Stories for June 1997

Monday, June 30


Specialty: Later stage manufacturing, logistics, real estate, specialty retailing, shipping, oil and gas


A healthy degree of skepticism from investors awaited Danny Villanueva Sr. and Guillermo Bron when they set out to start a venture capital fund several years ago targeting Hispanic consumers.


Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. completed its bid to create a sports cable network to rival ESPN last week, buying a minority stake in eight regional sports channels and two pro sports franchises.


Venture capital firms are a great source of financing for high-growth companies. But they also can be among the pickiest of financiers.


Silicon Valley doesn't have all the venture capital cards, according to Todd Springer, vice president of Trident Capital Inc.

Union BanCal

Union BanCal Venture Corp. is not your traditional venture capital firm. Established in 1967, the company is a wholly owned subsidiary of San Francisco-based Union Bank of California, which was formed last year following the merger of Union Bank and Bank


For Ted White, it meant 20-hour work days poring over paperwork and conferencing with lawyers on both coasts. Without an office to work out of, White says his kitchen was so jammed with file folders that his family couldn't even use it.


Small growth companies that's the hot stuff, in the economy, and on Wall Street, right?


EarthLink Network Inc.


Since 1986, the U.S. government has fought malfeasance in the defense industry by allowing private citizens to file fraud suits against the alleged perpetrators on the government's behalf and then collect a share of any damages.

Weekly Briefing

Jackie Martin left a sales management job 13 years ago to strike out on her own as a caterer. She didn't like it the hours were long and the work hard. But as part of the job she made floral centerpieces for tables. When more and more customers started


When Fox Broadcasting Co. debuted 10 years ago on KTTV-Channel 11, some observers predicted it would be a matter of decades, if ever, before the station would become a serious challenger to the Big Three networks.


There live, via satellite was Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan describing to a CNBC news anchor the steps other cities can take to enjoy the kind of growth L.A. has had over the last year or so.


Financial insiders know him as a successful venture capitalist a man who bet on small tech companies and made millions when they went public.


Sipping his morning coffee at the offices of Enterprise Partners in Brentwood, James Gauer glances over the day's itinerary, which is scribbled on a yellow note pad.

Q & A Lewis

Though only 41, J. Christopher Lewis is already a veteran venture capitalist, having put in 16 years in the business, first with Riordan, Freeman & Spogli (now disbanded), and then with Riordan, Lewis & Haden, in downtown Los Angeles.


Knight-Ridder Inc. put the Long Beach Press-Telegram on the block last week, creating a new opportunity for a buyer to assemble a regional newspaper group to compete against the Los Angeles Times.


Decades ago, the Santa Clara Valley economy was fueled by plum orchards and cattle.

Levine Leichtman

Levine Leichtman Capital Partners of Beverly Hills loves to scope out the California business world for promising entrepreneurs, and the type of industry is no object if the person is right.


Quotable: 'Often, a home run is a matter of helping a company with strategy and carving out a niche that they can protect and work to build. Once it goes public, it can keep growing.'


When you read about the tax cut bill in the newspapers, you learn mostly about the big picture issues. Should there be tax credits for children? What tax should there be on capital gains?


The Business Journal, somewhat immodestly, laid out an agenda for Los Angeles six months ago under the heading, "25 Ways to Make L.A. Grow." It was a plan, fashioned with the help of business, political and academic leaders throughout town, to examine the


A New York retailer is introducing to Los Angeles what might be called the Home Depot of the beauty world.

Media Technology

Specialty: Start-up companies whose products meld entertainment and information technologies


As you plan your vacation this summer, the World Wide Web may not be a complete substitute for a travel agent, but there are some excellent sites worth a look before you pick up the phone to make a reservation. At a minimum, you might save the cost of a g


I'm writing in response to a recent opinion piece about local philanthropy ("Non Profits Must Adapt to New Reality," May 12). Its author, Barbara Greenleaf, writes that Bank of America "focuses its philanthropic activity on its home town" of San Francisco

Health Column

There was the president, yes, the U.S. President, Bill Clinton, in Los Angeles last week praising managed care giant Kaiser Permanente for helping out with health care for the country's low-income, uninsured children.


Despite its economic might, Los Angeles remains an also-ran in the race for venture capital. 25-27


U.S. Secretary of Commerce William Daley applauded the California Manufacturing Technology Center during a visit to Los Angeles last week, saying the program appears to be doing its job helping small manufacturers modernize their operations.


Mid-level executives in Los Angeles spend an average of 36.8 percent of their annual income on a home mortgage, according to a report released last week by E & Y; Kenneth Leventhal Real Estate Group. Only New York and San Francisco homeowners pay more. The


California's top property/casualty insurance companies are slowly recovering after several years of decline in homeowner and earthquake coverage.


Seeking to break the deadlock over Burbank Airport expansion, Burbank city officials have resumed negotiations with the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority over the number of gates for a proposed new terminal.


Billionaire Marvin Davis has put to rest any doubts about his legendary sense of market timing.


In an effort to cut costs and consolidate management, Kaiser Permanente will shift oversight of its Southern California operations from Pasadena to Northern California, company officials said last week.


Los Angeles has a monster economy, which employs nearly 4 million people, and which harbors industries that are the envy of the world from entertainment to aerospace to fashion.


I was fascinated by all of the facts and figures in your 1997 Business Almanac (June 23). However, I noticed that El Segundo was not among your list of cities nationwide with Fortune 500 company headquarters. El Segundo actually has four: Unocal Corp. (17


As long-time executives in health care companies, James Berglund and Charles Martin came across a lot of people with ideas for products. Problem was, the people with the ideas seldom had the knowledge to bring them to life.


The name now seems out of place. But Harkham Industries Inc., which produces women's sportswear under the Jonathan Martin label, has launched a multi-million dollar bid to change that and transform Jonathan Martin into a household name.

Kline Hawkes

Venture capital veteran Frank Kline discovered the joys and frustrations of raising capital when he struck out on his own to start Kline Hawkes California L.P. three years ago.


