Wednesday, October 11, 2017
SpaceX Successfully Launches EchoStar 105/SES-11 Mission, Lands Booster
Hawthorne-based SpaceX has again successfully launched a satellite payload into space, this time for EchoStar and SES, and also again landed the first stage of its Falcon 9 rocket. SpaceX launched the EchoStar 105/SES-11 mission to Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) from NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 6:53pm EDT, and was in the process of deploying the satellite. The Falcon 9's first stage--which already had launched to the ISS in February--successfully landed on the Of Course I Still L (More info...)

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Snapchat Sets Up Secret Research Lab In Utah
Venice, California-based Snap, Inc., the parent firm of Snapchat, has reportedly set up a new, secret location in Lehi, Utah, according to a report this week. The report says that the new lab is being headed up by former Scan.me co-founder Kirk Ouimet, who founded Scan.me out of Brigham Young University, and sold that to Snap for the basis of its Scancodes product. Lehi is a major center of technology talent in Utah's Silicon Slopes, and is home to scores of other technology companies. Lehi's te (More info...)

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SpaceX Aims At Yet Another Launch, Today
Los Angeles-based space rocket developer SpaceX is targeting yet another launch of a rocket this week, this time, from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. SpaceX said the EchoStar 105/SES-11 has a two hour launch window opening today, Wednesday, October 11 at 6:53 p.m. EDT (22:53 UTC). The launch will place the EchoStar 105/SES-11 into what is the most challenging orbit for a rocket, Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO). The launch will re-use the Falcon 9 which was used in the February launc (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


Science Launches SpringRole To Tackle Professional Reputations Using Blockchain
Santa Monica-based startup studio Science, led by former MySpace CEO Mike Jones and Peter Pham, has launched a new company called SpringRole, to tackle the fraud in user profiles. According to Jones, SpringRole is the first professional reputation network powered by artificial intelligence and blockchain. The new startup--the first Blockchain startup out of Science--lets employers and educators verify information on user profiles, and also uses Blockchain to weight endorsements of others in your (More info...)

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Wavemaker Partners Names New Venture Partner
Los Angeles-based venture investment fund Wavemaker Partners has added Alon Goren as a new Venture Partner at the firm, Goren told his friends and supporters this week, as the investment firm continues to grow its team. Goren is the co-founder of the Crowd Invest Summit, founded crowdfunding startup Invested.in, and is well known for his work running the 805 Startups community. Wavemaker's Managing Partners in Los Angeles are Eric Manlunas and David Siemer. Wavemaker Partners also has a very sig (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


FastPay Acquires AnchorOps
Los Angeles-based FastPay announced today that it has acquired AnchorOps, a developer of electronic payment solutions for media buyers. Financial terms of the acquisition were not announced. AnchorOps was based in Westborough, Mass, and was founded in 2012. The two said AnchorOps' payment solutions were exclusively designed for media industry. The acquisition will grow FastPay's team to over 100 employees. David Frogel, President and Founder of AnchorOps, will become Chief Revenue Officer at Fas (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


Techstars LA Debuts First Class Of Startups
Techstars LA, one of three, Los Angeles area startup accelerator programs run by Techstars, launched the first class of startups at its first Demo Day on Tuesday at the El Rey Theater. The ten startups that presented at the Demo Day included Avisare (B2B contracting marketplace), Blue Fever (content for millennial women), DirecTech Labs (AI for direct selling), Heartbeat (marketing automation for female consumer brands), LIV (VR experience), Maslo (emotional awareness AI), PlayFull (mobile games (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


Pontifax AgTech Launches $105M Venture Investment Fund
In the latest fund in an unprecedented boom in local investment funds, Los Angeles-based Pontifax AgTech Management announced this morning that it has closed on its first fund, a $105M fund calld the Pontifax Global Food and Agriculture Technology Fund. Pontifax AgTech said it will invest in revenue-generating businesses with proven technologies that improve the productivity, sustainability and efficiency of the agriculture supply chain. Pontifax AgTech said LPs in the new fund included financia (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


Akatsuki Lauches $50M Entertainment Investment Fund
Japanese entertainment firm Akatsuki has launched a brand new, Los Angeles-based entertainment fund, called the Akatsuki Entertainment Technology Fund (AET Fund), which will invest in augmented reality and other entertainment technology, the Japanese company announced on Tuesday. According to Akatsuki, the new $50M investment fund is aimed at encouraging startups to create new content and services, and will invest in such areas as Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality (VR), and Mixed Reality market (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


Tooshlights Takes $3M For Bathroom Traffic Management
Los Angeles-based startup Tooshlights, a developer of a technology-enabled system to help manage traffic into public restrooms, has raised $3M in a Series A funding, the company said today. According to Tooshlights, the Series A funding was led by convenience store chain Buc-ee's LTD. Tooshlights said its products are designed to help such venues as arenas, stadiums, airports, malls, hotels, convention centers, casinos, theme parks and office buildings improve traffic flow in their restrooms, by (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


Nimble Selected For Microsoft Accelerator
Santa Monica-based CRM software developer Nimble has been selected to join Microsoft's startup accelerator in Seattle, the company said today, in a major move which will help tie Nimble into Microsoft's ecosystem. According to Nimble, it has joined Microsoft's Seattle Accelerator, an accelerator program specifically geared at later stage, more mature enterprise startups to help them scale. Nimble, which is led by Jon Ferrara, said joining Microsoft's Seattle Accelerator program is an "important (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


GoFundMe Launches Hub For California Wildfire Relief
San Diego-based crowdfunding site GoFundMe has launched a new hub for crowdfunding projects aimed at helping those hit by the wildfires across California, the company said late Tuesday. According to GoFundMe, it has created a new centralized hub for California fire relief, where users can view or create campaigns to help those affected by the sudden, devastating wildfires in Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, and Yuba counties, as well as fires locally in the Anaheim Hills. There are now 17 confirmed deat (More info...)

posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017(Full story)


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