Thursday, March 17, 2016
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Fullscreen Acquires StageBloc
Los Angeles-based Fullscreen has acquired engagement marketing software and technology developer StageBloc, and will rename it Fullscreen Direct, the company said Thursday. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. StageBloc was based in Chicago, and offered up online tools that help musicians, artists, and influencers engage with their fans, send emails, post content, sell tickets, and otherwise interact with their fans. StageBloc was founded by Tom Giles, Josh Holat and JD Hartley (More info...)

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Machinima, FTC Settle Over Paid Influencers
The Federal Trade Commission said Thursday that it has approved a final consent order with Machinima, over the MCN's use of paid campaigns to pay influencers to post YouTube videso and product endorsements as part of an "influencer campaign". The FTC said the settlement prohibits Machinima from misrepresenting that any influencer is an independent user of its product or service, and also requires Machinima to educate its influencers on those requirements. No financial details of the settlement w (More info...)

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Green Dot, Uber Link On Uber Checking Account
Pasadena-based Green Dot and on-demand ride service Uber have teamed up to provide Uber drivers with their own, business checking account, the two companies said this morning. According to the two, the new Uber Checking by GoBank will allow Uber's driver-partners to get their pay deposited into their own business checking account. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Green Dot said that it does not expect revenues from the deal to be material to its 2016 financial guidance, however, (More info...)

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Four SoCal Startups That Thrived Despite--or Because Of--Economic Downturns

There has been a lot of worry recently in the high tech industry and from venture investors about "headwinds" in the technology market, particularly with valuations of "unicorn" companies dropping, investors shying away from investing in rounds, and even employees looking for safer jobs. However, if history is any lesson, downturns actually have created some of Southern California's most successful technology companies, whether through forcing those companies to swizzle their business models, (More info...)

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Lenny Targets Millennials with Lending App
Santa Monica-based Lenny said Wednesday afternoon that it has launched a new app and service, which provides credit to millennials. Lenny said its app uses data from millennials, allowing them to borrow anywhere from $100 to $10,000. The company said that the purpose of its lending app is to help students and others increase their credit scores, with 0 percent interest when balances are repaid in full and on time, with rates increasing to an average of 9.8 percent if payments are not made in ful (More info...)

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Qualcomm Names CIO
San Diego-based Qualcomm has appointed a new Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, the company said this morning. Qualcomms aid that it has named Mary Gendron as its new CIO, to lead the company's IT operation. Gendron was previously SVP and CIO at Hospira, and also has served at Celestica International,
The Nielsen Company, Motorola and Bell Canada.

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Startup Weekend Ventura County Winner Gets $10,000
Camarillo-based Semtech, which manufactures analog and mixed-sginal semiconductors, says the winner of the recent Startup Weekend Ventura County event, which was held in Camarillo last weekend, has been awarded $10,000 in seed funding. Semtech said the $10,000 in seed funding went to one of the teams, which competed at Rancho Campana High School, to create a new product in the areas of agriculture and medicine. The winning team created a product to make it easier to monitor a patient's workout r (More info...)

posted on Thursday, March 17, 2016(Full story)

Snapchat Names Former Pandora CTO As VP
Venice-based Snapchat has named Tom Conrad, the former CTO of Pandora, as its new VP of Product, the company disclosed on Wednesday. Conrad--who is based in the Bay Area--was CTO at Pandora between 2004 and 2014. He also served at Kenamea,, Documentum/Relevance, Berkeley Systems, and Apple Computer.

posted on Thursday, March 17, 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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LAVA 13th Annual Venture Awards Dinner - March 30th, 2016
LAVA 13th Annual Venture Awards Dinner
Celebrating over 30 years of service to the Los Angeles Entrepreneurial Community

Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows
101 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401
5:30pm – 9pm

Featuring Frank Mottek, KNX1070 Business Hour Host as Master of Ceremonies

2016 Hall of Fame Honoree – Adam Miller, Founder/CEO, Cornerstone OnDemand

Register today!

Cal State Channel Islands 2016 UAV Poll
Please consider taking our anonymous online survey about Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs, aka “drones”). This poll was created by students and colleagues here at California State University Channel Islands to better understand public attitudes toward and use of this technology. No particular knowledge of or experience with UAVs is necessary to take this survey. It takes roughly 10 minutes to complete. Our results will be shared widely and openly (see after we have closed the poll in April.

Take the poll here!

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