The DirecTV satellite-TV service is launching a major drive to tap into the more than 500,000-unit apartment market in L.A.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

Expansion at the Burbank Airport has become so contentious that Burbank and Airport Authority officials have resorted to secrecy on the whereabouts of their negotiating sessions. Burbank officials want to see little or no expansion at the airport, while A

Market Column

Last Monday, Murray Kalis donned a suit and tie the better to put him in the right frame of mind to work on an ad campaign for a banking client.


I attended the May 5 Working Group meeting on the Village Center Westwood Project, where I listened with dismay and frustration as the Laura Lake-led homeowners kept harping on the same tired issues. Despite all the changes made to the project, the basic


Seated at a sunny table at the Century City Shopping Center's food court, Kevin Fenenbock was about to dig in to his taco salad.


For more than two decades, Cindy Miscikowski served as a planning aide and chief of staff to Los Angeles City Councilman Marvin Braude. This week, Miscikowski will take over her former boss' seat on the council.

El Dorado

The marble-clad lobby and gold-leafed decorative molding of the Pacific Grande Hotel in downtown Los Angeles has classic charm.


As a director of business development, honesty, integrity and continuity are essential for getting my job done. While my firm, the Landau Partnership Inc., is not into heavy promotion, we do not like to see our 29-year practice "de-promoted," which was wh


The closest Los Angeles comes to the "big time" of venture capital is Brentwood Venture Capital, the only local firm to make it into the top 30 venture capital firms in the country.


Asian investors purchased $619 million worth of California real estate last year, thanks in large part to a flurry of major building sales in downtown L.A.


A Beverly Hills landmark for 25 years, Hermes, the Parisian fashion accessories retailer, is moving to a new location across Rodeo Drive to accommodate a much larger inventory of merchandise.

Alternative Bullets

- Friends and relatives Usually the cheapest of all capital sources but greater risk of alienating people if venture fails.


In the June 16 Who's Who Real Estate, the Business Journal incorrectly reported that Selleck Properties had disbanded. The company remains in operation.


Peregrine Ventures has found its niche in traditional venture capital financing, with only a general industry focus and a preference for early-stage companies.


For once, the corporate chieftains weren't leaving L.A. they were descending upon it.


A New York retailer is introducing to Los Angeles what might be called the Home Depot of the beauty world.

Company Index

20th Century Fox 6

Monday, June 23


It's been over a year since Wells Fargo & Co. acquired First Interstate Bancorp for $11.3 billion, but Wells is still recovering from arguably one of the longest cases of the Monday morning blues in recent corporate memory.


The vastness of Los Angeles and its economy can be hard to track, which is why the Business Journal each year publishes a detailed accounting of L.A. by the numbers.


The economics of most professional sports teams are relatively simple: Fill the stands, keep the player salaries under control and make your real profit by selling TV rights and corporate sponsorships.


Since Boeing's Co.'s move to acquire McDonnell Douglas Corp. last year, the fate of McDonnell's Douglas Aircraft Co. in Long Beach has been the biggest question mark in the local aerospace industry.


BBDO West has announced three promotions in its creative services department. Dante Lombardi and Dan Burrier were both given the titles of vice president and group creative director and Chris Robb was named senior vice president and creative director.

Forbes Schedule

The following are some of the speakers scheduled to speak this week at "The 1997 Forbes CEO Forum: The Next Millennium." Conferences are only open to company executives registered to attend:

Columbia Las Encinas Hospital

Centered in a community which is rich in history and tradition, Columbia Las Encinas Hospital is no exception. Established in 1904, by Dr. James H. McBride, Las Encinas Hospital (then named the Southern California Sanitarium for Nervous Diseases) was mea

AC Propulsion

The widely held image of electric cars puttering along in the slow lane might be in for a revision.

Computer Column

For the first week after school got out, everything was great for the kids around the house sleeping late, goofing around. What's not to like?


OK, mutual fund gunslingers, you've got a new target. Find the real, high-performing fund.

Q & A

When he took over management of The Peninsula Beverly Hills in 1992, Ali Kasikci was the envy of his peers worldwide taking the reins at a new luxury hotel catering to the elite in the entertainment industry and a VIP clientele of L.A. visitors.

LA Stories

A recent issue of Fortune magazine included a list of the 15 cities with the most Fortune 500 company headquarters. But while Stamford, Conn., and Richmond, Va., made the list each with six L.A. was nowhere to be found. Is L.A. really so devoid of blu

Executive Pay

Never mind show business the real money these days is coming from the banking and finance arena.


Fred Roberts is one of those mysterious investment bankers who operate by themselves, yet always seem to pull a rabbit out their hats whether it is landing a big assignment, or completing a deal.


The Women's NBA launched its first season June 21, when the Los Angeles Sparks sold out the home opener at the Forum. Teams in Houston and Cleveland also sold out their opening games. But some observers warn that the new league could be little more than a


Los Angeles County once teetering on the brink of fiscal insolvency appears to have made a financial comeback after three years of staggering deficits and one-time fixes.

Facts Behind Health Care Costs



The last thing Daniel Linde wanted to do after a 10-hour work day was jump in the car and fight evening traffic just to make it to night school.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

Ben Benya has been appointed executive vice president and director of client services at DavisElen. He was vice president and media director prior to the promotion. Benya was with TBWA/Chiat Day and Bozell/Jacobs before joining DavisElen.

AC Propulsion Box

Driving Force: To pioneer new technology to make electric vehicles more practical and affordable

Wells Time

April 1, 1996 Wells Fargo completes its acquisition of First Interstate for $11.3 billion.

Great West

On the evening of Feb. 17, John Maher stepped out of a corporate jet at Van Nuys Airport after a long President's Day weekend skiing in Colorado with his 13-year-old daughter.


In what is expected to be the largest gathering of blue-chip company executives in the city's history, some 300 corporate chieftains will gather in Los Angeles this week for the 1997 Forbes CEO Forum.

