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Daily Business Report — Dec. 5, 2014

Daily Business Report — Dec. 5, 2014

Topera Inc. won a Most Innovative New Product Award for its 3D Mapping System, shown here at Texas Heart Institute. Dr. Abdi Rasekh, right, and Dr. Mehdi Razavi use the system to find the source of an abnormal heart rhythm in one of their patients.

Eight Companies That Launched

Groundbreaking New Products Are Honored

Eight San Diego-based companies who launched groundbreaking new products in the last year were honored last night as winners in the 27th annual Most Innovative New Product Awards sponsored by Connect, the business accelerator organization.

Held at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine, the program was attended by more than 700 business leaders, entrepreneurs, researchers and investors.

“This year’s MIP Award winners truly represent not only the best new products coming out of San Diego in the past year, but some of the best new products in the country,” said Connect Chief Executive Officer Greg McKee. “This year, the entries were particularly strong and the process was so competitive, which just demonstrates the continual advancement in innovation happening in San Diego year after year.”


Cubic NextBus Fleet system

Cubic NextBus Fleet system

Rock My World's Rock My Run

Rock My World’s Rock My Run

 Solatube International's Solatube SkyVault Series

Solatube International’s Solatube SkyVault Series

 Electrozyme's Real-Time Sweat Electrolyte Sensor

Electrozyme’s Real-Time Sweat Electrolyte Sensor

Organovo Inc.'s exVive3D  Liver Model

Organovo Inc.’s exVive3D Liver Model




The 2014 MIP Award winners and their products:

Aerospace and Security Technologies

Cyber Flow Analytics for FlowScape

Flowscape provides anomalytics for the Internet of Things.  It continuously analyzes billions of unstructured application and network traffic flows, and applies machine learning algorithms to provide real-time actionable intelligence for anomalous behavior.  FlowScape detects anomalous high-risk threats as a cyber-security platform.

Communications and IT

Cubic Transportation Systems for NextBus Fleet Management

The NextBus Fleet Management application is a modular, mobile gateway for connecting passengers and public transit managers to valuable real-time travel and operations information. This cost-effective, high-quality and reliable application makes public transportation a viable and attractive choice for commuters.

Diagnostics & Research Tools

Organovo Inc. for exVive3D  Liver Model

exVive3D Liver model  is functional 3D human liver tissue constructs consisting of multiple primary human cell types which are found in native human liver.  The exVive3D Livers are created using Organovo’s proprietary 3D bioprinting technology that results in tissues containing precise and reproducible architecture. They are intended to improve preclinical drug discovery programs.

Pharmaceutical Drugs and Medical Devices

Topera Inc. for Topera’s 3D Mapping System

Topera’s 3D Mapping identifies the mechanism that sustains atrial fibrillation in arrhythmia patients. By helping physicians visualize and localize these precise sources the Topera System provides the essential information for excellent patient outcomes.

Mobile Apps

Rock My World Inc. for RockMyRun

RockMyRun takes biometric data from smartphones and fitness wearable devices, and then adjusts the music you’re listening to so that it matches your body, leading to increased enjoyment and improvement in performance by up to 20 percent while exercising.


CloudBeds for CloudBeds

CloudBeds is an operating system for hotels where properties can manage their operations easily through online tools; distribute real-time inventory (rooms) to consumers and travel agents worldwide through popular channels around the web via 2-way APIs; and increase a property’s revenue while lowering its costs using learning algorithms that optimize a property’s room prices, availability and back-office tasks.

Sport & Active Lifestyle Technologies

Electrozyme LLC for ProFit SE Real-Time Sweat Electrolyte Sensor

The ProFit SE Real-Time Sweat is the world’s first personal hydration monitor capable of assessing fluid and electrolyte loss in a non-invasive, real-time fashion. The wearable product provides answers to three key questions: When is it time to rehydrate? What to rehydrate with? How much to rehydrate?


Solatube International for Solatube SkyVault Series

Solatube SkyVault Series employs advanced optics to deliver maximum daylight with minimal heat gain to large spaces with high, open ceilings. Modular components let designers spread light evenly, enhance light capture or control focus with one system.

Besides the companies honored, Connect awarded the Distinguished Contribution Award for Life Sciences Innovation to philanthropist T. Denny Sanford, and the Distinguished Contribution Award for Technology Innovation to Robert S. Sullivan, dean of the UC San Diego Rady School of Management.


Grossmont College nursing students.

Grossmont College nursing students.

Nursing Students at Grossmont College

Can Get Bachelor’s Degrees from PLNU

Nursing students at Grossmont Collegewill be able to take classes at the El Cajon campus for four years and graduate with a degree from Point Loma Nazarene University under a deal the schools are scheduled to announce today.

Under the terms of the four-year agreement, students who get their associates degree at Grossmont will be able to complete their bachelor’s requirements with an additional 15 months of classes.

A state pilot program that will allow community colleges to offer four-year degrees in certain academic areas does not include nursing, according to the schools.

The program will also help address a need for further education for the region’s nurses, school officials said.

Grossmont currently offers a four-semester nursing program that includes related science courses, and practical experience in area hospitals and health agencies. Students who complete the program can transfer to San Diego State University to complete their bachelor’s degree.

By comparison, the PLNU deal will allow the students to finish out their studies at the Grossmont campus.

The position of registered nurse is regularly included in lists of high-demand jobs. According to the Campus Explorerwebsite, around 711,000 registered nurses will be needed over the next decade, with a typical starting salary of more than $64,000.

— City News Service

Attorney Arlene Yang of the Brown Law Group.

Attorney Arlene Yang of the Brown Law Group.

Arlene Yang Elected President

Of Pan Asian Lawyers of San Diego

Arlene R. Yang, an attorney serving as of counsel for Brown Law Group, has been elected president of Pan Asian Lawyers of San Diego. She will take the helm of an organization that is dedicated to advancing Asian Americans in the legal profession and promoting and advocating the interests of the Asian Pacific American community.

Yang will begin her term as president on Jan. 29, 2015 at the Pan Asian Lawyers of San Diego/Filipino American Lawyers of San Diego’s 37th annual dinner and installation of officers at the Omni Hotel in San Diego.

Yang recently joined Brown Law Group as of counsel with a focus on employment law and litigation. She handles employment matters at the state and federal levels, as well as before administrative agencies such as the Merit Systems Protection Board and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Before joining the law firm, Yang worked in labor and employment litigation and counseling as an attorney at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security — both at the Transportation Security Administration and at U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Yang is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and New York University School of Law. Immediately following law school, she clerked for the Honorable Daniel H. Huyett n the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Following that, Yang served as a litigator at the United States Department of Justice and at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP.

San Diego Included in National

Fast-Food Walkout on Thursday

Fast-food restaurant employees marched through Downtown San Diego on Thursday, in one of a nationwide series of job actions aimed at raising their pay to $15 an hour and gaining the right to unionize.

Organizers, including the Service Employees International Union, said job actions were scheduled in about 160 cities . Activists argue that fast-food workers earn an average of $9 an hour and struggle to make ends meet.

One of the local demonstrators was Ericka May.

“It’s not always a for-sure thing if I’m going to know if I’m going to have rent covered or be able to pay my bills,” the fast-food worker told Fox5 San Diego.

The Center on Policy Initiatives said “rolling strikes” took place at fast-food eateries around San Diego, beginning with a McDonald’s in City Heights.

Employees in low-wage jobs and labor unions have been pushing for a minimum hourly wage of $15, which has been adopted in San Francisco and Seattle. The state of California’s lowest pay rate was $8 an hour until July, when it increased by $1.

The San Diego City Council passed a three-step increase in the minimum wage to $11.50, but it was suspended after business interests obtained enough petition signatures to force the issue to a public vote. The wage hike is likely to go on the ballot in about 18 months.

The International Franchise Association released a statement accusing the SEIU of a “politically motivated agenda” being implemented “under the guise of trying to help the poor.”

