Thursday, February 26, 2015

Slickdeals Taps OpenX, Twitter Vets For Board

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Los Angeles-based Slickdeals, the online coupon and deal site led by Josh Meyers, has tapped two technology veterans for its board. Slickdeals said Thursday that it has named Tim Cadogan, the CEO of Pasadena's OpenX, along with Nathan Hubbard, head of commerce at Twitter, to its board of directors. Prior to becoming CEO of OpenX, Cadogan was Senior Vice President of Global Advertising Marketplaces at Yahoo!. Prior to Twitter, Hubbard was CEO of Live Nation Ticketing, and was CEO of Musictoday. Meyers has ramping up Slickdeals, looking to leverage a site with loyal users and lots of traffic but not focus on design, and adapting it to the mobile and social generation.

 
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3D Robotics Lands $50M For Drone Technology

Thursday, February 26, 2015

3D Robotics, the unmanned aerial vehicle maker behind the IRIS, X8, and many other drone vehicles, said Thursday that it has raised $50M in a Series C venture funding round. The funding was led by Qualcomm Ventures. The company--which has major operations in San Diego--said the deal comes along with a partnership with Qualcomm, where it will use Qualcomm's Snapdragon processors in its design. 3D Robotics not only sells drone hardware, it also makes all of its technology available through open source, so that designers can create their own drones.

 
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Twenty20 Gets $20M For Crowdsourced Stock Photography

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Marina Del Rey-based Twenty20 is taking aim at the stock photography market, announcing this morning that it has raised $20M in a Series A funding and launched its commercial image catalog out of beta. The startup--led by Matt Munson--said the funding was led by Canaan Partners, and also included First Round Capital, Bullpen Capital, and VersionOne Ventures. The company say s it is looking to connect photographers with creative professionals, helping to provide crowdsourced stock imagery to businesses they can use in marketing, advertising, social campaigns, and more. Twenty20 said that existing, stock image sites have left a vacuum due to their "staged, dated photos". In an interesting twist, Twenty20 is offering up a mobile app which allows its crowdsourced creators to upload the photos from their camera phone. The company said that those mobile photos have already been used by West Elm, Washio and The Audience.

 
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Luxe Valet Raises $20M

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Luxe Valet, the on-demand valet parking app provider which launched into LA in January, has reportedly raised $20M in a new financing. The funding came from Redpoint and Venrock, and also included the company's prior investors, including Google Ventures, Sherpa Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Foundation Capital, and Data Collective, according to the report. Luxe Valet is also backed by LA's Upfront Ventures, which was not mentioned in the report.

 
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Brikk Blings Up The Apple Watch With Diamonds, Gold

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Need some serious bling on your new Apple Watch? Los Angeles-based design firm Brikk is bringing on some serious bling to the Apple Watch, saying this morning that it is launching 30 models of the Apple Watch availablegold, platinum, and studded with diamonds. The company said the models range from $7,495 to $69,995 for its versions of the Apple Watch, with its high end model, the Lux Watch Omni, wrapped with over 12 carats of diamonds. Brikk said it expects to ship its version of the Apple Watch 4-6 weeks after the official release.

 
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Meritage Pharma Acquired For $70M By Shire

Thursday, February 26, 2015

San Diego-based pharmaceuticals firm Meritage Pharma has been acquired by Shire plc, Shire announced this week in a deal worth $70M upfront plus unspecified earnout. Shire said the deal gives it the global rights to Meritage's Oral Budesonide Suspension (OBS), which is being targeted at the treatment of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), a rare, chronic inflammatory gastrointestinal (GI) disease. Shire said the acquisition will enhance its late stage pipeline. Meritage Pharma was venture backed by Domain Associates, Latterell Venture Partners, and Vertical Group, and had raised north of $33.5M since 2008.