Real Estate Column

Little deals can add up to a big deal, according to Santa Monica-based Macerich Co., a real estate investment trust that signed 60 shopping center leases for more than 118,000 square feet of space throughout the country during the first quarter of this ye

Health Column

Los Angeles legislators have had a busy month shepherding AIDS legislation through the state Assembly and Senate. They saw four bills they sponsored pass in their respective houses by wide margins, with likely full approval later this year.


Michael Eisner is my hero. Shareholders have realized more than $46 billion in gains during his tenure. Shares purchased for $100 when he joined Disney in September 1984 are worth $2,500 today.


In a sharp break with other Los Angeles officials, state Sen. Richard Polanco, D-Los Angeles, is scheduling a public hearing next month to consider alternatives to the Memorial Coliseum as a home for professional football in Los Angeles.

Good Samaritan

When hundreds of community members recently attended a gala event marking the tenth anniversary of Good Samaritan Hospital's Heart Institute, they paid tribute to a program that has grown in quantum leaps over the last decade. As one of the largest and mo

Citrus Valley Health Partners

health systems comes from a unique ability to anticipate and meet the health care needs of the communities it serves. Citrus Valley Health Partners' hospitals, located in the San Gabriel Valley, offer state-of-the-art medicine, melded with community-orien


Tom Kiely has been appointed director of travel industry sales and marketing for Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal CityWalk. He will be responsible for the domestic and international sales activities which market the attractions to tour operators

Tourist Malls

Nearly 24 million tourists are expected to descend on Los Angeles this year, spending an estimated $11 billion, more than ever before.



Future of Hospitals and Health


State-of-the-Art Specialty Car

Orthopaedic Hospital's comprehensive range of adult and pediatric orthopaedic services is unparalleled on the West Coast. A private, not-for-profit specialized treatment center, the hospital campus includes a pediatric and adult inpatient hospital, a si

List Footnotes

Total Compensation is the sum of total cash compensation and total long-term compensation.


Back in 1989, L.A. furniture-maker Stephen T. Wise went on a sight-seeing trip to Asia. But his lingering impressions were less of the beaches of Thailand or the streets of downtown Tokyo than they were of the region's furniture stores and the buying habi

Market Column

Guess what happens when a handful of players owns nearly all the important radio stations in the United States? Those players become very powerful, and they get to charge more for advertising time.

CFX Spotlight

Goal: To have CFX offices in each of the major trading areas in Asia within the next five years.


When businesses don't bring their conventions and meetings to Los Angeles, the hotel industry bleeds, according to Randall K. Villareal, the newly elected chairman of the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau's board of directors.

For Record

In the May 26 Business Journal, the List of messenger service companies contained two incorrect addresses. The address for Action Messenger Service is 6855 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 412, L.A. 90038. The address for Sunrise Delivery Service is 1011 N. Cole


The purchase of Spin magazine earlier this month by Miller Publishing Group marks only the beginning of what company Chief Executive Bob Miller says will become a substantial group of magazine titles.

Weekly Briefing

Q: We manufacturer and sell high-quality, durable sports uniforms to non-professional teams world-wide. We pay high prices for the fabrics we buy from the East Coast and would like to save on costs. These fabrics originate in Japan. Do you have any sugges


The state Supreme Court has dealt a serious blow to the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency's plans to rebuild downtown L.A. by upholding a $750 million spending cap for the CRA's Central Business District.

Company Index

Abe's Deli 1


Hollywood's top-grossing releases in Asia, excluding Japan, indicate a strong preference for action and big-name stars.


Are clothing companies responsible for what goes on behind the doors of their contractors?


Sitrick & Co. is one of L.A.'s biggest public relations firms, although you won't find it on the Business Journal's List of P.R. agencies or anybody else's.


As president of a small snowboard-apparel company, Bombshell, Greenblat found herself facing the same dilemma that plagues scores of young start-ups: She had more than $1 million worth of purchase orders, but was unable to find financing for her manufactu


HONG KONG The line outside the five-screen multiplex stretches around the corner. The marquee advertises Hollywood's latest action blockbuster.

Saint John's Health Center

The future of healthcare is coming to Santa Monica and the Westside. You will find it at Saint John's Health Center. The medical facility is stepping to the forefront of healthcare delivery by developing a comprehensive design plan for a new facility.


A recovering state economy is creating a shortage for California industrial development bonds the tax-free financing vehicles used by manufacturers to build new plants, buy advanced equipment and hire new workers.

Monday, June 16



What's New

LOS ANGELES _ Los Angeles, the City of Angels, offers something for everyone. Trends start here...some say the future starts here. The nation's second largest city is constantly re-creating and redefining itself. The region enjoys a cultural diver

Family Fun

With a virtually limitless list of activities and natural wonders, Los Angeles is increasingly being recognized as a destination that welcomes the entire family.


When she took over management of the Great Western Forum in 1995, Jeannie Buss had a tall order to fill: Bring down expenditures, raise revenues and come up with new events to entertain the crowds.

Los Angeles History

It began as a sleepy pueblo with no natural harbor and an inadequate water supply, and it became one of the largest and most influential cities in the world. From Spanish village to metropolitan power, the many people and forces that shaped Los Angeles h

LA Feature Language

countries calling Los Angeles home, the "new Ellis Island" could have easily become the modern day Babel. But instead of creating constant confusion, L.A.'s linguistic salad bowl serves as a bridge that can welcome foreign visitors to the area in their na


Everything's coming up roses in Hollywood and mums, carnations, daisies and more. And the handful of local florists who cater to television and movie producers couldn't be happier.


Strong faith by investors in mutual funds helped Capital Research & Management Co. top this year's List of Los Angeles County's largest money management firms.


Nearly a year after city officials kicked off a program to sell off excess parcels many vacant or unused L.A. has auctioned off 19 of them, adding more than $3.2 million to city coffers.


At long last at least from some investors' perspectives the small guys are again beating the big boys.


Dierdre Roffoni was a recent USC graduate with plenty of ambition but little idea of where to direct it. She was, however, certain of at least two things: She loved clothes and she knew what looked good.


