Daily Business Report-July 8, 2013
Venture Summit will be held Friday at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront
Venture Activity Alive in San Diego
In 2012, the San Diego region raked in upwards of $1.1 billion in venture funding, beating Texas, Colorado, the DC Metroplex and other locales. At the San Diego Venture Group’s annual Venture Summit on July 12 at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront (7:30 a.m. to noon), participants will be able to interact with more than 120 VCs and 30 “cool” companies. The event connects numerous top entrepreneurs from the region with many investors from Southern California, the Bay Area and other areas to showcase how the innovation climate thrives in San Diego. It will feature a keynote by Gwynne Shotwell, president and COO of SpaceX, as well as other San Diego innovators including Chris Anderson (3D Robotics), Dr. James Mault (Qualcomm Life) and Larry Stambaugh (San Diego Zoo Bioinspiration Centre.)
For the second year in a row, the Venture Summit will include 30 San Diego “cool companies.” From social media to software and algae biofuels, companies making this year’s roster include Roambi, Sapphire Energy and Embarke.
Also on July 12, companies from around the globe will hand in their submissions to present at WBT Innovation Marketplace Oct. 22-23 at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina. Now in its 11th year, WBT Innovation Marketplace brings together the largest collection of vetted and mentored companies and technologies emanating from top universities, labs, research institutions, and the private sector.
Cleantech Investment in California Exceeds $1 Billion in 2013
Recent data from Cleantech Group, a global market intelligence firm, reports that in California, clean technology venture investment has reached an impressive year-to-date total of $1,002,828,868. To learn more about activity in the San Diego region, visit connect.org/innovation-report.
Mayor Jacked Up About Jack in the Box
Jack In the Box, famous for its secret sauce, found itself in hot water Friday as Mayor Bob Filner moved to stop work on a restaurant remodel in North Park, U-T San Diego reports. The 62-year-old restaurant at 30th and Upas streets is being rebuilt with its drive-through lane remaining. Filner said that violates the North Park planning and zoning rules against drive-throughs as a way to reduce car dependence and promote walkability. “It is outrageous to me that Jack In the Box has completely misled the North Park community about this project,” said Filner, citing a company letter saying the exterior walls would not be removed. “In fact, nearly all of the exterior walls were destroyed.” At Filner’s direction, Tom Tomlinson, the city’s interim head of development services, asked City Attorney Jan Goldsmith to investigate the matter and see if construction, begun last month, can be halted while issues get resolved. Goldsmith’s office said it would look into the matter but did not say how long it will take to answer Tomlinson’s questions.
Aguirre Tells PUC to Refund San Onofre Ratepayers
Attorney Mike Aguirre has filed a motion with the California Public Utilities Commission demanding refunds to ratepayers who he says have paid for nuclear power they never received, KPBS reports. Aguirre, a former San Diego City Attorney, is filing the case on behalf of a San Diego Gas & Electric customer named Ruth Henricks. The San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant has been shut down since January 2012. Aguirre and law partner Maria Severson said the CPUC has allowed the utilities to continue to charge ratepayers as if the nuclear plant were still operating, even though it has been offline for a year-and-a-half and even though SCE has decided not to restart it. Severson said the motion asks for an immediate injunction on charges made to utility customers.
Kyocera Communications Again Wins Director’s Recycling Award
Mobile phone-maker Kyocera Communications Inc. has received the Director’s Recycling Award for environmental programs by the city of San Diego’s Environmental Services Department. It is the 13th consecutive year the company, which operates multiple divisions in San Diego, has been awarded by the city for its recycling efforts. Overall, Kyocera has earned 20 such awards for recycling programs and other environmental efforts from the city — more than any other business in San Diego, according to the ESD.
Vibra Bank Celebrates Five-Year Anniversary
CHULA VISTA — Vibra Bank, formed in the midst of an economic downturn, has reached $126 million in assets as it celebrates its fifth year in business. “I can clearly recall skeptical comments from people as we were forming the bank, and the economic fear which was so prevalent at the time,” said Scott Parker, the bank’s president
and CEO. “But we were confident that there was demand for a bank like Vibra Bank in the San Diego market. Given the level of business activity involving people and businesses on both sides of the border, we were sure that a multicultural bank would be welcomed with opportunities, and we were right.”
“Many of our original investors, including myself and other members of our board of directors, came to the U.S. from Mexico, and know first-hand the challenges faced by business owners in establishing and growing a business in the U.S., and in navigating through the legal, investment, accounting, and cultural differences between the two countries,” saidVibra Bank Chairman Enrique Schon.