2020

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10 Ways Entrepreneurs Limit Their Creative Potential

Startup Professionals Musings

Every entrepreneur believes in their heart that their startup is more innovative and creative than their competitors. Yet none knows exactly.

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A security flaw in Grindr let anyone easily hijack user accounts

TechCrunch LA

Grindr, one of the world’s largest dating and social networking apps for gay, bi, trans, and queer people, has fixed a security vulnerability that allowed anyone to hijack and take control of any user’s account using only their email address. Wassime Bouimadaghene , a French security researcher, found the vulnerability and reported the issue to Grindr.

Email 361
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Tech Companies Continue to Bulk Up in LA, Driving Job Growth

L.A. Business Journal

Tech jobs are growing at a rapid clip in Los Angeles, fueled by an increasing appetite from local companies as well as industry leaders that are expanding their presence here.

Company 334
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Celebrating the Life and Work of Tony Hsieh

Tech.Co

By Frank Gruber and Jen Consalvo. It’s with profound sadness we mourn the loss of a true visionary, author, mentor, thought-leader, investor, and friend, Tony Hsieh. Readers may be interested to know that Tech.co has a history with Tony, as he became an investor in the company in 2013, and built a lasting friendship with us as the Tech.co co-founders.

Commerce 204
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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.

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Generation Bio Leads a Trio of Biotech Companies Aiming for the Nasdaq

Xconomy

COVID-19 has ravaged the economy, and it was expected to quash the IPO market, too. But the biotech sector is defying the pandemic with crossover financings and freshly minted public companies. On Friday, three firms added their names to the list of life science companies preparing to join the public markets. Gene therapy company Generation Bio, vaccines developer Vaxcyte, and cancer diagnostics maker Burning Rock Biotech each filed IPO paperwork just ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.

Company 145
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AlchemyLeads Helps Businesses Increase Both Traffic And Web Conversions

AllTopStartups

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) increases both the quantity and quality of traffic to a website. It provides businesses with the visibility they need to attract customers. SEO consists of multiple strategies,… The post AlchemyLeads Helps Businesses Increase Both Traffic And Web Conversions appeared first on AllTopStartups.

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Framework Benchmarks Round 19

TechEmpower

Round 19 of the TechEmpower Framework Benchmarks project is now available! This project measures the high-water mark performance of server side web application frameworks and platforms using predominantly community-contributed test implementations. Since its inception as an open source project in 2013, community contributions have been numerous and continuous.

Framework 624
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How I Lost 65 Pounds In 18 Months Without Any Fad Diets or Gimmicks

Both Sides of the Table

June 2019 (left) and November 2020 (right) I’ve been reluctant to write this blog post because historically I don’t like talking about weight. But I’ve been promising to publish how I lost 65 pounds in the past 18 months without any fad diets or gimmicks to try and be helpful to others. I have a plan, I know it works and for the friends and family who have followed what I’ve done they’ve equally lost a lot of weight.

Startup 526
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London and SF have become Impact Tech hubs, with 280% increase in VC in 5 years

TechCrunch LA

New research has found that San Francisco and London have become two of the world’s leading hubs for VC investment into tech solutions that address one or more of the 17 UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), more commonly referred to as “Impact Tech” They are followed by Paris, Berlin, Stockholm, Shanghai and Beijing. Tech solutions for such pressing issues as the climate crisis and social inequality have seen a 280% increase in global VC investment from 2015 to 2020, while inves

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LA tech industry mourns Kobe Bryant

TechCrunch LA

The Los Angeles startup community is joining the rest of the world in mourning the death of NBA superstar, entrepreneur and investor Kobe Bryant who was killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif., shortly before 10 a.m. on Sunday. Reports indicate that Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant, and seven other passengers were on board a helicopter traveling to Bryant’s basketball training facility Mamba Academy.

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GrubMarket raises $60M as food delivery stays center stage

TechCrunch LA

Companies that have leveraged technology to make the procurement and delivery of food more accessible to more people have been seeing a big surge of business this year, as millions of consumers are encouraged (or outright mandated, due to Covid-19) to socially distance or want to avoid the crowds of physical shopping and eating excursions. Today, one of the companies that is supplying produce and other items both to consumers and other services that are in turn selling food and groceries to them

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Snap accelerator names its latest cohort

TechCrunch LA

Yellow , the accelerator program launched by Snap in 2018, has selected ten companies to join its latest cohort. The new batch of startups coming from across the U.S. and international cities like London, Mexico City, Seoul and Vilnius are building professional social networks for black professionals and blue collar workers, fashion labels, educational tools in augmented reality, kids entertainment, and an interactive entertainment production company.

