Sat.Jun 19, 2021 - Fri.Jun 25, 2021

What Mistakes Do VCs Make When Fundraising?

Both Sides of the Table

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of talking to Samir Kaji on the Venture Unlocked podcast about a wide range of topics that we as venture capitalists think about everyday, including: How to build a generational firm?—?retaining

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Here are five TACTICAL skills of a great leader.


It is hard to coach or teach leadership in a few paragraphs. But let’s try by limiting this short insight to a list of the five principal tactical skills of a great leader.


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Apple is opening a store in downtown LA’s nearly 100-year-old Tower Theatre

TechCrunch LA

This Thursday, Apple will mark the opening of a new store in downtown Los Angeles. The space occupies the newly renovated Tower Theatre, which opened in DTLA’s Broadway Theater District in 1927.

Triller Looks Toward IPO in July

L.A. Business Journal

Century City-based TrillerNet, the owner of short-form video platform Triller, is preparing to file a confidential direct listing with the Securities and Exchange Commission in July that values the company at more than $5 billion, according to a source familiar with the plans

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 Ways To Ensure Customer Interactions Are Memorable

Startup Professionals Musings

As a consumer, I rarely pay attention to your marketing pitch, but I certainly always remember a exceptionally positive total experience with your team, based on a memorable set of interactions from first contact to discussions with friends.

Shopify Plots Amazon Affiliate Marketing Attack


Shopify is planning to strike a blow at Amazon by entering the affiliate marketing space. An ecommerce giant with huge clout in bricks-and-mortar store retail, too, Shopify can boast to having more than one million retailers using its platform.

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Heliogen Raises $108 Million for Solar Energy Technology

L.A. Business Journal

Pasadena-based energy technology company Heliogen Inc. has raised a total of $108 million in two funding rounds to help develop its industrial solar energy technology, the company announced June 15

8 Reasons To Initiate A Startup While Career Probing

Startup Professionals Musings

If you are one of the many professionals still trapped between jobs by circumstances outside your control, or are about to dump the loser job you have now, you should be actively defining and starting your own business, in parallel with looking for that ideal job.

Long Beach Small Business Online Networking Event

SoCal Tech Calendar

Tuesday, June 29, 2021 -- Long Beach Small Business Online Networking Event. The Long Beach SBDC is hosting a virtual networking event on Tues. 29/6/2021 at 4:30pm PDT for business owners interested in exchanging ideas. See [link].

Revolution Prep Gets Growth Funding From Apax


Santa Monica-based Revolution Prep, an academic testing and tutoring preparation company, has scored private equity funding from Apax Digital Fund. Size of the funding was not announced. According to Apax Digital, the new funding will go to expand Revolution Prep's offering and to increase access to its online tutoring services. The companies said that Revolution Prep has been in the business for over 20 years, and has served more than 1 million families.

Apple Launches Mentorship Program in LA

L.A. Business Journal

Apple Inc. is launching a creative mentorship program in Los Angeles for youths from underrepresented communities

5 Ways To Turn Business Connections Into New Ventures

Startup Professionals Musings

I often hear the popular notion that successful entrepreneurs are built from a single heroic insight or a single innovation. This is just plain wrong. The business world is a symphony of players and elements that only works when everything interconnects harmoniously.

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PayPal Pumps Up Processing Fees


PayPal has announced price hikes for some of its merchant fees. The new changes, which take effect in August, will see fees rise from 2.9% to as much as 3.49% for some PayPal Digital Payments. These changes could have big impacts on some small businesses.

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Blue Sky eLearn Names CFO


San Diego-based Blue Sky eLearn, a provider of online learning and virtual event systems, said this week that it has named Scott A. West as the company's Chief Financial Officer. West previously was CFO of Heritage Group, where had had been since 2014. He also previously served at Chief Accounting Officer at Websense and Lytx. Blue Sky eLearn provides an online learning management system and virtual event services. blue elearn elearning executive scott west

Bird Rolls Out Bike Sharing Platform

L.A. Business Journal

Bird Rides Inc. announced that it will launch an e-bike sharing service in the U.S. and Europe

6 Success Stages Every Entrepreneur Idea Has To Pass

Startup Professionals Musings

It seems like everyone wants to be an entrepreneur and get rich these days. As a business mentor, I sometimes feel besieged by people begging for my view and support of their latest idea.

