Sat.May 04, 2019 - Fri.May 10, 2019

Pearl, the healthcare spinout from LA-based AI startup, GumGum, raises $11 million

TechCrunch LA

GumGum , the Los Angeles-based startup that’s spent the past decade applying machine learning technologies to advertising and sports, has spun out a new healthcare startup focused on the dental industry called Pearl.

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Zillow Expands Instant Home Buying Service To LA, San Diego


Online real estate service Zillow is expanding its home buying service to both Los Angeles and San Diego, the company announced this week, in a move which will allow home buyers to get nearly instant offers on their homes--instead of going through a traditional broker and offering their home on the market. According to Zillow, the addition of Los Angeles and San Diego comes along with a move into six new markets. Zillow already had been offering up the service in the Inland Empire.

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Uber Completes $8.1B Public Market Debut in Spite of Tumultuous Past


Ride-hailing giant Uber secured $8.1 billion in new capital late Thursday as it priced an initial public offering that set its market capitalization at $82.4 billion , according to calculations by The New York Times and other news outlets.

Everyone needs to manage their mantra or move on.


Ever stand with someone you’ve never met when at a party, a trade show or just meet someone in the hallway? We all have. And then that person opens his or her mouth and spends a boring two minutes describing their business to you?

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5 Key Drivers For Creating A Board For Your Startup

Startup Professionals Musings

Image via Flickr by MDGovpics Many entrepreneurs I know are confused by definition and need for an Advisory Board versus a Board of Directors.

AppOnboard Gives Away Instant App Software For Free


Los Angeles-based AppOnboard says it has begun giving away its codeless app development software, AppOnboard Studio , to help developers create "instant apps" and playable ads, as well as prototypes. The startup--led by startup veteran Jonathan Zweig--said the free version of its software makes it easy for people to design and build interactive versions of their mobile apps and games. AppOnboard has been offering up to the tool to many mobile game developers, to help them offer up game previews.

Two Days, Five Biotech IPOs, and $359M Raised for Clinical Trials


It will be hard to top last year’s flurry of biotech companies joining the public markets, but this week is shaping up to be the busiest for life science IPOs in recent memory. Five biotechs priced their IPOs and at least one more is coming.

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7 Problem Solving Mistakes To Avoid In Your Business

Startup Professionals Musings

Image via Flickr by Fortune Conferences In every business, especially new ones, quick and effective problem solving is a critical skill.

Phyn Finds $12M More For Smart Water Monitoring


Los Angeles-based Phyn , the Belkin spinout which is developing very advanced, machine learning-driven smart water usage monitoring systms, has raised $12M more in a funding round, the company announced on Thursday. The funding came from Belkin International and Uponor, both prior investors in Phyn. According to Phyn, the new funding will go towards research and new product development, to help it grow its footprint in the U.S., and continued expansion in global markets.

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Lundbeck to Buy Abide Therapeutics For $250M, Make SD Lab a US Hub


Danish pharma firm Lundbeck has agreed to acquire Abide Therapeutics for $250 million upfront. The La Jolla-CA-based company, spun out of research from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), is developing drugs to treat diseases of the central nervous system, among them Tourette syndrome.

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North America CACS 2019

SoCal Tech Calendar

Tuesday, May 14, 2019 -- North America CACS 2019. IT Audit, Control, and Security Event. Stay ahead of trends and tools across your professional landscape. Join us at North America CACS 2019, 13-15 May in Anaheim, California, and be a part of the top conference for IS audit and security professionals! See [link] (more

7 Keys To Using Social Media to Kickstart Your Brand

Startup Professionals Musings

Image via Pixabay After a frustrating meeting with a small business client recently who didn’t “have time” for social media, I was surprised to find evidence on the Internet that up to one quarter of small business owners are still hesitant to invest time, money, and effort into a social media strategy.

Report: Bird Facing Major Issues With Keeping Scooters Alive


Santa Monica-based last-mile transportation startup Bird is facing big issues with keeping its scooters up and operating, according to a story from the LA Times published on Sunday. According to the LA Times, despite a massive rollout of scooters across the world, the scooters are wearing out "long before they could earn back their cost". An study shows that Bird had nearly 7,000 scooters active in Los Angeles County in January, but only 1,500 of them survived until April.

