Moore College of Art & Design Receives $5 Million,
Largest-Ever Single Gift from Alumna Jane Walentas
Philadelphia, PA – New York artist and philanthropist Jane Walentas, a 1966 graduate of Moore College of Art & Design, and her husband, David Walentas, have provided Moore with a gift of $5 million—the single largest donation in the 170-year history of the College. This generous gift will fund scholarships for deserving women artists who wish to receive their education at Moore, the nation’s first and only visual art and design school for undergraduate women.
Jane Walentas, who also received a Master of Fine Arts degree from NYU and worked for many years as an art director in cosmetic advertising for Elizabeth Arden, Avon and Estee Lauder, is a longtime member of Moore’s Board of Trustees, and played an integral role in the launch of Moore’s Visionary Woman Scholarship Program in 2005. She is well-known for restoring and operating Jane’s Carousel, a historic 1922 carousel that is located in the DUMBO section of Brooklyn—an area that was developed by her husband, David Walentas, who attended the University of Virginia on a full Navy ROTC scholarship. Jane worked in her DUMBO artist studio to restore the 48 carousel horses to their original glory, working first only with a carpenter and later, a team of artists to bring the carousel to life. She worked on and oversaw every single detail of the restored carousel. The carousel now stands as a treasured landmark in Brooklyn Bridge Park.
Pictured above: Jane and David Walentas in 2017. Photo by Academic Image.
The Walentas family has a long history of supporting the arts and education. Jane is the Executive Director of the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program, which awards rent-free non-living studio space to 17 visual artists for year-long residencies in DUMBO, Brooklyn. Developed for artists, by artists in 1991, the Walentas’ took over the program with new sponsorship and commitment from the Walentas Family Foundation, continuing the legacy of founder Marie Walsh Sharpe. The Walentas Family Foundation also established the Neighborhood School Grants program with the belief that vibrant and successful schools are fundamental parts of communities. Since conception, the foundation has awarded dozens of school grants that aim to enrich students’ learning experiences through creative programming that may not supported by a school’s existing budget.
“We both believe in education, and David is a big believer in giving back because of his opportunities as a result of his scholarships at UVA, so it’s very exciting to be able to help students who can’t otherwise go to school. My hope is that with this gift it will encourage others to help expand the endowment,” says Jane Walentas. “Moore, being a small, all-women’s college of art and design, is still relatively unknown outside the Philadelphia area and I felt strongly about bringing talented students from other regions to this extraordinary college. Moore was important to my past. I am privileged to be making a contribution that will help Moore continue to attract and educate the country’s brightest and most gifted young women artists.”
The $5 million donation to Moore will be used to create the Walentas Visionary Woman Scholarships. These scholarships will be part of Moore’s Visionary Woman Honors Program, which provides financial support and sustained mentorship to talented, motivated and future-focused students, both inside and outside of the classroom. Since 2005, Visionary Woman Scholarships have increased the level of opportunity and access to Moore’s high-quality visual arts education for a broad and diverse array of women, many of whom may not have otherwise had the ability to pursue careers in art and design.
The Walentas’ record-breaking gift expands upon this legacy of opportunity. The endowment will provide scholarships each year to 10 non-Pennsylvania residents accepted to Moore who display exceptional artistic and academic promise. Each scholarship will be automatically renewed for up to four years of full-time enrollment with the upkeep of the student’s GPA.
“There is nothing nobler that anyone can do than to provide an opportunity for deserving and talented students to achieve their dreams of going to college,” said Moore President Cecelia Fitzgibbon. “We are deeply grateful that Jane—a notable Moore alumna—and David believe so strongly in the mission of the College, and in the ability to transform lives through the study of art and design.”
The first Walentas Visionary Woman Scholars will be chosen among students attending Moore for the first time this fall, as part of the incoming class of 2023. The College will begin to award the scholarships from the endowed fund in fall 2020.
Jane and David Walentas have also established the Jane Walentas ’66 Endowed Scholarship and International Travel Fellowship at Moore, as well as the Jane and David Walentas Endowed Fellowship. With their new gift, they will play an even greater role in bringing emerging artists who display great talent to Philadelphia, a growing and evolving destination for artists and for art and culture.
Moore College of Art & Design educates students for careers in art and design. Founded in 1848, Moore is the nation’s first and only women’s visual arts college for undergraduates. The College’s career-focused environment and professionally active faculty form a dynamic community in the heart of Philadelphia’s cultural district, surrounded by world-class museums. The College offers ten bachelor of fine arts degrees for women and four coeducational graduate programs. In addition, Moore provides many valuable opportunities in the arts through The Galleries at Moore, Continuing Education Certificate programs for professional adults, the acclaimed Young Artists Workshop, The Art Shop and Sculpture Park. For more information about Moore, visit www.moore.edu.
JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, an iconic leader in the financial community, came to Philadelphia yesterday to welcome InstaMed officially to the family, as the acquisition announced in May closed. InstaMed put itself up for sale in February.
I’ve seen the price mentioned as anywhere between $500 and $600 mllion.
Senior leadership, including the co-founders, CEO Bill Marvin and CTO Chris Seib, are staying on. Headcount is now at 275, according to a post by the co-founders. InstaMed’s data center operations remain in Newport Beach, CA.
Ownership by Morgan Chase likely means acquisitions will be more of a possibility. Instamed’s growth was completely organic.
InstaMed, founded in 2004 , raised $134 million. Osage Venture Partners, which was part of InstaMed’s early venture round, was one of the biggest beneficiaries of its success.
Financial Technology Partners LP and Pepper Hamilton LLP advised InstaMed, and Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP advised InstaMed management.
Clinical trials are often the biggest bottlenecks in the drug development process. Getting them completed faster and more accurately, and collecting precise data while controlling costs, are industry imperatives.
The extent of clinical trials’ importance are reflected in GV’s (formerly Google Ventures) interest in them. David Schenkein and Krishna Yeshwant, both physicians who lead the life sciences team at GV, want to revolutionize the process, they told Business Inside recently. They might invest in an existing clinical trials company, or start an entirely new one. “There’s a lot of infrastructure that needs to be built in order to start talking about machine learning in clinical trials, in clinical data. And so we’re well down the path of working on companies in that space.,” Yeshwant said.
Veeva Systems (NYSE; VEEV), with its market value approaching $25 billion, maintains its strong growth rate by having a fruitful ongoing product development pipeline. With the success of its Veeva Vault clinical information offering, itself organically developed and now accounting for a a majority of its revenue, a lateral move into clinical trial technology was inevitable and logical. Shared customers, shared expertise, and shared costs with its existing business all pointed that way.
Veeva already had developed one key asset for this, an application named eTMF (electronic Trial Master File), that is instrumental in digitizing the information collected in a trial. In some cases, eTMF replaced completely paper-based systems.
I spoke with Henry Levy, general manager, Veeva Vault CDM, about Veeva’s progress with its Veeva Vault Clinical Data Management System (CDMS) , a relatively new offering. Levy joined Veeva in late 2016 to head up its new CDMS efforts, following extensive experience with Accenture Life Sciences and a major CRO (contract research organization).
Levy, by the way, came to the US by way of Colombia and holds a bachelor of science degree in bioengineering from Penn. He has studied the Clinical Trials industry inside and out and probably knows his way around it as well as anybody.
You could hold an impromptu forum of CTMS industry leaders at a Main Line coffee spot. Philly is probably the capitol of the clinical trial tech industry, although actual trial activity itself is more dispersed. So despite Veeva’s headquarters being in California, the bulk of its CTMS initiative has been managed from its Radnor office were Levy is located.
Veeva sees the CTMS market as a $1 billion TAM (total addressable market) opportunity, Levy says, not that it expects to capture all of that, but hopes to have a significant share within 3 years in some segments. Veeva sees a total adressable market of $9 billion now for its entire enterprise, so it obviously considers the CTMS opportunity significant.
Veeva reported having 34 CTMS clients at the end of 2918, twice as many than at the end of 2017.
The current CTMS market is probably well in excess of $500 million and growing at a double digit annual rate for the next several years. Market size can be difficult to pin down due to the amount of trials conducted in house and the task of defining what revenues should be included as relevant. Recent IPO SmartSheet, for example, touts its product for CDMS use, but its difficult to quantify its use for that.
Veeva emphasizes these benefits from Vault CTMS:
Better decision making: Enable proactive closed-loop issue management and improve strategic trial planning with a complete real-time view of trial status.
Streamlined clinical operations: Provide one seamless system of record for shared CTMS, TMF, and study start-up content, improving efficiency and streamlining operations.
Unify clinical: Leverage the most comprehensive suite of clinical applications on a single cloud platform to unify clinical operations and data management.
Unification of data and the elimination of silos are emphasized here as throughout Veeva’s product line
Veeva’s Vault CTMS product offering is self sufficient so that in some cases it can give clients an end-to-end technology package and let them go at it, while offering tech support. For others, Veeva will assist in trial management to the extent needed, Levy said.
