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Jan 9, 2014

Uber cuts prices up to 34 pct for no-frills UberX car service

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan 9 (Reuters) – Uber, the red-hot rides
start-up known for jacking up town-car fares, is taking the
opposite approach with its no-frills UberX service.

Fares on UberX, which offers rides in ordinary cars at lower
prices than the company’s high-end town car service, will be cut
in 16 cities, Uber said in a blog post Thursday.

Jan 6, 2014

Google, other big companies to pay to use San Francisco bus stops

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Google Inc and other big technology companies that rely on private commuter buses to ferry workers around will now pay the city of San Francisco fees to use city bus stops, the city announced at a news conference on Monday.

Companies using commuter buses, which some see as a symbol of unwelcome gentrification in San Francisco, will end up paying the city around $1.5 million over the next 18 months as part of a pilot program, Mayor Ed Lee said.

Jan 6, 2014

Arrest made in San Francisco Chinese consulate arson: FBI

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – U.S. prosecutors on Monday charged a 39-year-old man with arson in connection with a fire at the Chinese consulate in San Francisco last week, but law enforcement authorities are not treating the incident as an act of terrorism.

Yan Feng turned himself into local police on Friday, two days after the Chinese consulate in San Francisco sustained fire and smoke damage, Federal Bureau of Investigation special agent David Johnson said at a news conference on Monday. Feng currently faces two criminal charges, including arson.

Jan 2, 2014

Ride service Uber, brash darling of Silicon Valley, stalks new markets

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan 2 (Reuters) – Uber Chief Executive Travis
Kalanick knows the value of a good controversy.

After his upstart company, which lets people summon rides at
the touch of a smartphone button, provoked a flurry of social
media outrage in December over pricing policies that can result
in exorbitant fares, Kalanick addressed prospective New Year’s
Eve customers.

Jan 2, 2014

Arsonist strikes Chinese consulate in San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO/BEIJING (Reuters) – The Chinese consulate in San Francisco sustained fire and smoke damage after an arsonist struck it, the consulate said on Thursday, but no injuries were reported.

The consulate said the arsonist struck on Wednesday night, carrying two cans of gasoline from a van parked on the street and then setting an embassy gate ablaze. The San Francisco Fire Department said it responded two minutes after the fire was reported and quickly got the blaze under control.

Dec 20, 2013

University of California need not disclose venture returns: court

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – The University of California is under no obligation to obtain and disclose information on the investment performance of venture capital funds in its portfolio, a California court ruled Thursday in a decision that could broadly affect how public-records laws are interpreted.

The suit, filed last year in California state court in Oakland by Reuters America, a unit of Thomson Reuters Corp, argued that the state Public Records Act requires disclosure of investment-return information for the university system’s $11.23 billion endowment fund.

Dec 12, 2013

High-profile venture capitalists cut back roles at Accel Partners

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec 12 (Reuters) – Two of Silicon Valley’s
most respected venture capitalists are cutting back their roles
at Accel Partners, the big-name firm best known for its early
investment in Facebook.

Kevin Efrusy, who as a junior partner had brought Facebook
to the attention of Accel, said he will not be a managing member
of the firm’s next venture fund. Accel’s investors expect the
firm to raise more capital early in 2014.

Dec 10, 2013

Google bus blocked in San Francisco gentrification protest

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec 9 (Reuters) – A Google Inc
commuter bus was blocked in San Francisco’s Mission district for
about a half hour Monday morning, highlighting many residents’
growing concern that an influx of affluent technology workers is
driving up costs in the city.

“San Francisco, not for sale” and “Stop evictions now”
numbered among the slogans yellow-vested protesters chanted as
they surrounded the double-decker bus. Google’s offices are in
Mountain View, about 34 miles away from the incident.

Dec 9, 2013

Google bus blocked in San Francisco protest vs gentrification

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – A Google Inc commuter bus was blocked in San Francisco’s Mission district for about a half hour Monday morning, highlighting many residents’ growing concern that an influx of affluent technology workers is driving up costs in the city.

“San Francisco, not for sale” and “Stop evictions now” numbered among the slogans yellow-vested protesters chanted as they surrounded the double-decker bus. Google’s offices are in Mountain View, about 34 miles away from the incident.

Dec 6, 2013

Insight: Tech start-ups show little imagination on board gender diversity

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – At Pinterest, the online bulletin board service that is valued near $3.8 billion, some 70 percent of the users are female. But the company’s board of directors is 100 percent male.

Male-heavy boards dominate in the start-up mecca of Silicon Valley, which prides itself on progressive thinking and putting talent first. A Reuters survey of the 10 top venture-backed start-ups, as measured by venture funds raised, shows that six do not have any women on the board, including Pinterest. And none has more than one.