GEEK News

June 05, 2015
Tech Moves: Riveter CEO relocates; ex-REI CEO joins UW business school; Edifecs add execs; more

Tech Moves: Riveter CEO relocates; ex-REI CEO joins UW business school; Edifecs add execs; more

Sally Jewell. (The Nature Conservancy Photo) — Former U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell has been appointed the Edward V. Fritzky endowed chair in leadership at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business for the 2021-2022 academic year. For the past 20 years, the faculty...

Ballmer Group gives $38M to bolster Washington state’s ailing mental health services

Ballmer Group gives $38M to bolster Washington state’s ailing mental health services

Steve and Connie Ballmer. (Ballmer Group Photo) Ballmer Group, an organization created by former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and his wife Connie, is donating $38 million over the next few years to create and strengthen multiple programs that support mental health services. The funding comes at a...

With assists from Seattle, satellite launch will boost BlackSky’s geospatial intelligence network

With assists from Seattle, satellite launch will boost BlackSky’s geospatial intelligence network

Clean-room workers play air guitar as they get set for Rocket Lab’s launch of two BlackSky satellites. (Spaceflight Inc. via Twitter) The next two satellites in BlackSky’s constellation of Earth-watching spacecraft are due to be launched by Rocket Lab from New Zealand as early as this weekend, but...

Seattle startup Bean Box raises $2.4M as pandemic fuels demand for specialty coffee at home

Seattle startup Bean Box raises $2.4M as pandemic fuels demand for specialty coffee at home

(Bean Box Photo) New funding: Bean Box, the Seattle startup that delivers premium coffee from independent roasters, has raised $2.4 million in new funding as part of a Series A round. The company: Founded in 2014 by Matthew Berk and Ryan Fritzky, Bean Box offers coffee products from 40 top-rated,...

‘Pandemic puppies’ help fuel Rover’s comeback as pet-sitting startup preps to go public via SPAC

‘Pandemic puppies’ help fuel Rover’s comeback as pet-sitting startup preps to go public via SPAC

Inside Rover’s HQ in Seattle. (Rover Photo) Pet adoption rates have surged amid the pandemic, and pet spending accelerated last year. Those are a few of the tailwinds driving optimism at Rover as the Seattle startup prepares to go public via a SPAC deal by the end of next month. Unlike many tech...

Lessons from the pandemic: Top STEM educators offer their insights on the future of learning

Lessons from the pandemic: Top STEM educators offer their insights on the future of learning

Kim Williams, science department head at Cougar Mountain Middle School, providing a lesson in genetics during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Bethel School District Photo via Twitter) The pandemic upended education in extraordinary ways, and shed new light on the social, economic and racial disparities in...

Absolute Software to buy Seattle-based NetMotion for $340M

The news: Absolute Software, a publicly-traded security software company, agreed to acquire Seattle-based security startup NetMotion for $340 million. Founded in 2001, NetMotion helps employees at more than 3,000 organizations access resources from devices both on premises or remotely in the cloud....

Washington state plans to fully reopen by June 30 as governor pushes COVID vaccine incentives

Washington state plans to fully reopen by June 30 as governor pushes COVID vaccine incentives

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, without his usual mask, on Thursday during a news conference. (Twitter screen grab) Washington state will move to fully reopen and lift restrictions put on the economy by COVID-19 by June 30, Gov. Jay Inslee announced on Thursday. The move comes as new cases of COVID-19...

Internal memo: Longtime Amazon exec Jeff Blackburn returns after brief hiatus to lead new entertainment unit

Internal memo: Longtime Amazon exec Jeff Blackburn returns after brief hiatus to lead new entertainment unit

Amazon executive Jeff Blackburn speaks at his alma mater, Dartmouth College, in 2015. (Dartmouth/Eli Burakian Photo, used with permission.) Blackburn’s back. Longtime Amazon exec Jeff Blackburn is returning to the Seattle tech giant, just a few months after he departed and spent five weeks at a...

Healionics raises $4.7M to commercialize artificial blood vessel tech

Healionics raises $4.7M to commercialize artificial blood vessel tech

Healionics’ STARgraft vascular graft acts as an artificial blood vessel for dialysis patients. (Healionics Photo) New funding: Seattle-based medical technology company Healionics raised a $4.7 million round led by Keiretsu Capital to help commercialize its artificial blood vessel called STARgraft...

Amazon to add another 75,000 workers and offers $100 bonus for proof of vaccination

Amazon to add another 75,000 workers and offers $100 bonus for proof of vaccination

(Amazon Photo) Amazon is hiring an additional 75,000 workers for its warehouse and logistics operations across the U.S. and Canada as the Seattle giant continues to grow at a whirlwind pace amid the pandemic. The latest hiring spree amounts to an expansion of nearly 6% of Amazon’s 1.27 million...

