Stories for October 2011

Monday, October 31

Investment Losses Hurt Mercury General’s Quarter

Mercury General Corp. reported a loss in the third quarter, largely due to investment losses, but its adjusted results were better than analysts expected.

MPG Swaps Partners at One California Plaza, Other Properties

MPG Office Trust Inc. has entered into an agreement with its joint venture partner at downtown L.A.’s One California Plaza and other properties that will enable the partner to sell its interest to a Boston private investment firm.

SAN GABRIEL VALLEY: Japanese Tsunami Recovery Boosts Slow Industrial Market

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

SANTA CLARITA VALLEY: Area Landlords Look to Next Year As Vacancy Rate Still Sky High

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

Developers Wash Hands of Dirty ‘Clean-Tech’ Site

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Public money was crucial in building momentum for a Carson mixed-use project.

SAN FERNANDO VALLEY: Studio City Stands Out but Tenants Mostly Move Around Region

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

TRI-CITIES: Glendale Gains Professional Service Firms at Expense of Sister Cities

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

HOLLYWOOD: Production Companies Roll Into Area but Rent Rates Still Tumble

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

WESTSIDE: Sun Still Shines in Santa Monica As Firms Fight for Office Space

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

Back Off, Track

GOVERNMENT: Monrovia property owner throws up roadblock to Gold Line after what he calls an unfair buyout offer.

A Monrovia property owner claims he’s being railroaded into selling his site to the Gold Line at a low price.

Tease photo

SOUTH BAY/ MID-CITIES: Torrance Broker Going Extra Mile to Spark Interest in Slow Market

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

Lighting the Way

Thanks partly to several construction projects, business leaders see L.A.’s Chinatown as the next district to get a downtownlike buzz.

Tease photo

Putting Their House In Order

Offspring of PR firm Grody Tellem’s founders launch Tellem Grody.

Children of Grody Tellem’s principals had no problem coming up with a new name for their firm: Tellem Grody.

Former IndyMac Executive Seeks to Connect Online

Michael Perry uses website to defend his term at failed lender.

IndyMac’s under siege former chief exec launches website to tell his side of the bank’s collapse.

Tease photo

It’s a Whole New Ball Game

Staples Center looks at new video screens to boost food sales.

Staples Center sports a new look with high-tech video screens in suites and at concession stands.

Cleaning Up

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Some brownfield sites have yielded green for developers who were able to allay cleanup costs through partnerships and public money.

Tease photo

Luc Robitaille: Sticking to It

Former hockey star now heats up things for the L.A. Kings off the ice as president of the NHL franchise’s business operations.

Former high-scoring L.A. King Luc Robitaille has made boosting the hockey franchise’s business his new goal.

Tease photo

Recession Saves LAX $1 Billion

Work-hungry contractors slash project bids.

Contractors have cut their bids to land work at LAX – to the benefit of the project’s budget.

Tease photo

Entertainment Site Doesn’t Hesitate in Taking Credits

Database of film, TV listings reacquired by Hollywood.com owners.

Owners of Hollywood.com acted quickly to reacquire Baseline’s TV and film credit database.

Tease photo

Fashion Exec Fights for Look at Company’s Books

Max Azria says he’s being squeezed out of firm he co-founded.

Fashion mogul Max Azria alleges his condom company partners are pulling one over on him.

Tease photo

Satellite TV Titan Circles Big Lease

DirecTV to sign state’s largest deal in decade.

Satellite TV provider DirecTV appears poised to sign a sky-high lease in El Segundo.

Tease photo

News of the Week

News of the Week

WILSHIRE CORRIDOR: Vacancy Rate Falls Slightly With Help From Miracle Mile Activity

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

DOWNTOWN LA: Positive Absorption Rate Rises as Tenants Sign for Longer Terms

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

LA COUNTY: Commercial Market Stumbles Amid Sputtering Economic Recovery

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Major events in each commercial submarket in the third quarter.

Shoemaker’s Exercise Footwear Didn’t Have Legs

Skechers sees sales slip as Shape-ups wear out welcome with buyers.

Skechers’ quarterly sales turned flabby after the shoemaker dragged its heels on ditching a line of toning footwear.

Carson Developer Turning Trash into Retail Gold Mine

Special Report: REAL ESTATE QUARTERLY

Toxic 21-acre site stands in the way of city of L.A.’s plan for a clean-tech corridor.

Landlords See No Room for Proposed Code Reform

City of L.A. enforcement plan could hike violation fines.

Landlord and property owners look to slam door on city of L.A.’s proposed higher fees for code violations.

Calendar & Events

Calendar

Regional Reports

Regional Reports

Neighborhoods Mean Business

COMMENT

In an era of fewer city services, don’t be surprised to see more business improvement districts form in Los Angeles, writes Charles Crumpley.

L.A.’s Work in Creating Jobs Pays Dividends

OP-ED

The city of L.A.’s investment in job creation is paying off, writes Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

Stop Giving Them a Pass

OP-ED: Large developments such as a pro football stadium and subway line require CEQA’s strict oversight.

Environmental reviews and regulations are most needed for the big projects – some of which may be allowed to avoid them, according to John Mirisch.

Institution’s Prospects Looking Up on Eve of Union

BANKING & FINANCE: Nara raises $55 million, beats quarter’s Wall Street expectations.

Things are looking up for Nara Bank on the eve of its highly anticipated merger.