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LA-based Boulevard raises $27 million for its spa management software

TechCrunch LA

Boulevard , a spa management and payment platform, has raised $27 million in a new round of funding despite a business slowdown caused by the COVID0-19 pandemic. Founded four years ago by Matt Danna and Sean Stavropoulos, Boulevard was inspired by Stavropoulos’ inability to book a haircut and Danna’s hunch that the inability of salons and spas to cater to customers like the busy programmer could be indicative of a bigger problem.

Software 323
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Residential renewable energy developer Swell is raising $450 million for distributed power projects in three states

TechCrunch LA

Swell Energy , an installer and manager of residential renewable energy, energy efficiency and storage technologies, is raising $450 million to finance the construction of four virtual power plants representing a massive amount of energy storage capacity paired with solar power generation. It’s a sign of the distributed nature of renewable energy development and a transition from large-scale power generation projects feeding into utility grids at their edge to smaller, point solutions dist

Develop 322
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New guidance on SBA loans means most startups are still excluded from $349 billion stimulus

TechCrunch LA

Under new guidance issued by the Small Business Administration it seems non-profits and faith-based groups can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program loans designed to keep small business afloat during the COVID-19 epidemic, but most venture-backed companies are still not covered. Late Friday night, the Treasury Department updated its rules regarding the “affiliation” of private entities to include religious organizations but keep in place the same rules that would deny most start

Startup 322
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President Trump reportedly has approved the Oracle deal for TikTok’s US operations

TechCrunch LA

President Donald Trump said has has given his stamp of approval “in concept” on the Oracle bid for the U.S. operations of the wildly popular social media app, TikTok, according to a report from Bloomberg. According to the Bloomberg report Trump said, “I have given the deal my blessing,” as he left the White House for a campaign rally in North Carolina on Saturday. “I approved the deal in concept,” Trump reportedly said.

Oracle 320
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Grindr sold by Chinese owner after US raised national security concerns

TechCrunch LA

Chinese gaming giant Beijing Kunlun has agreed to sell popular gay dating app Grindr for about $608 million, ending a tumultuous four years under Chinese ownership. Reuters reports that the Chinese company sold its 98% stake in Grindr to a U.S.-based company, San Vicente Acquisition Partners. The app, originally developed in Los Angeles, raised national security concerns after it was acquired by Beijing Kunlun in 2016 for $93 million.

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Human Capital: Moving away from ‘master/slave’ terminology

TechCrunch LA

TGIF, am I right? Welcome back to Human Capital, where we explore some of the latest news in labor, diversity and inclusion in tech. This week, we’re looking at the use of “master/slave” terminology in computer programming and the current state of gig workers in California. Human Capital will soon be available as a weekly newsletter.

Capital 316
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Pray.com Answers Call for the Digital Faithful

L.A. Business Journal

Pray is among a fortunate handful of companies whose businesses have actually benefited from the statewide shutdown. The platform's monthly active users grew 50% from February to March.

Activity 313
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Pitching access management on the fly, Los Angeles-based Britive raises $5.4 million

TechCrunch LA

It seems Los Angeles is becoming an enterprise software hotspot. LA saw its first big enterprise exit in recent memory with the recent acquisition of Signal Sciences for $775 million, and less than a month later a hometown startup, Britive has raised $5.4 million from LA’s own venture fund, Upfront Ventures and a clutch of security experts. LA gets a big SaaS exit as Fastly nabs the Culver City-based Signal Sciences for $775M.

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Hyundai taps EV startup Canoo to develop electric vehicles

TechCrunch LA

Hyundai Motor Group said it will jointly develop an electric vehicle platform with Los Angeles-based startup Canoo, the latest startup tapped by the automaker as part of an $87 billion push to invest in electrification and other future technologies. The electric vehicle platform will be based on Canoo’s proprietary skateboard design, according to the agreement that was announced Tuesday.

Startup 310
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Mov gives you a chance to win your favorite athlete’s game day attire — sweat, tears and all

TechCrunch LA

“If it smells, that’s how they’re going to receive it.”. While that claim would likely make most D2C founders cringe, for founder Chris Alston, it’s part of the magic of his company, Mov. The upstart, based in Los Angeles, connects fans to the game-worn apparel of their favorite athletes through a sweepstakes-style model. And in the market of sports memorabilia, authenticity (even if it includes sweat, blood and tears) is everything.

