HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM THE VENTURE CATALYST TEAM
Witan Law Joins as a Partner in the Venture Catalyst LegalNet TM Program
Witan Law Group is partnering with UC Davis Venture Catalyst to provide legal consultation and services to participants in the Smart Toolkit for Accelerated Research Translation (START TM ) program through the LegalNet program. Partners in the LegalNet program offer participants initial startup incorporation services at no cost, except for associated filing fees and out-of-pocket expenses, and with no obligation to continue the engagement after incorporation. Witan Law Group is a Sacramento-based business law firm with practice areas focusing on startups, commercial contracts, corporate governance and compliance, financing and mergers and acquisitions.

To learn more about the Witan Law Group, click here
UC Davis Venture Catalyst SBIR/STTR Knowledge Exchange
Doing Business with the Department of Defense: Opportunities for Small Business Startups and SBIR/STTR Technology Commercialization
This talk will offer an opportunity for participants to engage with the Defense Microelectronics Activity (DMEA), a McClellan-based specially focused government unit and research and development laboratory established by the Department of Defense (DoD) in 1997 with an emphasis on addressing the growing problem of complex microelectronics issues. Mr. Gregory L. Davis, DMEA Small Business Programs Chief and Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) / Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program Manager will provide an overview of DMEA and discuss DoD prime contracting and subcontracting opportunities for small businesses and startups, including the SBIR/STTR program. The event will also provide an opportunity to engage with additional DMEA personnel in attendance (SBIR/STTR topic authors, Procuring Contracting Officers, and Contract Specialists).

WHEN: Thursday, January 30, 2020, 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., followed by time for additional engagement with DMEA personnel