Genba, the latest spinout from PSL-Fortive studio, raises cash for industrial work voice app

Genba, the latest spinout from PSL-Fortive studio, raises cash for industrial work voice app

Genba co-founders Bruce Kaufman and Emory Sullivan. (Genba Photos) New spinout: Genba came out of stealth mode Thursday, revealing its software built for the industrial workforce. The company is the latest to spin out from a Seattle startup innovation studio run by Pioneer Square Labs (PSL) and...

Why this Seattle deli ditched third-party delivery services: ‘I don’t want them anywhere near our food’

Why this Seattle deli ditched third-party delivery services: ‘I don’t want them anywhere near our food’

The Schmaltzy’s crew, pre-social distancing. Co-owner Jonny Silverberg is on the far left. (Facebook Photo / Schmaltzy’s Delicatessen) Jonny Silverberg, co-owner of Seattle’s Schmaltzy’s Delicatessen, remembers his breaking point. It was on a Wednesday, not long ago. A customer called saying that...

Recurrent lands R&D grant to bolster its battery data that helps used electric car shoppers

Recurrent lands R&D grant to bolster its battery data that helps used electric car shoppers

(Flickr Creative Commons Photo / Ivan Radic) New funding: Recurrent, a platform for helping people make informed choices when buying used electric vehicles, was awarded a $256,000 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The money is a Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research grant,...

Auto parts data platform PDM Automotive raises $4M after doubling revenue in 2020

Auto parts data platform PDM Automotive raises $4M after doubling revenue in 2020

PDM is led by founders Johannes Crepon and Philipp Crepon. (PDM Photos) New funding: PDM Automotive, a 3-year-old company that runs an automotive product data platform for manufacturers and receivers, raised a $4 million round led by FUSE. The startup provides information on aftermarket automotive...

Amazon to stream WNBA games on Prime Video in tech giant’s latest deal with a pro sports league

Amazon to stream WNBA games on Prime Video in tech giant’s latest deal with a pro sports league

Seattle Storm star Sue Bird. (File Photo via Neil Enns / Seattle Storm) Add the WNBA to the list of professional sports leagues that Amazon wants to help showcase via its Prime Video streaming platform. Amazon and the WNBA reached a multi-year agreement giving Prime Video exclusive global streaming...

Amplitude acquires Seattle-based customer data analytics startup Iteratively

Amplitude acquires Seattle-based customer data analytics startup Iteratively

Iteratively CEO Patrick Thompson. Acquisition news: San Francisco product intelligence company Amplitude acquired Seattle startup Iteratively. Founded in 2019 by veterans of Atlassian and Microsoft, Iteratively sells software to data and product teams for customer analytics tracking. The idea is to...

Xplore reveals its plans to open satellite manufacturing facility in Seattle area

Xplore reveals its plans to open satellite manufacturing facility in Seattle area

Xplore’s new satellite manufacturing facility is in the Redmond complex that once housed Planetary Resources. (Xplore Photo) Xplore, a Seattle-area startup that aims to build satellites for interplanetary missions, has a new address in Redmond, Wash. — in the same office complex that once housed...

How this tech engineer is using his son’s rare disease as inspiration to disrupt drug development

How this tech engineer is using his son’s rare disease as inspiration to disrupt drug development

Sanath Kumar Ramesh with his wife Ramya and son Raghav. (Photo courtesy of the Ramesh family) Before their son was born, Sanath Kumar Ramesh and his wife Ramya had normal first-time-parent jitters. Ramesh, who works for Amazon as a software engineering manager, was so excited to welcome his little...

IXL Learning lays off 16 employees in Seattle after acquiring Rosetta Stone

The news: San Mateo, Calif.-based edtech company IXL Learning will cut 16 jobs in Seattle following the company’s acquisition of Rosetta Stone, according to a WARN notice filed with the state of Washington. “There were some personnel changes as we integrated Rosetta Stone into IXL, and we are...

Behind release of NFL’s new schedule, Amazon Web Services helped sort endless matchup options

It might seem like a no-brainer to pit the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Tom Brady against “America’s team,” the Dallas Cowboys, in the opening game of the 2021 NFL season. But figuring out the matchups, locations and timing of the other 271 games takes a bit of computing power. The...

‘World’s lowest power wireless chip’: UW spinout Jeeva unveils new sensor data streaming tech

‘World’s lowest power wireless chip’: UW spinout Jeeva unveils new sensor data streaming tech

Jeeva’s Parsair wireless chip. (Jeeva Photo) The news: Jeeva, the Seattle startup founded by University of Washington researchers, has developed what it’s calling the world’s lowest power wireless chip for streaming real-time sensor data, the company announced this week. Why it’s a big deal:...

Seattle startup Jargon sells IP to Remitly; founders will join remittance company

Seattle startup Jargon sells IP to Remitly; founders will join remittance company

Jargon CEO Milkana Brace. (Jargon Photo) The news: Seattle mobile remittance company Remitly has acquired intellectual property from Jargon, a Seattle startup that developed an enterprise platform for chat and voice services. Jargon co-founders Milkana Brace and Jonathan Burstein will join Remitly,...