 
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TherMark Acquired By Ferro

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Irvine-based laser marketing technology developer TherMark Holdings has been acquired by Cleveland-based Ferro Corporation, in a deal worth $5.5M, the two said late Wednesday afternoon. TherMark develops laser marking technology used to permanently fuse marking materials to metals, ceramics, glass, and other surfaces. Ferro had been the supplier of those marking materials to TherMark. TherMark was backed by the Tech Coast Angels and Pasadena Angels, and had announced a total of around $2.55M in funding since 2006.

 
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WD Rolls Out Network Attached Storage

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Irvine-based Western Digital said today that it has rolled out a new set of network attached storage devices, aimed at the creative professional and small business market. The company said it launched four new products in its My Cloud line including two- and four-bay network attached storage systems, with versions aimed at the prosumer market, and parallel models aimed at small business customers. Both systems support up to 24 TB of storage, multiple RAID options, backup software, and more. The systems start at $249.99 and range up to $1449.99 for the full 24TB.

 
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Iteris Loses CEO

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Santa Ana-based Iteris, which provides traffic management technology, said its CEO and president, Abbas Mohaddes, has resigned. The company said Mohaddes resigned from both his position and the company's board to "pursue other opportunities". The company has appointed Kevin Daly--who was on the company's board--as interim CEO until the company finds a replacement. Iteris said it has tapped Heidrick and Struggles for the CEO search. Mohaddes had been CEO of Iteris since 2007.

 
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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Mavenlink Finds $19M For Project Management Tools

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Irvine-based Mavenlink, the developer of business and project management software led by Ray Grainger, said Tuesday that it has raised $19M in a round of funding. The funding was split between $15M in equity, plus $4M in a credit facility. The equity investment was led by Carrick Capital Partners, and the credit facility came from Silicon Valley Bank. Mavenlink's business software is aimed at project management, particularly in the ares of marketing, IT services, software implementation, management consulting, and similiar areas.

 
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GoDaddy Selects NYSE For IPO Effort

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

GoDaddy, the parent of Los Angeles-based website hosting service MediaTemple, said in a regulatory filing late Tuesday that is has selected the NYSE for its IPO. GoDaddy said that it hopes to trade under the ticker symbol GDDY. GoDaddy filed for an IPO back in June. GoDaddy is backed by KKR, Silver Lake, and Technology Crossover Ventures. The company has significant operations in Los Angeles, largely due to the company's acquisition of Media Temple in 2013; GoDaddy's recent push into the small business hosting market has come in part due to the talent and executive team from Media Temple.

 
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AdRev Hits $14.8M In Royalty Payouts

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Los Angeles-based AdRev, the startup led by Ryan Born which provides digital rights management for music publishers on YouTube, says that it has just hit $14.8M in royalty payouts through its service. The company says it saw around 4.6 billion average views per month on the content it is managing. The royalty payments are nearly triple the $5 million in royalty payouts the company in 2013, and nearly ten times the $1.4M in royalty payouts the company had in 2012. AdRev's service identifies content on YouTube owned by music publishers, allowing them to assert their copyright rights and monetize usage of that music by others.

 
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Rubicon Project Passes $100M Mark, Sees $125.3M In Yearly Revenues

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Los Angeles-based online advertising technology developer Rubicon Project> has just passed the $100M mark, reporting yesterday that its 2014 year end revenues were $125.3M. The company said it is expecting 40 percent year-over-year revenue growth in 2015. The details came as the company released its fourth quarter results, where it reported net income of $1.4M on revenues of $41.8M for the quarter. Rubicon Project is led by Frank Addante, and helps online publishers optimize the advertising on their website to gain the most revenue.

 
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SpaceX Wins Two Satellite Launches From SES

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Hawthorne, California-based SpaceX, the Los Angeles area rocket and spacecraft company, has scored two new launch agreements, this time with Luxembourg-based SES. SES said this morning that it has signed a deal for SpaceX to launch two satellites--SES-14 and SES-16/GovSat--‌into orbit in 2017. Financial impact of the deal was not announced. SES said both satellites will be launched using the Falcon 9. SES-14 iss a KU- and Ka-band satellite being used for video and data. SES-16/GovSat is a military satellite covering Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Image: artistic rendering of SES-14

 
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Bitcentral Buys Fission Software

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Newport Beach-based Bitcentral, a developer of software used in broadcast news production and automation, said it has acquired Fission Software, a developer of software used for master control automation in the media and broadcast industry. Financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed. Bitcentral is led by Fred Fourcher.

