Thursday, May 14, 2015

Bay Area Tech Wire -- May 14

BAY AREA TECH WIRE -- May 14, 2015
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Percolate Raises $40 Million for Expansion in San Francisco
o San Francisco-Based Vouch Raises $6 Million in First Round
Ellie Mae Relocates to Larger Headquarters in Pleasanton
San Francisco-Based Zirtual Names Ramon Icasiano as COO
U.S. Information Technology Employment Continues Climb in April
Briefly Noted: Aviat Networks, Most Bikeable Cities Rankings


> Job/Event/Marketplace Classified Listings (Full Listings Below Stories)

--Senior Director, Business Development - Optoro - DC
--The MIT Sloan CIO Symposium - May 20 - Cambridge, Mass.

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o Percolate Raises $40 Million for Expansion in San Francisco

San Francisco -- Percolate, the New York-based developer of a software platform designed to help users manage all aspects of marketing, said on Thursday it has raised $40 million in its third round of funding, which the company will use to aggressively expand its footprint in San Francisco. Lightspeed Venture Partners led the round, which included participation from previous backers Sequoia Capital, GGV Capital, First Round Capital and Lerer Hippeau Ventures. The company, which now has raised $74.5 million since its inception, said it plans to triple its headcount in San Francisco by the end of this year, increasing its worldwide employee base from 200 to 300. Potential new offices in Europe, Asia and Latin America also are in the works. 

o San Francisco-Based Vouch Raises $6 Million in First Round

San Francisco -- Vouch, the San Francisco-based developer of a social network focused on helping borrowers proactively build their creditworthiness, said on Thursday it has raised $6 million in its first round of funding. Core Innovation Capital, Data Collective, Stanford StartX Fund and Cooley joined previous investors First Round Capital, Greylock, IDG Ventures and AngelList in the round, which increases the company's total backing to $9.6 million. The company will use the latest proceeds to accelerate growth of its Vouch network, which launched in April. The network lets prospective borrowers apply for loans and ask friends, family and other personal connections to sponsor them. Sponsors agree to pay back money if the borrower defaults on their loan. The idea is to let consumers pool and share their creditworthiness, enabling any member of the network to get the best possible rates on loans and other financial services.

o Ellie Mae Relocates to Larger Headquarters in Pleasanton

Pleasanton, Calif. -- Ellie Mae, a developer of software and services for the residential mortgage industry, said on Thursday it has relocated its corporate headquarters to a new, larger building in Pleasanton. The new facility -- located at 4420 Rosewood Drive in the California Center business park -- has 100,000 square feet of office space, more than twice the size of the company's previous Pleasanton offices. Ellie Mae's staff has nearly doubled over the past three years, with more than half of its 685 employees based in Pleasanton. The building includes an executive briefing center for hosting clients and prospective customers, as well as several auditoriums with video conferencing capabilities, a fitness center and a full-service café for employees. 

o San Francisco-Based Zirtual Names Ramon Icasiano as COO

San Francisco -- Zirtual, a San Francisco- and Las Vegas-based provider of vetted and trained virtual assistants, on Thursday named Ramon Icasiano as its COO. Icasiano most recently served as a partner at Cognizant Business Consulting, and previously was the vice president of advocacy and service at Zynga and director of customer service at Netflix. Zirtual matches busy professionals, entrepreneurs and small teams with vetted and trained, U.S.-based virtual assistants, who handle tasks such as online research, email response, scheduling, event coordination and travel booking. The company is backed by Tony Hsieh, the CEO of; VegasTechFund; and Mayfield Fund. 

o U.S. Information Technology Employment Continues Climb in April

Alexandria, Va. -- The number of information technology jobs in the U.S. continued to grow steadily in April, according to new figures from the TechServe Alliance. U.S. IT employment grew 0.3% for the month to 4.9 million, and now has grown 5% since April 2014. The rate of engineering job growth, however, was sluggish, increasing just 0.04% to 2.5 million. "While IT employment continues to outperform the growth rate of the overall workforce, engineering employment has recently been underperforming the general job market," said Mark Roberts, CEO of the TechServe Alliance. "ith that said, it is important to keep the data in perspective -- this is a slowing of the rate of growth, not a contraction. If the economy continues to strengthen after a sluggish first quarter, I am optimistic that strength will be reflected in improving IT and engineering employment numbers in the coming months." (PDF)

o Briefly Noted:

(Santa Clara, Calif.) Santa Clara-based Aviat Networks, a developer of microwave networking technology, on Thursday named Ralph Marimon as its senior vice president and CFO. Marimon most recently has served as the vice president of finance and CFO of QuickLogic, and previously was the CFO of Anchor Bay Technologies, Tymphany and Scientific Technologies. 

(San Francisco) San Francisco is the nation's second most bikeable major city, according to new rankings released by Walk Score. The rankings measure whether a city is good and safe for biking on a scale from 0-100, based on bike lanes, hills, destinations and road connectivity and the share of local workers' commutes traveled by bicycle. San Francisco's score of 75.1 trailed only Minneapolis, with Portland, Denver and Boston rounding out the top five.

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> Senior Director, Business Development - Optoro - DC

We are looking to add a Senior Director of Business Development to our growing team to help capitalize on the rapidly rising demand of our enterprise software solution. The Senior Director will be responsible for prospect evaluation, coverage and development across a portfolio of enterprise accounts. We are looking for someone with a forward-thinking and strategic approach to solving business issues and a strong background in selling solution based software in retail, ecommerce or supply chain industries. For more information or to apply, go to:

> The MIT Sloan CIO Symposium - May 20 - Cambridge, Mass.

The MIT Sloan CIO Symposium will help CIOs to invent their future and accelerate success through technology. CIOs will engage with business leaders, technology trendsetters, and academic thought leaders in panel discussions and explore new thinking and practices. Panel discussions include: Academic Keynote Panel -- The Impact of Automation; Platform Shift -- How New Business Models are Changing the Shape of Industry, and the Role of CIOs; Leading Digital: A Manifesto for IT and Business Executives; The Board, CEO and CIO Roles in Dealing with Digital Disruption; Cybersecurity - New Approaches to Assessing and Maximizing Your Protection; Demand Shaping: How IT Becomes a Distinctive Advantage; and Cashing in on Your Data. Use code 15NETECHWIRE when registering for a $200 discount. Register at


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