Ideas 75

OncoSec Names Interim CEO


San Diego- and Pennington, New Jersey-based OncoSec Medical said late Thursday that the company's CEO, Daniel O'Connor, has resigned. The company has appointed Brian Leuthner as the company's Interim CEO. Leuthner was previously Chief Operating Officer at the company. The reason for the sudden resignation were not given. OncoSec said former CEO O'Connor also is stepping down from his seat on the company's board of directors.

Maury Microwave Acquired By Private Equity Investor


Ontario, California-based Maury Microwave, a developer of RF calibration, measurement, and modeling products, said on Thursday that it has been acquired by private equity investor Artemis Capital Partners. Financial terms of the acquisition were not announced. Maury microwave was founded in 1957, with customers in the telcommunications, semiconductor, aerospace, defense, instrumentation, and research industries.

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XPRIZE Awards Winner In $5M IBM Watson AI Prize


Los Angeles-based XPRIZE, which operates a number of competitions aimed at encouraging advancement in key technology areas, says a Grand Prize Winner has been named in the IBM Watson AI XPRIZE Competition. According to the organization, the prize--first launched in 2016--goes to Zzapp Malaria, with second place going to Aifred Health, and a runner up prize to Marinus Analytics. Zzapp gets $3M, Aifred gets $1M, and $500k goes to Marinus.

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inVia Robotics Links With Rufus Labs


Los Angeles-based warehouse automation robot developer inVia Robotics has linked with fellow Los Angeles company Rufus Labs, a developer of wearables, to help with warehouse automation, the two announced this morning. According to the two companies, they are in a strategic partnership where they will serve shared customers with subscription model pricing to warehouse automation software, robots, and wearables. Financial details of the partnership were not outlined.

Vida Ventures Raises $825M Fund


Los Angeles- and Boston-based life sciences investor Vida Ventures. vida ventures fund investment venture capital lifescience biotech biomedical

Drata Takes $25M For Security, Compliance Software


San Diego-based Drata, a startup working on security and compliance automation software, said it has raised $25M in its Series A funding. The funding was led by GGV Capital, and also included Okta Ventures, Silicon Valley CISO Investors (SVCI), Cowboy Ventures, and Leaders Fund. The company's founders are Troy Markowitz, Adam Markowitz, and Daniel Marashlian. The company said it previously raised a seed funding round six months ago.

GOAT Raises $195M More, Hits $3.7 Billion Valuation


Los Angeles-based GOAT Group, the online marketplace for sneakers and many other items, has raised $195M more in funding, and now has a valuation of $3.7 billion, the company announced this morning. According to the company, the new funding was led by Park West Asset Management, funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price Associates, Franklin Templeton, Adage Capital Management, and Ulysses Management. The company said the round more than doubles its prior valuation, which was $1.8 billion.

Bird Expands Into Bike Share


Los Angeles-based Bird says it is expanding into the bicycle sharing market, unveiling a new electric bicycle and a program to support what it calls "multimodal" cities. According to Bird, its new Bird Bike is designed for longer, 3-5 mile trips, and are equipped with a high-powered motor capable of handling hills with up to a 20% grade. Bird--led by founder and CEO Travis VanderZanden--says it plans to start rolling out the shared Bird Bike across North America and Europe this year.

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FaceCake Rolls Out Virtual Dream Closets


Los Angeles-based FaceCake, a developer of augmented reality shopping software, says it has launched a new product which allows its users to create and build a "dream closet" filled with both items they own and aspire to own. According to the company, the software allows consumers to add products from their favorite brands, retailers and influencers, virtually try them on, share them with friends, and buy single pieces or complete looks. FaceCake is led by founder and CEO Linda Smith.

Miso Robotics Links With Beverage Dispenser Provider


Pasadena-based robotics developer Miso Robotics announced on Tuesday tht it has linked with global beverage dispenser manufacturer Lancer Worldwide, to build an automated beverage dispenser for commercial kitchens. Financial details of the partnership were not announced. According to Miso Robotics, the new product will help address record labor shortages at quick-serve restaurants (QSRs).

