In today’s Bulldog wrapup of technology and life science news:

  • SciQuest receives good news from a research firm
  • BDSI stop drops 24 percent on drug trial news
  • Scynexis posts a $4.2 million loss;
  • Amazon launches its own referral service
  • The PlayStation network embraces Spotify.

The details:

  • offering to help get jobs done around the house is introducing a referral service to help people to get projects and chores done around their homes.

The recommendation system, called Amazon Home Services, marks the e-commerce company’s latest attempt to expand its empire beyond online shopping. It debuted Monday across the U.S. after several months of testing in New York, Los Angeles and’s home city of Seattle.’s move poses a potential threat to other online referral and business rating services, including Angie’s List, Yelp and Thumbtack, a startup that raised $100 million last year from a group of backers led by an investment arm of Google Inc.

About 700 different services in major U.S. cities can be booked through, spanning from housecleaning to goat grazing. isn’t charging consumers a fee to use the service. Instead, the company will collect a commission ranging from 10 percent to 20 percent from most of the professionals.

All professionals listed in the service are vetted by, which is also guaranteeing all the work.

  • Gartner gives good marks to SciQuest

Morrisville-based SciQuest receives a boost from research firm Gartner in two recent reports.

In the most recent one, SciQuest achieved “Leader” status in the “Magic Quadrant” report for procure-to-pay suites.

The company also was recognized in Gartner’s Strategic Sourcing Application Suites report.

“We believe recognition as a leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant report is a testament to our longstanding commitment to investing in our product to the benefit of our customers,” said Stephen Wiehe, CEO of SciQuest. “We are honored to be included in Gartner’s inaugural Procure-to-Pay Magic Quadrant and believe that our suite of solutions gives procurement and sourcing professionals real business value by fulfilling their transactional and strategic needs.”

  • BDSI stock plummets

Shares in BioDelivery Sciences fell 24 percent Monday after the company disclosed that Phase 3 study results of a treatment for painful diabetic neuropathy did not meet key criteria.

Read more at:

  • Triangle-based Scynexis reports a loss

Scynexis, which went public a year ago, reported a $4.2 million loss for its first year as a public company.

The News & Observer has more details at:

  • PlayStation gets Spotify, replacing Sony’s own music service​

Spotify is coming to the PlayStation, replacing Sony’s own MusicUnlimited service, as the company continues to expand the game console into an entertainment hub beyond video games.

Spotify hits the PlayStation 3 and 4 on Monday, with a new app adapted for large television screens. Sony says partnering with Spotify expands its music service to 41 countries, rather than the 19 available with Music Unlimited, and offers better tools for playlists and music discovery.

PlayStation users have long been able to watch DVDs and stream Netflix, Amazon and YouTube shows with the console. Just two weeks ago, Sony launched an online televisionservice, PlayStation Vue, offering more than 50 over-the-air and cable channels starting at $50 a month.

Spotify has 60 million active users worldwide, including 15 million paid subscribers. Itsmusic app is available on some Internet-connected TVs and set-top boxes, but Spotifysays it worked closely with Sony to optimize its service for the PlayStation. Notable features include: the ability to listen to music while playing a game and still listening to sound effects, or automatically pausing the game while changing volume or playlists.

The service is free with ads, or costs $10 a month for a premium ad-free version that offers offline playback. Although free users aren’t allowed to choose specific songs on mobile devices, they will be able to on the PlayStation, just as they now do on traditional computers.