Website’s Contest Makes Play for Small Businesses

ADVERTISING & PR: LegalZoom will pay $20,000 to air commercials for winning company.

Glendale-based website LegalZoom has set up a contest for small-business owners with a prize of $20,000 in TV advertising.

Leaning On Style

Nova’s ski-shaped feet offer chic upgrade for walker-using seniors.

Nova offers seniors a step up in style from tennis balls with its ski-shaped feet for walkers.

Cycling Keeps Him Sane

PAGE 3

While some Angelenos may have spent Sunday morning nursing a hangover, attorney Zia Modabber was up early orchestrating a charity bike ride for hundreds of cyclists.

Friday, October 28

Stamps.com Surges on Strong Earnings Report

Stamps.com Inc. hit a new 52-week high on Friday after the online postage and shipping company reported record growth in the third quarter.

The Week’s Big Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies made strong gains for a third straight week as European leaders reached a tentative agreement to address the region’s debt crisis.

VCA Antech Shares Gain

VCA Antech Inc. shares gained 11 percent Friday morning after an analyst upgrade on third-quarter earnings that generally met Wall Street expectations.

Green Dot Mixed on Expectations

Helped by revenue growth in its prepaid debit card unit, Green Dot Corp.’s adjusted third-quarter net income exceeded analysts’ forecasts, although revenue was lower than expected.

Thursday, October 27

Disney Channel Makes Russian Deal

The Walt Disney Co. will launch an advertiser-supported Disney Channel in Russia next year after the company acquired a large stake in a Russian television network.

Improved Quarter at CBRE Group

CBRE Group Inc.’s net income rose 12 percent in the third quarter as the real estate services giant saw healthy growth in the units serving its Americas region.

Teledyne’s Quarter Beats Expectations

Teledyne Technologies Inc.'s third quarter earnings rose 13 percent, boosted by higher revenue at its digital imaging, aerospace and defense businesses.

Poll: L.A. Business Owners’ Outlook Sours

Optimism about the future among business owners and executives in Los Angeles County has plunged in the past eight months, according to a survey by the Los Angeles County Business Federation released Thursday.

Oxy Profit Jumps on Higher Prices, Production

Occidental Petroleum Corp.’s third-quarter net income jumped nearly 50 percent as the energy company benefited from higher oil prices and record production at its U.S. fields.

Reliance Steel’s Earnings Up, Outlook Down

Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co.'s its third-quarter profit rose on strong demand, but the metals processer dampened expectations for the current quarter due to lower sales and weaker steel prices.

Wednesday, October 26

Rentech Nitrogen Partners Announces IPO Launch

Rentech Nitrogen Partners LP, a Rentech Inc. spinoff, announced the launch of an initial public offering that could raise roughly $300 million.

Lower Skechers Profit Exceeds Analysts’ Expectations

Skechers USA Inc.'s third quarter net income fell 77 percent as the shoemaker adjusted to the end of its Tone-Up athletic shoe craze. The results were still better than Wall Street expected.

J2 Global Buys Irish Online Backup Business

J2 Global Communications Inc. has acquired the online backup business of C Infinity, a Dublin, Ireland provider of online data backup and hosting services for businesses.

Lower-Than-Expected Quarter at Avery Dennison

Avery Dennison Corp. said its third quarter net income fell 22 percent on lower sales of its labeling and sign products.

OSI’s Quarter Beats Forecasts

OSI Systems Inc. reported better-than-expected fiscal first quarter earnings, driven by strong sales growth in its security scanner division.

Tuesday, October 25

Lower DreamWorks Earnings Still Beats Expectations

DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc.'s third quarter profit fell 51 percent on lower box office and home video sales.

Staar Surgical Earnings Miss Wall Street Forecasts

Shares of Staar Surgical Co. fell more than 12 percent on Tuesday after the ophthalmic products company reported third quarter profit that fell short of analysts’ expectations.

U.S. TelePacific Completes Tel West Acquisition

U.S. TelePacific Corp. has completed its acquisition of Texas communications company Tel West Network Services Corp.

Monday, October 24

Large Charge Cuts Amgen’s Profit

Amgen Inc. reported 60 percent lower third quarter income, primarily due to a charge for a planned settlement in a marketing practices investigation. But the drug maker’s adjusted results beat Wall Street expectations.

Arrowhead Research Acquires Genetic Medicine Business

Arrowhead Research Corp. on Monday said it has expanded its genetic medicine business by acquiring the U.S.-based “gene-silencing” unit of Swiss drugmaker Roche.

Kennedy Wilson Makes $1.8 Billion Irish Real Estate Deal

Kennedy Wilson Holdings Inc. on Monday announced the purchase of a distressed commercial loan portfolio from Bank of Ireland for $1.8 billion.

Mattel Inc. to Acquire HIT Entertainment

Mattel Inc. has agreed to buy HIT Entertainment, the company behind Thomas the Tank Engine and Bob the Builder, in a deal valued at $680 million.

Big Banks Wary of Plan For Grades From Council

City’s rating of local impact could benefit some smaller institutions.

L.A. city proposal to grade financial institutions on their local connections has divided big and small banks.

Regional Reports

Regional Reports

Mike McNeilly: Artist’s Way

Creative pursuits led Mike McNeilly to launch supergraphic ad company Sky Tag, which continues to fight the city of Los Angeles.