FDA OKs Pfizer Rare Disease Drug, Sets Up Battle With Alnylam, Akcea


[ Updated 5/6/19, 9:20 am ET. See below. ] A year ago, there were no FDA-approved medicines available for US patients with the debilitating rare genetic disease transthyretin amyloidosis (ATTR).

North America CACS 2019

SoCal Tech Calendar

Monday, May 13, 2019 -- North America CACS 2019. IT Audit, Control, and Security Event. Stay ahead of trends and tools across your professional landscape. Join us at North America CACS 2019, 13-15 May in Anaheim, California, and be a part of the top conference for IS audit and security professionals! See [link] (more

8 Keys To Introducing Truly Life-Changing Innovations

Startup Professionals Musings

Image via Flickr by UC Davis What sparks paradigm-shifting innovation in any business? It’s a special mix of entrepreneur and company, regular in every respect except for having the courage and foresight to make an idea happen that was supposed to be impossible.

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j2 Global's Q1 Revenues Rise To $299.9M


Los Angeles-based J2 Global , the owner of such Internet publishing brands as IGN, Mashable, PCMag, Everyday Health, and also cloud services such as eFax, eVoice, KeepItSafe, and Livedrive, reported its quarterly results on Tuesday evening, saying that its quarterly revenues rose to a record of $299.9M. Those quarterly results were up from Q1 of 2018, when the company had revenues of $280.6M. The company said net cash provided by its operating activities increased to $116.9M

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Tech Ethics, Regulation & Strategy: Here’s the Napa Summit Agenda


With Uber’s long-awaited IPO, Facebook’s mounting controversies, and ongoing debates over drug pricing and safety issues, come a great responsibility. A big story in the innovation community now is about the ethics and regulation of tech and life sciences.

University Venturing Summit 2019

SoCal Tech Calendar

Tuesday, May 14, 2019 -- University Venturing Summit 2019. The best and brightest ventures from top Southern California universities will demo their ventures to angel investors and other resources in the new venturing community. See [link] (more

8 Steps For Developing Employees To Generate Loyalty

Startup Professionals Musings

Image via Flickr by University of the Fraser It’s a whole new world out there in the workplace. Millennials want work that matters, and don’t care for hierarchies. Boomers are coming back to work, but because of their experience, they may be insulted by constant feedback.

StoryBots Acquired By Netflix


StoryBots , the kids' mobile app and content developer created by long time Southern California entrepreneurs Gregg and Evan Spiridellis, has been acquired by Netflix , Netflix announced on Thursday. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced. StoryBots was created by Gregg and Evan Spiridellis when they were running another, local technology company--JibJab-- when, as new parents, they recognized the need for good children's content on mobile platforms.

SMA, Migraine Data Lead Neuro Highlights from AAN Meeting


The American Academy of Neurology meeting in Philadelphia is rolling on through the end of this week. There has been plenty of news to digest already.

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TIF/ Corporate VC Program

SoCal Tech Calendar

Tuesday, May 14, 2019 --.

Appetize Sees Gains With Self Service Kiosks


Playa Vista-based point-of-sale equipment and software provider Appetize says that its recent move to offer up "self-service" kiosks to its customers, has resulted in its customers seeing more spending and demand. The company--which uses tablets and other technology to provide a more modern approach to point-of-sale terminals--said its customers are seeing an up to 40 percent increase in order size due to the availability of its self-service kiosks.

Neural Analytics Finds $22M For Medical Robotics


Los Angeles-based Neural Analytics , a developer of medical robotics technology being used to track and measure brain health in possible stroke victims, has raised $22M in its Series C funding, the company said this morning. The company says it has now raised approximately $66M in total. The Series C funding was led by Alpha Edison.

Indose Inhales $3.5M In Funding From Snoop Dogg's Casa Verde


Woodland Hills-based Indose , a startup developing a vape device for THC and cannabis, has raised $3.5M in a Series A funding round, according to the company. The funding came from Casa Verde Capital, the cannabis investment fund run by Snoop Dogg. According to Indose, it has developed a vape pen technology which provides a measured dose of THC to the user. According to the company, it has created an "individualized, controlled vannabis vaping experience".

