LA Tech ‘Moves’: Jam City Shakes Up Games Leaders, Viant Lures Amazon Vet

Kristin Snyder

Kristin Snyder is an editorial intern for dot.la. She previously interned with Tiger Oak Media and led the arts section for UCLA's Daily Bruin.

LA Tech ‘Moves’: Jam City Shakes Up Games Leaders, Viant Lures Amazon Vet
Photo by James Opas | Modified by Joshua Letona

“Moves,” our roundup of job changes in L.A. tech, is presented by Interchange.LA, dot.LA's recruiting and career platform connecting Southern California's most exciting companies with top tech talent. Create a free Interchange.LA profile here—and if you're looking for ways to supercharge your recruiting efforts, find out more about Interchange.LA's white-glove recruiting service by emailing Sharmineh O’Farrill Lewis (sharmineh@dot.la). Please send job changes and personnel moves to moves@dot.la.


Cash ecosystem integrator Sesami named Nicolas Van Erum as chief marketing officer. Van Erum joins from creative agency Sid Lee.

8minute Solar Energy, a solar and energy storage company, hired Kip Larsonas chief technology officer. Larson previously led technology teams at Amazon and Convoy.

Advertising software company Viant Technology tapped Dustin Kwan as chief product officer. Kwan was most recently general manager of advertising products at Amazon DSP.

Tamara Armstrong joined Loyola Marymount University as chief information officer and vice president for information technology services. Armstrong was most recently associate vice chancellor and CIO at the Los Rios Community College District.

TigerConnect, a health care clinical collaboration platform, hired Melissa Bellas president. Bell was previously chief growth officer for Intelligent Medical Objects.

Visual effects and animation studio DNEG tapped Disney Animation and Dreamworks veteran Erika Burton as co-president of its animation arm.

Video game developer Jam City promoted Lisa Anderson to executive vice president, from her previous role as senior vice president of studio operations. The company also hired Dan Lipa to head its casino division and King’sBrent Blazek to lead its puzzle division.

Seth Rogan’s cannabis lifestyle brand Houseplant brought in Kelly Natenshon as senior vice president of housegoods. Natenshon was most recently a consultant for home brands including California Closets, Cravings by Chrissy Teigen and Wayfair.

Cancer research organization City of Hope named Philip Okala as system president to oversee its portfolio of clinical care and research entities. Okala was previously chief operating officer at the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Law firm Perkins Coie added attorney Patrick Anding, who has previously provided legal counsel for tech companies, as a partner at its Emerging Companies & Venture Capital practice in its Los Angeles and San Diego offices.

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Cadence

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

When avatar startup Genies raised $150 million in April, the company released an unusual message to the public: “Farewell.”

The Marina del Rey-based unicorn, which makes cartoon-like avatars for celebrities and aims to “build an avatar for every single person on Earth,” didn’t go under. Rather, Genies announced it would stay quiet for a while to focus on building avatar-creation products.

Genies representatives told dot.LA that the firm is now seeking more creators to try its creation tools for 3D avatars, digital fashion items and virtual experiences. On Thursday, the startup launched a three-week program called DIY Collective, which will mentor and financially support up-and-coming creatives.

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Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

LA Tech Week—a weeklong showcase of the region’s growing startup ecosystem—is coming this August.

The seven-day series of events, from Aug. 15 through Aug. 21, is a chance for the Los Angeles startup community to network, share insights and pitch themselves to investors. It comes a year after hundreds of people gathered for a similar event that allowed the L.A. tech community—often in the shadow of Silicon Valley—to flex its muscles.

From fireside chats with prominent founders to a panel on aerospace, here are some highlights from the roughly 30 events happening during LA Tech Week, including one hosted by dot.LA.

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Rivian Q2 Earnings Are a Much-Needed Nothing Burger

David Shultz

David Shultz is a freelance writer who lives in Santa Barbara, California. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Outside and Nautilus, among other publications.

Rivian R1S at a charging station in the desert.
Rivian's Q2 numbers are delightfully boring.

Rivian, the fledgling electric vehicle startup in Irvine, CA, released its Q2 earnings yesterday. I’m happy to report they’re pretty boring! There were no big surprises from RJ Scaringe’s EV hopeful, but here are the report highlights:

  • ~$15 billion of cash, cash equivalents, and restricted cash as of June 30 2022.
  • 98,000 net R1 preorders
  • Amazon has ordered 100,000 electric delivery vans
  • Rivian has produced 8k vehicles so far
  • The company is still on pace to deliver 25,000 vehicles in 2022
  • -Actual revenue was $364 million.
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