EVENT COST: Free (Registration Required)
UC Davis Chancellor, Sacramento Mayor Earn Leadership Award for Aggie Square
UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May and Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg received a national award for their work on the Aggie Square innovation hub planned on UC Davis’ Sacramento campus. The Leadership Award from the Association of University Research Parks, or AURP, recognizes May and Steinberg for forging a unique partnership that matches UC Davis’ strengths to community priorities and engages industry partners to create a broad range of opportunities.... Read More
UC Davis Agricultural Entomologist and Computer Science Students Develop an App for Strawberry Growers
UC Davis agricultural entomologist Christian Nansen and team have developed Smart Spray, a smartphone app for strawberry growers to predict spray coverage to combat pests. Through Smart Spray, growers can optimize and perform quality control of pesticide spray applications in their strawberry fields. The Smart Spray allows a user to predict spray coverage under different operational scenarios, including type of nozzles, spray volume, and tractor speed, as well as weather conditions, such as temperature, relative humidity and wind..... Read More
What's in Your Food?
The Consortium for Sequencing the Food Supply Chain made up of IBM Research and Mars Incorporated, together with member Bio-Rad Laboratories and consulting professor Dr. Bart Weimer of the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, are testing a new way to authenticate the composition of raw materials. Through the application of metagenomics, analytics and cloud technology they are generating new insights and understanding of food, moving towards prediction and prevention of food safety incidents..... Read More
Student Startup Center: Inspiring Undergraduate Innovators
The UC Davis Student Startup Center (SSC) is providing UC Davis students with an opportunity to experience the entrepreneurial process while developing, refining, and prototyping their ideas for technology startups. SSC was established by the UC Davis College of Engineering and is open to all majors, students, and faculty. The center has open hours where all of their prototyping equipment, including 3D printers, a CNC machine, a 3D laser printer, electronics kits, virtual and augmented reality headsets and more are available at no cost..... Read More
New Way to Make Dyes From Plant-Based Chemicals
Mark Mascal, professor of chemistry at UC Davis, and his students have discovered a more sustainable way to create vibrant yellow, orange, and red synthetic dyes derived from plants. This new method could help solve the clothing industry’s toxic waste problem caused by commercial dyes and pigments, which are made from petrochemicals.... Read More
Moore Foundation Funds Nurse Leader Fellowship Program at UC Davis
UC Davis announced a $37.5 million grant from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to launch the Betty Irene Moore Fellowship Program for Nurse Leaders and Innovators at the university’s Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing. The new fellowship program recognizes early-career nursing scholars and innovators with high potential to accelerate leadership in nursing-science research, practice, education, policy, and entrepreneurship. This three-year fellowship program will engage promising nurse scholars in a journey of leadership development and mentorship to complete an innovative project or study..... Read More
Startup News
EicOsis Announces First Subject Dosed in Phase 1a Clinical Trial of EC5026
EicOsis LLC, a pharmaceutical startup developing a new class of oral non-narcotic analgesics based on inhibition of the soluble Epoxide Hydrolase (sEH) enzyme, announced initiation of dosing for the first human subject in a Phase 1 trial of EC5026, the company's lead product candidate for pain management.... Read More
Ambercycle Recognized Among Forbes 30 Under 30 – Manufacturing & Industry (Forbes)
Ambercycle co-founders Akshay Sethi and Moby Ahmed were were named on Forbe's 30 Under 30 list in the manufacturing industry category. The company was formed in 2015, when the team, while students at UC Davis, made the discovery that allowed new garments to be made entirely from used textiles.... Read More
B. infantis R educes Intestinal Inflammation in Infants
A study published in Pediatric Research by researchers from UC Davis, UC Davis associated startup Evolve Biosystems, and the University of Nebraska, demonstrated that colonizing infants with a specific strain of probiotic bacteria -- B. infantis EVC001--reduces intestinal inflammation up to 55-fold compared to infants receiving breastmilk only.... Read More
RB and Evolve BioSystems Team Up to Advance Infant Gut Health
RB and Evolve BioSystems announced a partnership in the sale of Evivo®, Evolve BioSystems' infant probiotic. The partnership leverages assets and expertise from both companies to drive scale in messaging directly to consumers and health care practitioners nationwide, expanding the reach and adoption of Evivo across the United States.... Read More
Sage Therapeutics Announces Planned Progression of SAGE-718 to Phase 2 in Huntington's Disease
Sage Therapeutics announced that it plans to advance SAGE-718, a novel, first-in-class, oxysterol-based positive allosteric modulator (PAM) of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, to a Phase 2 placebo-controlled clinical trial in patients with Huntington’s disease (HD).... Read More
Pheronym Treated Nematodes Three Times More Effective in Attacking Agricultural Pests 
Pheronym, an ag-biotech pest control company, announced the results of a peer-reviewed study demonstrating the efficacy of their patented Nemastim™ pheromone extract for bio-remediation of agricultural pests. In a joint study with the USDA and the University of Idaho, nematodes treated with pheromone extracts increased their effectiveness in invading host insects in soil by 300 percent.... Read More  
Nematodes successfully launched into space for first ever agricultural bio-control experiment on ISS
Pheronym announced that its first-ever agricultural bio-control experiment featuring beneficial nematodes is on its way to the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory after a successful launch at the Kennedy Space Center.... Read More
Arcadia Biosciences Launches GoodHemp, a New Commercial Brand of Superior Hemp Seeds, with an Ultra-Low THC Variety Available for Order This Month
Arcadia Biosciences announced the launch of a new product line: GoodHemp. As the company’s new commercial brand for delivering genetically superior hemp seeds, transplants, flower and extracts, GoodHemp debuted its first commercial product, a disease resistant and ultra-low THC hemp seed, during the American Seed Trade Association CSS & Seed Expo.... Read More
Novoheart to Co-develop First of its Kind Human Heart-in-a-Jar Model of Heart Failure with AstraZeneca
Novoheart announced a collaboration with global biopharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, in an effort to develop the world’s first human-specific in vitro, functional model of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), a condition with reported prevalence approaching 10% in women over the age of 80 years.... Read More
Recycling: Turning Trash Into Energy (Comstock’s Magazine)
Sierra Energy, led by UC Davis alumnus Mike Hart, has been developing its FastOx gasification technology, which converts trash into energy, for the past 15 years. The company will begin testing its technology with the Department of Defense in 2020 by implementing a fully functioning system at Fort Hunter Liggett..... Read More
Startup Career Opportunities
Career Opportunities at Evolve Biosystems
