Home Podcast San Diego Tech News Weekly – September 10, 2021

San Diego Tech News Weekly – September 10, 2021

by FBT Team

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. 

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

Jonah: And I’m Jonah Peake, serial tech operator and investor both, both of us big fans of growing the San Diego tech community. Let’s dive into our five stories of the week


For  Sep 10, 2021:

  1. Asian Street Food Delivery Service Floods San Diego
    1. Wow Bao is rapidly expanding landing in San Diego
    2. Really cool concept that launched during the pandemic
    3. But you won’t see them in person
    4. They’re operating out of Ghost Kitchens
      1. Mira Mesa BLVD
      2. Clairemont Mesa BLVD
      3. Imperial Avenue
    5. The company itself is not super new, founded in 2003
    6. They’re actually out of Chicago
      1. Operating at the airport
      2. Concessions stands 
      3. Grocery lines
    7. This concept was an offshoot to make the most of slower periods
      1. Think ice cream in winter (not SD winter but you get the idea)
    8. This new version of Wow Bao
      1. Launched in April
      2. Exploded into 239 locations
      3. 39 States
    9. There may even be 3 more locations coming to SD
    10. They will partner with Doordash, Uber Eats and Grubhub to fulfill the order.
    11. This concept is pretty cool, allowing for a bit more freedom when picking locations.
      1. No need for seating
      2. Can get central without paying high prices for prime locations
      3. Can design for the delivery driver or customer in mind
    12. Ready for your mouth to water?
      1. BBQ Berksire pork steamed buns
      2. Teriyaki chicken
      3. Spicy mongolian beef
      4. Fried potstickers
      5. Rice and noodle bowls
    13. I’m hungry…
  2. For subscribers: These San Diego jobs are expected to grow most, and what’s next for the economy
    1. *This article was pretty weak.. We can have a conversation instead?*
    2. We’ve talked about jobs in SD a ton on this show
    3. Neal is kind of a jobs expert
    4. San Diego has struggled a bit to get back to national average unemployment rate
    5. A number of things may cause this
      1. High % of service jobs in the region
      2. Higher % of people upleveling and looking for work
      3. Fewer people applying for jobs
        1. Fear / risk averse perhaps
      4. Stricter restrictions
    6. Unemployments rates by city:
      1. LA – 9.5%
      2. NY – 8%
      3. Houston – 7.4%
      4. SD – 7.0%
      5. Phili – 6.9%
    7. VC was a bright spot with record levels
    8. We do talk about the hot VC scene in SD
    9. Heavy Bio typically
      1. But tech coming back in 2021
    10. Pandemic job loss, biggest
      1. Leasure -18.1%
      2. Gov -12.2%
      3. Mining and logging -25% (-100 jobs)
      4. Construction is growing
    11. Non Farm jobs growing +17.4%
    12. Biggest job growth industries: 
      1. Nursing! 68.7%
      2. Staticians 43%
      3. Med and health services managers
      4. Physician assistant 40%
      5. Physical therapists 34%
      6. Vet Tech! 33%
    13. Some huge growth
  3. For subscribers: The 10 highest-paid CEOs in San Diego in 2020
    1. Includes salary, bonus, perks and stock that vested and/or stock options that were exercised
      1. taxable compensation.
    2. This calc used the “realized” frameworks count salary
      1. This method counts the value of restricted stock only upon vesting i.e when they are released to executives.
    3. Game Show
    4. Neal’s answers – 3/10, 90% biotech, Qualcomm, Illumina, Dexcomm
    5. Michael Farrell: ResMed
      1. Total compensation: $30,614,397
      2. Shareholder return: 59 percent
    6. Steve Mollenkopf: Qualcomm
      1. Total compensation: $23,654,346
      2. Shareholder return: 59 percent
    7. Kevin Sayer: Dexcom
      1. Total compensation: $21,500,815
      2. Shareholder return: 69 percent
    8. Sheila Gujrathi: Gossamer Bio
      1. Total compensation: $18,226,511
      2. Shareholder return: -38 percent
    9. Francis deSouza: Illumina
      1. Total compensation: $18,145,930
      2. Shareholder return: 12 percent
    10. Amit Munshi: Arena Pharmaceuticals
      1. Total compensation: $16,769,601
      2. Shareholder return: 69 percent
    11. Charles Baum: Mirati Therapeutics
      1. Total compensation: $14,192,140
      2. Shareholder return: 70 percent
    12. Jeffrey Martin: Sempra
      1. Total compensation: $12,185,926
      2. Shareholder return: -13 percent
    13. John Higgins: Ligand Pharmaceuticals
      1. Total compensation: $11,300,850
      2. Shareholder return: -5 percent
    14. Gregory Garrabrants: Axos Financial
      1. Total compensation: $10,064,545
      2. Shareholder return: -19 percent
    15. Some details:
      1. Newest list of top comp came out: 
        1. By Mike Freeman
      2. Pop Quiz
        1. Name split of met to woman
        2. Top 3 companies
        3. Do you think they all had shareholder value generation?
      3. 1 female CEO on the list
      4. 6/10 had positive shareholder value
      5. 6 biotech (counting Dexcom)
      6. 1 energy 
      7. 1 FinTech
  4. What’s actually going on with Amazon’s new facility across the border 
    1. You might have seen the viral photos
    2. Beautiful Amazon facility
    3. In the middle of Tijuana, Mexico
    4. This is not a facility to serve the booming population in the region
    5. Unless you mean booming US population across the border
    6. Inland Empire has been the most crucial site for Amazon’s delivery network.
      1. Close to the ports of LA and LB — which handle 40% of all container imports into the US
    7. So why is this facility here? 
    8. This is not a result of cheap labor
      1. Though that does come into play
    9. This facility is actually serving the Amazons newest facility in Otay Mesa
      1. In the US
      2. 3.3 miles away
    10. Trump’s trade war, there has been a total increase of about $200 billion in tariffs from China.
      1. V expensive fo For e-commerce companies
    11. This facility is designed to ship goods from China -> Mexico
      1. Take them apart
      2. Then bring them over the boarder in 
      3. Exploiting an Obama rule loophole
        1. allow the duty-free import of goods up to $800.
        2. In tote bags
    12. Sure this does add jobs
      1. Some are mandatory OT 60 hr a week in order to get around these tariffs
    13. Makes you wonder….
    14. Definitely seems like Tech can innovate much quicker than GOV can regulate
  5. TakeLessons acquisition
    1. Founded in 2006
    2. Raised $19M from Crosslink and more. Haven’t raised since 2014
    3. Were always a favorite stop on the SD Startup Crawl from the early days of Startup Week since 2013
    4. We had them on the podcast recently, so listen to the founding story from CEO Steven Cox


  1. Tiled – $13.7M Series A – content generation platform
  2. Plantible Foods – $20.5M Series A – platform for developing plant-based proteins
  3. Grolltex – $1.5M Note – graphene production
  4. Nanocellect – $20M – cell analysis platform
  5. Powur – $3.7M plus more from crowdfunding
    1. Check this rap by the CEO at their recent shareholder meeting


  1. Chosen Food by Butterfly Equity
  2. RevCult by OwnBackup – salesforce ecosystem
  3. TakeLessons by Microsoft


Find us on twitter / Linkedin: @NealBloom & JonahPeake

And find this news and more at FreshBrewedTech.com

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