Category: Portfolio Companies

The home solar market is full of sales tricks, but this LA startup wants to change all that. – San Gabriel Valley Tribune

What ridesharing services Uber and Lyft did to taxis, Max Aram and Chris Blevins are trying to do to the home solar industry.

The founders of the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator award-winning startup Pick My Solar said they have witnessed too many high-pressure sales tactics from quantity-over-quality solar companies pulling the wool over customers’ eyes or scaring them away.

FreeWire’s New VP of Growth

A long time supporter, Dr. Carolin Funk comes to FreeWire from Siemens where she was the Director of Venture Technology. During her time at Siemens, she opened the doors for the then, nascent company and created a strategic partnership between FreeWire and Siemens.

Check Out These Unique Ridesharing Services – KTLA News


You’ve heard of Uber and Lyft – but there are many other ridesharing services putting a unique twist on the pick-up!
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One ridesharing service doesn’t fit all! Here are three companies putting their unique spin on the typical pickup.

Let’s start with See Jane Go. This is a service that pairs female drivers with female passengers, for an extra layer of trust. A dad named William Jordan came up with the idea – inspired by his two daughters. One wanted to take a ride sharing service he didn’t trust, and another wanted to drive for one!

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Kimberly Toonen, CEO of See Jane Go

“Being able to do things that make women especially comfortable and enjoy the ride, well beyond just getting from point A to point B, is what we’re all about,” explained Kimberly Toonen, CEO of See Jane Go.

The service is currently operating in Orange County.

RideConnect is an app that works with your social network to help you find rides for free. You can connect with friends or a trusted community, like your school or club.

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Once you download the app, you post a request for a ride – including where and when you want to go. Then, others in your network see the request and can offer you a ride.

The best part – RideConnect doesn’t charge a percentage or a fee. It can be useful for corporate carpools, road trips and more. Carpool Karaoke is optional.

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Finally, how does getting to work in style in an all electric Tesla SUV sound?

That’s the idea behind Green Commuter.

“Tesla offers the 7 seat capacity that we need for the van pool, the long range we need for the vehicle to be repurposed and be used during the day, and it’s all electric and zero emissions, which is our goal to use zero-emissions vehicles,” said Gustavo Occhiuzzo, CEO of Green Commuter.

The company’s special software enables commuters to ride to work in a shared Tesla Model X, but when it’s not rush hour, members can request a ride to wherever they need to go.

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Gustavo Occhiuzzo, CEO of Green Commuter

“We really want to create a critical mass to really make a change and move the needle a little bit and alleviate traffic for all Angelenos,” explained Occhiuzzo.

There you have it, three interesting twists on Ridesharing, providing new ways of getting around town.

Hollywood Electrics: #1 In the World

LACI Portfolio Company Hollywood Electrics is the premier electric motorcycle dealership and performance parts manufacturer on the planet. Trailblazing founder Harlan Flagg has carried the largest selection of electric motorcycles globally since 2010, is the top dealer for Brammo and Zero electric motorcycles, has had sales growth every year, and has an award-winning Racing Team.

A Penn educated electrical engineer, Harlan grew up with motorcycles in his dad’s garage, and later teamed up with his dad to convert a BMW into an electric powered vehicle, paving the way for Harlan to find his passion in the world of electric motorcycles.

Pay a visit to his store at 901 North Fairfax Avenue in West Hollywood and you’ll find more than motorcycles – electric scooters, bicycles, and something called the OneWheel that you just have to try. You can sign up for a test ride here and visit their website at hollywoodelectrics.com.

 

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Pasadena Angels Invest $75K in LACI Portfolio Company Nevados Engineering

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Pasadena, California (August 2, 2016) – The Pasadena Angels (PA) today announced the first investment from their PA Fund 1 (The Fund).  The Fund invested an additional $75K in Nevados Engineering, a clean tech company whose solar single-axis-tracker enables ground-based installation on virtually any terrain; improving on solar project economics. The Pasadena Angels have previously invested $240K in Nevados, this additional funding from The Fund will allow Nevados to fully execute on their grant funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative.  Nevados is also a Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) company, one of four LACI companies that the Pasadena Angels have invested in.

