MP3Tunes Likes Sound of Court Ruling, PureForge Raises $4.5M, Qualcomm Backs AliveCor, & More San Diego BizTech News

8/29/11Follow @bvbigelow

Managing complexity was a recurring theme at a global conference on data mining and predictive analytics held in San Diego last week, and sometimes it’s a recurring theme here at Xconomy as well. We’ve pulled together a lot of disparate elements for this roundup, for example. Your briefing begins now.

—In a ruling with broad implication for cloud-based music services provided by Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) and others, a federal judge in New York sided largely with San Diego’s MP3Tunes in a patent infringement lawsuit filed by music record giant EMI. The judge found that MP3tunes mostly complied with rules of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, but didn’t go far enough by deleting 153 accounts with copyright-protected songs.

—San Diego-based Confident Technologies, which recently extended its image-based sign-on verification system to smartphones and other mobile devices, said it raised an additional $2 million earlier this year to build out its business. The network security company also said it had developed technology to protect user accounts from automated “brute force” log-in attempts, and broadly based denial-of-service attacks.

—In a presentation at last week’s “Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining” (KDD) conference, Salford Systems CEO Dan Steinberg explained how the San Diego company’s predictive analytics technology can help retailers better predict consumer response to discount offers. With about 50,000 different items in a typical grocery store, Steinberg said retailers that operate more than 30 stores and offer hundreds of discount promotions have enormous difficulty forecasting consumer demand and managing their inventory. More than 1,100 experts in data mining, analytical software, and predictive modeling attended the conference in San Diego.

PureForge, a Vista, CA-based startup focused on innovations in metal surfacing, raised $4.5 million through Series A financing. The company, co-founded by Nathan K. Meckel and longtime San Diego investor and executive Doug Wall, also named Wall as chairman and CEO. Meckel, an expert in surface sciences, physics, and metallurgy, previously founded Molecular Metallurgy, an engineered coatings services company, and Deposition Technology, an optical coating development company. A PureForge spokesman says today the round consisted of individual private investors who are not being identified.

—Silicon Valley’s Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers led a Series F round that raised $27 million for Awarepoint, a San Diego company developing real-time tracking technology for the healthcare industry. Since CEO Jay Deady joined the company at the end of last year, Awarepoint has expanded its strategy to become more of a full-service provider of health IT products and services.

Qualcomm Ventures, the San Diego corporate venture fund, joined a Series A round led by Burrill & Co. of San Francisco that raised $3 million in funding for AliveCor, an Oklahoma City, OK-based startup developing an electrocardiogram recorder. AliveCor makes a device that enables iPhones and Android mobile phones—and eventually iPads and other mobile devices—to serve as low-cost heart monitors. Brian Dolan of MobiHealthNews was the first to report the deal earlier this month.

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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