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AmazeVR Finds $15M For Virtual Reality Concerts

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Los Angeles-based AmazeVR has raised $15M more in a new funding, from Partners Investment and Murex Partners, plus Smilegate Investment, Quantum Ventures Korea, ABC Partners, Everrich Group, GS Futures, We Ventures, Base Investment, Duname&Partners, Mirae Asset Venture Investment, Mirae Asset Capital, Partners Investment and Timewise Investment. The company offers up a way for artists to hold concerts in augmented reality. The company has now raised $30.8M in total.

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TuSimple Sends Fully Autonomous Semi 80 Miles, Without A Human On Board

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San Diego-based autonomous driving company TuSimple reports that it has sent its first, fully autonomous semi--without even a safety driver in the truck--80 miles, going from Tucson, Arizona to Phoenix. According to TuSimple, its truck made its 80 mile run on December 22nd, traveling from a railyard in Tucson, navigating surface streets and a highway at night, and arrived at a high volume distribution center in Phoenix.

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IDrive Adds Linux Backup Support

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Los Angeles-based cloud storage provider IDrive said this week that it has added cloud backup support for Linux machines on its IDrive 360 product. The company said the support allows IT admins to schedule and automate backups for all of their organizational Linux data into a single account through a unified web console. The product is aimed at businesses, and starts at $29.50 per year per computer. idrive linux backup cloud storage software data

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GoSecure Acquires Covail

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La Jolla-based GoSecure, a provider of managed security services, said today that it has acquired Covail, a security and risk optimization and automation company. Financial terms of the acquisition were not announced. GoSecure said it will use Covail's expertise in artificial intelligence (AI) to augment its platform. GoSecure is led by CEO Neal Creighton. gosecure covail managed security services merger acquisition software

Can You Ask for Office Rent Relief? How to Manage Your Lease During COVID-19

Office leases are one of companies’ largest expenses, and if your whole team is working from home with no clear end in sight, you may be wondering what to do about your lease.

Transphorm Gets $12.9M In PIPE, Hopes For Uplisting On Nasdaq

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Goleta-based gallium nitride (GaN) power conversion semiconductor developer Transphorm says it has received $12.9M in a private placement. The publicly traded company (OTC) said the funding came from MCM Investment Partners, as well as Boardman Bay Capital Management. The company said the investments come as a part of a plan to uplist its shares of common stock on the Nasdaq.

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Launch House Raising $10M For Startup Investments

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Beverly Hills-based Launch House, which hosts month-long, live-in startup programs in Los Angeles and elsewhere, is looking to raised $10M in a new venture capital fund, according to a regulatory filing from the company. The filing said the company is raising $10M to invests in startups. The company started originally during the pandemic, when its founders rented a home in Mexico to work on startup projects and fight off social isolation.

Virgin Orbit Has Another Successful Launch

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Mojave-based space launch provider Virgin Orbit successfully launched a new batch of satellites into space, using its unique rocket-launched-from-a-747 system. Virgin Orbit said it launched 7 customer satellites on its mission on Thursday, using its LauncherOne rocket. The launch was from off the Southern California coast, about 50 miles south of Channel Islands National Park.

March Capital Backs Gr4vy

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Santa Monica-based March Capital is the lead investor in San Mateo-based Gr4vy, a developer of cloud-based payments orchestration software. According to Gr4y, it raised $15M in a Series A funding, which was led by March Capital, and also included Nyca Partners, Activant Capital and Plug and Play Ventures. March Capital's investment was led by Solomon Hailu. Gr4vy said it has raised a total of $27.2M so far. march capital gr4vy venture funding cloud saas payment fintech

ICEYE Launches Satellite Into Space

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Irvine-based ICEYE, which develops synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellites, says it has launched two new satellites into orbit. According to ICEYE, the satellites were launched on the the recent SpaceX Transporter-3 smallsat rideshare mission. ICEYE said the two satellites are its fifteeth and sixteeth satellites it has launched into orbit.

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Tastry Applies AI To Wine Recommendations

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In a bid to make it easier for consumers to get personalized wine recommendations, San Luis Obispo-based startup Tastry said it has launched a new artificial intelligence-powered service for wine recommendations. The company said its service, Tastry Uncorked, is an artificial intelligence tool which provides personalized wine recommendations for online retailers and wineries.

