Plan to turn East Bay restaurant site into nature center gets huge boost

SAN RAMON — The vision of turning the closed Mudd’s Restaurant site into a nature center has been given the support of the San Ramon City Council. At Wednesday night’s meeting, all five council members supported the staff’s recommendations that the city reach an agreement with the San Ramon Nature Park Foundation in the next 120 days to create the nature center and food lab. In addition, the city gave the foundation up to a year to come up with funding for the center. The details on operational expenses and who would run the nature center have be worked out as part of the negotiations. Last month, the foundation’s efforts… Read More

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Bonobos founder Andy Dunn to leave Walmart in 2020

Andy Dunn, the founder of menswear site Bonobos which sold to Walmart in 2017 for $310 million, is now parting ways with the retail giant. The executive, who joined Walmart as SVP of digital consumer brands at the time of the acquisition, officially announced his departure in a LinkedIn post titled “A Love Letter to Walmart.” In it, Dunn praises the time he spent with the company and the knowledge he gained while working there. Specifically, he references several of Walmart’s bigger initiatives, including its transformation into an omnichannel retail serving customers online and offline, without distinction. This is an area of Walmart’s business that’s been under pressure as the… Read More

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Spotify will ask people what they’re interested in to give them podcast suggestions

Spotify Spotify wants more people to listen to podcasts, so it’s making the process of finding one that interests you even easier. Starting this week, the company will include a button on free users’ homepages that’ll ask them to pick topics that interest them in order to get podcast recommendations. The button will only show up for people in the US, Denmark, Great Britain, Brazil, Canada, Sweden, Australia, Mexico, Ireland, and New Zealand who have never listened to a podcast on Spotify before. The launch of the button follows Spotify’s introduction of an automated, customized podcast playlist that’s designed to give listeners new shows to consume based on their taste,… Read More

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Why YouTubers MKBHD and iJustine Got the First Sneak Peek at the New Mac Pro

If you want to get a visceral sense for some of the stunning changes in the media landscape over even just the past decade, we got a fascinating test case this week. On Tuesday, Apple rolled out its long-awaited Mac Pro computer. To help build excitement and generate some buzz, Apple chose to seed a few pre-release models (worth tens of thousands of dollars) with some of the most popular and influential people who regularly cover the company’s new products. The three were MKBHD, iJustine, and Jonathan Morrison. In case you don’t watch much YouTube, don’t have teenagers who constantly watch YouTube, or otherwise live under a (media) rock, those… Read More

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Chicago’s Sprout Social prices IPO mid-range at $17 per share, raising $150M

On the heels of Bill.com’s debut, Chicago-based social media software company Sprout Social priced its IPO last night at $17 per share, in the middle of its proposed $16 to $18 per-share range. Selling 8.8 million shares, Sprout raised just under $150 million in its debut. Underwriters have the option to purchase an additional 1.3 million shares if they so choose. The IPO is a good result for the company’s investors (Lightbank, New Enterprise Associates, Goldman Sachs, and Future Fund), but also for Chicago, a growing startup scene that doesn’t often get its due in the public mind. At $17 per share, not including the possible underwriter option, Sprout Social… Read More

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