The Fund was formed in May of this year with a total investment of $1.3 million; for the purpose of co-investing exclusively in deals that are subscribed by Pasadena Angels members.  “We are pleased to be an additional source of follow on funding for our portfolio companies.  It speaks to our commitment of not only providing a wealth of human capital but also strong financial support to promising start-ups” A statement from Pasadena Angels PA Fund1 chairs, Anthony Valencia & Terry Kay

The Pasadena Angels’ 100 plus members invest individually and directly, without any legal pooling of financial resources.  The Fund will give PA members the opportunity to invest as a group and increase their portfolio diversification. The Fund expects to make investments of $50,000 – $100,000 per company across emerging companies being funded by the Pasadena Angels.  The PA Fund 1 operations are managed by Pasadena Angels members Terry Kay and Anthony Valencia.

About the Pasadena Angels:

The Pasadena Angels was founded in 2000 and is one of the longest running angel groups in Southern California.  Members have invested over $65 million in over 175 companies. Pasadena Angels funded companies have gone on to raise over $500 million from additional funding sources such as venture capital and private equity. Recent notable exits for the Pasadena Angels are Mind Body Software (NASDAQ:MB) and Bluebeam Software.   In 2015, the group invested a total of $5M in 27 companies. The Pasadena Angels was ranked one of the top ten angel investing groups in the country according to Forbes Magazine (2015). A nonprofit entity, the Pasadena Angels offers early stage start-ups capital investments; as well as mentoring from the expertise of more than 100 investor members with over 4,000 years of combined business expertise.

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Hive Lighting Wins 2016 Award of Excellence at NAB

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LACI Portfolio company Hive Lighting’s new 1000 Watt Plasma Bulb successfully debuted at NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) Show 2016 in Las Vegas last week. The 1000 Watt Plasma Bulb took home a 2016 Award of Excellence from ProductionHUB, the global network of freelancers, crew and vendors. The Awards of Excellence recognize the innovation in technology and practice from the NAB Show Floor, the anchor event of the industry.

“We interview hundreds of exhibitors from trade shows across the country to make sure our users are up to date on the tech and skills needed to succeed on set and in the workforce,” says Katrina de Leon, Director of Marketing for ProductionHUB. “Because of this focused view, we are in a unique position to select and spotlight the best of the best from the NAB Show.”

To finalize the award selections, ProductionHUB used a combination of the following criteria: nomination form entries, expert opinion from both industry icons and the ProductionHUB leadership team, and direct feedback from attendees at the show.

The 1000 Watt Plasma Bulb generated lots of buzz on the trade show floor, resulting in interviews with No Film SchoolAbelCine, a feature in ICG Magazine’s April 2016 Gear Guide and more.

Hive’s new 1000 Watt Plasma Bulb is 5 times brighter than their 250 Watt Plasma Bulb, has a CRI of 98, making it the brightest light you can plug into the wall. Pulling only 9.5 amps of power, the 1000 Watt is the equivalent output of a 2,500W HMI or 10,000W Tungsten Incandescent but costs almost 40% less to purchase and over 50% less to operate. All of Hive’s Plasma Fixtures are manufactured in Los Angeles, CA, USA. 

The 1000 Watt Wasp Plasma Par and 1000 Watt Bee Plasma Flood are available now for pre-order and will be available for sale at Cine Gear Expo in June.

Find out more about Hive Lighting at hivelighting.com

Read more about the ProductionHUB NAB Awards of Excellence here

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LACI Portfolio Company Ayyeka Chosen as Runner-up In 2016 Water Data Challenge

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LACI congratulates Ayyeka on it’s great showing at Imagine H2O’s 2016 Water Data Challenge. Ten promising data-driven water businesses were selected from a global field of 90 startups in 20 countries to participate in IH2O’s 7th annual innovation program. Winning teams will participate in IH2O’s rigorous business accelerator, benefitting from cash awards, mentorship, industry exposure, as well as introductions to customers and investors.