Ex-fashion photographer Mike McNeilly now creates legal controversies with his company’s supergraphics.

News of the Week

News of the Week

Prized Presentation

Non-profits to vie for money in pitch-styled funding competition.

Pitch event will let charities compete for money to fund their social improvement projects.

Grocer to Go Small in Hopes of Bigger Revenue

Fresh & Easy to add convenience store-size locations in SoCal region.

Grocery chain Fresh & Easy looks for a bigger piece of the market with smaller express-style stores.

Betting on The Web

Card clubs, American Indian casinos push for in-state online poker site.

Card clubs and American Indian casinos have become card-carrying allies in a push to legalize in-state online poker in California.

Calendar & Events

Calendar

New Companies Lean on Older Funds for Money

BANKING & FINANCE: Shortage of new blood could mean lack of future financing.

Venture capital investment in L.A. companies was up sharply in the third quarter, but not everyone is ready to celebrate the news.

Startup ‘Accelerator’ Looks to Peddle Its Mettle

TECHNOLOGY: MuckerLab offers mentorship program to local businesses.

L.A. startups looking for a boost can now elicit the help of MuckerLab, a Santa Monica startup “accelerator” that launched last week to provide early stage companies with seed funding and mentoring.

Hollywood Looks To Add Big Star

Revived project near W Hotel hailed as local lift.

Neighborhood businesses hope a revived big mixed-use development will put Hollywood back in the spotlight.

Layoffs May Sow Seeds for Life Science Startups

Previous Amgen cutbacks led to launch of businesses.

Layoffs at Amgen could prove a shot in the arm to life science companies looking to staff up.

Doctor Management Company Gets Healthy Boost

IPC sees stock rise on strength of expansion strategy.

IPC’s practice of managing hospital-based doctors has given a healthy boost to its stock.

Something To Think About

Santa Monica hotel adds mind-powered games to its bar.

Bargoers at Casa Del Mar literally play mind games with NeuroSky’s brain-powered entertainment.

Different Riff on Drones

Northrop touts aircraft with promotional video set to hard rock beat.

Northrop rocks the boat with a music video for its aircraft carrier-launched drone.

What is Reality? Real Estate Sales on TV

PAGE 3

Valerie Fitzgerald thought reality TV was staged. Until she was put on a show herself.

NFL Stadium Backer Can’t Pass on Downtown

REAL ESTATE: L.A. Live- based AEG looks nearby to add office space.

Gearing up for construction of its downtown L.A. football stadium, AEG is moving and expanding into new corporate offices that will give it a better view of the proposed development.

Drone Maker May Have New Market in Cross Hairs

AeroVironment craft used as weapon in Afghanistan.

AeroVironment could get charged up from the military’s interest in the company’s exploding drone, which reportedly has been used in combat.

The Cruel and the Wonderful

COMMENT

A new report that ranks L.A. City Council members by their economic results could inject a little needed competition in City Hall, Charles Crumpley writes.

HELP, PLEASE

L.A. tech firms desperate to score new hires

Local tech companies struggle to get a line on new hires despite L.A. County’s high unemployment rate.

Contracting May Squeeze Employers

New state fines to enforce worker classifications.

Some local businesses fear a new state law could slam them with big bills if they misclassify independent contractors.

Electric Carmaker Losing Its Buzz?

China’s BYD rides into L.A. with fewer jobs.

The big buzz over BYD opening an L.A. HQ has quieted as the electric-car maker’s sales have stalled.

Leasing Could Be Roadblock for Trucking Companies

Trucking companies that lease vehicles to drivers at the ports may run afoul of the new regulation.

Friday, October 21

The Week’s Big Movers

A late-week rally on Wall Street, fueled by improving prospects to resolve the European debt crisis, helped the Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies make strong gains for a second straight week.

School, Government Hiring Boosts L.A. Employment

L.A. County’s unemployment rate dropped slightly last month to 12.4 percent as teachers and other school personnel returned to work and local governments also increased their hiring.

Thursday, October 20

Kennedy Wilson Makes Three L.A. Acquisitions

Kennedy Wilson has acquired stakes in three office buildings in the Los Angeles area in transactions totaling $111 million.

Higher City National Profit Still Misses Forecasts

City National Corp. reported a 20 percent rise in third-quarter earnings. The results fell short of Wall Street expectations as Los Angeles County’s largest local bank took its first provision for loan losses this year.

Profit at Cathay Bank Meets Expectations

Cathay General Bancorp said its third quarter profit jumped 67 percent as the Asian-American bank saw lower interest expenses and higher non-interest income.

Hanmi Reports Profit, Names CFO

Hanmi Financial Corp. reported a profit in the third quarter thanks to lower credit losses. It also named Lonny Robinson as chief financial officer.

Wednesday, October 19

East West’s Quarter Beats Expectations

East West Bancorp Inc. reported third quarter profit and revenue that was better than Wall Street expected and raised its full-year earnings guidance.

Cheesecake Factory Profit Misses Wall Street Forecasts

Cheesecake Factory Inc. said that despite higher revenue, its fiscal third quarter earnings fell 6 percent after Hurricane Irene hurt sales at East Coast restaurants.

Cherokee to Move Corporate Headquarters

Cherokee Inc. announced plans to move to larger offices in Van Nuys in order to accommodate its growth.

