No. 126: A hot new currency, a cool trailer and good-bye to the Bin Laden note

TG it’s F: A great end to an interesting week, everybody. It’s May 6, on which the Hindenburg exploded into “Oh the humanity” flames, John Steinbeck won the Pulitzer for “Grapes of Wrath” and Gary Hart said he didn’t do it.

(He had, of course.)

Making rounds: Charles Schleien has been appointed executive director of Cohen Children’s Medical Center, succeeding Kevin McGeachy, who moves up to senior vice president of strategic alliances at Northwell Health.

Speaking of which: Northwell has inked a deal to be the official sponsor of the Mets Dash, via which kids work off the peanuts and Cracker Jack by running the bases following Sunday home games at Citi Field. The health system will also sponsor a nursing station for suite-level patrons suffering from other intake.

And in case you nodded out: Ariana Huffington was here for a Northwell-sponsored women’s health symposium. She has a book out on sleep.

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Express train: Gov. Cuomo announced an aggressive schedule of public meetings on his plan to get the LIRR’s long-debated third track proposal back on the rails.

If you’re alternating weekends: Woodbury entrepreneur Greg Wagner has released a Hollywood-style trailer for his about-to-launch Moiety App, which helps co-parents manage quality time, excursions and expenses. Trailer now, app in June, already with 80,000+ followers.

CVC jumps: Cablevision shares enjoyed a modest bounce on word that NYC has recommended approval of the firm’s $17 billion sale to Europe’s Altice. The FCC approved the deal earlier this week.

The uptick puts the stock close to the agreed-to purchase price of $34.90 per share. Cablevision and Altice continue to insist the City has no say in the deal. (First link requires WSJ subscription)

Ether net: The state has approved trading in ether cryptocurrency using the Gemini Trading Co. platform run by the famous-for-Facebook Winklevosstwins. Officially starts Monday, but you can buy now and store until then. How? Read this. (An ether is currently worth around $9.90.)

Earnings: Planet Payments, the Long Beach currency and transaction-processing firm, posted a 13 percent jump in revenues on the strength of its Pay in Your Currency program.

Also: Hain Celestial saw a 9 percent year-over-year jump in earnings.

Plus: Henry Schein said it was generally pleased with a ho-hum Q1 10 percent sales jump, which was, actually, pummeled a bit by currency rates.

Spud-niks: Three Suffolk programs got bucks from the NY Farm Viability Institute, including a Cornell project to study controlled release of nitrogen on potato plants.


Where do I sign? The state has ponied up $3 million that will be matched with private money to create a $6 million+ seed fund to be run by Hofstra’s Mark Lesko and SBU’s Pete Donnelly. Deals capped at $100K, meaning support for at least 60 startups out of the blocks.

A start to crime-stopping: Andy Braverman wants to help you drop a dime on bad guys, anonymously.

Stuff we’re going to: Stony Brook University is showcasing 40+ of its startups.

Also: The Town of Islip’s annual CEO Summit is June 23. More details to come.

The complete Innovate calendar is here.

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Attention young women: Startups with at least one female founder tend to outperform those with all-boy teams. Younger trumps older, too. The research as only Harvard can present it.

Speaking of Harvard: The university’s Wyss Institute says it has a deal with an unnamed sports-equipment giant to market its vibrating insoles, which improve balance and agility and reduce exertion.

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More bad news for Mayer: AT&T is ending a $100 million deal via which its customers received free access to Yahoo search and web features. (Think Verizon likely buying Yahoo was a factor?)

Out of the closet: ThredUP, a San Fran startup that allows users to buy and sell used clothing, helped New Yorkers earn $2 million last year. (Hoping my daughter sees this.)

The FBI should hire him next: Facebook paid a 10-year-old Finnish boy$10,000 for exposing a flaw in Instagram.

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Hack warning: Data breaches are up 40 percent year over year, AG Eric Schneiderman cautions New Yorkers.

Half mushroom, please: Viv, the just-revealed virtual assistant from the brains who brought you Siri, is one of the most anticipated technologies of the year – and not just because it can get a pizza delivered. (And yes, Google and Facebook have both made offers.)

Airing on the side of caution: Amazon said it is taking a 30 percent stake in New York’s Atlas Air cargo service as it attempts to wean its Prime program from UPS and FedEx.


200 now tops: The European Central Bank announced it will stop printing the 500 Euro note, a favorite among drug dealers and terrorists – it’s often called the “Bin Laden note” – but eschewed by most banks and businesses. (True story: I’ve been trying to get change for one since 2009.)

Real insecurity: Hillary Clinton is disputing claims from Romanian hacker Marcel Lazar – better known as “Guccifer” – that he found it easy to break into the former Secretary of State’s private e-mail server, but found nothing of interest there. (Not sure which part of the story Clinton disagrees with.)

Weird Al on Conan: Paul McCartney forbade Yankovic from doing a parody of “Live and Let Die” because the proposed redo – “Chicken Pot Pie” – violated Sir Paul’s vegan sensibilities. (Really?)

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Compiled by John Kominicki. Thanks for reading.