Wednesday, January 11, 2006
Interview with Nick Grouf, Co-Founder, Spot Runner
My interview this morning is with Nick Grouf, co-founder, chairman, and CEO of Spot Runner (, a new firm that is bringing an Internet twist to the television advertising market. Grouf and co-founder David Waxman were founders of Firefly (acquired by Microsoft) and PeoplePC (IPO and acquisition by Earthlink). Spot Runner is launching its services today. BK: What's Spot Runner, and how does it fit into the local search market? NG: Spot Runner is the first Internet-based ad a (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006(Full story)

Firefly Founders Launch New Firm
Nick Grouf and David Waxman, the founders of PeoplePC and Firefly, are launching a new company today. Grouf and Waxman, whose Firefly Network was acquired by Microsoft to become Microsoft Passport, and who launched PeoplePC, which went public and was acquired by Earthlink, said that their new company, SpotRunner, will provide a way for local businesses to buy self-service advertising on television networks. The new firm will allow local businesses to buy pre-produced, commercial television adve (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006(Full story)

Manufacturers Form Ethernet Standards Group
A consortium of hardware manufacturers has formed a new industry group centered around Ethernet technology. The new Ethernet Alliance will be focused on promoting the Ethernet technology standard, and includes Sun Microsystems, Intel, 3COM, AMCC, Broadcom, Force10, Foundry Networks, Samsung, and others. The group said that the groups will focus on IEEE 802 standard group projects, helping to speed adoption of new Ethernet technologies, cultivate efforts to define and develop new standards, and e (More info...)

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Syntricity Raises $5.8M
San Diego-based Syntricity has raised $5.8M in a Series B funding. The company said this morning that it raised the funds from Windward Ventures, as well as new investors GKM Ventures, and Osprey Ventures. The company will use the new funding to accelerate sales of its semiconductor yield management software. The firm is developing a software package used by semiconductor manufacturers to analyze data from their manufacturing lines.

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Websense Snaps Up McAfee Exec
San Diego-based Websense, a provider of web filtering and employee Internet management software, has snagged a long time McAfee executive as its new President and CEO. The firm said yesterday that it has hired Gene Hodges, formerly president of antivirus firm McAfee, to the position. Hodges was responsible for all of McAfee's technology development, strategy, and execution as well as sales and marketing. Existing CEO John Carrington will continue as chairman of the board of the firm. Websense sa (More info...)

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MySpace Goes To Sundance
Los Angeles-based social networking web site firm MySpace is promoting a new competition targeted at aspiring music video directors. The firm said yesterday that it has linked up with arts organization Gen Art to sponsor a competition for aspiring filmmakers, with the prize being a unveiling at the Sundance 2006 film festival. MySpace is looking for filmmakers to shoot and re-create a music video of a Beastie Boys song. MySpace has been co-promoting and linking into bands, television, and movies (More info...)

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Jamdat Expands Into India
Los Angeles-based JAMDAT Mobile is expanding its cell phone game offerings into India, with a new deal with Indian cell provider Hutch. Hutch, which offers cellular service in India, will offer JAMDAT's Pitfall, Pool, and other titles on its Planet Hutch data services platform. Hutch, operated by Hutchinson Essar, is based in Mumbai India and provides access to 10.16 million mobile users in the country. JAMDAT is a developer of wireless entertainment titles, and recently announced a deal to be a (More info...)

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Mavent Gets Win From LendingTree
Irvine-based Mavent, a developer of automated compliance systems for the mortgage loan industry, has scored a win with LendingTree. LendingTree, a provider of mortgage loans and operator of, will use Mavent's software to review applications for compliance with lending rules and regulations. Mavent's expert system software flags loan applications for issues, and checks against state and local regulations. Mavent is backed by FTVentures.

posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006(Full story)

Xingtone Promotes Independents
Los Angeles-based Xingtone, a ring tone provider for cellular phones, announced yesterday that it is debuting a solution that allows independent artists to market, sell and deliver their own ringtones. The firm said that it is offering a turnkey e-commerce store for independent content owners to sell ringtones from their own websites. The new stores will allow anyone to create their own ringtones, upload them as MP3 or other files, set prices, and manage payments and delivery of the ringtones. X (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006(Full story)

Tech Coast Angels Fast Pitch, January 24
January 24, 2006
UCLA Anderson School of Management

Meet, greet, and learn the art of the pitch from the Tech Coast Angels,
the nation's largest and most active network of angel investors.
One-minute "elevator pitches" by 12 of Southern California’s most
promising startups. A panel of seasoned investors will judge the pitches for their fundability and presentations. Keynote by Guy Kawasaki, chairman of Silicon Valley’s Garage Technology Ventures and author of several best-sellers, including his latest The Art of the Start.

More information, registration and application to pitch at:

LAVA Third Annual Awards Dinner - January 19th
LAVA Third Annual Awards Dinner
Thursday January 19, 2006

Enjoy a fun evening of excellent networking, fine cuisine and an entertaining program that will honor Bob Hoff of Crosspoint Venture Partners with the Lifetime Achievement Award in Venture Capital.

The program includes LAVA's Annual Awards for:

* Best Venture Financing in Biotechnology/Medical Devices
* Best Venture Financing in Software/Media
* Best Venture Financing in Communications/Semiconductors
* Best IPO
* Best M&A Exit

Don't this this once-a-year evening of great networking, food, and entertainment.

SCOTT EDWARD WALKER - A Corporate Lawyer Who Gets Deals Done
SCOTT EDWARD WALKER: A Corporate Lawyer Who Gets Deals Done

Mr. Walker is a former big-firm New York corporate lawyer, with 12+ years of sophisticated transactional and securities experience. His services include:

-- start-up counseling
-- venture capital financings
-- mergers & acquisitions
-- strategic alliances
-- technology licensing
-- restructurings

See a brief video of Mr. Walker at

Contact info:
213.213.7315 (direct dial - downtown LA)
310.859.7177 (direct dial - Beverly Hills)

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