Stock prices were up sharply last week for L.A.'s three remaining major thrifts, H.F. Ahmanson & Co., Coast Financial Savings and Glendale Federal Bank, following Ahmanson's recent withdrawal of its hostile takeover bid for Great Western Financial Corp.


One of the nation's largest movie theater chains is set to make its entrance into the City of Los Angeles by opening a theater in an area where it will have no competition: downtown San Pedro.

Theme Parks

LOS ANGELES _ Speeding like superman at 100 mph. or escaping the clutches of a Velociraptor ... just another day of fun and fantasy at L.A.'s theme parks.

Media Laboratory

NBC this month introduced a new character named Johnny Chimes, an animated peacock lounge lizard who sings Sinatra knock-offs while promoting the network's primetime lineup.


In response to the area's growing number of small import-export businesses, a Los Angeles developer has begun construction of downtown L.A.'s first modern industrial park.


LOS ANGELES _ Basking in a sunny, semitropical climate, and blessed with a diversity of cultures and conceits, this singular city mixes and matches settings, scenes and styles like no other. It is America's dream machine in living Technicolor. Ri

West Hollywood

Electric nightlife, extraordinary dining, eclectic shopping and exceptionally fine hotels, West Hollywood has the hottest collection of E-rated attractions around.


In the mold of many a Hollywood drama, the rising star may be poised to upstage the vintage veteran in the world of theatre. To be sure, the general public may not think of theatre in L.A. the way they do when they're off to New York or London. Perhaps b


Five years ago, Dr. Francine Vogler got a frantic phone call from a friend whose wife had fallen and broken her hip while on a trip to Milan, Italy.


Rupert Murdoch's global pursuits would be a little scary were they not so logical and well-crafted. The proposed acquisition of Pat Robertson's Family Channel, announced last week, provides him with immediate access to one of the 10 most-watched cable net

Computer Column

Two recent columns describing difficulties with the Windows 95 password system have evoked considerable reader response, making clear that many users have experienced similar frustrations.

Cultural Stage

city in the nation. More legitimate stage productions than in any other American metropolitan region. More resident artists than any other city in the world. Does this sound like the same old La La land?.


LOS ANGELES _ Kitchen table economics may have put the squeeze on many families' vacation budgets, but the drive to experience different parts of the world continues.

LA Media

The Media Relations Department of the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau provides assistance to working press filing stories about Los Angeles as a travel destination. We offer the following services to help with story development:


A chart accompanying a story on City Charter reform in the June 9 Business Journal gave incorrect endorsements for Marguerite Archie-Hudson and Jackie Dupont-Walker. Both were backed by labor, not the mayor.

LA Studios

movies for more than 70 years, and the folks in the back shop realize that not only will people pay to see the final product, but they'll also shell out quite a bit to see how movies are made. Voila! The latest must-see on a vacation itinerary: a studio t

Real Estate Column

A Dallas-based real estate investment trust has bought more than 466,000 square feet of industrial space in Santa Fe Springs, continuing a trend of REITs being the big newsmakers in L.A.-area commercial real estate.


It was around the time of the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles that Gary Robert Baker decided that he wanted to start his own design business. After putting himself through design school, he started up Baker Design Associates and has since establi


it in January," said Jean Bray, public relations officer at Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.


Do you agree or disagree with the following proposition: It's OK to put all your investment eggs in one basket, as long as you watch the basket.


Emerging from a year-long bankruptcy, a leaner and meaner Sizzler International Inc. is hunting for a new identity.


At the UPN affiliates meeting last week, outgoing network Chief Executive and President Lucie Salhany wore a plastic pin depicting the top-hatted cartoon "spokesfrog" for rival network The WB with a dagger in its heart.

Hotel Stars

LOS ANGELES _ The category: Best supporting structure featured in a major motion picture.

CA Facts

California has a Mediterranean-type climate that is characterized by general sun and warmth with rain mainly in the winter. Climate varies greatly based on distance from the ocean and elevation. There are five main climatic zones in the state.

LA Sports

LOS ANGELES a If 1996 were a baseball game, the pitches would be coming fast and furious for L.A.'s sports scene, with more than a few curve balls thrown in to keep everyoneOs attention.

LA Songs

From the upbeat sounds of "I Love L.A." to the classic strains of "L.A.'s My Lady," Los Angeles has been the focus of countless musical tributes. Rock, country, blues and ballad artists have all taken their turn with an L.A. tune and the result is a songb


The City of Los Angeles says it will host its own multimedia convention in 1998, to help fill the void left by the departure of the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) last year to Atlanta.


The Los Angeles Five-County area population is larger than any state excluding California, Alaska, New York and Texas.

Health Column

The Healthcare Association of Southern California has endorsed construction of a 675-750-bed replacement facility for Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center.

LA Guide

Needless to say, Los Angeles has its fair share of detractors - many of whom are, curiously enough, longtime residents who apparently aren't "detracted" enough to move elsewhere. For loyal Angelenos and visitors alike, however, perhaps the most defining


LOS ANGELES _ With more than 93,000 hotel rooms, Los Angeles boasts more hotel rooms than nearly any other vacation destination in the United States.


The playing court for Southern California business is changing, but are college graduates watching?


Although it's 3,000 miles away, Washington D.C. has direct impact on how business gets done in Los Angeles. But do people really pay attention to the doings of the federal government, or are they too busy and too focused on what's going on in their own ba


The latest indication of the severity of Robert Maguire's financial woes surfaced last week, as the prominent Los Angeles developer engaged in "intensive discussions" to retain control of the big Playa Vista project near Marina del Rey.


The proposed strategic alliance between the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power and Duke/Louis Dreyfus has sprung a serious new leak one that could sink the long-awaited partnership before its launch.


That's gratitude for you. Universal Studios Inc., which under former President Sid Sheinberg distributed such mega-hits as "E.T.: The Extraterrestrial," "Jurassic Park" and "Schindler's List," ended its production deal with Sheinberg last week.


When Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky and City Councilman John Ferraro dropped a bomb on Universal Studios Inc.'s expansion plans by recommending a 40 percent cut in the project, it was another sign of the enduring power of homeowner groups i


When Manhattan Bagel Co. Inc. recently decided to move out of North Hills and locate its new manufacturing facility in the city of San Fernando, it was more than just another company leaving Los Angeles city limits for more business-friendly climes.


To merchants along Cesar Chavez Avenue in Boyle Heights, the dramatic drop in crime has done more than make life a little easier.

LA Nightlife

their equally glamorous cohorts from Hollywood's golden era returned to L.A. today ready to party, they'd have a serious adjustment to make.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

Executives at small companies are growing more sophisticated at pricing their services and products. Yet many still look for shortcuts through the strategic pricing process.

Prime Time

A new restaurant has opened in Marina del Rey and it's the kind of "California casual" tenant the County of Los Angeles hopes will revive the waterfront.


Sitrick and Co. has announced the addition of David Farmer and Steve Hawkins to the staff of the strategic communications firm. Farmer is a former New York and Los Angeles bureau chief for Cable News Network and most recently was the Los Angeles bureau ch


I was surprised and disappointed in an article in the June 2 edition of the Business Journal ("State HMO Regulators Talk Like Lions, Seen as Lambs"), especially since the facts don't support the premise that the Department of Corporations has failed to ta


LOS ANGELES _ Los Angeles will be the cultural capital of the 21st century. More museums, theatres, festivals and ethnic neighborhoods can be experienced in the City of Angels than in any other destination. Here, artists from every continent combine the


John Livesay has been named West Coast Director of W magazine. Livesay is the former West Coast manager for both Mirabella and Elle magazines, and previously worked at Us and Self magazines.


LOS ANGELES (May 30, 1997) -- Situated at the center of Los Angeles' entertainment mecca, the 442-room Sheraton Universal Hotel, known as the "Hotel of the Stars" in Universal City, offers a unique locale in the magnificent Hollywood Hills on the backlot


Visitors to L.A. are sure to find one dining trend here to their taste: lower prices. "Definitely it's a consumer's market," said Janet Lowder, a Rancho Palos Verdes restaurant consultant.


Dove Entertainment Inc. founders Michael Viner and Deborah Raffin sold the company last week to new owners, who must now work to put the company on a more solid footing, analysts said.


LOS ANGELES a Los Angeles, for years overshadowed by New York and Paris in the world of haute couture, is now coming into its own as the unofficial seamstress to the casually clad masses, industry insiders say.

Hotel Nikko

BEVERLY HILLS, CA (June 2, 1997) - Ideally located in the "heartbeat" of the city of angels on Beverly Hills famed Restaurant Row, the Four Diamond, Four Star Hotel Nikko at Beverly Hills envelopes guests into a tranquil environment with all the comforts

Company Index

1st Business Bank 11


Beset by bickering board members and under attack by state, local and federal officials, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority is facing the threat of a major overhaul that would change the makeup of its 13-member governing board.

Market Column

In September, 275 head of cattle will be set loose in the streets of La Verne. Again.

Travel Trade

The Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau (LACVB) is a private, not-for-profit association that provides an array of services to the travel trade. These services include the following:


As Washington Mutual Inc. prepares to expand its presence on the Los Angeles banking scene through its acquisition of Chatsworth-based Great Western Financial Corp., several other out-of-state institutions are gaining footholds in Southern California.

Trendy LA

remember, Los Angeles has been perched on the cutting edge. For decades, L.A. has had the world waiting for the next trend: daring fashion, computer wizardry or special effects, both the reel and real kinds. This is, of course, the city that gave the wor

Mandalay Beach

Put your feet in the sand, catch a sunset at the beach, ride along the bike path, or just relax in one of the fabulous 2 room suites at Embassy's Mandalay Beach Resort. Located midway between Malibu and Santa Barbara, this Spanish style, all-suites hotel


its mark in many ways. Los Angeles leads the nation in business, entertainment, education and diversity. A dynamic and trend-setting region, many things make L.A. one-of-akind. Here are just a few examples:


International management consulting firm with expertise in the aerospace industry.

Sunday, June 15


Hollywood has been called a jungle, but Arnold Milchan, principal owner of New Regency Productions Inc., is well-prepared: He's a veteran of the Israeli Six Day War and the Yom Kippur War.

Monday, June 9


Winnick pulled together the investment team that purchased the mortgage debt on the troubled Playa Vista development, where Maguire had fallen into default on his loan.


Recent Deal: Purchasing the biggest shopping center in Salt Lake City, South Towne Center.


Recent Deals: Purchased majority of income-producing property of Ontario-based Mission Land Co. for $43.6 million.


Recent Deals: Downtown sports arena, DreamWorks SKG projects, Universal Studios expansion


When Russian actor Oleg Vidov defected to the United States in 1985, the man touted as "the Robert Redford of the Soviet Union" attracted international headlines and speculation that he would do for Russians in cinema what Mikhail Baryshnikov and Alexande


Victoria Lins has been named director of marketing for Adlink. She previously worked with AirTouch Cellular. She will design and implement Adlink's overall marketing strategy and oversee the creative services, promotions and public relations departments.


Why waste time and money in even having citizens vote? Just give the issues to a federal judge and let her or him decide for the voters, as they've done recently in matters that the voters did decide on, but which the judges didn't like, and blocked.


A veteran journalist who knows the fashion circuit from coast-to-coast, as well as internationally, Liz Mazurski is looking forward to settling into her new position as West Coast editor of Glamour magazine.

Real Estate Column

Look for Alexander Haagen Properties Inc. to start acquiring more shopping centers in Los Angeles, the rest of California and bordering Western states.


When M. David Paul isn't developing new office space, you might find him remodeling a new home he bought in Westwood that was built in 1936.


Top Los Angeles County officials, seeking to borrow $1.3 billion against next year's tax rolls, are telling Wall Street analysts and investors that the nation's largest county government has turned the corner from its worst fiscal crisis ever.