Amgen Announces R&D Layoffs

Amgen Inc. has told 380 research and development employees, including 226 in Thousand Oaks, that their jobs are being eliminated.

Report: Aerovironment’s Drones Saw Action Against Taliban

Aerovironment Inc.’s drone aircraft, primarily used by the U.S. military for surveillance, are now starting to be deployed as weapons in Afghanistan, an Army official confirmed in a media report.

Tuesday, October 18

Environmental Group to Sue Railroads Over Pollution in L.A.

The Natural Resources Defense Council is expected on Wednesday to announce a lawsuit against the two major railroads that operate in Los Angeles, alleging they produce harmful amounts of diesel pollution.

Lower Sales Hurts Jakks’ Profit

Jakks Pacific Inc.'s third quarter earnings fell 14 percent on lower sales of its toys, missing Wall Street expectations.

Monday, October 17

Grubb & Ellis Receives Financing from Texas Investment Firm

Struggling commercial brokerage Grubb & Ellis Co. said it reached a financing deal with a Texas private equity firm for additional funding, and is in negotiations with the firm regarding a “strategic transaction.”

Jakks Completes Moose Mountain Acquisition

Malibu toymaker Jakks Pacific Inc. has completed its acquisition of Moose Mountain Toymakers Ltd., a Hong Kong maker of licensed arcade-style games, children’s vehicles and other toys.

Public Will Pay the Price for High-Speed Rail

OP-ED

Michael Gorman writes that the public will pay more than its fare share for the state’s high-speed rail project.

Distributor Sees DVDs as Blessing

Image’s new faith-based unit to focus on discs.

Distributor Image gets into the swing with religious DVDs through its new faith-based division Slingshot.

Napster Tried to Play Down Illegal Past

Online file-sharing service rocked the music industry when it debuted in 1999.

Malibu Toymaker Says It Won’t Be Played With

MANUFACTURING: Jakks shoots down takeover bid with eye toward big 2012.

MANUFACTURING – Jakks rebuffs acquisition bid as analysts foresee bright future for toymaker.

Promotions Put Premium on Online Connections

Back at You helps businesses boost sales by tapping social networks.

Back at You hopes to help small businesses click with more customers through social network promotions.

Tease photo

Pain at the Pumps

L.A. Arco owners say BP driving up business costs

Local Arco owners allege BP policies have pumped up costs for franchisees.

Tease photo

A Modern-Day Tax Rebel

COMMENT

A local business woman’s bad encounter with an IRS agent became a taxing battle, Charles Crumpley writes.

Investors Take Shine to Bank’s Effort to Clean Up

A target for takeover last year, more steady Hanmi adds staff.

Koreatown’s Hanmi stock is rising and staff expanding only a year after facing collapse.

Tease photo

Terminal Would Give Port Big Boost

New L.A. port facility would handle massive oil tankers.

Houston company dives into L.A. port with plan for a terminal designed to handle massive oil tankers.

Tease photo

Charles Cohen: Marquee Moves

Design center developer has raised the curtain on a career as a movie maker.

Design center developer Charles Cohen used his real estate success to build a career in the movies.

Tease photo

Fat Lady Finally Sings for Napster

New parent to scrap trailblazer’s name, dismiss workers.

Song is over for Napster as the once-outlaw website is sold and its L.A. headquarters closed.

Tease photo

Open Door?

DINING: Bankruptcy of Mexican chain parent Real Mex may make room for more eateries in Los Angeles.

Bankruptcy of Mexican restaurant chain Real Mex could make room at the table for new eateries in L.A.

Tease photo

Century City Outpost Fills Roster of New York Firm

ADVERTISING & PR: New office of Sard Verbinnen signs Groupon, Yahoo, others.

New York-based investor relations firm Sard Verbinnen & Co. has signed an impressive list of clients since opening a Century City office in May.

Calendar & Events

Calendar

Maker of Outdoor Products Gears Up for Growth

MANUFACTURING: Exxel CEO sees new high-end line bringing more jobs to L.A.

Exxel Outdoors has received plenty of press for moving its sleeping-bag manufacturing from Mexico and China to Alabama.

Credit Unions May Capitalize From Facebook Post

BANKING & FINANCE: L.A.-area art gallery owner spurs drive to ditch big banks.

Credit unions say they have seen a surge this month in inquiries from prospective members looking to leave big banks.

New Apartments Set to Move Onto Miracle Mile

REAL ESTATE: BRE to build $350 million project with residential and retail.

After waiting two years for the economy to improve, developer BRE Properties Inc. broke ground last week on a $350 million apartment project in the up-and-coming Miracle Mile district.

Hollywood Publicist Makes Move Into Cyberspace

Howard Bragman joins online reputation management firm.

Celebrity publicist Howard Bragman plugs into Redwood City firm managing clients’ online reputations.

Overseas Volatility Feeds Oil Company Stock Swing

Occidental also tripped up by delays of drilling in California.

Overseas unrest has helped fuel the recent stock swing for oil and gas company Occidental.

Regional Reports

Regional Report

New Line on Construction

OP-ED: Expedited review process for proposed football stadium may also benefit Wilshire subway project.

Joel Epstein foresees a positive impact from California’s new expedited environmental review process.

News of the Week

News of the Week

Getting Ready for Another Big Ride

PAGE 3

Kevin Korenthal never shies away from a challenge.