Startup 306
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From bioprinting lab-grown meat in Russia to Beyond Meat in the US, KFC is embracing the future of food

TechCrunch LA

From a partnership with the Russian company 3D Bioprinting Solutions to make chicken meat replacements using plant material and lab cultured chicken cells to an expansion of its Beyond Fried Chicken pilots to Southern California, KFC is aggressively pushing forward with its experiments around the future of food. In Russia, that means providing 3D Bioprinting with breading and spices to see if the company’s chicken replacements can match the KFC taste, according to a statement from the comp

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Google Maps gets improved Live View AR directions

TechCrunch LA

Google today announced a few updates to Live View, the augmented reality walking directions in its Google Maps app that officially launched last year. Live View uses your phone’s camera and GPS to tell you exactly where to go, making it a nice addition to the standard map-centric directions in similar applications. The new features Google is introducing today include the ability to invoke Live View from the transit tab in Google Maps when you’re on a journey that includes multiple mo

Google 306
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LA Companies Play Leading Role in Rising AR, VR Industry

L.A. Business Journal

It may seem redundant to say that a company focused on creating virtual reality experiences is ahead of the curve, but that’s precisely the case for West Adams-based Survios Inc.

Company 299
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Innovative Companies Turn LA into an AI Hub

L.A. Business Journal

The idea of artificial intelligence may conjure up images of robots and mechanical automation, but for businesses, the technology’s applications are much more wide-ranging.

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Vurbl Wants to Outdo Spotify. Can It Become the YouTube of Audio?

L.A. Business Journal

There’s no shortage of audio streaming apps, but Santa Monica-based startup Vurbl Media Inc. is betting that its newly launched player can compete with established platforms like Spotify.

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Beyond Meat unveils two new versions of its Beyond Burgers

TechCrunch LA

Beyond Meat has launched two new versions of its Beyond Burgers, the company announced today. The two new options will be available on store shelves in 2021, but will be on offer at a two-day pop up event in Los Angeles for folks to try. The new Beyond Burger patties are designed to mirror the options of beef in the market with the presentation of a lower fat patty option and a new version of its higher fat content option that the brand promises will be its “juiciest” patty for the &

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Elon Musk moved to Texas

TechCrunch LA

SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk said Tuesday that he has moved to Texas, confirming months of speculation that the billionaire would leave California, a state of which he has become increasingly critical. Musk confirmed the move during an interview at the The Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council annual summit. His remarks confirmed a CNBC report that Musk had told friends of his intent to move to Texas.

SpaceX 293
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Cyber insurance startup At-Bay raises $34M Series C, adds M12 as a new investor

TechCrunch LA

Cybersecurity insurance startup At-Bay has raised $34 million in its Series C round, the company announced Tuesday. The round was led by Qumra Capital, a new investor. Microsoft’s venture fund M12, also a new investor, participated in the round alongside Acrew Capital, Khosla Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Munich Re Ventures, and Israeli entrepreneur Shlomo Kramer, who co-founded security firms Check Point and Imperva.

Startup 288
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The Shed is a startup out of Virginia trying to revive the rental-for-everything business

TechCrunch LA

Reducing consumption by expanding the notion of the rental economy and giving people access to tools and equipment has been something of a startup holy grail for some time. It’s a model that’s worked famously well for fashion and accessories ( just ask investors in Rent the Runway ), but has had not had the same resonance for white label goods.

Startup 285
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Uber CEO says service faces temporary shutdown in California over worker reclassification ruling

TechCrunch LA

Uber could be forced to shut down its ride-hailing app in California for several months if a court doesn’t overturn a recent ruling that classifies its drivers as full-time employees, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in an interview with MSNBC. “It’s hard to believe we’ll be able to switch our model to full-time employment quickly,” Khosrowshahi said, noting it would force the company to temporarily shut down.

San Diego 284
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Sundae snags $36M to build out its distressed property marketplace

TechCrunch LA

Opendoor has opened the door, so to speak, for startups to apply their technical expertise in search, marketplaces and audience segmentation to rethink the very antiquated and analogue world of property. Today, a startup that is doing this in the specific area of distressed property is announcing a round of growth funding to ramp up its team and expand its business.

Sales 282
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Taika is building a better coffee through natural chemistry and adaptogens

TechCrunch LA

So, an eight-year product veteran from Facebook and an internationally renowned barista walk into a coffee bar… It’s not a joke. It’s the origin story for Taika , a new startup that’s aiming to bring natural stimulants to the masses through its juiced up coffee-beverages. The two co-founders, Michael Sharon, an eight-year veteran of Facebook’s mobile product division, and Kalle Freese, a champion barista (it’s a thing) and the co-founder of Sudden Coffee are o

Startup 284
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With Bambee, Allan Jones wants to give small businesses HR services their employees can trust

TechCrunch LA

Allan Jones’s first startup was Fourth and Grand , a Trunk Club-like service backed by the venture studio and accelerator, Science, out of Santa Monica. While the business didn’t work out, it put the budding young entrepreneur (and college dropout) on a path that would lead him to launch the Los Angeles-based startup Bambee , a company that lets small businesses give their employees access to the same kinds of human resources services that large companies have.

Services 281
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Post-Breakup Apps Help Women Move On

L.A. Business Journal

After going through a difficult breakup, Elle Huerta created what she thought she and others in her situation needed: an app for women who had recently split from their partners.

Help 277