Recent Deal: Negotiated a deal under which CommonWealth will purchase commercial properties on behalf of Lazard Freres & Co.


Recent Deal: Purchasing the land and entitlements for what will be Glendale Plaza, a 500,000-square-foot office tower.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

The Port of Los Angeles has decided to drop its fancy marketing name, Worldport L.A. The reason? Widespread confusion. "People thought it was two different ports," says port spokeswoman Barbara Yamomoto. "We decided to get back to basics." Henceforth, the


In 1990, Brandt, who heads Nomura's Los Angeles real estate division, was at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Real Estate, working on a thesis about a new way of raising investment capital called debt securitization.


Voters finally elected a City Charter reform commission last week, yet there were widespread perceptions both in and out of City Hall that charter reform was dead on arrival.


Just before noontime, Takashi "Tachi" Kiuchi gestures in disgust from the boardroom window of Mitsubishi Electronic America Inc.'s headquarters in Cypress.


Several newsroom management changes have been announced by Los Angeles Business Journal Editor Mark Lacter.


Your article on football in Los Angeles ("L.A. Football Who Needs It?," May 26) was great because it captures the essence of what is really happening. I would add that over half of the county population did not grow up with football and has no emotional

Entrepreneur of the Year

More than 3,000 entrepreneurs have received the Entrepreneur of the Year award since its creation in 1986. Founded by Ernst & Young LLP in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the program has grown from one award area to 46 across the United States and 10 countries int


If you're a conservative saver who's unhappy with the rate on your bank CDs, the insurance industry has a hot new product designed exactly for people like you.


Recent Deal: Acquiring the Citicorp Center office highrise and adjacent Seventh Market Place shopping center.


Recent Deals: Developing 360,000 square feet of retail space on site of former General Motors auto plant in Van Nuys.


Recent Deal: Investing $40 million on behalf of Insignia Commercial Investment Group to acquire an office building in Phoenix.


Jeff Nickell isn't wasting any time in his new position as vice president of Spieker Properties. In less than three months on the job, Nickell has already pieced together $80 million worth of deals.


As a child growing up in Houston, Mark Cassidy learned the real estate market from the bottom up.


To the surprise of local economists, international trade in Southern California has taken a sharp turn upward this year far outpacing 1996's levels.


In the wake of the passage of 1996's Proposition 209, a number of L.A. Hispanic organizations have formed a new task force to promote the interests of Latino-owned businesses in a post-affirmative action world.


Recent Deals: Designed Disney's Skunkworks Studio, Santa Monica Studios (to break ground in January), and 600,000 square foot Glendale Plaza (to break ground in early fall).


Los Angeles harbor officials took the first step last week to find a replacement for longtime port director Ezunial Burts nearly six months after Burts resigned.


So much so that Sadowsky a regional manager with Julien J. Studley Inc. has been known to knock on the doors of properties that aren't even on the market. Being aggressive is one way to survive in a crowded market, he said.


In his decades-long call for the revitalization of the City of Los Angeles' downtown, Ira Yellin has led by example.


After being promoted to executive vice president of The Seeley Co. in 1985, Jay Haskell vowed to increase the firm's size from 30 brokers to 100.


There is a popular Los Angeles post card these days portraying the "four seasons of disaster" riots, fires, earthquakes and floods. Cute for some, but for those whose livelihood is tourism the decade's catastrophes and economic slump have been no joke.


Recent deal: Development of 600,000 square feet of industrial space that will break ground this fall in the South Bay.


Recent deal: Bought $250 million worth of neighborhood shopping centers in Southern California.


As president of Elite Modeling Agency's Los Angeles Office, Trott has worked with some of the world's most famous models and actresses. Cheryl Tiegs, Paulina Porizkoza, Kathy Ireland, Kim Alexis, and Demi Moore have all walked into her office during the p


Recent deal: Assumed management of Century Plaza Towers following the $480 million sale of the building in April.


The South Coast Air Quality Management District board on Friday will decide whether to renew the contract of executive director, James Lents. The role played by Lents and the AQMD staff in cleaning up air pollution has long been a subject of debate in the


Recent Deal: Leading the efforts to reach a plan for a commercial project to be built in Westwood Village that would satisfy both the developer and area residents.


In a way, the real estate recession was a blessing for Mark Armbruster, an attorney and City Hall lobbyist who specializes in winning approval for major commercial real estate projects.

Health Column

Los Angeles County has 44 hospitals' worth of excess beds, according to a new study just completed for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.


Recent Deals: Acquired a 145,000-square-foot building and adjacent land in London for Disney's TV and Film European headquarters.


The Cold War was winding down, and with it the prospects for his company, Datron Systems Inc., which makes high-end antennas for tracking rockets, aircraft and missiles at its Simi Valley plant.


Never mind all the Hollywood hype about computer-driven effects being the star of the summer movie season. What's driving much of the gee-whiz stuff is strictly low-tech as well as being one of the oldest tricks in show business.

Washington Mutual

Washington Mutual Inc. is coming to town, and in keeping with the personal style of its chief Kerry Killinger, that arrival is occuring in a very big way.

EOY Profile

The Entrepreneur Of The Year awards program was established to honor entrepreneurs for their vision, innovation, persistence and hard work in creating and sustaining successful, growing business enterprises.


ITT Corp.'s decision to offer some of its most valuable luxury hotels for sale prompted officials with Beverly Hills-based Hilton Hotels Corp. last week to say they may cut their $10.5 billion offer for the company.


A preliminary vote last month on whether or not to extend the contract of James Lents and his top management team at the South Coast Air Quality Management District was six votes "for" and six "against." Lents and his team need at least seven "for" votes


Robert F. Maguire III is responsible for many of L.A.'s most prominent developments including the MGM Plaza in Santa Monica, the rebuilding of the historic Central Library and the First Interstate Tower, the tallest highrise in the west.

Market Column

Two years ago, advertising agencies saw the light. It was coming from their computer screens.


KABC-TV Channel 7 is in the final stages of negotiations to move its television news operations and offices to a new 100,000-square-foot campus to be built at Taylor Yard, an old Southern Pacific Railroad yard near Elysian Park, sources said last week.