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CarParts.com Adds Board Member

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Torrance-based e-commerce auto parts marketplace CarParts.com said on Wednesday that it has appointed Ana Dutra to its board of directors. Dutra is currently the CEO of Mandala Global Advisors, Inc., and also had been CEO of Korn/Ferry Consulting between 2007 until 2013. Dutra also has served on the boards of First Internet Bancorp, CME Group Inc., and Health, Harvest & Recreation. carparts board executive dutra mandala korn ferry

Zest AI Signs Up Credit Union

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Los Angeles-based Zest AI, which develops artificial intelligence software for lending, said it has signed up a Florida credit union as a customer. The company said Addition Financial Credit Union has $2.6 billion in assets and 162,000 members across Florida. Financial details of the win were not announced. Zest AI is led by CEO Mike de Vere. zest artificial intelligence software florida fintech

Jaanuu Gets $75M

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Los Angeles-based medical scrubs and clothing brand Jaanuu said this week that it has raised $75M in a private equity investment. The funding came from private equity firm Eurazeo. Jaanuu was founded by Shaan Sethi and Dr. Neela Sethi. According to the company, it has now raised $100M in total.

Masters Snags $2.7M For Virtual Coaching

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Los Angeles-based Masters, a startup that lets users get coaching and training from famous athletes, has raised $2.7M in a seed funding round. The funding was led by Sweet Capital, and also included Mucker Capital, Goodwater Capital and Luxor Capital, in addition to angel investments from Shaun White, Bam Adebayo, Kai Lenny and A'ja Wilson, Anton Gauffin, Jakob Joenck, Henrik Kraft, Greg Tseng, Prerna Gupta, Hank Vigil, Janis Zech and Andreas Mihalovits.

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HeyRenee Takes $4.4M More

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Los Angeles-based HeyRenee, the health concierge and health technology startup led by former Heal founders Renee Dua and Nick Desai, said today that it has raised $4.4M more in a seed funding. The company said the funding was led by Quiet Capital, and also included Fika Ventures and Mucker Capital. The company said the funding comes on top of earlier seed funding, bringing its total capital raised to $8.2M.

Hyperloop Transportation Technologies Shows Off Capsule Design

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Playa Vista-based transportation technology developer Hyperloop Transportation Technologies is showing off what it calls its "completed hyperloop capsule passenger experience", which it designed in conjunction with design firm ICONA Design Group. The design--which only exists on paper and fancy rendered graphics--will be installed in the company's first commercial passenger prototype, according to the company.

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NFINIT Sets Channel Sales Head

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San Diego-based hybrid cloud provider NFINIT said it has named Bradley Craig as its new Director of Channel Sales. Craig previously has served at such cloud and managed service companies as Veeam and Insight. According to NFINIT, Craig has over 13 years of experience in the technology industry. nfinit salse head channel sales

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HyperDraft Names General Counsel

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Los Angeles-based HyperDraft, which is developing artificial intelligence software to help legal professionals draft, edit, and analyze legal documents, says it has named Sean Greaney as its General Counsel. HyperDraft said that Greaney was most recently at Goodwin Procter LLP, and previously had also served at Stubbs, Alderton & Markiles. HyperDraft also said that Greaney had been an in-house counsel at Beats by Dr. Dre, including working on that company's acquisition by Apple in 2014.

Kim Kardashian Sued Over Alleged Cryptocurrency Pump And Dump

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Reality TV star Kim Kardashian, who lives in the Los Angeles area, has been sued--along with other celebrities like Floyd Mayweather and Paul Pierce, over her promotion of a cryptocurrency which has been billed as a "pump and dump" scheme. According to reports, Kardashian was paid to promote the cryptocurrency, which earned a large sum for the creators and promoters of the coin, but became worthless when it crashed. The lawsuit seeks class action status.

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Aspiration Buys Carbon Insights

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Los Angeles-based Aspiration said this morning that it has acquired Carbon Insights, a climate technology developer which helps consumers translate what impact their spending behavior and transactions have on carbon and climate change. According to Aspiration, it will integrate the Carbon Insights technology into its existing offerings. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced. Carbon Insights was founded in March of 2020, as a Public Benefit Corporation.

Neurophth Gains $60M For Gene Therapy Efforts

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San Diego-based Neurophth, a gene therapy company, has raised $60M in a Series C funding round, the company said today. The funding was co-led by CMG-SDIC Capital and Sequoia Capital China, and also included Sunshine Insurance and China Merchant Bank International Capital. According to the company, the funding will go towards its lead clinical program, enrich R&D pipeline and programs through business development and continue to expand the its gene therapy manufacturing platform.