 
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SEKUR.me Rolls Fingerprint Payment App

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Santa Ana-based SEKUR.me, the electronic payments startup led by Jack Bicer, said this morning that it has integrated the Apple Touch ID and Samsung's fingerprint recognition features into its mobile, online payment app. SEKUR.me said it software now lets shoppers purchase items--using their fingerprint--instead of entering checkout forms or credit card numbers on e-commerce sites. SEKUR.me is aiming at reducing consumer friction in e-commerce payments, by allowing users to use their fingerprint rather than enter dozens of bits of payment information via their smartphone.

 
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Kofax Wins Nearly $1.0M From Health Insurance Provider

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Irvine-based Kofax>, the developer of software used for scanning and handling paperwork, reported a nearly $1M deal today. Kofax said that a large, un-named U.S. affordable health insurance provider has invested $945,000 in a set of Kofax software to handle medical claims processing. Kofax said the customer will use its products to automate the processing of more than 800,000 medical claims and related documents annually. Kofax said the sale was split between $550,000 in software licenses, and $380,000 in maintenance and professional services.

 
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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Semitrex Aims At Power Efficiency

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A new, Laguna Beach-based startup, Semitrex, said today that it has launched a new set of systems-on-a-chip aimed at helping to improve the power efficiency of circuits. According to the startup, it has launched a new family of chips which dramatically improve the efficiency of power spplies. The company says it has consolidated over 14 different parts which are needed for power supplies, and incorporated them into a single systems-on-a-chip, which it says provides 90 percent efficiency. The startup is led by Michael H. Freeman, who has previously developed products in the 802.11n mobile video area, and the executive team also includes COO Jay Cormier, who previously was at Teridian.

 
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BlackLine Sets New CFO, Eyes IPO

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

In what might be the most demanding CFO position in the area, Los Angeles-based BlackLine said this morning that it has named a new CFO. The company--which develops financial controls and automation software for companies--said it named Mark Partin as its Chief Financial Officer. Partin was most recently CFO of Fiberlink Communications. Partin previously also served as CFO at Headhunter.net (now Careerbuilder.com), seeing the company through startup to IPO, and also served at Arthur Anderson. Former CFO Charles Best becomes Chief Accounting Officer. BlackLine sells its software--used for automating account reconciliation and financial close automation--to CFOs of a long list of large corporations, and was founded by Therese Tucker. The company is rumored to be prepping for an IPO, and Partin's appointment might be part of that process. BlackLine recently posted a job position seeking a "Manager, SEC Reporting" seeking someone to lead filing of an S-1, along with 10-K, 10-Q, and other SEC filings for the company.

 
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Flexus Biosciences, Backed by Amgen, Acquired For $1.25 Billion

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Flexus Biosciences, which is backed by Thousand Oaks-based Amgen, has been acquired by Bristo-Myers Squibb in a deal worth $1.25 billion. Flexus--which is based in the Bay Area--counts Amgen veterans Terry Rosen and Steve Young among its founders. Flexus Biosciences was venture backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, The Column Group, Celgene, and Amgen, and had just announced a $38M Series B financing in December. Rosen was Vice President, Therapeutic Discovery (TD) at Amgen prior to co-founding Flexus Biosciences.

 
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YP Rolls Out New Search Advertising Product

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Los Angeles-based b>YP, the provider of business search and local marketing services, said today that it has launched a brand new product. YP said it has launched ypSearch, a new product aimed at small business owners, which both provides search ads on YP's properties, as well as on major search engines. The company said the tool not only lists ads on its own properties, but also delivers those ads to Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Pricing on the new tool was not announced. The new product includes both technology and consultants to help business owners with hands-on support.