Driven to Modernize Service

UCLA medical center’s garage to offer patients automated parking.

UCLA medical center will keep patients moving with a new automated parking garage.

Dieting With Some Spirit

Former prosecutor now makes case for his low-calorie vodka.

Former prosecutor’s cases now include bottles of his low-calorie, fruit-flavored vodka.

Marriage Hangover

Psychologists launch detox program to help the recently divorced.

Pair of psychologists debut postmarriage detox program for recovering divorcés.

Sporting Goods Chain Scores Points With Investors

Analysts say Big 5’s undervalued shares were too good to pass up.

The ball bounced Big 5’s way as investors scored a stock surge in the sporting goods chain.

Federal Reform Prompts Hospital-Doctor Alliance

HEALTH CARE & BIOTECH: Providence doctors to share patient data, best-care practices.

Catholic hospital chain Providence Health & Services, Southern California is forming a partnership with its physicians that it hopes will enable them to better compete under federal health care reform.

Tease photo

Saturday, October 15

Delgadillo Named CEO of Los Angeles County Medical Association

Former Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo has been hired as chief executive of the Los Angeles County Medical Association, the area’s largest professional organization for physicians.

Friday, October 14

The Week’s Big Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies rose 5.5 percent for the week after more optimistic investors fueled a Wall Street rally.

‘Cars’ and Barbie Boost Mattel’s Profit

Strong worldwide sales of its Barbie and "Cars 2" toys contributed to a 6 percent rise in third-quarter earnings for Mattel Inc.

Thursday, October 13

DineEquity Sells 17 Applebee’s Restaurants to Franchisee

DineEquity Inc. has signed an agreement to sell 17 company-owned Applebee’s restaurants to a Florida company that already operates franchises in two states.

Icahn Sells Nearly All Lions Gate Shares

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. has arranged the sale of $134 million of shares owned by activist investor Carl Ichan, who had once attempted to take over the company.

Wednesday, October 12

Green Tech Provider Enova Projects Sales Slump

Enova Systems Inc. expects to report third and fourth quarter revenue that is “materially below” what it saw in the first half of this year.

Tuesday, October 11

Dole Buys Florida Fruit Producer

Dole Food Company Inc. has acquired SunnyRidge Farm Inc., a Florida berry producer, for an undisclosed amount.

Downtown’s Kyoto Grand Hotel to become a DoubleTree

The formerly bankrupt Kyoto Grand Hotel and Gardens in downtown Los Angeles has been sold, and will be reflagged as a DoubleTree by Hilton, the property’s new management company said.

Joe's Jeans Reports Steep Loss

Shares of Joe's Jeans Inc. fell 26 percent in after-hours trading Tuesday after the apparel manufacturer and retailer reported an unexpected loss for its fiscal third quarter on write-downs and lower wholesale revenue.

Ezri Namvar Sentenced to Seven Years in Federal Prison

Ezri Namvar, the Brentwood real estate investor convicted of federal wire fraud charges, has been sentenced to seven years in federal prison.

99 Cents Only Goes with Another L.A. Firm in Buy-Out

99 Cents Only Stores has signed a definitive agreement to be acquired by affiliates of Ares Management LLC and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for about $1.6 billion.

Monday, October 10

Governor Vetoes Most of Chamber's 'Job-Killer' Bills

Gov. Jerry Brown has vetoed all but one of bills that the California Chamber of Commerce had identified as “job killers.”

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - CHRISTOPHER J. KELLY

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - MARK S. GREENFIELD

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Who's Who in L.A. Law

SPECIAL SECTION: This year, the Business Journal shines its spotlight on the dealmakers: the L.A. lawyers who pull off the biggest mergers and acquisitions.

Prominent attorneys in Los Angeles handle deals with a lot of zeros.

Tease photo

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - DAVID ANDERSEN

Special Report

The highlight of David Anderson's past year was the closing two different multimillion-dollar corporate sponsorships for X Prize Foundation in May.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - ANDREW APFELBERG

Special Report

Andred Apfelberg's biggest deals include the sale of OPI Products to Coty and the sale of Fiji Water to Roll International.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - LAWRENCE M. BRAUN

Special Report

Lawrence Braun was kept hopping this year when in one during one eight-week period he completed six M&A transactions, completed a financing, signed a definitive sale agreement to sell a unit of a public company, signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire a private company, signed a merger agreement to sell a private company to a public company, closed a bankruptcy acquisition, and signed five letters of intent to buy and sell various businesses.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - JEFFREY H. COHEN

Special Report

Jeffrey Cohen says his most difficult deal to date was representing of News Corp. and Fox Entertainment Group in the sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers to Frank and Jamie McCourt.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - SANFORD J. HILLSBERG

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - LINDA L. CURTIS

Special Report

Linda Curtis' biggest deal to date was Del Monte Foods Co.’s $5.3 billion leveraged buyout by KKR and other investors this spring.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - ROBERT L. KAHAN

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - WARREN LOUI

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Flower Vendor May Find Thorns in Expansion Plan

Florist shops may oppose FTD move into grocery stores.

FTD’s proposed move into grocery stores may sow seeds of displeasure with its online florist network.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - STEPHEN H. KAY

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Regional Reports

Regional Reports

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - MATTHEW ERTMAN

Special Report

Matthew Ertman's biggest deal to day was representing a large foreign investor in the acquisition of an interest in a large slate of film and television properties for in excess of $500 million.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - HENRY M. FIELDS

Special Report

Henry Fields says his best career moment was conceiving and structuring the recapitalization and sale of AmericanWest Bank in 2010 in a sale by its bankrupt parent, which prevented the bank’s failure.