The competitive landscape is changing, with more consolidation and strategic moves to strengthen some market participants’ positions. Bracket bought CRF Health and became Signant Health, Dassault spent $5.8 billion to acquire Metadata in June, Oracle bought GoBalto, and IQVIA, formed through the merger of IMS Health and Quintiles, has made several niche acquisitions towards boosting its clinical trials capabilities.
When I mentioned GoBalto, a startup which uses data sources to seed trials more quickly with the desired population characteristics, Levy admitted that was a big win for Oracle. Which made me wonder whether Veeva, which has been very constrained on acquisitions in general, had been in the running for it. Levy told me he prefers organic growth.
There will always be room for niche specialists in clinical trials. For instance, Malvern-based Biotelemetry and Philly-based ERT both run cardiology trials, and Newtown-based BioClinica specializes in applying imaging to trials. But across verticals, there are common needs that can be addressed by a single, unified platform. The race is on to see who can do it best, and based on its track record I wouldn’t bet against Veeva.
“What you’re not counting on is how much revenue will come SAP’s way by relying on” cloud partnerships with the likes of Amazon and Google, SAP’s Chief Executive Officer Bill McDermott told analysts during a call. “There’s no reason to think this is slowing down.”
The investment could be for several hundred million dollars, according to the article.
Philly-based goPuff has already reached Unicorn status, The Information says, but its been very quiet when it comes to announcing investment events.
SoftBank might have some channel conflicts with other startups its invested in, including Uber and DoorDash, and that has been an issue of debate within SoftBank.
Founded in 2013 by Drexel students Rafael Ilishayev and Yakir Gola, goPuff grew like a weed and now serves 90 markets.
Speculation about SoftBank’s planned $108 billion Vision Fund ll (which isn’t certain to be the funding source for any investment in goPuff) has often involved questions as to how far SoftBank will have to search for investment opportunities, since it already reached many obvious ones through the first Vision Fund.
To date, goPuff funding per CrunchBase is $8.3 million from two rounds, the latest a 2016 Series A round led by Anthos. But goPuff must have gone beyond that amount already judging from its rapid expansion to 30 states, going down to Florida and to Arizona and Colorado to the west. So my guess is it already has more funding from somewhere.
But there are risks, as well as opportunities, in moving so quickly to establish a national footprint.
The layoffs follow a May 16 Commerce Department decision to put Huawei on its so-called entity list, which blocked companies from supplying U.S.-sourced technology to Huawei without a license. However, it appears possible removal of restrictions is still a bargaining chip in the US / China trade negotiations.
Esther Surden, Editor & Publisher of NJTechWeekly (and contributor to this site), covered the opening of Huawei’s R&D center in Bridgewater, NJ, back in 2012. Huawei pledged to bring 55 (later said to be 90) new jobs to the center, for which it received some state financial support. But that achievement was soon overshadowed by a House Intelligence Committee report written after a yearlong investigation of it and another Chinese firm, ZTE. The report essentially concluded that U.S. companies should think twice about doing business with the Chinese firms.
As a result, Huawei cut back its US efforts, except to maintain some small wireless systems it already had and to continue US-based R&D.
In Philadelphia, Huawei has a small office with around 2o employees, and I believe its primary purpose is to work with Comcast.
Though layoffs have already started, there is no word yet on cuts in these two locations.
Battery Ventures, a leading SaaS VC firm, acquired Ewing NJ-based 1WorldSync Holdings. 1WorldSync enables brands “to securely and continuously share critical product data with a community of retailers, operators and distributors across industries, including consumer goods, foodservice, electronics and healthcare”, the company says.
Of its 200+ employees, only a small fraction, mostly administrative staff, appear to be based in New Jersey. More US employees are based in Chicago, and the company also has established ops in Europe.
Analytical Graphics (Exton) spinout Cesium raised $5mm from Falcon Global Capital for a platform enabling software developers and data providers to build dynamic, interactive 3D geospatial applications. It is AGI’s first spinout; will there be more?
This piece by Charles Fitzgerald on IBM’s acquisition of Red Hat (now closed) is definitely worth the read.
About two years ago I did a quick and dirty analysis on all of IBM’s expenditures on Capex, M&A, and R&D over the past 20 years, compared to its market value. It appeared that Big Blue was frittering away its shrinking but still prodigious cashflow on expenditures that were not enhancing its value, which is the reason for investing.
You might also want to take a look at this by Daniel Newman: