We saw the proxy battle for control of San Diego’s Amylin Pharmaceuticals heat up last week, amid signs that wireless technology giant Qualcomm is in peace talks to settle a wide-ranging patent dispute with Broadcom, its Southern California chip-making rival. We also got some new insights into venture capital activity in San Diego, and in the emerging cleantech sector. Let Xconomy be your guide.
—All three factions in the proxy battle at San Diego’s Amylin Pharmaceuticals are appealing for shareholder support in advance of the company’s annual shareholder meeting on May 27. Billionaire investor Carl Icahn and Eastbourne Capital Management are trying to oust Amylin’s governing board by persuading shareholders to vote for their slate of candidates. Amylin’s management contends the dissident shareholders just want to sell the biotech. Talks to reach some kind of accommodation ended with no progress—and no peace—in the continuing battle.
—Two San Diego biotechs disclosed layoffs last week. Arena Pharmaceuticals said the company is laying off 130 of its 400 employees, after investors were disappointed in results from Arena’s mid-stage clinical trial of a new drug for treating obesity. In a separate announcement, Sequenom said it eliminated 30 jobs as it reorganized its genetics analysis business.
—San Diego’s Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) postponed its Q2 financial results last Wednesday. Qualcomm explained it is in advanced IP settlement discussions with rival chipmaker Broadcom of Irvine, CA. Qualcomm rescheduled its earnings release for today and said its revenue and operating income exceeded the company’s prior guidance, although that could change if Qualcomm agrees to pay Broadcom to end the acrimonious patent dispute.
—With venture investments in San Diego in retreat, Hans Swildens of San Francisco-based Industry Ventures told Bruce that San Diego’s homegrown VCs are “in transition,” which seemed to be a diplomatic way of saying many local venture firms … Next Page »