Evolve Biosystems is currently hiring for two medical sales management positions.... Learn More
Career Opportunities at Chirp Microsystems
Chirp Microsystems is hiring for a manager of applications engineering position.... Learn More
Career Opportunities at Sage Therapeutics
Sage Therapeutics is hiring for a wide range of positions from quality control internships to senior-director level positions.... Learn more
Regional Innovation News
Blue Bottle Signs Decade-Long Lease to Roast in West Sacramento (Sacramento Business Journal)
Blue Bottle Coffee Company is shutting down its Bay Area retail coffee operations and relocating to West Sacramento. The company leased a 39,000-square-foot facility to roast coffee beans for all its California retail cafe operations.... Read More
WeWork Opening Coworking Space for S.F. Food Startups (San Francisco Business Times)
WeWork is opening the WeWork Food Labs incubator to provide startups in the food industry with access to mentors and networks, as well as space to operate. The over 15,000-square-foot space located in San Francisco’s North waterfront district is able to accommodate around 100 startups.... Read More
PowerSchool to Keep Schoology Brand, Spend More on Research (Sacramento Business Journal)
Folsom-based PowerSchool has completed its acquisition of New York-based Schoology, a technology company for student education. The company also announced that it plans to increase Schoology's R&D budget by 40%.... Read More
CoWo Campus Unveils Growth Accelerator Competition (Sacramento Business Journal)
CoWo Campus in Sacramento is launching a new accelerator program in spring with the objective of working with 15 companies to help them scale and grow more quickly. At the conclusion of the program, participating companies will pitch to compete for up to $10,000 of funding..... Read More
Innovation Insight
Which Food & AgTech Categories, Geographies are Investors Most Excited About? (AgFunder News)
More than half of the food and agtech investors surveyed by Idea2Scale and AgFunder identified ag biotech and innovative foods as the most exciting investment sectors for 2020. This marks a shift from recent investment levels where these two sectors received just 14 percent of total food and agtech funding. In terms of geography, the majority of surveyed investors indicated they are most excited about opportunities in Asia despite the dominance of North America and Europe in recent investment activity.... Read More
Young, Male Farmers are Flocking to a Truly Global Indoor Ag Industry, CEA Census Reveals (AgFunder News)
According to a new global controlled environment agriculture (CEA) census study conducted by Agriculture Consulting and Autogrow, the CEA industry is beginning to attract younger individuals, often with little or no prior experience, to the farming industry. About 60% of CEA founders are under the age of 40. Of note, only 23% of CEA founders are female. Only about 19% reported to have received funding, down from 28% in 2014.... Read More
The Successful College Dropout is Rare. The Majority of Startup Executives Have Advanced Degrees (Kauffman Fellows)
According to a study of over 90,000 startups and nearly 420,000 startup roles done by the Kauffman Fellows Research Center, the idea that a college degree is not a necessity to advance in startups is misleading. Overall, 56% of US startups executives held an advanced degree. This percentage is higher for healthcare startups, with over two-thirds of executives having a masters degree or above.... Read More
Funding Opportunities
Berkeley SkyDeck Accelerator
Application Deadline: January 8, 2020.... Learn More
Rice Business Plan Competition
Application Deadline: January 27, 2020.... Learn More
Cowo Campus Accelerator
Application Deadline: January 31, 2019.... Learn More
Arrow Capital Student-Run Venture Fund for UC Startups
Application Deadline: Ongoing.... Learn More
USAID Development Innovation Ventures
Application Deadline: Ongoing.... Learn More
IndieBio Accelerator
Application Deadline: Currently accepting.... Learn More
Open SBIR/STTR Grant Topics. ... Learn More
Educational Opportunities
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship 20th Annual Big Bang! Business Competition Workshops Series
Workshop Dates: Through April, 2020.... Learn More
CITRIS Foundry Incubator
Application Deadline: January 1, 2020.... Learn More
Women in Tech Symposium
Application Deadline: March 6, 2020.... Learn More
Regional Events
The Forum: The Essential Networking Event Powered by Seed Central
Date: Monthly, every second Thursday.... Learn More
Sacramento Business Review Economic Forecast
Date: January 14, 2020.... Learn More
Hacker Lab Hands-On Education
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Bay Area NSF Innovation Corps Immersive Short Courses
 Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
AgStart Office Hours
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Small Business Development Center Workshops
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Silicon Valley USPTO Workshops
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
1 Million Cups
Date: Weekly (Wednesdays).... Learn More
Industry Events
AgEmerge (Monterrey, CA)
Date: January 7-9, 2019.... Learn More
Precision Ag VISION Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: January 14-16, 2020.... Learn More
Non-Dilutive Funding Summit (San Francisco, CA)
Date: January 15, 2020.... Learn More
Precision Medicine World Conference (Santa Clara, CA)
Date: January 21-24, 2019.... Learn More
Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening Annual Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: January 25-29, 2020.... Learn More
Pharmaceutical Market Research Conference (Newark, NJ)
Date: February 5-6, 2020.... Learn More
BIO CEO and Investor Conference (New York, NY)
Date: February 10-11, 2020.... Learn More
Startup Grind Global Conference (Silicon Valley, CA)
Discount Code for UC Davis Students: UCDavisStudent
Date: February 11-12, 2020.... Learn More
Food Processing Expo (Santa Clara, CA)
Date: February 12-13, 2020.... Learn More
Biocom Global Life Science Partnering Conference (La Jolla, CA)
Date: February 25-27, 2019.... Learn More
Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy (Chicago, IL)
Date: March 1-5, 2020.... Learn More
Silicon Valley AgTech Conference (San Jose, CA)
Date: April 9, 2019.... Learn More
World AgriTech Innovation Summit (San Francisco, CA)
Date: March 17-18, 2020.... Learn More
Indoor Ag-Con (Las Vegas, NV)
Date: May 18-20, 2020.... Learn More
American Society for Mass Spectrometry Annual Conference (Houston, TX)
Date: May 31 - June 4, 2020.... Learn More
BIO International Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: June 8-11, 2020.... Learn More
TechConnect World Innovation Conference & Expo (National Harbor, MD)
Date: June 29 - July 1, 2020.... Learn More
About Venture Catalyst 
 
UC Davis Venture Catalyst facilitates the translation of University research and technology by enabling the development of new ventures. Venture Catalyst engages with the Davis and Sacramento business, governmental and economic development community to highlight the development of technologies and ventures coming out of UC Davis that will drive tomorrow’s regional job creation. Working closely with these partners, Venture Catalyst is invigorating the technology-based entrepreneurial ecosystem of the entire region. 
The Venture Catalyst START™ Suite of programs and services provides the ABCs to equip UC Davis entrepreneurs with the tools they need to form and grow robust startups. The program gives founders the START they need to create a well-structured company and ensure the company is prepared for success. 
 
Contact Venture Catalyst 
For more information or for editorial comments, please email us