Friday, April 15, 2016
Former Surf Air Founder's New Flight Startup, Beacon, Shuts Down
Beacon, the new, all-you-can fly startup led by former Surf Air founder Wade Eyerly, has shut down, after burning through all of its cash--and never getting off the ground. According to a report from TechCrunch, Beacon apparently was unable to cover all of its expenses as it ramped up its operations, having relied on "pre-selling" spots on its all-you-can-fly service--but finding that most of those people who had paid a deposit to reserve a spot on the airline were unwilling to sign up for its m (More info...)

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Gatsby: Tackling Shopping Cart Abandonment With Social Sharing

How do you help online brand owners both reduce the abandonment of a shopping cart by online shoppers—and also get the word out about their brands? Los Angeles-based Gatsby ( has come up with a way to combine both ways to promote social sharing, as well as reduce shopping cart abandonment, via discounts which change depending on your social influence and sharing activity. We spoke with co-founder Brett Bernstein.

Explain how Gatsby works?

Brett Bernstein: First and fo (More info...)

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Ponder, Backed by Tinder Founders, Launches Photo, Video Sharing App
Los Angeles-based Ponder, a new startup backed by Tinder founders Sean Rad and Justin Mateen, along with Mark Cuban and Greylock Partners, has launched a new photo and video sharing app. The new app applies the swipe left-and-right ethos of Tinder to photos and videos, letting users "push" or "pass" on any photo and video to match users up to other people with similar tastes. Ponder said its app focuses on the quality of photos and videos, rather than how many followers one might have. The new s (More info...)

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016 (More)(Full story)

Illumina Creates New, $100M Venture Fund
San Diego-based life sciences equipment maker Illumina has created a new, $100M venture capital fund, the company said Thursday afternoon, which will focus on investments in early stage companies that are pioneering new applications of nucleic acid sequencing, developing products that will expand the genomics ecosystem, and utilizing genomics to improve human health. According to Illumina, it will commit $100M over 10 years to the new fund, to be run by new venture capital firm Illumina Ventures (More info...)

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Sysrepublic Acquired By Appriss
Torrance-based Sysrepublic, a developer of analytics software used by retailers to reduce shrinkage and returns fraud, has been acquired by Kentucky-based Appriss. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Appriss said it will merge Sysrepublic into its retail division, The Retail Equation, focused on retail exception-based reporting and return fraud solutions.

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Nativo Snags Google Vet As VP of Product
Los Angeles-based native advertising technology developer Nativo said this week that it has named Eugene Cherny, a former Google executive, as its new Vice President of Product. Nativo said that Cherny was previously manger of Google's TrueView In-display product, a native ad unit used on YouTube and Google. Nativo is led by Justin Choi, and venture backed by Greycroft Partners, Signia Ventures, Bertelsmann Digital Media Investment, and

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Glaukos Co-founder Retiring From Board
Laguna Hills-based medical device developer Glaukos Corporation reported late Thursday that co-founder Olav Bergheim is retiring from its board of directors. Bergheim has been a member of the company's board of directors since he co-founded Glaukos in 1998. Glaukos said Bergheim will remain on the board for the remainder of his term, which runs until June 2nd. Bergheim said he is retiring to spend more time with Fjord Ventures, a life sciences accelerator. Glaukos develops medical technology for (More info...)

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Lieberman Software Teams With FireEye
Los Angeles-based cybersecurity software developer LIeberman Software said this week that it has partnered with FireEye, to better respond to data breaches and threats. According to the company, its new integration triggers rapid, real time credential rotation for systems, whenever a cyber threat is identified, making it more difficult for attackers to gain access to systems.

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

Southern California VC Totals Drop To $810.5M In Q1
Southern California startups raised $810.5M in venture capital in Q1, according to the latest MoneyTree Report by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association, based on data from Thomson Reuters. Southern California venture totals were down significantly from the $1.38 billion raised in Q4, and even lower than Q1 of 2015, when $2.01 billion was raised in the region.

Los Angeles had $399.1M in funds invested, across 47 deals; Orange County had $158M invested across 15 d (More info...)

posted on Friday, April 15, 2016(Full story)

SAM Precellerator Program Now Accepting Applications!
Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP is one of the leading business law firms in Southern California. We pioneered a fixed fee start-up package making the formation and organization of your start-up as seamless as possible. Our Preccelerator® Program is a platform offered to select start-up companies out of our Santa Monica office that provides interim office space and sophisticated legal services, with the objective of helping you grow your idea from business concept to funded startup. The Preccelerator® Program provides free co-working space and other perks for 5-6 promising young startups.

The perks include:

Free 24/7 access to our co-working space on a rolling basis, including free wireless access to the Internet and access to conference rooms for meetings and presentations
Access to real-time legal advice and transactional legal services on site (under our standard engagement and/or fee arrangements)
Access to in-house educational workshops and activities
Access to our extensive network of mentors
Perks package worth approximately $150K!

For more information about the Preccelerator Program, visit or contact Heidi Hubbeling at (310) 746-9803 or

Clear Capital Advisors Advisors Advises Extrameasures
Clear Capital Advisors is pleased to announce that it has served as
exclusive financial advisor to extrameasures in its sale to Blackhawk
Network (NYSE: HAWK). On March 31, 2016 Blackhawk Network, a leading
prepaid and payments network, announced it has acquired extrameasures,
a prepaid consumer promotions and incentives company. Through its
customized rebate programs, extrameasures offers Visa prepaid cards
and private label merchant-specific reward and gift cards with a
proprietary platform to help businesses drive consumer acquisition,
engagement and loyalty.


Peter Cowen
Managing Director

Bruce Pompan
Managing Director

Project X – New Design Focused Accelerator in Los Angeles
Launch your next MVP. Be Victorious. Conquer the perils of poorly branded
products, semi-good stories, and underwhelming UX/UI front-end design and

Project X is a business unit of the Los Angeles based digital agency La
Visual. UX/UI strategy, rapid-prototyping and design, world-class
branding, product strategy & design, testing, rollout strategies,
mentorship, and access to exclusive funding.

Don't be shy. Hit us up and we will talk about your next startup.
Drop us a line // See how we can help you:
Check it out here //

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

Sponsored By


Recent Interviews

Browse Issues