Sat.Jun 04, 2022 - Fri.Jun 10, 2022

Are there only three types of advice?

Berkonomics

“Here’s the deal…” So, I occasionally read suspense novels to break up the relative monotony of constant business books. A sentence in the one I recently read caught my eye.

Almost Always Any Decision Is Better Than No Decision

Startup Professionals Musings

Every so often a promising entrepreneur seems to freeze in the oncoming headlights and gets run over by his competition. Why is it that his idea which seemed so fundable only months ago fails to attract investors today? The team is the same. The company's market is the same.

Ideas 121
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TuSimple Co-Founder Launches New, Self Driving Hydrogen Truck Startup

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One of the co-founders of self driving truck company TuSimple, Mo Chen, said today that he has launched a new company, Hydron, which will develop, manufacture, and sell hydrogen-powered, self-driving (Level 4) trucks. Hydron did not say how it is being funded. The company said it intends to both develop the trucks, as well as operate its own hydrogen refueling infrastructure for large fleets and leading carriers in the future. Hydron is based in Los Angeles.

DigiMarCon California 2022 - Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference and Exhibition

SoCal Tech Calendar

Thursday, June 16, 2022 --.

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.

8 Traits Of The Most Highly Creative Startup Founders

Startup Professionals Musings

An entrepreneur is literally “one who creates a new business.” The best new businesses are ones that have never been done before, so mastering creativity and recognizing creativity are key skills and mindsets. But how does one recognize and nurture creativity in a person or team?

Ideas 108

5 Keys to Developing Trust and Leadership In A Crisis

Startup Professionals Musings

Every business leader expects to encounter one or more crises eventually. The challenge for each of you is to get it handled quickly and effectively, without losing the trust of constituents , as well as customers.

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8 Ways To Heighten Your Image As A Great Communicator

Startup Professionals Musings

In my work with entrepreneurs and business leaders, a common question I get is how to be a better communicator.

Texas AG Lines Up With Musk Against Twitter

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In a move which aligns the State of Texas with new billionaire resident Elon Musk, Ken Paxton, the Attorney General of Texas, announced on Monday that he has ordered a Civil Investigative Demand (CID) to investigate whether Twitter's reporting on real versus fake users is "fake, misleading, or deceptive" under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. Paxton said that the number of bots are "directly harming Texas consumers and businesses."

Stratolaunch Completes Sixth Flight Test

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Mojave-based Stratolaunch has completed its sixth flight test of its aircraft, the Roc--which is currently the world's largest flying aircraft. According to Stratolaunch, the Roc flew for 1 hours and 26 minutes over the Mojave desert on the test flight on Thursday. Stratolaunch recently pivoted from developing a launch platform for satellites, to providing a platform for testing hypersonic vehicles.

Activision Blizzard Plans Union Negotiations At Raven Software

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Santa Monica-based Activision Blizzard says it pans to start negotiations with the Communications Workers of America, related to the 27 quality assurance employees at Raven Software. Raven Software's QA employees voted to join a union in May, the first in the industry to attempt to unionize. Activision Blizzard subsequently raised pay--it says "significantly increased starting pay for QA specialists" after the unionization vote, but excluded all Raven Software employees from that pay raise.

Just Women's Sports Scores $6M

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Los Angeles-based Just Women's Sports, a startup which provides a media platform for women's sports, said this week that it has raised $6M in a funding round.

Faraday Future Plans Chinese Expansion

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Troubled Los Angeles-based electric vehicle maker Faraday Future apparently is planning to open up a factory in China, according to the company, despite a slew of troubles facing the company. Faraday Future--which has yet to release its first vehicles--is currently under investigation by the SEC, has been having issues with regulatory filings, and has warned it is "running out of money". The company's original founder also has been facing legal woes in China around financial fraud charges.

Phoenix Motor Raises $15.75M In Lackluster IPO

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Anaheim-based electric vehicle developer Phoenix Motor, which says it is working on electric drive systems and light and medium duty electric vehicles, has raised $15.75M in its initial public offering (IPO), a fraction of its initial target of $150M. The company said it sold 2,100,000 shares of its common stock at $7.50 per share. The company now trades on the Nasdaq Capital Market as PEV. The company's IPO was underwritten by Prime Number Capital LLC, Revere Securities LLC and Westpark Capital.

Revolution RE Snags $3M For Rental Property Data

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Los Angeles-based real estate data and software provider Revolution RE has raised $3M in a funding round, according to the company, to go towards its software-as-a-service for data aggregation and analytics for the residential rental real estate market.

CIO 109

Wavemaker Three-Sixty Health Raises Second Fund, Worth $64M

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Pasadena-based healthare technology investment fund Wavemaker Three-Sixty Health announced this morning that it has raised its second fund, worth $64M. According to WaveMaker Three-Sixty Health, its Fund II is nearly four times the size of its first fund, and will be used to invest in 40-50 early-stage companies in the areas of health-tech, digital health, medical device, telehealth, artificial intelligence, pharma-tech, science and marketplaces. Wavemaker 360's first fund was raised in 2018.

