Spanlink bought by Converge One

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By Katharine Grayson, Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal

Spanlink Communications, which designs and manages call centers for businesses, has been sold to ConvergeOne for an undisclosed amount.

Southport, Conn.-based ConvergeOne, a communications-technology provider and integrator, has most of its operations in Eagan.”

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LeadPages lands former HighJump CFO Matt Ouska

Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 2.53.11 PMSprawling SaaS tech startup LeadPages has hired its first outside executive as Matt Ouska officially joined the team this week as Chief Financial Officer.

Prior to joining Lead Pages, Ouska was with HighJump Software for a decade, acting as their CFO for the latter half of that time.  At HighJump, he was intimately involved with the Accellos merger that resulted in a $150m combined company.

Ouska says he’s number one goal is to continue supporting founders Clay Collins and Tracy Simmons during their phase of hyper growth, naturally acting as the money manager on all fronts.

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MNVest open sources crowdfunding proposal, plans ‘Forkathon’

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MNVestMNVest’s campaign to loosen securities regulations around Minnesota intrastate crowdfunding has taken an interesting turn this week.

After posting the v1 bill to a GitHub repository — opening up the draft for inspection, editing and revision — the related meetup group has announced a hackathon of sorts, but instead of code, it’s all about the legalese.

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Digital River is being acquired for $840 million

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Via News Release

“MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Digital River, Inc. (NASDAQ: DRIV), a leading global provider of Commerce-as-a-Service solutions, today announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement to be acquired by an investor group led by Siris Capital Group, LLC (collectively “Siris”) in a transaction valued at approximately $840 million.”

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I’m Matthew Dornquast, CEO of Code42, and This Is How I Work

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By Andy Orin, Lifehacker

“…CrashPlan was developed by Code42, which was founded in 2001 as an IT consultancy but has since shifted to both consumer and enterprise software. At the helm as CEO is Matthew Dornquast, who co-founded the company and continues to run it. We spoke with Matthew to learn about his work habits and the challenges his team has faced in developing CrashPlan.”

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Deluxe buys Wisconsin fintech software co. for $90 million

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Via News Release

Deluxe Corporation (NYSE: DLX) today announced the acquisition of Wausau Financial Systems (WAUSAU), a market share leader in receivables management for commercial banks and major corporations.

The all cash acquisition closed on October 22; it was announced this morning during Deluxe’s Q3 financial results call with investors. By providing a broader and deeper range of financial technology solutions (FinTech) to both the retail and commercial sides of the market, the purchase of WAUSAU is an important step in the evolution of Deluxe’s Financial Services Segment to becoming a more diverse provider in the highly competitive FinTech marketplace.”

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Watch Minnesota startups Jingit & TrackIF pitch their retail tech

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Shopper-Marketing-ExpoBy Ben Walker

How are retailers and brands using new technology to engage their customers in the dynamic world of retail?

That was the all important question addressed during the ‘startup symposium’ at this week’s Shoppers Marketing Conference & Expo at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Organized and led by Kim Garretson, this afternoon session opened with an overview on trends in next generation digital strategies in retail. From there, a panel of venture capitalists spoke to both their interests in the retail sector as well as midwest investing.

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Minneapolis’ Confluence Capital backs Chicago tech startup Charlie

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Via News Release

“It’s not uncommon for sales reps to schedule 6, 8, or even 10 meetings/calls a day. With this many events taking place, it’s nearly impossible to appropriately prepare for these calls so that you don’t seem aloof to who you are talking with. This preparation could easily be the difference between closing a sale or losing a sale.

Enter Charlie – the tool that helps you crush your next meeting! Needing only an email address or access to your Google calendar, Charlie compiles data from over 100,000 sources including social media sites, company sites, and company reports.”

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[Video] Hardware demos from IoT Hackday

by The TECHdotMN Team

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Screen Shot 2014-08-20 at 1.06.58 PMMinnesota’s inaugural IoT Hackday came and went last Satruday at Minnetronix HQ in St. Paul Minnesota. Hatched by Justin Grammens and San Francisco resident Varun Bhartia, the event drew a solid 50 participants who formed 12 unique teams that hacked the day away on their own unique ideas, followed by a final show and tell for their respective creation.

“When it comes to early development of new products, getting out of the garage or basement to collaborate with structure is important. Overall we’re very happy with the way it went. The wide range of what was built is phenomenal and I’d say it was a success,” Grammens says of the initiative. “We’ll absolutely do it again!”

HabitAware earned the first place crowd favorite, in second place was IoFeeder and third place went to FidoTracker. Below are the final demos as presented during IoT Hackday:

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Minnesota developer’s data viz hack captures climate change

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Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 10.33.34 AMWith all the differing opinions, mind-numbing statistics and political scrutiny, it can be difficult to see the subject of climate change clearly.

MyFutureClimate was created to help people do just that.

Developed by Richard Barnes and his virtual team as a project for #hack4good, a global hackathon series focused on bringing together expert engineers and designers to build solutions for the world’s pressing issues, MyFutureClimate makes it simpler than ever to visualize how climate change may affect your part of the world in five, 25 or even 75 years.

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