January 19, 2021
Your one-stop newsletter on all things tech in San Diego.

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Welcome to The Local Buzz, your inside scoop on San Diego’s tech scene. Keep up to date on our Fresh Brewed Tech website.
With 2020 already a record topping year with San Diego total VC funding of over $5 billion, expect a similar blockbuster year in 2021. 2020 matched 2000 in total dollar amount, but the number of deals was way down. This means later stage mega fundings are taking precedence over early stage funding. While San Diego startups are getting some big later stage fundings, we need to make sure we’re filling the funnel up top too. I predict 2021 sees more early stage angel and angel funds come to light. I plan to be a part of that. Keep an eye out for more news here. 😉

We often talk about industry clusters that San Diego is leading in. We know about biotech, but another one that is worth highlighting continuously is logistics tech. With the rise of ecommerce comes the boost to shipping; San Diego companies are on the frontlines of building technology to enhance routes, making trucking more efficient, and even creating autonomous trucking technology.

  • Some of this has roots from Qualcomm, whose spin-off Omnitracs was acquired by Vista Equity, and then last year acquired San Diego-based SmartDrive Systems, a dashcam analytics system.
  • Another big player is Lytx, which is private equity owned.
  • There’s also two of the biggest players in the world here - Amazon Fresh engineering, and Walmart Global Tech engineering, which has offices in Carlsbad.
  • Of the local venture backed startups, the late stage companies to know are TuSimple for autonomous trucking; Flock Freight, which focuses on efficient routing; Platform Science, enterprise fleet management; and Brain Corp., whose robots are taking over inventory management and cleaning.
  • Of the early stage companies in logistics tech, there is Airspace Technologies with critical time logistics development; Modal AI building drone delivery tech; Shipcalm, which is building third-party logistics tech; Tourmaline Labs for fleet management; and Boxton for cloud shipping; Mercato for local grocery delivery; HireAHelper/Porch for movers; and GoShare for connecting delivery pros. 

Say it with me now: “San Diego Does Logistics Tech!” Now let’s tell the world.


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Our team of local writers gives a fresh look inside the San Diego tech ecosystem past and present.

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Some highlights from this past week in San Diego tech.
New grants and resources for business owners affected by COVID-19

Qualcomm CEO is retiring in June with President Cristiano Amon stepping in as CEO in June 2021

SIM San Diego launches new initiative for women in tech in the IT industry

San Diego to be featured on CNBC’s Streets of Dreams on January 19th at 7pm

Ryan Kuder of Techstars becomes the new Chair of Startup San Diego
During the current shift in the world of work, many San Diego companies are still hiring. This live job board by SD Life Changing, StartupSD, and Connect shows open roles. Companies can add their roles if they are hiring, too.
Sr. Solution Engineer, Couchbase

Enterprise Account Executive, Yelp

Regional Marketing Manager, Okta

VP Client Services, eSub

Operations Lead, Spin (Ford Mobility)

Senior Project Manager, Truvian

Engineering Manager, Google

Senior Live Ops Analyst, Psyonix

Engagement Manager, Twilio
IconOVir Bio with $77M Series A

Endeavor BioMedicine with $62M Series A

Encodia with $60M Series C

Genalyte with $50M

Jumpcode Genomics with $21M

QuantaRF with $19M Series B
Cardea Bio with $6.5M Series A

Primmune Therapeutics with $4M Series A

Human AI with $3.2M Series Seed

Drata with $3.2M Series Seed

Coral Vita with $2M Series Seed

Mosaic.Tech with $18.5M Series A
Denovium acquired AbSci

Biotheranostics acquired Hologic

ComplianceMAX acquired RegEd
Qualcomm acquired Nuvia for $1.4B

Next Tech aquired Pluralsight
Petco oversubscribed their IPO and raised $864M and up 44% on first day of trading
Prospector Capital SPAC by Steve Altman and Derek Aberle oversubscribes to $300M

Section32 invested in EQRx

TVC Capital invested in SimpleNexus $108M Series B

dRx Capital, a joint venture between Qualcomm and Novartis, invested in Peptone $2.4M Series Seed

Finistere Ventures invested in Israeli agtech Pigmentum $1M
Enjoy these events from the comfort and safety of your own home.
AFWERX Applications Open for SBIR and STTR from January 14 to February 18

Black New Ventures Pitch Competition Virtual pitch competition, taking applications until January 16

Learn about SBIRs and STTR Grant funding event by UCSD, January 26

Connect's Cool Companies Annual capital program, applications open February 1

WBC Virtual Launch Program 9-week classroom sessions program, February 8

Ad Astra Ventures Get To Even Founder Bootcamp 4 day program, February 24-26 & March 1-2

Launch Factory Now recruiting founders for their new startups, apply here

Have a tip or want to share your favorite local taco?
Feel free to tell us about it: techos@freshbrewedtech.com