Stories for May 1998

Monday, May 25

Computer Column

The hot new buzzword in the personal computer world is "MP3." It could be important; indeed, some MP3 fans say this new technology could make your local music store and your local radio station obsolete. But MP3 has powerful enemies.

Featured Newsmaker

Stephen A. Unger is looking for what he calls "human modems" folks with experience in a wide range of industries who can help highly diverse corporations get connected.


Kent & Spiegel Direct Inc., the trouble infomercial producer in Culver City, applied for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last week.


L.A.'s ethnic diversity is credited for giving the region an edge in everything from global trade to entrepreneurial start-ups. Now, it may even be partly responsible for lower cancer rates.


Are you saving enough to retire? Most of us don't have a clue. You hear amazing figures, like $1 million or more, and it probably depresses you.


When it comes to Washington insiders, Ted Van Dyk is about as inside as they get.

At Home

Last week, I dropped by the office of a friend who operates a home-based editorial business. When she first started working at home, she marveled at the roominess of her home office, its great view and the enjoyment of working at home. Now, only a year la


Grubb & Ellis Co. is beefing up its property management operations in the West, including Los Angeles.


UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Center, which has been on the cutting edge of research and treatment for years, is now believed to be making its most significant progress in three decades.


The thousands of cancer doctors and researchers in the American Society of Clinical Oncology could not have picked a better place when they came together in Los Angeles last week.

Custom Brokers and Freight For

The newspaper war between Dean Singleton and the Los Angeles Times is suddenly looking more like a marriage.


Last week, 200 visiting French oncologists here for an annual convention had dinner in a somewhat unlikely venue the Palace in Hollywood, which is known more for musical acts like the Violent Femmes than for candlelit dinners.


Carson, home of the Goodyear blimp, may not seem like the most likely location for an NFL stadium. With its blue-collar roots, it's far removed from L.A.'s Westside and downtown power centers.

Market Column

If there are any advertising executives left in the area who haven't sent their resumes to Deutsch/LA in Marina del Rey, now would be a good time.

Moments in History

Beverly Hills-based Litton Industries Inc. was selected to build the Navy's $1 billion LHA heavy assault ship, triggering a rise in the company's stock by 4.5 points, to $78.50. Litton beat rivals General Dynamics Corp. and Newport News Shipbuilding Co. T


Damian Hillseth's family has run businesses on East Washington Boulevard south of downtown since his grandfather started selling mining equipment there in the 1940s.


Cancer patients are cured all the time at City of Hope not because the Duarte cancer center has some kind of miracle drugs stashed away in its laboratories, but because doctors and researchers work in tandem to provide patients with the maximum number o


A May 18 Newsmakers item misstated the job title of Mark K. Mason at Bank Plus and its subsidiary Fidelity Federal Bank. Mason is executive vice president and chief financial officer.


Dick Zanuck is back, and the producer of "The Sting" "Cocoon" and "Driving Miss Daisy" has DreamWorks SKG's first blockbuster the asteroid thriller "Deep Impact." But he bristles at rumblings that he ripped off Disney's upcoming asteroid yarn, "Armagedd


In advance of the June 2 primary, the Business Journal interviewed the four leading candidates for the Democratic and Republican nominations for governor on their reasons for running, their plans to promote California businesses and other issues. Rep. Jan


Although several reform measures already have been signed into law, health maintenance organizations appear to have dodged the brunt of the assault launched upon them in Sacramento this year.

LA Story

The producers of "Marketplace," a daily business radio program out of USC, took an old-fashioned approach to delivering their show when the communications satellite they typically depend on spun out of control.

Copr. Focus

When Learning Tree International Inc. announced this month that its second-quarter performance was on target, its stock promptly plummeted and analysts downgraded their recommendations.


At first glance, everything seems fine at the Eclectic Cafe on Lankersheim Boulevard in North Hollywood.


There's yet another sign that Westwood Village is coming back: Mr. Chow is coming to town.


If nearly all the nation's pagers could be silenced from a single malfunctioning satellite, can cell phones be far behind?


It's a few minutes before 2 p.m. and Maurice Neri, an escrow officer at First American Title Co. of Los Angeles' downtown office, realizes he needs to get proof of insurance from Farmers Insurance Co. in the Mid-Wilshire District to conclude a deal.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

Just a couple of years ago, the Internet was likened to the Wild West, an open frontier to be settled by pioneers and cowboys. In the last year, however, the Law has come to town.


Never mind the pager problem. Hughes Space and Communications Co., which launched the satellite that resulted in last week's near-total pager blackout, has more business than it knows what to do with.

