $12M For Customer Self Service Software


San Diego-based MindTouch , a developer of software-as-a-service tools to help companies create self-service, customer support sites, has raised $12M in a Series A funding. MindTouch, which was founded by Steve Bjorg and Aaron Fulkerson back in 2005, said the funding will go to increase its integration with software such as Salesforce, SAP, and Oracle, and grow its marketing, business development, sales, and engineering teams.

Equity Compensation: A 6 Point Primer on Creative Service Fees

From the Venture Trenches

Any service provider that is willing to bet the business they are working for is going to be worth considerably more in the future than it is today. Charlie eventually sold those shares for $26 million when he left the business in 2005, which meant he earned $4.3

Wpromote Buys Standing Dog For Digital Marketing Efforts


El Segundo-based digital marketing company Wpromote said on Tuesday that it has acquired online marketing agency Standing Dog , which provides search engine marketing, SEO, social media and paid media services. Standing Dog was founded in 2005, and was based in Texas. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

FamilyFinds Launches DailyFinds Email


Los Angeles-based FamilyFinds , the daily deal service headed by Matt Coffin, the founder of, looks to running another experiment with the service this week, telling subscribers that it is launching a new product called DailyFinds.

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American Industrial Systems Sells Majority Stake To Foxconn


Irvine-based American Industrial Systems , a provider of engineering services and products for the Interet-of-Things, oil and gas, industrial automation, and other markets, has sold a 60 percent stake of the company to Ennoconn. AIS was founded in 2005. Financial terms of the sale were not announced. Ennoconn is a subsidiary of Taiwan's Foxconn Technology Group. Nelson Tsay is the founder and CEO of American Industrial Systems, which will become part of Foxconn's IPC Business Group. Names New COO


Sawtell was SVP and GM of the firm's Sales and Advertiser Services business unit, and also has been President and COO from 2000 to 2005. Irvine-based , the online local search publisher, said Wednesday that it has named Michael Sawtell as the firm's Chief Operating Officer.

Frequency Inks Video News Deal With Newsy


Los Angeles-based video streaming app and video distribution service Frequency , which is led by Blair Harrison, said today that it has inked a video news deal with millenial-focused video news service Newsy. Harrison previously founded FasTV, and headed up iFILM, which he sold to Viacom back in 2005.

Snapchat Message Linked To Teen Murder


Venice-based instant messaging app developer Snapchat is at the center of a murder investigation in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, after a teen allegedly stabbed and killed his girlfriend over a message sent via the service. The issue of crime linked to new Internet and mobile services is not a new one for local companies. Most notably, MySpace faced several high profile cases in 2005 and 2006 where predators had used the service to find underage victims.

Cheers Looks to Spread Love Around the World


According to Cheers, the service allows anyone to snap a picture, add some workd, and share appreciation for anything to anyone. Mohit sold Shopzilla in 2005 for $569M.

Microsoft Buys Telesign Competitor


PhoneFactor provides similar services to TeleSign, using phone calls, texts, and other means of authenticating users, as a way of better securing logins into enterprise applications and other services. Jillings sold one of his last companies, FrontBridge, to Microsoft back in 2005. Microsoft has just acquired PhoneFactor , a competitor of Los Angeles-based, two-factor authentication provider TeleSign.

eHarmony To Launch Same-Sex Matching Service


Pasadena-based online dating provider eHarmony said Wednesday afternoon that it will launch a same-sex matching service, called Compatible Partners, as a result of a lawsuit filed against the firm by the state of New Jersey. The firm had been sued by a New Jersey resident in 2005; the firm also faces a similar claim in California.

How to Avoid a Common Product Mistake Many Teams Make

Both Sides of the Table

It was hard to imagine customer service reps who had learned every keystroke short-cut by heart on a green screen and weren’t eager to embrace the obvious future. We built our product at Koral in 2005 with this design philosophy in mind.

FamilyFinds Buys Chicago Daily Deals Site

socalTECH is focusing in on deals on services and experiences for families, and is the latest venture for Matt Coffin, who sold his last firm,, to Experian back in 2005 for over $330M. Los Angeles-based , the daily coupon and deals site run by Matt Coffin, said today that it has acquired Mamaloot , an online daily deal site located in Chicago. Mamaloot was started by two mothers, Bo Johnson and Lindsay Cohen, who met while working at Orbitz.

TeleSign Gets Patent


Los Angeles-based TeleSign , the provider of phone-based authentication and verification services which is headed by former FrontBridge and Vantage Media CEO Steve Jillings, said today that it has scored a U.S. The patent was originally filed in October of 2005. TeleSign provides two-factor authentication to web services and applications, to help prevent fraudulent logins and registrations.

Interview with Steve Jillings, TeleSign


Steve Jillings has a long track record of running successful startups in Southern California, ranging from such companies as FrontBridge Technologies (sold to Microsoft in 2005 for over $200M) and Vantage Media (acquired in 2007). They started in January of 2005.