MabVax Therapeutics Looks To Sell Company In $3.7M Bankruptcy


San Diego-based biopharmaceuticals developer Mabvax , which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March, has lined up a buyer for the company , in a deal worth $3.7M. Mabvax filed for bankruptcy in March, claiming that it was the victim of "pump-and-run" by outside investors. Mabvax was developing treatments for cancer, using antibody technology. READ MORE>>. mabvax therapeutics biopharmaceuticals phamraceutical merger acquisition bankruptcy lifescience biotech

Relativity Signs Satellite Rideshare Deal


Los Angeles-based Relativity , a developer of robotics technology and 3D manufacturing technology aimed at developing 3D printed rockets, says it has signed a launch services agreement with satellite ridesharing arranger Spaceflight. According to Relativity, Spaceflight will manifest missions to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) on Relativity's 3D printed rocket, the Terran 1. Relativity has not yet launched its first rocket. Financial details of that launch services agreement were not announced.

Pearl Picks Up $11M To Apply AI Vision To Dental Industry


Los Angeles-based Pearl , the machine learning startup which was spun out of advertising AI software startup GumGum , has raised $11M in a funding round, which came from Craft Ventures, as well as un-named strategic investors. The startup, led by GumGum founder Ophir Tanz, says it is uses artificial intelligence to help the dental industry, with plans to roll out artificial intelligence-powered dentistry tools using computer vision technology.

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Sonos Launches Google Assistant Support, Reports Q2 Results


Goleta-based whole home speaker manufacturer Sonos said on Thursday that it has launched Google Assistant on Sonos, allowing Google's voice assistant to run on Sonos "smart" speakers through a software upgrade. According to Sonos, it will begin rolling out the feature next week in the U.S., with more markets to come over the next few months.

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Chrome River Powers New Expense App For U.S. Bank


Los Angeles-based software developer Chrome River and U.S. Bank announced this week that Chrome River is powering a new app being launched by U.S. Bank, the U.S. Bank Expense Wizard. According to the two, the new payment software helps streamline payments and reconciliation for infrequent business travelers. Financial details of the arrangement between the two companies were not announced.

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Scopely Buys DIGIT Game Studios


Los Angeles-based mobile game publisher Scopely has acquired DIGIT Game Studios , the game development studio behind its hit mobile game, Star Trek Fleet Command , Scopely announced on Thursday. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced. Scopely was already a strategic investor in Dublin, Ireland-based DIGIT, having made an investment in DIGIT in 2015.

ChowNow Connects With $21M More


Los Angeles-based online ordering software developer ChowNow has raised $21M more in funding, in its Series C funding, according to the company. The funding came from 3L Capital and Catalyst Investors, and brings the company's total raised to $60M. Chowow is led by co-founder and CEO Chris Webb. As part of the funding, the company said that Shawn Colo, the co-founder and managing director of 3L Capital, has joined the company's board.

LiveXLive Inks Livestream Deal With Tencent Video


West Hollywood-based LiveXLive Media , which produces digital media for the live entertainment space, has inked a distribution deal with Chinese video platform Tencent Video , where LiveXLive will stream the EDC Las Vegas music festival to Chinese viewers. According to LiveXLive, it has granted Tencent exclusive rights to distribute the livestream of Insomniac's EDC Las Vegas throughout China, including Macau and Hong Kong, for the weekend of May 17th to 19th.

St. Cloud Capital Rolls Up Healthcare Firms Into A New Company, AleraCare


Los Angeles-based private equity investor St. Cloud Capital announced on Wednesday that it has made a growth capital investment in a new company, AleraCare Holdings , which will provide. home and community-based healthcare and pharmacy services for high-need and medically complex populations. Size of the investment was not announced. According to St.

How Runtriz Is Powering Mobile Apps For Hotels, with Alonso Vargas


For our interview this morning, we caught up with Alonso Vargas , the CTO and co-founder of Runtriz (, a Los Angeles company which has been powering the mobile apps and experiences for Radisson, Best Western, a lot of boutique brands. What does Runtriz do?

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GOAT Jumps On Augmented Reality


Los Angeles-based online sneaker marketplace operator GOAT has rolled out an augmented reality (AR) feature, which lets buyers on the site see sneakers feature on the site in AR, the company said on Wednesday. According to GOAT, users on iOS and Android can both view sneakers in a new AR feature of those apps, starting with the Travis Scott x Air Jorcan 1 Retro High OG 'Mocha'. GOAT recently raised $100M in a funding round led by Footlocker, and has raised nearly $200M in total for its efforts.

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