ACELYRIN Names New COO

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Los Angeles-based ACELYRIN, a biopharma company focused on unspecified drug candidates, said today that it has named Melanie Gloria as the company's Chief Operating Officer (COO). The company said Gloria is a former oncology nurse, and previously worked at teams at Abbott, AbbVie, and Horizon Therapeutics, and most recently was Senior Vice President of Development Operations at Horizon.

Renovo Solutions Gets Growth Investment

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Irvine-based Renovo Solutions announced this morning that it has raised a round of growth investment, from investor Water Street Healthcare Partners. Size of the investment was not announced. According to Renovo Solutions, it will use the new funding to expand offerings. As part of the funding, it has appointed Bill Newell as CEO. Newell previously served at Cardinal Health, Baxter and Dentsply Sirona. Renovo Solutions provides health care and life sciences technology management programs.

Invest 109

Hadrian Finds $36M for Aerospace Manufacturing

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Hawthorne, California-based Hadrian, which is working on aerospace manufacturing technology, disclosed in a recent regulatory filing that it has raised $36.3M in an ongoing funding. Details of the funding have not yet been announced by the company. The filing says that so far, the firm has 28 investors in the round, with a target of $38.1M. Hadrian says on its website that it is building "the most advanced Space & Defense factories on the Planet.".

Amgen To Award Lab Space, Support To Karma Biotechnologies

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Thousand Oaks-based Amgen and share lab provider Biolabs LA said Monday that they have awarded Karma Biotechnologies one year of lab space at Biolabs, as well as other facility benefits and connections to Amgen's scientific and business leaders. According to the two, the "Amgen Golden Ticket" is the second awarded in Southern California, intended to help accelerate life science start-ups in Southern California. amgen space karma biotechnologies biolabs startup incubator biotech

eyko Raises $2.5M For Data Software

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Santa Barbara-based Eyko, a new startup focused on "data preparation, blending, and streaming", says it has raised $2.5M in a Seed funding round, the company announced this morning. The company said the funding came from InReach Ventures and Taggia Investments, the personal investment vehicle of former Balderton Capital founder Barry Maloney. The startup is led by co-founder and CEO Paul Yarwood.

Snap Launches Augmented Reality Ad Studio, Arcadia

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Los Angeles-based Snap said on Tuesday that it is launching a new, augmented reality advertising studio, which it is calling Arcadia. The new studio--which is not based in Arcadia, California, despite the name--will provide a team of experts focused on mobile augmented reality (AR) advertising for its brand and agency partners. According to Snap, Arcadia will "take on select projects that require the most creative and technical skillset" to provide branded AR experiences.

ZipRecruiter Raises $550M In Debt Offering

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Santa Monica-based online employment market operator ZipRecruiter said on Friday that it is raising $550M in debt, via 5.000% Senior Notes due in 2030, up from an earlier announced $500M. The company--which is traded on the NYSE as ZIP--said it intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for general corporate purposes, which may include capital expenditures, investments and working capital. ziprecruiter employment marketplace jobs debt nyse

Display Social Aims At Metaverse

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Los Angeles-based Display Social announced this morning that it has acquired two other companies, Thunder Studios and Infinite Reality, and will seek to focus on entertainment in "the Metaverse". Display Social did not provide details on the financial aspects of the two acquisitions. The company said it will focus on "creative tools covering social, gaming, virtual and remote production, NFT minting, and metaverse creation."

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Thankful Expands To Europe

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Venice, California-based AI customer service software developer Thankful said today that it is expanding into the European market, via a partnership with Netherlands-based Dixa. According to the companies, Dixa wil leverage Thankful's AI agent. Thankful is led by founder and Ceo Ted Mico. The company said it is developing natural language processing software to help provide personalized service interactions for brands. Financial details of the partnership were not announced.

mPulse Mobile Acquires HealthCrowd, Finds New Funding

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Los Angeles-based mPulse Mobile, which develops conversational AI software for the healthcare industry, says it has acquired HealthCrowd, a provider of healthcare communications services for the Medicaid market. Financial terms of the deal were not announced.

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Google Starts Downgrading Speakers Due to Sonos Patent Win

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Santa Barbara-based smart speaker maker Sonos has scored a major win in its patent efforts, winning a patent infringement case it had filed against Google. As a result of that win, Google has started stripping functionality from its speakers, rather than pay Sonos for licensing.

