Innovation thrives with a diverse and inclusive startup community. In an effort to foster this growth, we are thrilled to announce the next virtual pitch showcase, which will be broadcast live at 11:00 a.m. PT on Thursday, February 4th.

We are looking for Southern California startups in any industry founded by entrepreneurs of color and/or women, or by entrepreneurs from low-income or underrepresented communities. Submissions are now open for company nominations to present at the live event. Submissions will be evaluated on a rolling basis. Please contact annie@dot.LA with any questions.

Nominate your company here >>

Register for the event here >>

Missions and core values are ubiquitous at companies today. They're expected — by employees, new recruits, even investors — because they take a stand on the company's purpose and path to get there.

You need both because one without the other isn't enough. A mission is the purpose of the company, its north star, its reason for existing, whereas core values are how you fulfill that purpose, the set of navigational tools in service to your mission that are more useful for immediate, near-term decisions. They're a code of conduct, a common language, guiding principles, shorthand for new employees, partners and outsiders to understand how your company operates.

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In Los Angeles, where gossip rags cover the real estate market with the same fervor they do Hollywood, a startup online brokerage is trying to eliminate the realtor from home sales. HomeLister is one of a handful of online real estate platforms that lets homeowners list their properties without the assistance of high-paid realtors.

On Tuesday, the Santa Monica-based company announced the closing of a $4.5 million seed funding round led by venture capital firms MetaProp and Homebrew. The company will use the funds to expand into new states, including three it expects to enter at the start of next year, according to chief executive Lindsay McLean.

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