Monday, February 27, 2017
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Safire Partners Executive Search
Safire Partners is a​ 15-person​​ Los Angeles-based​ executive search firm built for SoCal​'s ​emerging companies working on ~100 searches per year. Clients cross over mobile, adtech, media, gaming, software, ecommerce, services, and consumer products.​ We always want to meet great companies, investors and executives, please reach out via http://www.safirepartners.com.

SpaceX Plans To Send Two People Around The Moon
Hawthorne-based SpaceX said on Monday afternoon, that it plans to send two passengers around the Moon, next year. According to SpaceX, two private citizens had approached--and paid a "significant deposit" for the trip. SpaceX said that it will use the Falcon Heavy--which is set for its first test flight this summer--for the launch, and will leverage development from NASA's Commercial Crew Program to help support the flight. SpaceX did not provide names of the two passeners, but said it would rel (More info...)

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Rubicon Project Snags OpenX Exec As Product Management VP
Los Angeles-based Rubicon Project announced on Monday that it has named former OpenX executive Khoi Nguyen as its new Vice President, Product Management For Video. Nguyen was most recently GM/Sr. Director of Product Management for Video, OTT, and Mobile at OpenX. He also had been at Google, Trend Micro, Symantec, among other companies, including co-founding Silvan Networks, a Sequoia-funded Internet startup from the late 90s.

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Cordial Connects With $6M From Upfront
San Diego-based Cordial, a developer of marketing software which automatically tracks the actions of consumers which triggers personalized messaging to those consumers, has raised $6M in a Series A funding round. The funding came from Upfront Ventures. The investment was led by Upfront's Kobie Fuller. Cordial's founder and CEO is Jeremy Swift, who was previously VP, Sales & Strategic Accounts at BlueHornet. The company said the funds will go to accelerate adoption of its platform among retailers (More info...)

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Scrambl3 Aims At Encrypted Messaging
Irvine-based USMobile, a developer of mobile communications applications, is taking aim at the encrypted messaging market with a new software product, Scrambl3, which it says does a better job of protecting consumer, business, and government users from prying eyes. The app--which runs on iOS and Android--says it allows users to start using its product using only a username and password, and no other identity verification. The company claims all communications go through the firm's own Virtual Pr (More info...)

posted on Monday, February 27, 2017(Full story)


HomeHero Calls It Quits, Shuts Service
Santa Monica-based HomeHero, which had been working on creating and online marketplace for in-home, senior care services, has called it quits, according to co-founder Kyle Hill. Hill said that it "lost its core identity" a year ago, when the company was forced to terminate its relationship with 95 percent of the 1099 caregivers it had been working with, and adopt an "inferior employment business model." HomeHero had shifted to W-2 employees in the midst of widespread industry struggles over how (More info...)

posted on Monday, February 27, 2017(Full story)


Alteryx Files For IPO
Irvine-based data analytics software developer Alteryx has filed for an IPO, saying in a filing late Friday that it is looking to raise up to $75.0M in an offering on the New York Stock Exchange. The company has applied to list under the symbol AYX. The IPO is being underwritten by Goldman, Sachs & Co., J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Pacific Crest Securities, William Blair & Company, JMP Securities, Raymond James & Associates, and Cowen and Company. Alteryx is venture backed by Insight Venture Part (More info...)

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RealD Acquires MasterImage 3D
Beverly Hills-based 3D movie projection systems developer RealD said last week that it has acquired the assets of MasterImage 3D, including all of its intellectual property, technology, inventory, and accounts receivable. Financial details of the acquisition were not announced. RealD said the acquisition came as a result of "key legal victories" where RealD asserted its patents against MasterImage. RealD won a big patent lawsuit against MasterImage 3D in July of 2016.

posted on Monday, February 27, 2017(Full story)


CureDuchenne Ventures Backs Exonics Therapeutics
Newport Beach-based investment fund CureDuchenne Ventures, which is a subsidiary of nonprofit CureDuchenne, announced this morning that it has invested $5M in a seed funding round for Exonics Therapeutics, a biotech startup which is focused on gene editing technology for treating Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Exonics Therapeutics is based in Boston, with reesarch in Dallas. CureDuchenne said that Exonics is developing a gene editing technology which potentially would make a permanent correction o (More info...)

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Abbott Medical Optics Acquired By Johnson & Johnson For $4.325B
Abbott Medical Optics, which was based in Santa Ana, California, has been acquired by Johnson & Johnson, in a deal worth $4.325 billion in cash, the two said this morning. The deal had originally been announced in September. The company will be renamed Johnson & Johnson Vision (J&J Vision). Johnson & Johnson said the acquisition includes ophthalmic products in three areas of patient care: cataract surgery, laser refractive surgery and consumer eye health.

posted on Monday, February 27, 2017(Full story)


Batu Biologics Names Investor To Board
San Diego-based Batu Biologics, a developer of immune therapy drugs aimed at treating cancer, has added investor John Peck Jr. to its Board of Directors. The company said Peck has been involved with the company as an early-stage seed round investor. Peck is a real estate and biotech investor, and had been CEO and one ofthe owners of Meridian Leasing, although he got his start working for RCA and Intel as an MBA student in the 1960's. The company said Peck is an investor in seven biotech companie (More info...)

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