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Shwanika Narayan

Stories by Shwanika


Founder, Wolfgang Puck Worldwide Inc.

Celebrity chef and restaurateur Wolfgang Puck did not finish high school, but from an early age – 14 to be exact – he knew he wanted to be a chef.

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Growth To Go

Kitchen United offers existing restaurants space, help on delivery services

Commercial kitchen intended to help brick-and-mortar restaurants get into the delivery game.

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UCLA Anderson Appoints Interim Dean

Alfred Osborne, associate senior dean of external affairs and a professor at the UCLA Anderson School of Management, has been tapped as the school’s interim dean starting July 1, the school announced on May 22.

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Blizzard Entertainment Signs Hasbro as Master Toy Licensor

Video game publisher Blizzard Entertainment Inc., signed Hasbro Inc. as its master toy licensor for its Overwatch franchise, the company announced May 22.

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Uncertainty at California-China Business Summit

Conference chance to normalize relations amid Trump’s tough trade talk

Dedicate discussions at California-China Summit.

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Millennials on Chains’ Menus?

RESTAURANTS: Signs point to trend of younger franchisees

It’s no surprise that the Business Journal’s list of the top restaurant chains is again dominated by fast-food and fast-casual restaurants – concepts based on large-scale operations.

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Differential Brands Names Borromeo President of Hudson Jeans

Differential Brands Group Inc. has named Maria Borromeo president for its Hudson Jeans brand, the company announced May 16.

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Pelican Products to Host UK Entrepreneur Program in Torrance

Pelican Products, makers of protective cases for a range of products, is sponsoring a pilot program that will bring six UK-based entrepreneurs to the company’s headquarters in Torrance for training this fall.

Ports’ Cargo Numbers Mixed in April

The Port of Long Beach saw a 10.8 percent increase in cargo movement for the month of April compared to the same time last year. Port of L.A. on the other hand, recorded a decline.

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Bill Spooks Apparel Cos.

Calls for warning label on synthetic clothing

Legislation to require warning labels on garments made of synthetic fabric draws ire of apparel makers.

Beyond Meat Plans Global Distribution

Beyond Meat, makers of plant-based meat substitute products, announced its plan to enter the global market beginning this summer.

Tourists Injected $22.7 Billion in Local L.A. Economy Last Year

Tourists visiting Los Angeles County pumped a record-setting $22.7 billion into the local economy last year, the L.A. Tourism and Convention Board announced on May 7.

Southern California Warehouses May Have to Regulate Trucking Pollution

The South Coast Air Quality Management District moved a step closer in regulating pollution stemming from trucks by focusing on a different sector of the cargo movement supply chain: warehouses.

Chicken of the Sea Moves to El Segundo

FOOD PROCESSING: Relocates 150 employees; partners with aquarium on education

Chicken of the Sea International, providers of canned seafood products, moved its North American headquarters to El Segundo from San Diego, the company announced last week.

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L.A. Region’s $431B in Trade Worth Celebrating

Organizations to host trade-related events throughout month

The business community in L.A. County, which set the pace on World Trade Week nearly 100 years ago, is getting set for the latest annual celebration.

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Act 1 Group Named One of Fastest Growing Women-Owned Businesses

An L.A.-based company was included on a list of 50 fastest-growing, women-owned business, as ranked by the non-profit Women Presidents’ Organization.

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Chicken of the Sea Moves North American HQ to El Segundo

Chicken of the Sea International, providers of canned seafood products, moved its North American headquarters from San Diego to El Segundo, the company announced May 2.

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Saban Brands to Sell Power Rangers to Hasbro for $522M

Century City-based Saban Brands, creators of the live-action Power Rangers children’s show, agreed to sell the brand to Hasbro Inc. for $522 million, the companies announced May 1.

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Platinum Equity Portfolio Company Merges with Competitor

Combined company worth estimated $1.5B

Beverly Hills-based Platinum Equity’s portfolio company, Interior Logic Group, announced its merger with competitor Interior Specialist Inc. on May 1. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Furniture Makers to Shutter Shops

MANUFACTURING: More than 200 employees could be out of jobs

Two furniture manufacturers in Los Angeles are shutting their factory doors, according to notices issued by the companies last month to a state agency.

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Troubling Trend For Mattel Amid Its Latest C-Suite Shakeup?

MANUFACTURING: Former YouTube studio exec Kreiz follows Google vet

Mattel Inc.’s fourth chief executive in four years officially took the helm of the company last Thursday.

Deal Takers

Port of Long Beach terminal at center of deal under review by little-known Committee on Foreign Investment

Shipping line’s pending acquisition of competitor could get thwarted should it include local seaport terminal.

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Mattel Shares Rise after First Quarter Earnings Announced

Shares of toymaker Mattel Inc. rose 4 percent after the company beat analyst expectations for its first quarter earnings announced April 26.

Highview Capital Acquires Two Manufacturing Companies

Private equity firm Highview Capital’s first portfolio company, American Plastics, has acquired two Ohio-based manufacturing companies, the company announced on April 18. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Chinese Company's Impending Control of L.B. Terminal Prompts Concern

U.S. regulators have reportedly raised concerns about China-based Cosco Shipping taking control of a container terminal at the Port of Long Beach as part of its $6.3 billion acquisition of another shipping line, the Wall Street Journal reported on April 20.