A San Diego-based developer will file plans this month for a project that could become the economic anchor of the $41 million redevelopment of downtown Culver City.


When an investment group including Morgan Stanley Real Estate Funds recently bought the mortgage on the proposed Playa Vista development, Jeff Dritley was right in the thick of the deal.


E! Entertainment Television will hire about 125 new employees to support a major increase in production and an intense focus on entertainment news.


The Los Angeles hotel market has improved considerably over the past year, with occupancy rates on the rise, renovations underway, one new hotel under construction and talk of some major new hotel developments in the not-too-distrant future.


Three years ago, when an executive with Nike was looking for someone to design the company's Web site, she paid a visit to the office of W3-design Inc. which was actually just the South Central Los Angeles apartment of USC anthropology professor Michael


Back in 1993, Richard S. Ziman went to Wall Street in search of financing for a number of Southern California office-building acquisitions. He scheduled a series of appointments with the Street's top investment banks and made his pitches.


Tenacity helps as does being well-connected, inheriting a well-established business from your family and getting a solid education (law degree and MBA preferred).


Goal: Continue to develop new, better ways to build brand awareness of clients' products and services on the World Wide Web.


L.A. has no shortage of unusual places to hold executive retreats. There's the two-story Art Deco apartment atop the Oviatt Building downtown, the Stadium Club at Dodger Stadium or even a converted DC-3 on the tarmac at Santa Monica Airport.


Steven L. Soboroff's easy-going style provides a contrast to the workaholic philosophy of many of his colleagues in the real estate business.


Fred Astman, chairman of First Wilshire Management Securities Inc., has labored in relative obscurity for decades, domiciled in his Pasadena warrens and looking for small stocks to invest in. As of last week, he has run his money shop for 20 years.


Recent Deal: Reorganized local office of the country's largest commercial real estate brokerage.


Edward P. Roski Jr. has risen over the last two years from being a successful industrial developer largely unknown outside the real estate community to one of the biggest names in the revitalization of downtown Los Angeles.


Recent Deal: Finding space for 1,400 city workers who must vacate City Hall during renovation


Recent Deals: Representing Fluor Corp. in its 550,000-square-foot world headquarters lease in Aliso Viejo.


Recent Deals: Just signed agreement with Princess Cruise Lines to develop 110,000 square feet of office space in Valencia; completing 725,000 square foot Valencia Marketplace shopping center anchored by Wal Mart.


Amazing things are happening in the world of personal computer printers. The speed and quality of these hard-working machines including those shoe-box-sized printers designed for home users keep going up, while prices plummet. There are two reasons fo


In the 1950s and 1960s, he fed into California's housing boom by building large suburban developments in Orange County and the San Fernando Valley. In the 1970s, as home prices skyrocketed, he expanded by building high-rise condominium complexes like the


They are the shock troops of the stock market, measuring gains in pennies per share, and time by the second.


With a long history of civic activism, Westwood Village spells trouble to most developers. But Ira Smedra has been willing to go where many of his developer brethren are fearful to tread.


Allen Kohl had it pretty good in Milwaukee. He and his father and two brothers owned and operated a chain of supermarkets and department stores that bore the family name.


Robert Voit could have gone into the family business Voit Rubber Equipment, a leading manufacturer of sporting goods. Instead, he chose real estate and even that was on a fluke.


Recent Deal: Brokering a 272,746-square-foot office lease in downtown Los Angeles for Arco Petroleum Products.


Recent Deals: Provided title insurance on the $130 million purchase of Citicorp Plaza by TrizecHahn Corp. and on the $250 million purchase of 10880 and 10960 Wilshire Blvd. by Beacon Properties.


Recent Deal: Obtaining a $235 million capital infusion from a unit of investment banker Lazard Freres.


Recent Deal: Buying the Warner Ridge property in Woodland Hills, which is currently in escrow.


Recent deal: Three-year management contract for the highrise at 444 S. Flower St., to be named Citibank Center.


It turns out that much of the available data on consumers sits idle in electronic storage closets, never to be used again.

Weekly Briefing

Q We have three part-time and one full-time job openings for computer programmers that we haven't been able to fill through local newspaper advertising, which has become expensive. We're in Chatsworth and the people we need to reach live outside the area.


Recent Deal: Working on the approval process for the proposed Universal City Master Plan.


As courtroom blockbusters go, the contrasts couldn't have been more striking. The trial of Timothy McVeigh was a study in decorum and efficiency. The trial of O.J. Simpson was a study in buffoonery and delays.


Recent deal: Relocated Countrywide Home Loans to 220,000-square-foot headquarters


Recent Deals: Shepherded approval of NBC's master plan to add 1.6 million square feet to its Burbank lot; approved development for 580,000-square-foot office building in the Media District.


David Safai says he wakes up each morning with the same thought to help motivate him through the work day.


Recent Deal: Buying the 80,000-square-foot Santa Monica headquarters of advertising agency Rubin Postaer & Associates.


Recent Deals: Opening Sega GameWorks; representing DreamWorks SKG in Playa Vista project.

Company Index

ABC Inc. 1


Recent Deals: Developed 750,000-square-foot industrial park in Denver; developed new hotel at Wild Dunes resort in Charleston, S.C.


A chief promoter for making Los Angeles a center of technology is getting fed up.


Recent Deals: As president of the Los Angeles Airport Commission, working on the master plan for expanding LAX.

GM follow

Los Angeles city officials met with executives at Marvin Engineering Co. Inc. last week to pitch an incentives package aimed at encouraging the aerospace firm to move its four facilities to the former General Motors plant in Van Nuys.


State legislators are considering a measure to reduce the franchise tax for businesses with 100 or fewer employees, but so far the bill has been stalled by cost concerns.


Richard Gentilucci knows how to get noticed in the South Bay just spearhead development of 660,000 square feet of sound stages in Manhattan Beach.


Recent Deal: Negotiated lease of a new Santa Monica headquarters for software firm CyberMedia.


