Home Uncategorized San Diego Tech News Weekly – October 1, 2021

San Diego Tech News Weekly – October 1, 2021

by Neal Bloom

Neal: Welcome everyone to the weekly San Diego Tech News by Neal Bloom and Jonah Peake from Fresh Brewed Tech. Every Friday at 12:30pm Pacific on Clubhouse and now we record them for you to enjoy as well. Find these episodes on Freshbrewedtech.com and favorite podcast player for Tacos and Tech Podcast

I’m Neal Bloom, entrepreneur, investor, and community builder 

Jonah: Hey I’m Jonah, ops guy building marketplaces spent time at Lime, Handy, and Postmates and I enjoy helping startups throughout San Diego. Let’s dive into our five stories of the week

For Oct 1, 2021:

  1. Magic Johnson sees smart tech as way to close societal gap
    1. Great article written by Mike Freeman
    2. Qualcomm held 3rd Smart Cities Accelerate event
      1. 300 city officials and tech partners 
      2. 700 virtually
    3. Kicking off the conference with Magic
      1. And his group JLC Infrastructure
      2. Who’s committed to invest 75 million into urban projects
    4. Their focus goes well beyond bringing tech to cities
      1. It became clear when the pandemic hit that the poorest americans were left out of virtual learning due to infrastructure
    5. This impacts virtual care and connections to doctors
      1. Magic told a story about his father securing a digital appointment and needing to be rushed to the hospital to save his leg
      2. Many who are not connected wouldn’t have this opportunity
    6. There are a few ways Qualcomm and others are looking at smart cities
      1. The Ecosystem:
        1. Connecting municipalities with companies who are building hardware and software
        2. transforming:
          1. Transportation
          2. Venues
          3. Campuses 
          4. Warehouses
      2. Smart Campus
        1. Qualcomm’s 40 buildings in sorrento are setup as a demonstration smart city
          1. Through an app
            1. Available parking
            2. Searching your license plate if you forget where u parked
            3. Smart trash bins (with solar)
            4. Inperson / virtual collaboration
              1. Simple example, whiteboards 
      3. Biz Models
        1. A few examples
        2. Free wifi monetized by ads
        3. Dispatched crews only to full trash bins
        4. Optimizing price of parking by supply and demand
      4. IoT-as-a-Service
        1. Smart city tech as subscription to keep cost down
        2. Or revenue sharing opportunities
    7. Love that this tech is local to SD!
  2. San Diego remains the nation’s No. 3 life science powerhouse
    1. We are biotech
      1. 1 out of every 30 employed San Diegans works in the life sciences.
    2. Industry unaffected (or maybe helped by) Covid
    3. Jones Lang LaSalle put out the ranking of top 10 in the US
      1. Based on a few things
        1. People living there
        2. Advanced science degrees
        3. Employees
        4. Investment money
        5. Total lab space
      2. 3rd only to…
        1. Boston (greater)
        2. SF/Bay Area
    4. Biocom Report
      1. 500,000 employed by the industry in CA
      2. + 0.5%
      3. The state workforce shrank by 7%
    5. In SD, 
      1. +6% in growth
      2. Over all drop -10% employment
    6. Local Economist: Lynn Reaser (point loma nazarene)
      1. 48B economic activity
      2. Up from 41B last year
    7. Life Science includes alot: 
      1. Pharma
      2. Med device
      3. Small biotech
      4. Contract companies
      5. Companies making test tubes and glassware
    8. Let’s hope the #3 spot is locked in
  3. Report: San Diego’s Life Sciences Sector Has ‘Profound Impact’ with 72,000 Jobs
  4. Solid-State All-Silicon Anode Batteries Offer Boosted Capacities, Charging Rates
    1. Batteries!
    2. New breakthrough: silicon anode batteries
    3. Out of the engineering department at UCSD
    4. Silicon anodes may replace graphite anodes
      1. Graphite is a perfect anode and has 
        1. dominated the anode materials since the birth of lithium ion 
      2. balance of: 
        1. relatively low cost, 
        2. abundance, 
        3. high energy density, 
        4. power density
        5. very long cycle life
    5. Solid state with pure silicon anode 10x more energy dense than LI batteries
      1. Solid State basically means there is no liquid between cathode and anode 
    6. This comes with a few advantages
      1. Lower cost 
      2. Safer
    7. The challenge: Silicon anodes expand/contract during charge/discharge
      1. May also degrade when in contact with liquid electrolytes
    8. But, this new design seems to solve this problem
      1. Using a solid stage alternative to liquid
      2. Successfully retaining 80 % storage after 500 cycles 
    9. Next step, commercialization
    10. The startup will be called UNIGRID Battery
  5. Bayer buys San Diego biotech Vividion for up to $2 billion
    1. Adding a major stake in the SD ecosystem for Bayer
      1. Who hasn’t really been here previously
    2. Vividion was going to go public (ding?)
      1. Founded in 2014
      2. To attack a problem
        1. No treatments for 90 percent of disease-causing proteins
        2. They look for small cracks into disease causing proteins to bind and block the disease
      3. Seems like Vividion gets to operate pretty freely
        1. its search for new drugs against disease-causing proteins
      4. This could be an interesting growth model for the bigger players
        1. Buy and let run
      5. The deal:
        1. 1.5B
        2. 500m based on milestones
        3. Not being consumed by a bigger entity
          1. Independence matters
      6. They would have been the 14th in SD to go public this year


For fun – name the new SD Zoo rhino – San Diego Zoo Safari Park Needs Your Help, Name a Baby Rhino

Fundings –

Biolinq, wearable biosensor platform developer, $62.2M

858 Therapeutics, biotechnology and drug discovery, $60M Series A with Versant Ventures and New Enterprise Associates

Ventyx Biosciences, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company for autoimmune diseases, $51M Series B with Surveyor Capital and Wellington Management

Measurabl, ESG data management solution for real estate, $50M Series C with Energy Impact Partners and Salesforce Ventures

Truepic, camera technology developer for mobile devices, $26M Series B with M12 – Microsoft’s Venture Fund and Adobe

GigaIO, high-speed interconnect hardware developer for computing clusters, $14.7M Series B with Impact Venture Capital and Four Palms Ventures

Eclipse Bioinnovations, RNA genomics, $12M

Cellibre, cellular agriculture, $9.9M

Lean Financial, financial technology, $4.5M Seed with Inspired Capital Partners and Oceans Ventures

9am.health, virtual diabetes clinic, $3.7M Seed with Founders Fund and Speedinvest


Acquisitions –

Vividion Therapeutics by Bayer for $2B

MK Decision by Alkami Technology

Agena Bioscience by Mesa Laboratories for $300M

Swinerton Renewable Energy by American Securities

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