FitSwoop Launches New Wellness Booking App


A new, Los Angeles-based startup, FitSwoop announced this morning that it has launched a new, health and wellness experience booking app. According to the company, its new app provides users access to fitness studios and wellness centers. The company says its new app is free to download and use. The startup was founded by Madeline Wolkove, who the company said spent 20 years at such companies as Nestle and Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, with its CEO being Susie R.

Interview with Alex Nocifera, Field Day


How do you reinvent your startup-focused on in-person, grass roots marketing-in the face of a global pandemic? Our interview this morning is with Alex Nocifera of Los Angeles-based Field Day. Alex tells us about how the startup had to reinvent itself during the pandemic, and how it's now taking advantage of the resurgence of the economy to build its business. What is Field Day?

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Donut Bites Down On $2M In Funding


A new, Los Angeles-based startup, Donut, said today that it has raised $2M in a funding round. The funding came from Redalpine, Inventures, angel Robert Leshner (Compound), Entrepreneur First, and theowners of the Washington Nationals baseball team. According to the company, the new round brings its total raised to $3.8M. Donut is working on decentralized finance tools, including a set of banking tools built on the Ethereum. The company's founder is Neel Popat.

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Phonexa Debuts New Products


Glendale-based software company Phonexa said this morning that it has launched a new suite of software which provides click tracking, suppression list management, and cloud phone services. According to the company, the additional software complements its existing call tracking and distribution, lead tracking and distribution, email and SMS marketing, and automated accounting products. Phonexa says it offers up all of its software beginning at $100 a month.

VideoAmp Names Chief Product Officer


Los Angeles-based VideoAmp, which provides video measurement software for the advertising industry, said today that it has named Cameron Meierhoefer as Chief Product Officer. Meierhoefer was previously CEO of SignalFrame, and also had been COO of Comscore, where he spent more than 17 years.

Elon Musk's Boring Company Looks Towards Freight Tunnels


Elon Musk and his tunnel drilling company, The Boring Company, appears to be pitching the idea of using its tunnels for freight, according to pitch materials leaked from the company. According to Bloomberg, The Boring Company is now pitching wide tunnels, 21 feet across, which would be able to move two shipping containers side-by-side, with battery-powered freight carriers.

MuckerLab Opens 2021 Accelerator Program Applications


Los Angeles-based startup accelerator and investor MuckerLab has opened up programs for its 2021 program, according to the accelerator. According to MuckerLab, applications for its Summer program are due by Tuesday, July 6th at 11:59pm. MuckerLab says it invests between $100,000 and $200,000 in companies in its accelerator program, with follow-on capital available over the lifespan of its investment.

CalAmp Powers Telematics For SERES 3 Electric Car


Irvine-based asset tracking technology developer CalAmp--which owns the LoJack brand--says it is powering a new mobile telematics feature for the new SERES 3 electric SUV being distributed in Italy by the Koelliker Group. The company said all SERES 3 C-SUV electric vehicles, recently launched by Koelliker, will be pre-installed with LoJack Connect cutting-edge connected car intelligence and services. Financial details of the deal were not announced.

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Songtradr Scores $50M More


Los Angeles-based Songtradr, an online marketplace for licensed music, has raised $50M in its Series D funding round, the company announced this morning. The funding came from Regal, Aware Super, Perennial, Argo and Greencape. The company says it now has raised more than $100M. Songtradr is led by CEO Paul Wiltshire. songtradr venture capital licensed music marketplace content hollywood

LENZ Therapeutics Takes $47M In Series A For Vision Correcting Eye Drops


San Diego-based biopharmaceuticals developer LENZ Therapeutics, a biopharmaceuticals firm which is developing an eye drop which helps treat presbyopia, has raised $47M in a Series A funding round. The company said the funding came from Versant Ventures and RA Capital Management. The company said when its eye drops are used, patient show "rapid and long-lasting" improvements in near vision, with 53% of patients showed three lines or more of reading improvement and 81% showed two lines or more.