Bank of America to Shut Down Mortgage Division

BANKING & FINANCE: More than half of unit’s 1,200 employees work in greater L.A. area.

The decision by Bank of America Corp. last week to shutter a unit of its mortgage lending business is expected to hit Southern California particularly hard.

News of the Week

News of the Week

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - BRIAN J. McCARTHY

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Calendar & Events

Calendar

L.A. Developer’s Very Own Biopic

PAGE 3

Downtown L.A. developer Izek Shomof is breaking ground on a new kind of project: committing his life story to film.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - S. ELIZABETH FOSTER

Special Report

Elizabeth Foster's best career moment to date was closing a $100 million IPO on the Swiss stock exchange for my client Leica Geosystems, which at that time was the largest ever IPO for Switzerland.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - MARK H. KIM

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Aesthetics Under Siege

Web video company dresses up HQ with graffiti gang attack.

Web video company Skee TV is making its marks with a graffiti gang tableau at its headquarters.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - GORDON BAVA

Special Report

Gordon Bava is known as one of the town’s veteran corporate dealmakers, but he made news this year wearing a different hat.

Tuning Up Hospitality Industry

Prescriptive provides tailored playlists for eateries, hotels, spas.

Eateries, hotels and spas have taken note of Prescriptive Music’s special mood-setting playlists.

Salvaged Stock

EcoXOXO fills shelves with goods made with recycled items.

EcoXOXO hopes to see green with environmentally minded products made from recycled items.

End of Line for Free Rides?

COMMENT

Charles Crumpley says Metro is on the right track with fare-enforcing subway turnstiles.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - JOHN A. LACO

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Nonunion Contractors to Push More PLA Bans

Move comes despite state bill that limits adoption of bans.

Nonunion contractors continue to push bans on project labor agreements despite a new state law that limits the adoption of the bans.

L.A. Area Chamber Wants City to Work on Jobs

NON-PROFIT: City Council members get hard data on district performances.

Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce employs its own report to push job creation with the City Council.

TV Pitchman Has More in Store with Olive Oil Fryer

Popeil hopes his name adds dose of healthy sizzle to product.

Late-night TV’s gizmo pitchman Ron Popeil looks to reheat his career with an olive oil fryer.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - JONATHAN K. LAYNE

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Food Giant’s European Exposure Tough to Stomach

Dole stock tumbles despite resolution of pesticide lawsuits.

Dole’s European exposure has taken a bite out of the food giant’s share value.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - DAVID YOUNG

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

In Need of More Positive Moves

OPED: Local cities must go beyond poaching each other’s businesses and focus on attracting new companies to region.

Christopher Hills urges local cities to look beyond Los Angeles County’s border to attract new businesses.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - MICHAEL WORONOFF

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - RICK WELCH

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Colorado River Helps Keep Tourism Afloat

OPED

Celines Toribio wants to protect the money flowing from the Colorado River to the tourism industry.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - KEN BARONSKY

Special Report

Ken Baronsky was just out of law school when he was assigned a leveraged buyout case that made him wonder whether he had chosen the wrong profession.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - JOHN A. WEISSENBACH

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - DON L. WEAVER

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Out of Place?

Location agency Real to Reel sees fees dry up as TV dramas leave California, drawn by rival states’ subsidies.

Location agency Real to Reel has sustained dramatic losses as lots of production has fled the state.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - W. ALEX VOXMAN

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - PAUL TOSETTI

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - MARY ANN TODD

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Jay Weston: Table Reads

Movie producer mailed a recommendation of a Chinese eatery to some show biz friends, which led to the launch of his Restaurant Newsletter.

Film producer Jay Weston has a full plate penning restaurant reviews and writing for the Huffington Post.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - PAULINE M. STEVENS

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

New iPhone Delivers Good News to Software Maker

TECHNOLOGY: PixelMags’ subscription app to be on new Apple device.

A Century City tech company is already benefiting from news of Apple Inc.’s latest iPhone, and the device hasn’t even hit stores.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - RICHARD A. SHORTZ

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - SAMANTHA GOOD

Special Report

Samantha Good's clients over the years have included Golden Gate Capital, Oaktree Capital and Gryphon Partners.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - GARY B. ROSENBAUM

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - TOM HOPKINS

Special Report

Tom Hopkins has focused his corporate practice on up-and-coming media and technology companies in Los Angeles and the Bay Area.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - DAVID K. ROBBINS

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - CHELSEA A. GRAYSON

Special Report

Chelsea Grayson's biggest deal to date was representing Deutsch Group in its sale to Wendel Investissement, a French private-equity firm.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - LISA GREER QUATEMAN

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - DAVID M. GRINBERG

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - JOHN F. HARTIGAN

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - STUART OGG

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Santa Anita’s Money Back on Horses

Track looks to spur racing after mall plan flops.

Santa Anita Park bets on social and new media to boost business after plans for mall at horse track fall apart.

Partners Develop Only Bad Blood

Cerberus elbows Casden out of Movietown project.

Alan Casden’s estranged partner Cerberus is looking to sell their joint properties – to anyone but him.

