Monday, November 23, 2015

Bay Area Tech Wire -- Nov. 23

BAY AREA TECH WIRE -- Nov. 23, 2015
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o WSJ: Airbnb Raises Over $100 Million in New Funding Round
San Jose-Based Move Names Suhail Ansari as CTO
Co-Founder of San Jose-Based Xbridge Systems Dies at Age 92
New Site Aims to Help Journalists Verify News Found on Social Media
Briefly Noted:
Lending Club

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o WSJ: Airbnb Raises Over $100 Million in New Funding Round

San Francisco -- Airbnb, the San Francisco-based developer of an online marketplace that lets people rent extra space in their homes to travelers, has raised more than $100 million in a new round of funding, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing a person familiar with the matter. Identities of the investors were not disclosed. The round reportedly valued the company at $22.5 billion -- the same valuation it had when it raised $1.5 billion last summer. Airbnb generated $340 million of revenue on bookings of $2.2 billion during the third quarter, The Journal reported. 

o San Jose-Based Move Names Suhail Ansari as CTO

San Jose, Calif. -- Move, the San Jose-based operator of online real estate site, on Monday named Suhail Ansari as its chief technology officer (CTO). Ansari, who will be responsible for overseeing the company's technology strategy, most recently served as the vice president of engineering and R&D at Pivotal Software, where he led research and development for the company's big data products. He previously spent 11 years at eBay, most recently as that company's vice president of engineering for buyer experience. Ansari is the company's third major hire in recent weeks, following the appointments of Tapan Bhat as chief product officer and Nate Johnson as chief marketing officer. 

o Co-Founder of San Jose-Based Xbridge Systems Dies at Age 92

San Jose, Calif. -- Xbridge Systems, a San Jose-based developer of data loss prevention software and services, said that co-founder Gene Amdahl died last Tuesday from complications of pneumonia. He was 92. Amdahl joined IBM in 1952, was named an IBM fellow in 1965 and eventually headed the company's Advanced Computing Systems Laboratory in Menlo Park. He left that company in 1970 to found Amdahl Corp., which specialized in IBM mainframe-compatible computing products, and in 1996 co-founded Commercial Data Servers, the predecessor company to Xbridge. "Gene shaped the mainframe computer industry, and his technical influence will be greatly missed," Raymond Williams Jr., the co-founder, chairman and CEO of Xbridge. 

o New Site Aims to Help Journalists Verify News Found on Social Media

A new website funded by Google News Lab aims to help journalists find and verify first-hand news accounts posted on social media. The site, called First Draft News, is designed to help reporters find legitimate sources and material on sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, while at the same time stopping the spread or rumors and hoaxes that proliferate the Internet following major news events. "We will be publishing features, case studies, interactives, videos, podcasts, industry news, how-to guides and collections of tools on a daily basis to help journalists navigate this new minefield of reportage," wrote Alastair Reid, the site's managing editor. Eight members of Google's First Draft Coalition will contribute to the site, including EyeWitness Media Hub, Storyful,, Bellingcat, Meedan, Verification Junkie, Dig Deeper, Google News Lab and Emergent 

o Briefly Noted:

(San Francisco) San Francisco-based Lending Club, developer of an online marketplace connecting borrowers and investors, said on Monday that its marketplace is now open to retail investors in Alabama; Kentucky; Michigan; and Washington, DC. Residents of those areas can create an account, and receive monthly payments of principal and interest as borrowers repay their loans. The company's platform now accepts retail investors from 42 states and DC. 

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