Mon.Jan 14, 2019

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.

IDrive Takes On Remote Help Desk Services

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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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Teradata Names Oliver Ratzesberger as New CEO

Xconomy

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

Iteris Partners With Cisco On Traffic Cameras, Smart City Effort

socalTECH

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.

San Diego Life Science Companies See Stock Bumps, Slips in JPM Wake

Xconomy

The massive life sciences meeting now known as the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference started out as a clubby get-together hosted by investment bank Hambrecht & Quist.

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

socalTECH

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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Bird Backs Off On Legal Threats Against Journalist, Apologizes

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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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GoFundMe Shuts Down Border Wall Campaign

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San Diego- and Redwood City-based GoFundMe , which allows users to create crowdfunding campaigns for pretty much any cause, has shut down a huge effort that had raised $20M to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico Mexico border. According to GoFundMe, the campaign, started by motivational speaker and veteran Brian Kolfage, came because the campaign changed the beneficiary of the campaign from the federal government, to a new nonprofit led by Kolfage, which is against the company's rules.

BitLaunch Targets Anonymous Users With Hosting Service

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Los Angeles-based virtual hosting and virtual private network (VPN) provider BitLaunch says it is looking to cater to users looking to maintain fully anonymous, VPS hosting accounts, by accepting Bitcoin and ten other cryptocurrencies for its service. The company said this morning that its service will provide "full anonymity" for its customers, and also enable people in other countries access to such cloud services as Digital Ocean, Vultr, or Linode.

Bird, BoingBoing Battle Over News Article

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Santa Monica-based Bird , and LA online publication BoingBoing , as well as BoingBoing journalist Cory Doctorow, are in the midst of a legal spat, after Bird threatened BoingBoing with legal action for describing how people are scavenging abandoned Bird scooters and turning them into their own, personal scooters using a $30 kit from China. BoingBoing did not describe how to modify and disable Bird's software and scooter, only reporting on the existence of such kits.

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Cirius Therapeutics Files For IPO

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San Diego-based Cirius Therapeutics , a venture-backed biotech startup developing treatments for liver disease, has filed for an IPO, saying it is looking to raise up to $86.25M in funding on the Nasdaq Global Select Market as CSTX. The company's IPO is being underwritten by Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Needham & Company, and Wedbush PacGrow. The startup--led by Robert Baltura, Jr.--is is venture backed by Frazier Life Sciences, Novo Holdings A/S, Adams Street Partners, and the William D.

GoFundMe Shuts Down Border Wall Campaign (Update)

socalTECH

San Diego- and Redwood City-based GoFundMe , which allows users to create crowdfunding campaigns for pretty much any cause, is giving users the options of backing out of a huge effort that had raised $20M to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico Mexico border. According to GoFundMe, the change to the campaign, started by motivational speaker and veteran Brian Kolfage, is because the campaign changed the beneficiary of the campaign from the federal government, to a new nonprofit led by Kolfag.