WHO’S WHO IN LAW - MONICA J. SHILLING

Special Report

Business Journal makes its case for L.A.’s top lawyers who shepherd the biggest M&A deals.

Anchor Tenants

San Pedro hopes college, U.S.S. Iowa buoy tourism

San Pedro leaders hope an influx of college students and U.S.S. Iowa’s arrival will buoy downtown.

Friday, October 7

The Week’s Big Movers

The Los Angeles Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies edged up slightly for the week despite lingering investor concerns about the European economy.

Iger to Step Down as Disney's CEO in 2015

Walt Disney Co. said Chief Executive Bob Iger will step down from that role in March 2015, as part of a larger succession plan that also has Chairman John Pepper retiring from the board next year.

Tetra Tech Wins EPA Contract

Tetra Tech Inc. has been awarded a contract valued at up to $55 million to provide research and development support for pollution prevention programs of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Thursday, October 6

L.A. Port Won't Challenge Ruling on Employee Mandate

The Port of Los Angeles will not challenge a federal appeals court ruling that threw out a controversial part of the port’s Clean Truck Program so that the port can't force trucking companies to hire their drivers.

BreitBurn Buys Rocky Mountain Oil Fields for $283 Million

BreitBurn Energy Partners LP has further expanded its presence in the Rocky Mountains with the acquisition of 255 acres of oil and gas properties for $283 million.

Veggie Grill Raises $11 Million from Investors

Veggie Grill, a seven-location restaurant chain offering a vegetarian take on American comfort food, has completed a third round of equity funding to support expansion.

Contour Energy Systems Raises $20 Million

Contour Energy Systems, an Azusa developer of advanced battery technology, has raised $20 million in a Series C funding round.

Wednesday, October 5

National Oilwell Varco Completes Acquisition of Ameron

Houston’s National Oilwell Varco has completed its acquisition of Ameron International Corp. in a deal valued at about $777 million.

Jakks Rejects Oaktree’s Buyout Offer

Jakks Pacific Inc. has turned down Oaktree Capital Management's proposal to take the company private, calling the $670 million bid “inadequate."

Hulu Signs Deal to Carry Univision Programming

Streaming video service Hulu LLC has signed a deal with Spanish-language TV giant Univision Communication Inc. to carry hundreds of hours of novellas and other Univision shows on its site starting later this year.

Increased Rentals Boost Electro Rent’s Quarter

Electro Rent Corp.’s profit jumped 63 percent in its fiscal first quarter as the Van Nuys seller and leaser of computers and other technology equipment saw more lease and rental business here and overseas.

Tuesday, October 4

Windes & McClaughry to Merge with Bay Area Accounting Firm

Windes & McClaughry Accountancy Corp. of Long Beach has agreed to merge with Burr Pilger Mayer Inc. of San Francisco, creating what they say will be the largest California-based accounting and consulting firm by revenue.

Michael Rich Named Chief Exectuive at Rand

Rand Corp. has selected one of its senior managers, Michael Rich, as chief executive and president.

Location Filming in L.A. Jumps in Third Quarter

On-location production days surged 16 percent in Los Angeles during the third quarter of 2011, acording to FilmLA Inc. Increases came in features, television, commercials and small projects.

Dole Settles Nicaragua Lawsuits

Dole Food Co. announced a definitive agreement to settle 38 lawsuits from farm workers who alleged injury from exposure to the pesticide DBCP.

Monday, October 3

Rhapsody Buys Napster

Consumer electronics retailer Best Buy Co. is selling the subscribers and other assets of Napster to Rhapsody International Inc., a competing online music subscription service.

Plastic Bag Maker Sues County Over Ban

The nation’s largest plastic bag maker has filed suit against Los Angeles County trying to overturn an ordinance that bans plastic bags and requires retailers to charge for paper bags.

CB Richard Ellis Group Changes Name

CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. has changed its corporate name to CBRE Group Inc., effective immediately.

Suspended-Camera Maker Lowers Boom on L.A.

New Texas HQ gives CableCam a line on football stadiums.

Chatsworth maker of cable-suspended cameras for football games will slide its HQ to Texas.

Experience Drives Auto Site

Cancer survivor and war veteran linked up to launch AutoRef.com.

After battling cancer and Afghan rebels, the co-founders of AutoRef.com found it easy to launch a car-buying site.

Software Security Firm Needs to Guard Share Value

Nasdaq warns CyberDefender of potential delisting.

Financial issues have left security software firm CyberDefender open to Nasdaq delisting.

Inventing The Future

Special Report: INNOVATION/TECH TRANFER

How do the brainstorms of university professors and grad students get turned into rainstorms of cash in the business world? This special section explains how technology transfer is accomplished at the three L.A. institutions best known for their prowess in obtaining patents and licenses, and for creating companies to commercialize their innovations.

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - KITE PHARMA INC.

Special Report: INNOVATION/ TECH TRANFER

Kite Pharma is developing an immune activating therapy aimed at stimulating the patient’s immune system to fight cancer cells of different tumor types.

Is She on The Level?

Pan maker sees sales rise with special line for topsy-turvy cakes.

Kaye Hartman’s topsy-turvy cake pans have business leaning her way.

State on Right Track

OP-ED: Private-sector support remains strong for high-speed rail project that will create much needed jobs.

Thomas J. Umberg believes California is headed in the right direction with high-speed rail.