Tax scofflaws, beware especially if your office is in a San Fernando Valley highrise.

Monday, June 2


We all know that anyone who tries to get business done in Europe in August might as well forget it. But what about here? Some American business owners have complained that the traditional summer slowdown was making its way across the Atlantic, with summer


Originally scheduled for a July 2 release, James Cameron's $200 million epic movie "Titanic" has been pushed back until Dec. 19, studios announced last week.


Four of the biggest entertainment companies in the world have bought or created television networks in recent years in order to pursue a simple strategy: They want to own both the programs and the source of distribution for them.


Confirming what many have suspected for some time, a just-released study conducted for the Business Journal reveals that Angelenos are using their ATM cards ever more frequently to buy goods and services directly from merchants and using cash and credit


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has become the runaway train that no one is willing or able to stop. Scan the last few weeks of news clips and the dysfunctional, out-of-control MTA quickly emerges as this area's biggest, most expensive embarrass

Real Estate Column

One of Hollywood's biggest office buildings the 12-story tower at 7060 Hollywood Blvd. has just traded hands by way of a foreclosure action.


Since big-time sports arrived here some 40 years ago, L.A. has always had its share of legendary owners. Walter O'Malley. Jack Kent Cooke. Al Davis.


The number of Los Angeles County homeowners going into foreclosure in April was at its lowest point since September 1995, according to a report released last week.


At 38 years old, Dominic Ng is one of the youngest chief executives of a major Los Angeles-area bank. And it's not just any bank: Ng is head of East West Bank, the nation's largest Chinese American-owned bank, with $1.6 billion in assets.


One thing everyone knows about health maintenance organizations is that treatment is denied far more often than in traditional plans.


Let's say you have a teenage son who absolutely refuses to clean his room. You should:


Their names sound more like characters out of a comic book than that of championship contenders. Nor can fans talk about the rich tradition of excellence or the heroes who once wore the uniform.


Standing behind the counter of his tiny jewelry kiosk in the Panorama Mall, Rudy Hussein looks out at the doors of what will be the first Wal-Mart to open within L.A. city limits.


When Olympic hopeful Tonya Harding had her competitor Nancy Kerrigan's knees whacked prior to the 1994 games, sports fans gasped, tabloid headlines raced, and local ice rinks found themselves flooded with business.


In health-conscious Los Angeles, restaurants learned long ago to offer low-calorie dishes to their customers. But for adherents to the latest fad diet The Zone low-cal alone isn't enough.


BankAmerica Corp. is stepping up its search to relocate its big downtown L.A. vault, which has been deemed too close to the site of the proposed sports arena.


The largest public company in Los Angeles County remains oil giant Atlantic Richfield Co., posting $19.2 billion in revenues, and employing 22,700 worldwide. An integrated oil major, Arco has been the largest company on the List since the Business Journal


A web site last year offered investors a cash flow of $600 a month, from leases extended to automatic teller machines.

Market Column

Let's say you have a teenage son who absolutely refuses to clean his room. You should:

Entrepreneur's Notebook

When your company is in trouble, work fast to build a plan and sell that plan to customers, creditors and employees.


In a major shakeup, the Beverly Hills-based brokerage Dabney/Resnick/Imperial LLC is cutting up to 45 workers, eliminating its equities department and reassigning co-founder and Chief Executive Judy Resnick out of a management role.

Weekly Briefing

Seven years ago, George E. Miller II and Pamela A. Robinson were strangers with just two things in common an artistic bent and an employer, the U. S. Postal Service. They were selected out of 58 postal artists to paint a series of wall murals in post of


Breaking up is hard to do. Just ask the former crew members on "Married With Children," television's longest running sitcom, which aired its last episode on May 5.


Mitchell W. Kitayama has been appointed first vice president of asset liability management for East West Bank in San Marino. He will be responsible for managing the interest rate risk exposure and overseeing the bank's investment portfolio. Kitayama comes


The idea works like this: that consumers feel something of a "wealth effect" when stocks go up, and so they become little more libertine at stores and restaurants.


That's the hope of a coalition of religious, labor and community groups in Pasadena, which has begun pushing a "living wage" ordinance similar to the salary-boosting law passed in April by the L.A. City Council.


DreamWorks SKG is scheduled to complete the first structure at its Glendale animation campus this month, under a revised development plan that eliminates a signature campanile-style tower and slightly increases the amount of office space.

Computer Column

The Woodland Hills-based Voit Cos. has been chosen to build the biggest phase of the Van Nuys Civic Center's redevelopment, which calls for new office space, an outdoor plaza for art and community events, and eventually entertainment facilities and replac


Richard R. Frank, the newly-elected president and chief executive of Lawry's Restaurants Inc., looks to yesterday to get his inspiration for tomorrow.


It was originally expected to last four to six weeks. But the damages trial pitting Glendale Federal Bank and the U.S. government is turning out to be a months-long marathon that could last well into the fall.


Southern California's publicly owned apparel firms are learning a new fashion lesson: What looks good on the runways is not necessarily appealing on Wall Street.

Company Index



An amalgam of technology, entertainment and fashion will define the global economy of the 21st century, and if Southern Californians play their cards right the region stands to benefit more than any other part of the country.


Santa Clara has the Silicon Valley. San Diego has a booming biotech corridor. And Los Angeles is starting to be regarded as the online stock market capital of the world.


Since practically his first day in office, Keith Paul Bishop has been called a wimp by critics of the HMO industry he is charged with regulating.

Health Column

Prompted in part by a California Supreme Court hearing held in Los Angeles in April, state Insurance Commissioner Chuck Quackenbush is holding his own investigatory hearings on the use of binding arbitration to settle disputes over health care coverage.


I enjoyed Morris Newman's article, "Executive Architects Play Key Role, Get Little Credit," in the May 12 issue.


However, there is a gradation of risk. Launching a venture cannot be based on complete control of all factors. Business risks can take the form of political risks, currency risks, operational risks and hidden risks. It is important to identify these risks