The Boring Company Gets Nod On Las Vegas Transportation System

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Los Angeles-based The Boring Company has just received approval from Clark County, Nevada, for its plans to create an underground transportation system that will connect the Las Vegas Strip, Allegiant Stadium, and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The project is expected to stretch 29 miles and will have 51 stations. vegas boring company underground transportation tesla elon musk tunnel

Huckleberry Connects With $12.5M For Baby Sleep Advice App

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Irvine-based Huckleberry, a developer of an artificial intelligence-driven app which helps parents with pediatric sleep advice, says it has raised $12.5M in a Series A funding. The funding was led by Morningside Ventures and also included Spero Ventures and Tamarisc VC. The company says the round brings its total raised to $16M. Huckleberry's app provides advice to new parents on how to manage the sleep patterns for newborns and even older children.

Symplr Acquires Midas Health Analytics Solutions

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Enterprise healthcare company Symplr, which is owned by Santa Monica-based private equity investor Clearlake Capital Group, said this morning that it has acquired Midas Health Analytics Solutions from Conduent Incorporated. symplr merger acquisition midas health analytics solutions clearlake healthcare software

ATTOM: Foreclosure Filings Surge In Q3 2021

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Irvine-based ATTOM, the unit of RealtyTrac which tracks foreclosure data, says that foreclosure filings for the U.S. have increased 68 percent from a year ago, and are up 34 percent from the previous quarter. The uptick in foreclosure starts come as a result of the retreat of foreclosure moratorium and mortgage forbearance programs. According to ATTOM, there were total of 45,517 U.S. properties with foreclosure filings - default notices, scheduled auctions or bank repossessions in Q3.

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Chronos Tech Names CEO

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San Diego-based Chronos Tech said this week that it has named Ali Farhang as CEO of the company. Farhang also will join the company's board of directors. Farhang was most recently Corporate Vice President at Micron Technology, and also served 26 years at Intel. Chronos Tech is developing technology for systems-on-a-chip (SoC) in the cloud computing, AI, mobile, automotive, and other areas. chronos tech semiconductor farhang executive intel micron

Alteryx Acquires Trifacta

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Irvine-based Alteryx, which develops analytics software, said Thursday afternoon that it has agreed to acquire Trifacta, a developer of data management and machine learning software. Alteryx said it will pay $400M in cash for Trifacta, and also will establish a retention pool of $75 million for former employees of Trifacta. The company said it expects to close the first quarter of 2022. Alteryx was advised by Goldman Sachs and Fenwick & West, with Trifacta advised by J.P.

TuSimple To Tap NVIDIA For Autonomous Trucking Effort

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San Diego-based autonomous driving systems developer TuSimple--which is developing technology to enable autonomous trucks--said this week that it has selected NVIDIA's DRIVE Orin systems-on-a-chip (SoC) for its Level 4 autonomous trucking efforts. NVIDIA is best known for its GPUs. According to TuSimple, NVIDIA' Drive Orin SoC delivers 254 TOPS (trillion operations per second) of performance and is the central computer for intelligent vehicles-powering safe autonomous driving capabilities.

LogicMonitor Names New CEO

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Santa Barbara-based software developer LogicMonitor says it has named Christina Kosmowski as the company's new CEO, succeeding former CEO Kevin McGibben. McGibben is shifting to become Executive Chairman of the company. Kosmowski was most recently President of the firm. According to LogicMonitor, it saw more than $150M in annual, recurring revenues and 50 percent year-over-year growth in 2021.

Landsat 9 Satellite Launch Scheduled For Today At Vandenberg

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A launch of an Atlas V rocket at Vandenberg Air Force Base is scheduled for today, to take a new Landsat satellite into space for NASA, according to NASA. The launch is currently targeted at 11:11am from Space Launch Complex-3 at Vandenberg Space Force Base, which is north of Los angeles near Lompoc. According to launch provider United Launch Alliance (ULA), the launch will also include multiple CubeSats, which will be released after Landsat 9 separation.

Jurny Finds $9.5M For Property, Guest Management

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Los Angeles-based Jurny, a developer of software used by independent hotels and vacation and short-term rental property operators for property and guest management, has raised $9.5M in a funding round. The funding was led by Mucker Capital. According to the company, the funding will go towards global expansion of its product, Jurny Virtual.