Real Estate Lawyer Gets a Leg Up

PAGE 3

Ervin Cohen & Jessup LLP partner Tom Sestanovich has had a storied athletic career – despite losing his right leg to a rare form of cancer as a teenager.

USC: Focus on Most Marketable Technologies

Special Report: INNOVATION/ TECH TRANFER

When USC Stevens Institute for Innovation was created five years ago, it represented a change in the university’s approach to turning inventions into companies. Its role is to give students and professors more resources for developing new technologies and forming companies.

CalTech: Ivory Tower Culture Change

Special Report: INNOVATION/ TECH TRANFER

Caltech patents as many as 140 inventions every year, making it one of the most active filers in Los Angeles County. But the Pasadena research university has only been helping professors and students commercialize that technology for the past 16 years.

Lew Feldman: Stand-Up Guy

Attorney gave up his comedy career for a seat at the table with some of real estate’s biggest movers and shakers.

A funny thing happened on the way to a comedy career for L.A. power-player attorney Lew Feldman.

UCLA: Changes Lead to More Startups

Special Report: INNOVATION/ TECH TRANFER

In the early years of UCLA’s Office of Intellectual Property, professors and donors were critical of the technology-transfer program. They said it failed to turn out successful startup companies and wasn’t doing enough to license its technology to local corporations.

West L.A. Firm Helps Take Stakes in Communities

SDS helps backers of social projects cobble together funding.

Strategic Development Solutions helps backers of community-minded projects find money.

Small Video Screen Maker Pages New Customers

Americhip can attach mini movies to paper ads and manuals.

Gift-card product company Americhip’s big picture is changing with its new tiny video screens.

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - MICROSKIA INC.

Special Report: INNOVATION/ TECH TRANFER

UCLA Professor Aydogan Ozcan and his team at Microskia have invented a technology for a very small, light optical microscope suitable as an inexpensive attachment to a cell phone or a portable instrument.

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - BRUIN BIOMETRICS LLC

Special Report: INNOVATION/ TECH TRANFER

Bruin Biometrics' SEM scanner device is a handheld apparatus that measures subepidermal moisture as a means to detect and monitor the development of edema.

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - GUIDE VEST

Special Report: INNOVATION/TECH TRANFER

Guide Vests, developed at USC, are equipped with monitors to help blind people navigate.

Taking Credit for Your Credibility

Malibu firm minds other businesses’ online reps.

A web entrepreneur boosts his profile with a company that tracks both a business’s credit and online reputation.

Creative Tech Firm Pulls Plug on Santa Monica

REAL ESTATE: Mahalo.com opts for Culver City location in deal valued at $1 million.

Santa Monica is losing a creative tech tenant to Culver City.

Upgrade, Downgrade, Failing Grade

COMMENT

Hard-sell from Costco clerks has Charles Crumpley ready to check out of the discount giant.

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - CRED.FM

Special Report: INNOVATION/TECH TRANFER

Cred.fm, developed at USC, is the game you play by sharing the music you love. A player recommends songs to others in the network and – if the recommendation is listened to – then she gets influence points.

Cooking Up A Loan

Grandson hopes federal-city program helps him keep family eatery.

Grandson of L.A. restaurant’s co-founders hopes a city-federal loan will keep the eatery in the family.

Truckers May Ride All the Way to Supreme Court

TRADE & TRANSPORT: Group says recent ruling still gives L.A. port too much power.

When a federal appeals court last week threw out the most controversial part of the Port of Los Angeles’ Clean Truck Program, it looked like a clear win for the trucking industry.

Regional Reports

Regional Reports

Kids’ Restaurant Cuts Cheesiness

Giggles N’ Hugs hopes high-end focus serves up tasty IPO.

One-location restaurant Giggles N’ Hugs is all smiles as it embraces a plan to go public.

Calendar & Events

Calendar

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - NINJA METRICS

Special Report: INNOVATION/TECH TRANFER

Ninja Metric’s Katana Engine is a system that analyzes data from large social systems to show what is driving traffic, spending, quitting, etc. It also detects when a person is at risk of leaving.

Training Site?

Railroad rolls on $500 million Wilmington yard

The Burlington Northern is laying tracks to build a $500 million rail yard in Wilmington.

News of the Week

News of the Week

Small-Business Loans Have Little Impact in L.A.

BANKING & FINANCE: Area institutions receive only $61 million from federal program.

The government gave out the final round of funds under its highly touted small-business loan program that closed last week, but don’t expect much of an impact in Los Angeles.

Visa Reform Deserves Welcome Mat

OP-ED

Robert Amano, Mark S. Liberman and Gary L. Toebben would welcome visa reform and more visitors from abroad.

INNOVATION/TECH TRANSFER - ARGES IMAGING

Special Report: INNOVATION/TECH TRANFER

Arges Imaging is a 3-D imaging technology company that has developed a handheld scanner that can directly scan teeth in order to create restorations such as crowns and bridges.

Getting Toehold on Fashion

Comfortable shoes that are stylish too proves a good fit for some stars.

Dana Davis’ struggle with diabetes inspired her to address a more pedestrian challenge: the lack of fashionable, but comfortable footwear.

Domain Name Firm Hopes to Click in Marketing

Oversee retools staff to focus on new suite of website products.

Oversee.net is shifting its focus away from the domain-name game and into managing and monetizing websites.