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New Electric Buses at LAX

The L.A. Board of Airport Commissioners approved a $23.7 million purchase of new 60-foot electric buses that will be used to transport passengers between terminals on the airfield.

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Electric Vehicle Access Expands in L.A.

More charging stations, car-sharing programs on tap

EVgo positions its electric car charging business to meet L.A. demand, strikes deal with GM

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Culver City Snack Brand Debuts With Kroger

Peatos gets shelf space at 1,700 locations; deal with Safeway expected

Healthy snack maker Snack It Forward lands deal with Kroger.

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$130M in Wings on Port Pilot Program

TRADE: Macquarie commits to longer view

The proposed $130M staging facility at the Port of L.A. could ease container traffic congestion.

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New CEO at Mattel Inc.

Toymaker Mattel Inc. announced April 19 that its chief executive officer, Margo Georgiadis, is leaving the company to take up the top executive position at Ancestry, a consumer genomics company.

PierPass Switches to Appointments and Flat Fees for Shipping Cargo Pickups

PierPass Inc., a not-for-profit organization created by terminal operators at the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach, is replacing its pricing model and implementing an appointment-based system for container pickups, the entity announced on April 16.

So Cal Ports Report Cargo Movement for Q1

The number of cargo containers moved in the first quarter of 2018 was similar at the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach but compared to the same period last year, one port set a record while the other saw a decline.

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Provenance Private Equity Firm Invests in Menswear Brand

Westwood-based Provenance, a private equity firm, closed a “significant minority investment” in menswear brand Knot Standard, the companies announced April 9. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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L.A. Finance Up In Various Segments

FINANCE: Private equity assets rise 22% to $141B

L.A.’s investment community brokered several large and noteworthy deals last year.

L.A. Entrepreneur Program Adds Manufacturing

Mayor’s office intends to boost industry in region; virtual advice in store

Nonprofit Make it in LA aims to help companies manufacture locally.

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Another Kind of Residuals

Repurpose Inc. makes line of tableware from sugarcane stock, other plant-based byproducts

Lauren Gropper’s career was rooted in environmental design, so founding and running a compostable tableware company was a natural evolution – but not a straight line.

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EVgo Lowers Electric Vehicle Charging Rates

Company looks to California as market leader, moves headquarters to L.A

Competition is charging up among makers of electric vehicle charging stations.

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Los Angeles and Long Beach Ports Set New February Cargo Records

The local twin port complexes set new records for cargo movement in the month of February, both ports announced on March 13.

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Ugly Dates, Sweet Nectar

FOOD: Culver City-based syrup maker adds 3 chains to national distribution lineup

D’Vash is part of a growing group of firms finding fresh uses for “ugly fruit.”

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Prefab Outfit Talks Code for Customers

Cover Technologies’ new service sorts requirements for accessory structures

A Gardena company is giving homeowners easy access to city of L.A. building codes.

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Alhambra Manufacturer Fined for Safety Violations

Alhambra Foundry Company Ltd., manufacturer of metal works for the construction industry, was fined $283,390 by the state for an accident that amputated an employee’s legs.

New CEO at L.A. Federal Credit Union

Richard Lie has been appointed president and chief executive of Los Angeles Federal Credit Union.

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New Subscription

TechStyle adds brick-and-mortar channel to e-commerce base

TechStyle wants to bring e-tail tech tactics to brick-and-mortar retail.

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Hollywood Restaurant Cited for Wage Theft Violations

The Shrimp Lover #1 Inc., a seafood restaurant in Hollywood, has been fined almost $520,000 in wage theft violations by the state’s Labor Commissioner’s office.

WWE Brings Rare Bright Spot for Mattel

Company extends deal for STEM-related toys on heels of dismal holiday, Q4

Mattel is banking on WWE action figures and STEM-themed educational toys.

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Harbor Trucking Association and Clean Energy Fuels Partner Up

Clean Energy Fuels Corp. is now the exclusive provider of cleaner fuels for Harbor Trucking Association’s 100-member trucking companies, the organizations announced on Feb. 21.

L.A. City Council Announces Homeless Housing Commitment

In a bid to tackle homelessness, the Los Angeles City Council announced on Feb. 21 that it had created a city-wide initiative to create a minimum of 3,300 supportive housing units.

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Guess’ Paul Marciano Gives up Day-to-Day Duties Amid Sexual Harassment Claims

Downtown-based Guess Inc. announced Feb. 20 that co-founder Paul Marciano had stepped down from his daily duties due to an on-going investigation of sexual harassment claims by model and actress Kate Upton.

Jakks Pacific Adds Harry Potter Tech Wands

Jakks Pacific Inc. will launch a collection of “technologically advanced and interactive” magic wands based on the “Harry Potter” films thanks to a partnership between the toymaker and Warner Brothers.

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Online Discounter Hollar Adds InVia ‘Picker’ Robots to Workforce

Online discount store Hollar Inc. recently has deployed 100 “picker robots” to help with automating fulfillment services at its Commerce warehouse.

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