Thursday, January 7, 2016
Emotient Acquired By Apple
San Diego-based Emotient, a developer of facial expression recognition software, has been acquired by Apple, Apple disclosed on Thursday. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Emotient, which was backed by Handbag and Intel Capital, had developed applications for Google Glass and other platforms to be able to tell what a person was feeling based on their facial expression. Apple has been on a major artificial intelligence and facial recognition buying binge lately; the company a (More info...)

posted on Thursday, January 7, 2016(Full story)

Amgen Backs Alector For Alzheimer's Treatment
Thousand Oaks-based biotech giant Amgen is the a new investor in a round for Alector, a developer of immuno-modulatory therapies for Alzheimer's disease and other neurogenerative disorders, which announced a $29.5M funding today. Alector said that its Series D funding was led by Dementia Discovery Fund, and also included new investor Amgen Ventures and AbbVie, along with prior investors Merck Research Lab Ventures, OrbiMed, Polaris Partners, GV (formerly Google Ventures), Topspin Partners and Mi (More info...)

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Gem Takes $7.1M For Blockchain Security
Venice-based Gem, the blockchain security and technology developer led by Micah Winkelspecht, said Wednesday that it has raised $7.1M in its Series A funding. The funding was led by Pelion Venture Partners, and also included KEC Ventures, Blockchain Capital, Digital Currency Group, RRE Ventures and others. Ben Dahl, who led the investment for Pelion Venture Partners, joins the company's board with the funding round, as does Scott Kriz of Bitium. The company says it has now raised $10.4M in total (More info...)

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Omkar Kulkarni On The Cedars-Sinai, Techstars Health Accelerator

The Techstars Health Accelerator recently set up shop in Los Angeles with Cedars- Sinai—the second, Techstars powered startup accelerator in the city--in a move to help healthcare startups get to market quicker. We caught up with Omkar Kulkarni, Director of the new accelerator, to hear more about what the accelerator is looking for, and how it hopes to help promising startups. The accelerator's deadline is Friday.

Thanks for the time today. For those who aren't familiar with what you're doi (More info...)

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J5 Infrastructure Partners Sets Up Shop In Orange County
A new company, J5 Infrastructure Partners, has launched in Orange County, after the acquisition of two companies by private equity investor Ridgemont Equity Partners. Ridgemont said it purchase two, telecommunications infrastructure companies--Coretel Inc. and TowerCom Technologies LLC, to form Irvine-based J5 Infrastructure Partners. The new company, led by Jerrry Elliott, will provide acquisition, leasing, permitting, zoning, structural engineering, utility coordination and equipment installa (More info...)

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Source Intelligence Gets $17.5M
Carlsbad-based Source Intelligence, a provider of supply chain compliance services and data, has raised $17.5M in an investment round, according to the company. The funding came from Kayne Partners. Source Intelligence said the funding goes to growing its network and advancing its platform. Source Intelligence helps its users, including many Fortune 500 companies, track supply chain compliance, particularly in the areas of conflict minerals, restricted chemicals, and similar areas. The company i (More info...)

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RASRx Finds Funding For Muscular Dystrophy Treatment
RASRx, a biopharmaceuticals startup developing an oral therapy to treat muscle degeneration, has scored funding from venture philanthropy company CureDuchenne Ventures, CureDuchenne Ventures announced Tuesday. Size of the funding was not announced. CureDuchenne funds research into finding a cure for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a genetic disease that causes muscles to degenerate. As part of the funding, Jak Knowles of CureDuchenne Ventures join's the RASRx board of directors. RASRx was founded b (More info...)

posted on Thursday, January 7, 2016(Full story)

Safire Partners Executive Search
Safire Partners has completed 500+ retained executive searches since 2006 working with emerging businesses in Southern California. Please visit our website to see an updated list of our clients and searches completed at We are always interested in meeting new candidates and potential clients, so feel free to email our Managing Partner, Todd Gitlin at

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