Beware of Ballers on a Budget

Both Sides of the Table

I was sitting with the financing guy who was trying to upsell me everything from pre-paying service to prepaying dent repair coverage, etc. I still drive the same car I bought for cash in 2005. The other day I was at a Mercedes dealership.

Study: $48 Billion In Value Created Over 15 Years In SoCal IT VC-Backed Firms


The study found that the greatest values for Southern California venture-backed firms were created by companies operating in Online Services (51%), followed by Communications and Networking (15%), Software (10%) and Semiconductors (9%). Among the highest acquisition values were MySpace ($580M in 2005), Shopzilla ($560M in 2005), ($430M in 2004), Lowermybills ($330M in 2005) and Sandpiper Networks ($630M in 1999).

How Liferay Grew To More Than $100M After Starting In A Church Basement


How did the shift come from consulting services to a product? The people who started with us in 2005 and 2006 are still with us, and there is a lot of longevity in the company, and familiarity and teamwork that comes from working together for so long that you don't find at other companies.

How to Decrease the Odds That Your Startup Fails

Both Sides of the Table

So when Sam Rosen came to me with the idea of disrupting storage with a product that is priced cheaper than existing incumbents and he could build a product that is a better service I was intrigued. Storage is what’s known as “highly fragmented,” meaning easier for a new entrant to get traction if it could design a better product / service / experience. But that’s harder to build in 2016 than it was in say 2005.

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When Should You Allow Exclusivity in Deals?

Both Sides of the Table

Before weighing in on the subject I would point out one thing that should be obvious to many of you – the iPhone was originally launched in 2007 in an exclusive partnership with AT&T and this was vital to both Apple and AT&T and was a hard negotiation throughout 2005 and 2006. Although the carriers made a lot of money initially by selling dial-up Internet services, customers never took their software because, well, it sucked.

FastSpring Gets Funding From Pylon


FastSpring , the fast growing Santa Barbara-based e-commerce payment services provider headed by Dan Engel, said today it has scored a funding round from Pylon Capital, a Los Angeles-based investment firm. The investment is the first, outside investment in the company since it was founded in 2005.

MP3tunes Gets Win Over EMI


San Diego-based MP3tunes , the cloud music storage service run by Michael Robertson, has scored a win over EMI, according to Robertson. Robertson called it a "99% Victory" over EMI in the case, after a judge found that the service did not violate copyright laws when it stored a single copy of MP3 files on a server, rather than storing separate copies for useres on the service. The firm's services have recently been replicated by companies such as Amazon and Google.

A Serial Entrepreneur’s Take On Brad Feld & Jason Mendelson’s Venture Deals


Brad and Jason have been exposing venture capitalists’ secrets since 2005, when they began writing a blog series on Term Sheets at AskTheVC.

Eleven Startup Tips From Richard Branson


It is undoubtedly impressive that Richard Branson has motivated a government organization and hundreds of intelligent, affluent people to commit millions of dollars to secure a service that does not yet exist. I was a serviceable CFO at several of my startups.

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Why Taking Some Risks in the Sales Process Can Improve Results

Both Sides of the Table

If you want that kind of service focus I think we’d be a better fit than your internal IT department.” There was a meme that started going around LPs around 2005 that “I’m not sure LA is really its own venture market” and some LPs actually believed that. Many people are too cautious in sales processes and as a result when they present their solutions they end up sounding milquetoast and undifferentiated from anybody else in the market.

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StoryBots And The Future of Learning,With Gregg Spiridellis, JibJab


It might look a little bit like StoryBots (, the new kids educational and entertainment service just launched by JibJab ( Gregg Spiridellis: We were producing viral video hits in 2005.

Data is the Next Major Layer of the Cloud & A Major Victory for Startups

Both Sides of the Table

I believe that this is a major new area of growth & innovation for the Internet as Cloud Services start to form deeper & richer layers. I’m not covering the actual layers of the Internet (under the OSI model) but rather the Cloud Services layer.

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Announcing a Deal I’ve Wanted to Talk About for a Year

Both Sides of the Table

I first met Ethan in 2005. He had an idea for a startup that would help consumers better book service jobs and would take on Service Magic, which he believed had a business model that could be disrupted. Let me not bury the lede.

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Why A Cellular Carrier Did Not Buy Skype - Watching A Big Dumb Company Fail In Real Time


billion caused me to recall an awkward meeting I had in 2005 with a particularly clueless group of cellular executives. Cool stuff for circa 2005, unless you were an idiot working for a cellular carrier. The recent purchase of Skype by Microsoft for $8.5

How Frequency Wants To Bring You Internet Video, with Blair Harrison


Just before the holidays, we caught up with Blair Harrison , founder of Frequency (, a personal video service which lets consumers watch video from the Internet on any of their devices. Blair Harrison: Frequency is an Internet video service.

Veteran LA law firm opens a Silicon Beach office and launches a pro-bono “Precelerator”

SoCal Delicious

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