MoneyGram now lets people buy and sell bitcoin through deal with Seattle startup Coinme

The news: Money wiring service giant MoneyGram inked a deal with Coinme to let customers buy or sell bitcoin with cash at more than 12,000 brick-and-mortar locations across the U.S. “This is a major milestone for the bitcoin and cryptocurrency communities, and for the millions of people who will...

Sales tax compliance and audit startup LumaTax raises $4M

Sales tax compliance and audit startup LumaTax raises $4M

LumaTax CEO Robert Schulte. (LumaTax Photo) New funding: LumaTax landed $4 million in new funding led by Trilogy Equity Partners. The 4-year-old startup that spun out of Seattle’s Pioneer Square Labs initially targeted small businesses to automate their sales tax reporting process. But over the...

Madrona Venture Labs raises $8M, unveils plan to turn its investors into co-founders of spinouts

Madrona Venture Labs raises $8M, unveils plan to turn its investors into co-founders of spinouts

The Madrona Venture Labs team, clockwise from left: Flora Ku, Keith Rosema, Maria Hess, Henry Huang, Mike Fridgen, Jay Bartot, Jason Flateboe. (Madrona Venture Labs Photo) The news: Madrona Venture Labs, the startup studio associated with Madrona Venture Group, has raised $8 million for its fourth...

Try before you fly: Orbite sets schedule for luxurious astronaut orientation sessions

Try before you fly: Orbite sets schedule for luxurious astronaut orientation sessions

Orbite’s director of astronaut training, Brienna Rommes, enjoys a zero-G airplane flight. (Orbite Photo) Wanna take a ride to space? There’s a smorgasbord of spaceflight shaping up for paying customers, ranging from the suborbital tours planned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin to the orbital...

Block out the date: Minecraft graduation ceremony will show off UW group’s detailed Seattle build

A college diploma is considered one of the building blocks for a successful future. If the diploma itself is made out of building blocks, well, congratulations on majoring in meta. UDub Minecraft, a group comprised of current and former University of Washington students who are passionate about...

Seattle teen entrepreneurs sell their health-tech startup and take a break from college

Seattle teen entrepreneurs sell their health-tech startup and take a break from college

Sage Khanuja, left, and Nikolas Ioannou, the founders of Seattle-based Spira. (Spira Photo) The news: Seattle entrepreneurs Sage Khanuja, 17, and Nikolas Ioannou, 18, have sold their telemedicine startup Spira to Galileo, a New York-based healthcare company. “To be honest, I didn’t really think...

Pledgendary, Carbon New Trill, Amazon Go(ne): What should Jeff Bezos name his new superyacht?

Pledgendary, Carbon New Trill, Amazon Go(ne): What should Jeff Bezos name his new superyacht?

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. (GeekWire File Photo / Kevin Lisota) When the news broke that Amazon founder and moderately rich guy Jeff Bezos commissioned a 417-foot-long, $500 million superyacht known only as Project 721, one fact became immediately clear: The code name Y721 hardly befits a three-masted...

Amazon shows off ‘New World’ gameplay in trailer for online multiplayer game set for Aug. 31 debut

Amazon shows off ‘New World’ gameplay in trailer for online multiplayer game set for Aug. 31 debut

Amazon Games has released a new trailer for its massively-multiplayer online game New World, which is scheduled for release on Aug. 31. Titled “This Is Aeternum,” the trailer is a sizzle reel that shows off some of the art, dungeons, and locales to be found in the game. In New World, primarily...

Russell Wilson and Ciara sign first-look TV and film production deal with Amazon Studios

Russell Wilson and Ciara sign first-look TV and film production deal with Amazon Studios

Russell Wilson and Ciara during a King County Library event in Tukwila in February 2019. (GeekWire File Photo / Kurt Schlosser) Russell Wilson and Ciara are getting into the film and television production business with Amazon Studios. The Seattle Seahawks quarterback and his Grammy-winning...

Remitly lands investment from Visa amid reports of IPO preparation

Seattle mobile remittance startup Remitly landed an undisclosed equity investment from Visa. The companies previously partnered in 2019 and have extended that partnership; Visa cited the deal in its earnings call last month. The investment comes as Remitly is reportedly preparing to go public....

Redfin forecasts record $2.53T in U.S. home sales this year, up 17%, biggest gain since 2013

Redfin forecasts record $2.53T in U.S. home sales this year, up 17%, biggest gain since 2013

(Redfin Graphic) The news: Seattle-based real estate company Redfin is forecasting record U.S. home sales of $2.53 trillion this year, saying in a report Tuesday that the 17% year-over-year gain would be the biggest percentage increase since 2013. What’s driving the market?: According to Redfin,...

Amazon begins the ‘huge’ lift to shrink the carbon footprint of its devices to reach climate goals

Amazon begins the ‘huge’ lift to shrink the carbon footprint of its devices to reach climate goals

The generation of Amazon Echo Dot devices released in September 2020, which include tiger and panda designs, contain some recycled materials. (Amazon Photo) Amazon’s newest Echo Dot is sold in charcoal, glacier white and twilight blue. But behind the scenes, the smart speakers that deliver Alexa...

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