Baltimore-based Harpoon Medical acquired for $100 million

Harpoon Medical, a Baltimore-based medical device company, has been acquired by Edwards Lifesciences Corp. for $100 million. Under the deal, Harpoon, which is developing a device for minimally invasive heart surgery, will become part of California-based Edwards while retaining its West Camden Street offices. All 18 of Harpoon’s employees are joining Edwards. The acquisition, which closed Dec. 1, stems from a structured financing agreement Harpoon struck with Edwards in 2015. In that deal, Edwards made an investment of undisclosed value in Harpoon’s research and development efforts in exchange for the option to acquire the company after completion of key clinical trials in Europe. (Balt. Sun)

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Maryland cannabis commission hires new executive director

An Eastern Shore hospital executive has joined the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission as its new executive director. Joy A. Strand takes her new job just as companies have begun to dispense medical marijuana to patients. She replaces Patrick Jameson who resigned last month. The former state trooper took over as executive director in April 2016. He was the second executive director to resign from the commission in as many years. Strand comes to the commission from McCready Health in Crisfield, where she was the CEO. She oversaw a health system that included a hospital, an outpatient center, an outpatient rehabilitation center, an assisted living facility, and a nursing and rehabilitation center. (Balt. Sun)

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Bethesda's Northwest Bio raises $12 million in new funding round

Bethesda-based Northwest Biotherepeutics has raised $12 million as it continues its phase 3 clinical trial for its immunotherapy drug candidate for glioblastoma multiforme brain cancer. Announced Tuesday, Northwest Bio officials said the funding would be used for general corporate purposes, which could include clinical trial expenses, but did not offer further specifics. The company is developing products to stimulate the immune system to reverse tumor growth and kill cancer cells and has several human clinical trials underway. (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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Number of Lyft rides in Baltimore doubled in 2017

The number of Lyft rides in the Baltimore region more than doubled in the past year, according to the San Francisco-based ride share service. Mike Heslin, market manager for Baltimore, said it was “in the thousands,” but he declined to disclose the exact number of rides, calling it proprietary information. The top Lyft destinations in the city in 2017 included two of Baltimore’s newest and trendiest attractions: R. House in Remington and the Sagamore Pendry Hotel in Fells Point, Heslin said. (Balt. Sun)

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Three Baltimore-area restaurants are among OpenTable's '100 best'

OpenTable has named three restaurants in the Baltimore area among its top 100 in the country. Charleston, Hersh's and Linwoods made it onto the online reservation finder and restaurant reviewer's 2017 list. Charleston, which serves New American cuisine from Chef Cindy Wolf in Harbor East, has been included among OpenTable's best restaurants several years in a row. Last year, it was the only Baltimore restaurant to make the cut. (Balt. Bus. Journal)

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December 6 // Massive development at Grosvenor Metro picks up Montgomery County approval

The Montgomery County Council on Tuesday unanimously approved the master plan for Strathmore Square, a nearly 2 million-square-foot project to be built essentially atop the Grosvenor Metro station. D.C.-based Fivesquares Development, led by childhood friends and Philadelphia natives Andy Altman and Ron Kaplan, is leading the development of the 14-acre site owned by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority. (Wash. Bus. Journal)

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Maryland backs Washington Gas-AltaGas deal

The proposed $6.4 billion purchase of D.C.-based WGL Holdings Inc. (NYSE: WGL), the parent company of Washington Gas, by AltaGas Ltd. reached a key arrangement in the state of Maryland on Monday. The two companies signed a settlement agreement with the Maryland Energy Administration, Montgomery and Prince George's counties and local unions ahead of a review by Maryland's Public Service Commission. (Wash. Bus. Journal)

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Baltimore to loan $100K to W.R. Grace to help train hundreds of manufacturing workers

Baltimore officials are planning to give a $100,000 forgivable loan to W.R. Grace & Co. as part of a plan to train at least 50 manufacturing workers each year. The Board of Estimates on Wednesday is set to award the 10-year loan to the company to help buy equipment for its $500,000 “Curtis Bay Industrial Training Partnership” that will train manufacturing workers for the company and other employers in the Curtis Bay area, such as Solvay, USALCO, PQ Corporation and Maryland Chemical. (Balt. Sun)

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