This Nonprofit Just Launched a Hub to Introduce SoCal's Regional Tech Communities to One Another

This Nonprofit Just Launched a Hub to Introduce SoCal's Regional Tech Communities to One Another

The Alliance for Southern California Innovation is LongLA, as regional investors and boosters like to frame their investment outlook.

Launched three years ago in a bid to help build a hub for technology that can rival Silicon Valley, the nonprofit has been slowly building up a network of tech companies, backers and entrepreneurs beyond Silicon Beach.

"We felt like we are under-appreciated because Hollywood and Silicon Beach are such a strong part of the story and there is so much more than that," said executive director Andy Wilson.

This week, the nonprofit announced a partnership with Verizon Media that will build out a digital hub for regional communities to connect. Already their site hosts boards and events.

The platform centers around so-called microsites such as Pasadena, home to Caltech; downtown Los Angeles where Honey and Soylent are based; Long Beach, a burgeoning center for space development; Ventura County/Thousand Oaks, home to several pharmaceutical outfits and it also has what it calls a Space Ventures Coalition.

The communities can independently manage content and relationships on the site, but the idea is to create a network for the region's diverse companies.

Backed by local universities, research institutions and tech companies, Silicon Valley entrepreneur and former state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner co-founded the nonprofit to ignite startup growth and draw the kind of big venture money that helped make the region's northern neighbor the nation's technology epicenter.

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Justin Gordon
Justin Gordon is the founder of "Just Go Grind" and host of the "Just Go Grind Podcast," a daily show with more than 200 episodes featuring interviews with entrepreneurs and investors. He has an MBA from USC, is an aspiring runner with a 1:29 half marathon personal best, and wants to help one billion people in his lifetime.

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Ben Bergman

Ben Bergman is the newsroom's senior finance reporter. Previously he was a senior business reporter and host at KPCC, a senior producer at Gimlet Media, a producer at NPR's Morning Edition, and produced two investigative documentaries for KCET. He has been a frequent on-air contributor to business coverage on NPR and Marketplace and has written for The New York Times and Columbia Journalism Review. Ben was a 2017-2018 Knight-Bagehot Fellow in Economic and Business Journalism at Columbia Business School. In his free time, he enjoys skiing, playing poker, and cheering on The Seattle Seahawks.