Nativo Names CMO

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Los Angeles-based Nativo, which develops brand marketing software for advertisers and publishers, says it has named Raquel Cadourcy as the company's new Chief Marketing Officer. Cadourcy was most recently Chief Marketing Officer at Modern Luxury Media, and also had served at Undertone and Merkle. Cadourcy reports to Nativo CEo Justin Choi. nativo chief marketing officer advertising publishing raquel cadourcy

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Calaxy Collects $26M

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A new, Los Angeles-based startup, Calaxy, which offers up a social marketplace for celebrities, has raised $26M in a funding round, the company said on Tuesday. According to the company, the strategic fnding was co-led by HBAR Foundation and Animoca Brands, and also included Polygon. The company said it was founded by tech entrepreneur Solo Ceesay and NBA star Spencer Dinwiddie.

Songtradr Acquires Musicube

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Los Angeles-based Songtradr, a B2B music licensing company, said yesterday that it has acquired Musicube, a developer of artificial intelligence software for music search. According to Songtradr, the deal will expand its portfolio of tech-enabled music solutions designed to license the right music for any content. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced. Songtradr is led by CEO Paul Wiltshire.

Design 109

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator Launches Cleantech Loan Fund

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The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator announced this morning that it has launched a brand new, $6M clean technology loan fund, designed to fund early stage startups in the climate area. According to the incubator, the LACI Cleantech Debt Fund will offer up loans of between $25,000 to $250,000 to an estimated 100 early-stage startups over five years.

Report: Bird Axes 23 Percent Of Staff

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Santa Monica-based micromobility provider Bird is reportedly laying off 23 percent of its staff, based on reports. The layoffs--first reported by Layoffs.fyi--apparently were announced in an internal memo. In a statement to TechCrunch, Bird said that it eliminated "all non-critical third party spend" as well as "team members". Layoffs.fyi said that most of the jobs being eliminated are in Los Angeles. bird layoff jobs employment micromobility scooter

Miso Robotics Adopts AWS RoboMaker

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Pasadena-based restaurant robotics developer Miso Roboticss said today that it is working with Amazon Web Services, and is using the AWS RoboMaker service to test the software powering its Flippy 2 and Flippy Lite robots. Those robots are being deployed in quick serve restaurants to automate parts of the food production line. Miso Robotics has raised more than $50M in crowdfunding. miso robot robomaker amazon robotics

OmniSync Gets $1M Grant

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San Diego-based OmniSync, which is developing artificial intelligence software to help deep tech and life science startups to access agency-wide Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants and contracts, has scored a SBIR grant itself.

Apple Names Latest OS After Ventura

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Although Apple does not have any local operations except its retail stores in Ventura County, the computing and electronic device giant has named its latest operating system, MacOS Ventura, after the local city/county. It's unclear why Apple decided to gives its latest OS a local moniker, however, the comany has previously named its OS versions after other California locations, including Monterey, Catalina, Mojave, Yosemite, Mavericks (a surfing spot), and Big Sur.

Religion of Sports Gets $50M More

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Santa Monica-based streaming media startup Religion Of Sports, which was co-founded by Tom Brady, Michael Strahan, and Gotham Chopra, said on Monday that it has raised $50M in a Series B funding. The funding was led by Shamrock Capital, and also included Elysian Park Ventures and Cerro Capital. The company is also backed by Courtside Ventures, LinkinFirm and Advancit Ventures. Religion of Sports is led by CEO Ameeth Snkaran.

MSBAI Gets Department of Energy Grant

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Los Angeles-based MSBAI said last week that it has been awarded $199,944 by the Department of Energy, to provide its tools to streamline setting up simulations for the Office of Nuclear Energy's Advanced Modeling and Simulation tools. The company said its tools reduce the time from hours to minutes. The company's software is based on artificial intelligence (AI) techniques. msbai defense artificial intelligence software

Tool 109

Ryff Partners With ReachTV

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Los Angeles-based Ryff, a startup developing artificial intelligence tools to virtually insert products into content, says it has partnered with airport television network ReachTV. Ryff said the partnership will give it access to ReachTV's complete library of content, allowing it to sell brands for product placement. Financial details of the deal were not announced. Ryff claims its technology allows products can be inserted digitally into an existing program without the need for post-production.

Tool 109

Avocado Green Mattress Extends To Canadian Market

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Los Angeles-based Avocado Green Mattress, an online "green" mattress brand headquartered in Santa Monica, says it has expanded its business to Canada, and is now offering up its organic mattresses, pillows, and mattress protectors to Canadian residents. The company said it is a certified B corp, which manufactures its organic mattresses in California, using 100% certified organic materials. avocado green mattress startup online expansion canada

Elon Musk Threatens To Kill Twitter Deal

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Elon Musk, the billionaire behind Hawthorne-based SpaceX, Tesla, and other companies, is threatening to pull out of a deal with Twitter, claiming in an SEC filing that Twitter has refused his data requests to quantify how many of its users are "spam bots". In the filing, Musk's lawyers said "he does not believe the company's lax testing methodologies are adequate so he must conduct his own analysis.". acquisition merger stock twitter musk elon

Resilience Takes $625M In Series D Round

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San Diego-based National Resilience, a biomanufacturing company, said this week that it has raised $625M in a Series D funding round. The company said the $625M comes on top of an earlier, unannounced $600M Series C funding it completed in August of 2021. Resilience did not say who provided the funding, only saying that it came from venture capital funds, public mutual funds, pension funds, biopharma companies, sovereign wealth funds and private family offices, and others.