UCLA Startup, Bruin Biometrics, Raises $10 Million Round

Funds will be deployed to market developed products, complete clinical trials and continue R&D on the product pipeline.

From BusinessWire:

LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Bruin Biometrics, LLC (“BBI”), a medical device company with two biometric sensing products ready for market in Europe and the United States, announced it has closed a $10 million round of funding which was oversubscribed by almost $2.7 million. The funds will be deployed to market the developed products, complete clinical trials and continue R&D on the product pipeline.

“Investors are responding to this important opportunity ideally timed to solve critical issues that cost healthcare systems globally billions of dollars in expensive, preventable diagnostics and treatments. BBI’s biometric scanning technology is proven and ready to improve patient care simply and inexpensively,” said BBI’s Chief Executive Officer Martin Burns. “Investors, physicians and hospitals understand these sensors detect a number of key health conditions. They soon will become another essential tool used by nurses and other healthcare workers to check a patient’s vitals, just as the blood pressure cuff is used today…”

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SoCalGas Establishes $1M Innovation Fund To Speed Development Of Clean Technologies

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator Boosts Utility’s Research & Development

From WSJ:

“LOS ANGELES, Sept. 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) has established a $1 million innovation fund with the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) to speed the development of clean technologies.

Working in collaboration with the LACI, a nonprofit business development agency that helps accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies, SoCalGas has launched an effort to identify and help bring to market potential clean technology solutions in three key areas: fuel cells, renewable natural gas and distributed natural gas products such as liquid transportation fuels and other chemicals.

“Natural gas is more than just a bridge fuel to meet current global energy needs; it has the potential to become a truly sustainable energy source, through new technologies that can produce gas from biomass and solar energy. We are excited about the project with LACI because it enables us to speed the advancement of key technology areas that we think can have a significant impact on the environmental issues facing California and the planet,” said Jeff Reed, Director of Business Strategy and Development for SoCalGas. “This collaboration provides us with a very cost effective and streamlined solution to identifying, developing and deploying strategic technologies.”

READ FULL PRESS RELEASE [web]
Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator [web]

Technology Incubator, Be Great Partners, to Fund 200 LA Startups within Next Year

BGP announces a new $6 million investment to fund about 250 startups within the next year, 200 of which will be in the LA area.

From Built In Los Angeles:

“To date, Be Great Partners has funded about 15 companies with $25,000 to $50,000 each since it opened in February. But now the incubator’s “investment strategy is more on the aggressive side with six startups per month and 80 percent of that in the LA area,” Lin Miao, Be Great Partners founder and CEO, said.

The fund, which Miao said was raised mostly from friends and family, will help Be Great Partners achieve its goal of companies starting (and staying) in LA. Miao said an LA location not only allows startups to use their limited funding more efficiently – when comparing to the high overhead costs of hiring and office space in, say, San Francisco – but also gives companies access to both traditional and celebrity investors.

“Here in LA we are seeing more and more celebrities and more high-worth individuals writing checks and investing in startups,” Miao said. “We believe that trend will accelerate over time as infrastructure gets built and we want to help startups be next to that…”

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Be Great Partners, LLC [web]

The Emergence of Los Angeles as a Booming Tech Hub

The ecosystem in Los Angeles finally has the necessary infrastructure, seed and early stage capital, support and advisory services, business development opportunities, and excellent talent pool to be sustainable.

From SocalTECH, by Ivan Nikkhoo:

“To fly as fast as thought, you must begin by knowing that you have already arrived.” – Richard Bach

Last week I had the pleasure of spending time at the various Silicon Beach Fest activities in Santa Monica. My conclusion: Los Angeles is a serious tech hub.

Make no mistake; we still have a long ways to go. There is a serious lack of growth capital. There are still very few large, brand name successes, and more often than not, there is more hype than substance.

As William Gibson said, “The future has already arrived. It’s just not evenly distributed yet…”

Read Full Article [web]

Siemer & Associates [web]

GRP Partners becomes Upfront Ventures, announces $200 million fourth fund to set the pace among LA VCs

Upfront Ventures is relocating to the heart of the Santa Monica startup community.

From Pandodaily:

“One of the biggest knocks on the LA startup ecosystem has been a dearth of local capital, particularly beyond the Seed stage. It’s not a problem that can be solved overnight, but one VC firm is doing its part to grab the title of biggest checkbook in town. Today, 17-year-old local firm GRP Partners announced the official close of its widely-anticipated fourth fund, which came in at $200 million, a slight uptick from rumors placing it between $150 to $175 million…”

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Upfront Ventures [web]

Mark Suster: New, $200M Fund, and GRP’s New Name, Upfront Ventures [web]

Meet TenOneTen, a New LA Fund from Gil Elbaz and David Waxman

The plan is to write checks between $50,000 to $250,000 meaning that TenOneTen will likely be investing as part of a syndicate in most deals, be they Seed stage or Series A.

From PandoDaily:

“As discussed last week, the cat is out of the bag in terms of the rise of the Los Angeles startup ecosystem. With it has come the arrival of a number of new early stage investment funds and investors looking to capitalize on the growth wave. Unlike many newcomers, however, the latest fund to formally announce its presence is not simply hopping on the bandwagon. Rather, TenOneTen Capital has deep LA roots and serious credibility among its founders.

TenOneTen is the creation of former Applied Semantics founder and current Factual founder and CEO Gil Elbaz in partnership with former SpotRunner, PeoplePC, and Firefly Network co-founder David Waxman. Together the two have several decades of success, both in founding and in angel investing in technology ventures. They also share a strong belief in the opportunity that exists in the LA tech ecosystem and a commitment to forwarding its development…”

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How TenOneTen Ventures Is Investing In LA’s Technology Future [web]
TenOneTen Ventures [web]

Suddenly, Hollywood Is A Startup Hotbed

Venture capitalists are flying to Los Angeles regularly hunting for innovative ideas at valuations that are a steal compared to Silicon Valley or New York.

From BusinessInsider:

“There’s something brewing in Los Angeles. Suddenly, Hollywood has becoming a startup hotbed.

Incubators and accelerators are popping up everywhere. Venture capitalists are becoming frequent fliers at LAX. Celebrities are stamping their names on new companies. And TV industry executives are quitting their jobs to become entrepreneurs.

In many ways, Los Angeles looks like New York City did three years ago. One early-stage investor, Gary Vaynerchuk, thinks LA will eventually trump both New York and San Francisco as the ultimate location for startups…”

READ FULL ARTICLE [web]
23 Hot LA Startups You Need to Watch [web]