“Data is a fundamental tool to improve how we monitor and manage water,” said Andy Wheeler of GV (formerly Google Ventures) who served on the judging panel. “Imagine H2O’s Data Challenge attracted some of the most promising data solutions to tackle pressing water challenges globally.”

Ayyeka is gaining great traction in the field of water and wastewater instrumentation monitoring and control systems. They are nearing completion of their first full scale implementation of their systems with the Cincinnati Municipal Wastewater District and are in the planning stages of a pilot project with the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power.

The Challenge’s winner was Ceres Imaging (Oakland, CA), a breakthrough aerial imaging solution for agriculture. Offering a proprietary imaging technology and analytics platform currently unmatched in the industry, Ceres provides farmers affordable access to actionable data to manage water stress and fertilizer application.

Ayyeka and Apana (Spokane, WA), a commercial water use management and detection platform, were both recognized as runners-up. IH2O’s 2016 cohort offered a full range of innovative data solutions to critical water issues and all ten selectees were showcased at the organization’s annual Water Gala on March 16 in San Francisco.

You can read more here http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/water-innovation-accelerator-showcases-promising-data-startups-300237238.html

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Repurpose Product Featured on Showtime Series “Billions”

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LACI Portfolio Company Repurpose was featured on Season 1 episode 4 of the hit Showtime show Billions starring Paul Giamatti (Sideways) and Damian Lewis (Homeland). The award-winning Repurpose insulated hot cup is being enjoyed by the US Attorney (Giamatti) and his co-workers while they plot to take down the criminal hedge fund manager (Lewis).

Repurpose® has created a line of sustainable tableware made exclusively from plants and they are on a mission to reduce the amount of plastics in the environment, offering high quality, durable, and guilt-free renewable alternatives.

The product placement was achieved in partnership with Green Product Placement, a first-of-its-kind agency helping environmentally friendly products find their way into film and television. This is not the first major placement for Repurpose and GPP, as Repurpose’s cup was featured prominently on Season 1 of House of Cards. Repurpose products have also been seen in shows like VEEP and The Good Wife

For more information on Repurpose, go to https://laincubator.org/portfolio-companies/repurpose/ and http://www.repurposecompostables.com/#intro

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Hive Lighting’s Rutherford and Miller Receive IPA Tesla Award

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Hive Lighting’s Rutherford and Miller Receive IPA Tesla Award

LACI Portfolio Company HIVE Lighting’s co-founders Robert Rutherford and Jon Edward Miller were honored along with Actors, Filmmakers and Technicians gathered for the star-studded 20th annual International Press Academy awards, on Sunday Feb. 21, 2016 at the Intercontinental Hotel in Century City, Calif.

Rutherford and Miller were honored for Hive’s energy efficient, full spectrum, flicker-free plasma lighting systems in the category of Visionary Achievement in Filmmaking Technology for 2015.

“This award is both a gratifying recognition of [Hive Lighting’s] ethos and a challenge for all of us at Hive Lighting to live up to this award’s promise to ‘influence future generations and give rise to further innovation’. We are only just getting started.” said Miller. Rutherford added, “To anyone here working hard on a dream, let this award remind you to keep going, because it may take longer than expected, but as Tesla said, you ‘will prevail in the end and make it a triumphal success.’” Past recipients of the Tesla Award include Director and Inventor James Cameron, George Lucas, Cinematographer Roger Deakins and SteadiCam inventor Garrett Brown.  

The IPA is the largest group of international and domestic entertainment journalists and their annual awards honor the best in film, television and new media. The IPA is the only major awards show comprised of international and domestic entertainment journalists and critics that give awards to film, television, new media and interactive and digital every year. The more than 100 members hail from more than 20 countries.

For a complete list of winners and nominees, as well as photos from the event, go to www.pressacademy.com.

For More on Hive Lighting:

http://hivelighting.com

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