 
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OpenX Wins Major League Gaming

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Los Angeles-based online advertising technology developer and marketplace operator OpenX is reporting a win this morning with Major League Gaming (MLG), saying that MLG has selected the company as its exclusive provider of ad serving and monetization of its digital media advertising. Financial details of the win were not announced. OpenX said that MLG has a reach of 20 million fans, and will use OpenX's platform for all of its digital advertising inventory, including directly sold inventory, real-time-bidding (RTB), and ad networks.

 
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Second Sight Medical Deploys In France

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Sylmar-based Second Sight Medical Products, which is developing implantable medical devices to help treat outer retinal degeneration, said it has implanted its first devices in France. According to the company, three of the centers approved to implant its Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System have done so in France, under that country's national healthcare reimbursement program. Second Sight's medical device treats patients with retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Second Sight Medical said taht RP often results in nearly complete blindness, and affects roughly 24,000 French people. Second Sight Medical is led by Dr. Robert Greenberg.

 
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Broadcom Announces New Microwave Backhaul Chips

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Irvine-based Broadcom has rolled out a new set of systems-on-a-chip, aimed at delivering microwave backhaul for the wired and wireless communications market. Broadcom said the new SoCs offer up 5 gigabit per second speeds, and re 4x times more spectrally efficient. The company did not announced pricing on the new SoCs, which are aimed at use in transporting wireless data traffic from cell phones. Broadcom said its new BCM85650 is currently sampling. Microwave backhaul networks are used to transport voice and data from cell phone towers to the core telecom network.

 
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Monday, February 23, 2015

Surf Air Hits 1200 Members

Monday, February 23, 2015

Santa Monica-based membership-based airline Surf Air is telling potential customers that it recently reached 1200 members for its service, which allows members to take all-you-can-fly trips between the Los Angeles, Bay Area, Santa Barbara, Las Vegas, San Diego, and other areas via its own fleet of turboprops. The startup airline charges $1750 per month, letting clients book unlimited private flights to its eight destinations. The company is catering to venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and other executives who find leaving from private air terminals and skipping the hassles of commercial airline travel--not to mention the flexibility of flight reservations--is well worth the monthly commitment. The company has aggressively been reaching out to the business executive community in Southern California in the last few months.

 
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Report: Drones Tracking Your Mobile Phone In The San Fernando Valley

Monday, February 23, 2015

Think you see some suspicious drones overhead in the San Fernando Valley? No, they're not filming a movie for Hollywood, nor are they the LAPD spying on your criminal activites. They are not even a local unmanned aerial vehicle maker testing their products. No, apparently--according to a report--they are a Singapore startup's effort to sell your information to marketers. Singapore's Adnear said it has been flying drones around the San Fernando Valley since early February, tracking mobile device locations based on Wi-Fi and cell transmissions, in order to track audience profiling data for marketers. Adnear said the tracking of mobile phones in the Valley are part of an experiment, but did not say how and when that data will be available to its clients.

 
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Latisys Now Part Of Zayo Group

Monday, February 23, 2015

Latisys, the colocation and infrastructure provider which has a big data center in Irvine, is now officially part of Zayo Group, Zayo said today. According to Zayo, which announced the acquisition of Latisys on January 14th, the deal adds eight new facilities--including that OC data center--to its zColo colocation arm. Latisys had set up its data center in Irvine in 2011. The deal was worth $675M.

 
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Machinima Gets $24M, But Chops Staff

Monday, February 23, 2015

Los Angeles-based YouTube network Machinima revealed last week that it has raised $24M in a funding round from Warner Bros., along with Redpoint Ventures, MK Capital, Coffin Capital and Allen DeBevoise. However, the company also made some big cuts in its staff on Friday, following the funding round. According to reports from the Hollywood Reporter, Machinima cut 14 percent of its staff on Friday, immediately following the announcement of the new funding round from its backers. The company has now raised nearly $100M in funding over its lifetime.

