Websense Partners With Facebook, Qualcomm Shuffles Top Execs, ViaSat Satellite Set for Launch Next Week, & More San Diego BizTech News

10/11/11Follow @bvbigelow

There’s been a lot of tech news in San Diego over the past week, from Web 2.0 startups like SocialIQ that are identifying and measuring social media influencers, to changes in the executive leadership at established companies like Qualcomm. Our roundup begins now.

—San Diego’s Websense (NASDAQ: WBSN) said it has installed its network security technology on the Facebook platform under a new partnership that’s intended to help protect Facebook users from uploading malware from malicious websites. Websense said its security technology would kick in whenever a Facebook user clicks on a URL posted within Facebook. Websense said its cloud-based technology is designed to analyze such links in real time and warn users of unsafe websites.

Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) announced a series of executive changes that will become effective on Nov. 12. The San Diego wireless giant promoted executive vice president Steve Mollenkopf to president and chief operating officer. Steve Altman, who has served as president for the past six years, will become vice chairman. Derek Aberle was promoted to executive vice president & group president. In addition to overseeing Qualcomm’s divisions, business operations, and other areas, Mollenkopf will continue as president of Qualcomm CDMA Technologies (QCT).

—Carlsbad, CA-based ViaSat said the launch of ViaSat-1, the first high-capacity satellite dedicated entirely to Internet service, has been scheduled on Oct. 19 from the historic Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The broadband satellite, which will enable non-urban Internet providers to provide basic service at 10 megabits per second (compared to existing capacity of 512 kilobits per second), represents a more-than-billion-dollar bet by the company.

—San Diego-based Legend 3D, which had almost 400 employees here in February, said it has reduced its workforce by “less than 10 percent,” according to a note relayed from Barry Sandrew, the company’s founder and chief technology officer. The layoff, which follows a 15 percent reduction in July, leaves Legend 3D with a local headcount of nearly 250 artists and engineers—close to the size of its workforce in mid-2010. Yet Legend 3D said it is still the largest 3D conversion studio for Hollywood films in the United States.

—New York-based Enterproid, which won Qualcomm’s incentive QPrize earlier this year, said it closed on $11 million in Series A funding to extend its engineering capabilities, expand distribution, and launch a series of global partnerships. San Diego-based Qualcomm Ventures (NASDAQ: QCOM) joined in the round, which was led by Comcast Ventures (NASDAQ: CMCSA) and joined by Google Ventures (NASDAQ: GOOG). Enterproid has technology that enables mobile users to divide their smartphone into separate operating systems—one for secure business communications and one for app-laden personal use.

—With the debut of its new website, San Diego-based SocialIQ said it wants to raise its Series A round from venture investors. Founded two years ago as SooVox, SocialIQ competes with better-known social influence measurement sites like Klout, and said it might have to move to the Bay Area if it can’t find needed early stage capital in San Diego.

—San Diego-based Qualcomm told Mike Freeman of The San Diego Union-Tribune that it is supporting a temporary tax holiday that could help repatriate more than $1 trillion that U.S.-based companies have been holding offshore. The wireless giant and other multinational corporations said they are holding the capital in foreign bank accounts because it would be taxed at a corporate tax rate of 35 percent if the money came home to the U.S. The temporary tax holiday proposed in a Senate bill would allow companies to repatriate foreign cash at a tax rate of 8.75 percent. Qualcomm executives have argued the capital could be better spent in the U.S. on technology innovation.

—San Diego-based ServiceNow continued its executive hiring spree as it makes its transition from fast-growth startup to an established company that provides IT management as software as a service. The company appointed Arne Josefsberg, a former Microsoft Internet executive, as its chief technology officer, a new position created to lead the company’s operations and to advance development of its data centers.

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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