For the first installments to see how we got here: (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3). We finish up going through Orange County and San Diego to visit some of the major digital media and tech companies…along with some minor ones that have caught my attention for one reason or another.
First stop is Emulex Corporation (jobs, ticker, blog) in Costa Mesa. These guys are one of the world’s main suppliers for high-speed host bus and network adaptors, using various transfer protocols, including Fibre Channel, iSCSI, and 10 Gb/s Ethernet. Very technical, and no, we probably won’t be seeing Emulex commercials during the Jets game this weekend. Follow the signs to the 55 Freeway north to Santa Ana to visit MSC.Software Corporation and STEC. In ’09, Symphony Technology Group purchased all shares of MSC (jobs, blog) and took it private and off the NASDAQ. STG also purchased Shopzilla earlier this year…changing the details of this previous post. MSC is in the computer-aided engineering biz—their software allows design and simulation of complex systems in a variety of industries. STEC (jobs, ticker, blog) is one of the few pure plays in SSD technology—the higher performance, solid state replacement for high capacity magnetic storage. Back to the 405 Freeway and Jamboree is Specific Media. These guys got a huge funding payday in ’07 before the crash, and earlier this year scooped up MySpace on the cheap from Fox. Specific (jobs) is one of the first and biggest specialists in online ad targeting technology. Further down Jamboree Road near the 73 freeway is Mindspeed Technologies (jobs, ticker, blog), makers of optical and media processors for a variety of applications. A little south on the 73 are Linksys and Broadcom Corporation. Yes, Linksys has been part of Cisco Systems for years now, but I continue to think of them as an independent. They make the best wireless routers for the home and small business. Broadcom (jobs, ticker) is a huge maker of communications products at the chip level. They were a spectacular stock win during the Internet Boom v1.0.
Let’s head to the northwest, cut across the UCI campus and visit the center of gravity of Orange County tech. Sage Software and Quartics are right across the street from one another on Irvine Center drive. Sage (jobs, ticker) is the North American arm of a UK company and they have a dizzying array of CRM software solutions for small and medium sized businesses. Some enterprise solutions as well. The very popular Act! package is their baby. Quartics (jobs) is a small company with SoC solutions for video. They’re ramping up 2D to 3D capabilities with technology licensed from DDD. A little south on the 5 freeway to get to Local.com Corporation and Kelley Blue Book. KBB (jobs) is well-known for their used car information products. Local.com (jobs, ticker) recently went public and provides online marketing services to small businesses in their local communities with an army of sales reps knocking on restaurant and insurance office doors. Yet a little further south on the 5 we find Boost Mobile and Solarflare Communications. Boost (jobs, FB) is an MVNO (wow, that’s a once-hot acronym I have used in a while) on the Sprint network. Solarflare (jobs, blog) is a smaller company with gigabit Ethernet component and adaptor level products. We take Bake Parkway out a few miles we visit Western Digital Corporation. WD (jobs, ticker) is one of the global giants in manufacturing disk drives with a great reputation as an employer. Next we have more than a 30 minute drive southwest on surface streets to QLogic (jobs, ticker). They complete directly with Emulex with their line of high speed network and bus adaptors on using various protocols. And to wrap up the tour of OC, we go south a few miles on the 73 again to drive by the tiny local office of TeleDyne Dalsa. Through acquisitions of Dalsa, preceded by Coreco, preceded by Imaging Technology, Inc, this company is the most recent incarnation of the company that brought me from Boston to Cali.
The next leg of the trip is almost 61 miles from Teledyne Dalsa to Cymer Inc in Rancho Bernardo. To my knowledge, Cymer (jobs, ticker) is the only manufacturer of semiconductor capital equipment (excimer laser light sources) in Southern California. A couple of well-known companies in this industry are Applied Materials and KLA Tencor (both in NorCal). Another pretty drive down the 15 freeway and west on Mira Mesa Blvd to Entropic Communications (jobs, ticker), a rapidly growing company the designs SoC solutions for home entertainment. A bit further down the road we meet companies of contrasting size; Anametrix and Qualcomm. Anametrix (jobs, blog, FB) is coming on strong with their web analytics and technology to unify and correlate business data from all possible sources into one dashboard. Qualcomm (jobs, ticker, blog) is the SoCal technology Gigantor. They are the world leader in mobile communications chipsets, and along with Broadcom is the anchor hard technology tenant in Southern California. Just a few minutes away is the very quickly expanding Active Network (mentioned in last month’s job post). Active Network (jobs, ticker, blog) just went public and serve a practically unlimited market of local sports and recreation organizations that need professional web presence.
Just a few miles south in the outskirts of La Jolla we visit Ortiva Wireless. Ortiva (jobs, LinkedIn) sells a range of solutions for optimizing mobile video to network operators. And for the big finale! A last drive 15 miles south to downtown San Diego to see the HQ of ESET, LLC (jobs, blog), makers of a suite of computer security software similar to McAfee‘s.