— City News Service

Chamber Launches Get Fit

San Diego 30-Day Challenge

The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce will help kick-start New Year’s resolutions around the county with the launch of third annual Get Fit San Diego 30-Day Challenge on Jan. 5, 2015. The fitness campaign, sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, is designed to encourage employees and businesses in San Diego to commit to a healthy lifestyle for the month of January and beyond. The challenge will be held throughout the county from Jan. 5 through Feb. 3.

“At the Chamber we know that a productive workplace starts with happy and healthy employees and I understand firsthand the importance and benefits of starting and maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle,” said Jerry Sanders, Chamber president and CEO. “Our goal through this Challenge is to help San Diego business owners and employees start their own journey to a path of long-term health and wellness.”

Participants can sign up now for the Get Fit Challenge by visiting The Challenge is open to individuals and teams of five to 10 people. Participants do not need to be a member of the Chamber to participate in the Challenge and participation is free for everyone. Participants and teams are divided into three different divisions based on perceived fitness level: “Back on the Wagon,”,“Average Joes,” and “Fitness Buffs.”

Upon registration, participants will be provided with access to an online platform that tracks activities related to exercise, nutrition and wellness in a point system called “Thrive Points.” Throughout the challenge, Get Fit registrants will receive emails with activities to complete and track in their online dashboard.  At the end of the 30 days, the individuals and teams in each division with the most Thrive Points will receive a prize.

For more information or to register, visit

Stephen Cushman to Chair Convention

Center Corp. Board of Directors in 2015

Businessman Stephen P. Cushman will serve as chair of the San Diego Convention Center Corp.’s board of directors beginning in January. Cushman established The Cush Automotive Group and was a recognized leader in the automotive sales industry before its sale in 2006. He is special assistant to Mayor Kevin Faulconer, a trustee for the National University system and a member of the Downtown San Diego Partnership executive committee.

Rabbi Laurie Coskey was elected the board’s vice chair. Coskey is the executive director of the Interfaith Committee for Worker Justice (ICWJ), an organization representing clergy, churches, mosques, synagogues, faith and justice organizations in San Diego.

Candace M. Carroll was elected to serve as the board’s secretary treasurer. Carroll is a highly-regarded appellate practitioner with more than 30 years of experience handling appeals in federal, state and bankruptcy appellate courts.

Metropolitan Transit System Hires Security Manager

The Metropolitan Transit System has hired former San Diego County sheriff’s Capt. Ed Musgrove as its security manager.
 Musgrove, a 25-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Department, will oversee 165 contracted security officers and 35 code compliance inspectors who are employed by the MTS, the operator of San Diego’s trolley system and many public transit buses.

“Ed has proven experience in government and private sector safety and security management,” said MTS CEO Paul Jablonski. “Providing a safe and secure environment for our passengers is our top priority. All of his law enforcement work has been in San Diego, so he’s familiar with our region and our transit system.”

Musgrove was the head of the sheriff’s Santee station. He left the agency to become the head of security operations manager for the Gemological Institute of America in Carlsbad.

Musgrove will work with another longtime local law enforcement leader, Manuel Guaderrama, who spent 30 years with the San Diego Police Department. Guaderrama is the deputy director of transit enforcement and code compliance for the MTS.

Stanley T. Crooke,  founder, CEO and chairman of the board of directors of Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Stanley T. Crooke, founder, CEO and chairman of the board of directors of Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Isis Pharmaceuticals’ Stanley Crooke

Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Stanley T. Crooke,  founder, CEO and chairman of the board of directors of Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc., has been awarded the 2014 SCRIP Lifetime Achievement Award, one of the most prestigious of its kind in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Crooke was selected for the lifetime achievement award by an independent panel of global life sciences experts, based on his dedication to advancing science and medicine as a physician, a scientist, a leader and as a successful entrepreneur.

Crooke’s accomplishments were recognized at the annual SCRIP awards ceremony held Wednesday at The Lancaster Hotel in London.

Crooke is a successful biotechnology entrepreneur and inventor. He led the scientific development of a new platform for drug discovery, antisense technology, and engineered the creation of one of the largest and most advanced pipeline of drugs in the biotechnology industry.  Currently, Isis has more than 34 drugs in development, including numerous drugs in late-stage clinical development and has achieved commercialization of the first three RNA-targeted drugs to reach the market.

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