Imation ditching consumer brands Memorex and XtremeMac

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Via News Release

“…As the Company intensified its focus on data storage and data security, management announced in the third quarter that Imation would be exploring strategic alternatives for the consumer electronics brands and businesses. Imation has decided to divest its Memorex and XtremeMac consumer electronics businesses.

The Company will continue its TDK Life on Record business on a more focused basis. Lucas commented, “Divesting the Memorex and XtremeMac consumer electronics brands will allow us to direct our time and resources to the right opportunities in data storage and security, as well as our retail optical business under the Memorex and TDK Life on Record brands.”

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Minnesota entrepreneurs attract investors by connecting household objects to Internet

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By Julio Ojeda-Zapata, Star Tribune

“Marcus Schappi’s compulsion to endow inanimate objects with Internet capabilities was sparked by the loss of a beloved chicken to a fox.

Schappi’s home in Sydney, Australia, abuts a national park, and the predator would emerge from the woods to stalk his three egg-laying “chooks” — Hen Solo, Princess Layer and Chook Norris.  When the fox turned Hen Solo into a pile of feathers, Schappi knew he had to act.”

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Digital River cutting and consolidating

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By Leslise Brooks Suzukamo, St. Paul Pioneer Press

“E-commerce specialist Digital River swung to a loss of $200 million for the fourth quarter last year due to a goodwill impairment charge for its past acquisitions.

The company is cutting some positions, but there should be little effect on its Minnetonka headquarters, where it employs about 700 people — or half its global workforce — officials said Wednesday, Feb. 6.

The company, which runs the online stores for numerous makers of software, consumer electronics and electronic games, reported Wednesday that revenue for the quarter ended Dec. 31 fell by 9.5 percent to $101.3 million.”

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Hutchinson Technology consolidates operations

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By Janet Moore, Star Tribune

Hutchinson Technology has put two of its manufacturing facilities on the block. Or, they’re available for lease.

The Hutchinson-based maker of disk-drive components, which is in the middle of a cost-reduction program, said its 159,000-square-foot manufacturing building in Eau Claire, and its 237,000-square-foot building in its hometown are available for sale or lease. The two buildings will be available for occupancy in the second half of this year.”

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Online startup MinuteBids expands with GroupBids

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By Urmila Ramakrishnan, Minneapolis St.-Paul Business Journal

MinuteBids, a Bloomington-based startup that serves as an online liaison between property managers and service providers, has launched a new product.

GroupBids allows independent property mangers to combine their bid requests for services such as lawn care and painting with their neighbors — increasing the buying power for all bidders.”

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Infinite Campus’ $15m Wisconsin win disputed

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Via Associated Press

“STEVENS POINT — A Stevens Point company says it will appeal a Wisconsin Department of Administration decision to give a Minnesota company a $15 million education services contract.

The department announced late Friday that it selected Blaine, Minn.-based Infinite Campus Inc. to be the sole provider of student information systems to Wisconsin’s more than 440 school districts and non-district charter schools. It said Infinite Campus had the highest scoring proposal based on several criteria, including having the highest technical score and the lowest cost.”

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MobileRealtyApps expands at Grain Exchange, ramps up hiring

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By Katharine Grayson, Minneapolis-St.Paul Business Journal

MobileRealtyApps, a developer of mobile applications for real estate firms, is the latest tech startup to lease office space at the Grain Exchange building after outgrowing a co-working space at CoCo.

The company this week moved into about 1,400 square feet of space on the first floor of the building. Several tech companies and organizations have set up shop at the Grain Exchange since CoCo opened in 2011.”

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Miinome Wants to Help You Market Your DNA

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By Gene Rebeck, Twin Cities Business

“Obtaining the lay of your genomic landscape is becoming easier and cheaper. A Twin Cities startup called Miinome wants to help you set up a security fence around this most personal of property—while providing a gate for salespeople you might want to drop in.

“We have organizations using all kinds of data about us to market to us,” says Miinome, Inc., co-founder Scott Fahrenkrug, an associate professor of genetics at the University of Minnesota. “So if you can predict behavior from genetics, then you can predict what kinds of products they might want.”

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