LA FINANCE

The Money Book: Jonathan Howe

INVESTMENT BANKING

Jonathan Howe is managing director and head of mergers and acquisition in the Wedbush Securities Investment Banking Group.

The Money Book: Michael Reilly

Investment Banking

Michael Reilly is chief investment officer equities group and has been the director of U.S. equities since 2006.

Movers for Week Ending Oct. 20

Arts District ad tech firm Social Reality Inc. was the week’s biggest gainer, rising 46.4 percent to close at $4.48. Skechers USA Inc. of Manhattan Beach was also up big, gaining 39.6 percent to close at $33.99. MannKind Corp. was the week’s biggest loser, dropping 22.2 percent to close at $4.11.

L.A. County Unemployment Rate Edges Up to 4.9 Percent Despite Strong Job Gains

L.A. County’s unemployment rate inched up to 4.9 percent in September from 4.8 percent in August even as employers in the region added 43,500 jobs to their payrolls, the state reported Friday.

Samsung Eyes Content, Leads $8.3 Million Round for Pluto TV

Pluto TV, a free internet television service, has raised another $8.3 million in a round led by Samsung Venture Investment Corp., the venture capital arm of Samsung Group.

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Pomona Partnership Submits Bid for Amazon Second HQ

A Pomona-area partnership announced Monday it had submitted a bid for Amazon’s second headquarters that would center around the Fairplex and Cal Poly Pomona campuses.

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E-Sports Ad Tech Firm VY Esports Raises Seed Round

Ad tech startup VY Esports of Santa Monica announced it had raised an undisclosed seed round led by Raine Ventures, with participation from Courtside Ventures, Elysian Park Ventures and other investors.

Pontifax AgTech Management Closes $105 Million Investment Fund

A Santa-Monica based agricultural investment firm backed by some of L.A.’s wealthiest individuals has closed its first fund with $105 million in commitments, the company announced Wednesday.

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Andelman and Mullen, VC Vets, Announce New Venture

Two veteran L.A. venture capitalists have formed Bonfire Ventures, a Brentwood VC firm focused on software for businesses.

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Herbalife Closes $600 million Stock Buyback

Herbalife Ltd. said Friday it had closed its $600 million stock buyback. The announcement, coupled with the anticipation of further buybacks, sent shares up by 10 percent in early trading.

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SEC Qualifies Fatburger’s $24 Million Initial Public Offering

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has given the go-ahead to the $24 million initial public offering planned by Fatburger’s parent company, paving the way for the company to begin trading on the Nasdaq later this month.

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Opportunity Funds Expands Lending Program Statewide

Opportunity Fund, a nonprofit lender for small businesses, has expanded its pilot Community Partner Program from the Los Angeles region to include San Diego, the Central Valley and Northern California.

CBRE Agrees to Acquire Atlanta Design, Engineering Firm

CBRE Group Inc. said it had agreed to acquire Heery International Inc., an Atlanta-based project management, design and engineering company, for $57 million.

Los Angeles Pet Device Firm Draws $3.7 Million Investment

Petnet Inc., a privately held Los Angeles company that sells automatic pet feeders for cats and dogs, has received a $3.75 million cash infusion, according to an SEC filing.

Morgan Stanley to Acquire Mesa West Capital

Morgan Stanley Investment Management Inc. of New York announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Brentwood-based real estate investment lending firm Mesa West Capital.