 
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MyPoints Debut New Gifting App, Swappable

Monday, February 23, 2015

Woodland Hills-based United Online said this morning that its MyPoints.com loyalty marketing service has launched a new, mobile app called Swappable, to help consumers buy and send gift cards. According to the company, the new app lets users buy gift cards using their credit cards, and easily gift those cards to friends. Among other features of the app are the ability of gift recipients to "swap" those gift cards for other, equal value gift cards from other merchants, and personalized photo, video, or text messages tied to those gift cards. The new app runs on both iOS and Android.

 
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Upfront Names Chamillionaire As EIR

Monday, February 23, 2015

Los Angeles-based venture investment firm Upfront said late Sunday that it has named rapper and entrepreneur Chamillionaire as its newest entrepreneur-in-residence. According to Upfront's Mark Suster, Chamillionaire has been making small co-investments in such companies as Maker Studios, and working with the firm as an advisor. Suster said Chamillionaire willl be moving to Los Angeles for awhile, and working out of the firm's offices to develop his entrepreneurial ideas.

 
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EnGenius Takes On Wireless Video Surveillance

Monday, February 23, 2015

Costa Mesa-based EnGenius Technologies, which makes wireless communications and RF products, said it is targeting the outdoor surveillance market with its latest product. EnGenius said it has rolled out the EnGenius WiFi Surveillance Solution, which combines wireless access points, IP cameras, and a management system specifically aimed at deployment on school campuses, hotels, and resorts. The new solution combines a long range, 5Ghz outdoor access point and bridge, an IP surveillance camera, and video management software. The product starts at $299.

 
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Illumina Launches New Product

Monday, February 23, 2015

San Diego-based gene sequencing equipment maker Illumina said this morning that it has launched a new product, aimed at the preparation of sequencing libraries. The company said its NeoPrep Library Prep System greatly simplifies DNA library prep, quantification, and normalization, reducing a process that normally took several hours into 30 minutes. The product is used in DNA research.

 
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SoCal IP Law Group LLP - Serving the IP Needs of Business

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Friday, February 20, 2015

Momstamp Looks To Connect Mothers, Help With Referrals

Friday, February 20, 2015

A new, Los Angeles-based startup, MomStamp, recently said it has launched, to help mother connect with their extended network and better get referrals from "friends of friends" to local service providers. The startup, which likens itself to "Angie's List and Yelp meets Facebook", said is backed by Brian Lee of The Honest Company/ Bam Ventures, Adam Miller, CEO of Cornerstone OnDemand, and artists Shepard and Amanda Fairey. The startup says it hopes to make it easier for parents to search for everything from plumbers, to dentists, to math tutors. The startup was founded by mothers Paulette Light, Staci Miller, and Julie Hermelin.

 
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MegaPath Sells Managed Services Business

Friday, February 20, 2015

MegaPath, the provider of cloud and broadband services which has major operations in Orange County, said Thursday that it has sold its managed services businesss to GTT Communication. The deal is worth $152.3M, split between $144.8M in cash plus $7.5M in stock. MegaPath's Managed Services division provided private networking, access services, and managed security services to enterprise clients. MegaPath's headquarters are in Pleasanton, California, but the company got its start in Costa Mesa before merging with Covad and Speakeasy.

 
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Uber Launches uberPOOL In LA

Friday, February 20, 2015

On demand ride service Uber said Thursday that it is launching its carpooling service, uberPOOL, in Los Angeles, in an effort to help residents help reduce traffic and pollution in the city. uberPOOL matches up UberX riders, letting them share rides along the way to their destinations, matching similar trips together and offering up lower fares for riders, better fares for drivers, and with a side effect of less traffic and less pollution. According to Uber, Los Angeles is the fourth city to get uberPOOL, which is also available in San Francisco, Paris, and New York City.

 
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