Company Index



U.S. companies that were purchased in the first quarter of 1998 fetched prices at an average of 26 times their annual earnings, according to a report by Mergerstat, an arm of Century City based financial house Houlihan Lokey Howard & Zukin.


In the belief that a lack of higher education is a root cause of economic inequality, Rand Corp. is tapping some of the biggest names in the L.A. business community to come up with ideas for fixing California's university system.


As I read through your "Meet the Candidates" profile on Attorney General Dan Lungren (May 4), I was frankly unable to reconcile the "pro-business" candidate Lungren so actively wishes to be with the anti-business attorney general he has become with his re

LA Stories

It's no secret that the ingredient most responsible for making "Godzilla" so huge is the movie's super-high-tech special effects.


Global traders and investors who less than a year ago were rushing breathlessly into promising new markets overseas are confronting a sobering realization:


Cancer is one of the most expensive and time-consuming illnesses to treat and that's a bad combination when it comes to managed care.


A study released last week suggests policymakers may have a tough time implementing federal welfare reforms in Los Angeles County, where the economy is not producing enough jobs to accommodate the huge welfare population.


Most Los Angeles post-production houses are no-frills affairs. They offer a single specialty, such as tape editing, and are usually tucked away in a dim warehouse.


The National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md. designates just 34 institutions nationwide as "comprehensive cancer centers," and three of them are in Los Angeles County.

Weekly Briefing

With few advertising dollars, small- and mid-sized law firms often find it hard to attract attention in a competitive market. However, when the firms band together, they can afford expensive and effective advertising. For a monthly fee, a qualified firm c


From a work standpoint, Laura Campanelli's breast cancer diagnosis couldn't have come at a worse time.


The level of insider selling at Los Angeles public companies has been considerably lower than the national level over the past three months, suggesting that executives and directors of L.A. public companies are less concerned about an imminent market down


When a group of Santa Monica emergency-room physicians learned that their administrative director Catherine Pahlow had breast cancer, their first reaction was that of caring friends rather than employers.


Nadine L. Padawer has joined Los Angeles-based Campbell-Ewald as senior vice president and director of account planning. She previously was with TBWA/Chiat Day.


Private jet traffic at Santa Monica Airport is soaring, boosted by a strong economy, congestion at nearby Los Angeles International Airport and growth in the entertainment industry.


Last week, more than 19,000 cancer researchers, doctors and pharmaceuticals industry officials met in Los Angeles at the annual conference of the American Society of Clinical Oncology to discuss some of the latest breakthroughs in cancer research. One of

Monday, May 18


Due to incorrect information provided to the Business Journal, a May 11 story erroneously reported that infomercial firm Kent & Spiegel Inc. had received numerous returns on its Sobakawa pillow because of an insect infestation. In fact, the company says l

Featured Newsmaker

Richard D. Farman is prepared to take advantage of California's newly deregulated energy market.

Small Business

Small businesses are getting harder to define. Annual gross sales and number of employees are no longer in lock-step. One company with six computers and eight employees can generate $50M annually, while another may need 80 employees and thousands of squ

Market Column

First, the agency's national leadership is accused in press reports of trying to orchestrate a sort of dirty tricks campaign on behalf of Microsoft Corp. Then, apparently through no fault of its own, its Los Angeles office becomes the center of what is tu

Weekly Briefing

When Los Angeles companies try to recruit employees from other cities, sometimes they need help "selling" L.A. ? so they call Terra Nova Relocation Services. The relocation management and consulting company introduces potential employees and their famili


The best strategy for banks looking to remain independent in a world increasingly dominated by financial supermarkets is to be a niche player and Inglewood-based Imperial Bancorp continues to be a leading practitioner of that concept.


They bought the Dodgers, they're buying into the new Staples Center, and they're interested in a piece of both the Lakers and Kings. Plus, there's that little network sports operation over on the Westside.


The wealthy residents of Hancock Park once shopped at Bullocks Wilshire and I. Magnin. Today, Bullocks Wilshire is a law school and the I. Magnin in Mid-Wilshire will soon be home to a bowling alley.


The two individuals most responsible for building and running the Fox Sports empire are Chase Carey and David Hill. Together, they have built an imposing empire of local, national and global sports channels that have catapulted Fox into one of the world's

Ask Lorraine

Question: My family has had its own jewelry business for several generations. My grandfather and his two brothers began the business and almost all of their children have gotten involved in one way or another. While we've had our ups and downs, we've been

Retirement Plans

As a small business owner, what would you do if the government offered to pay retirement benefits to your employees? And give you all the credit? And pay you for letting them do it?


In advance of the June 2 primary, the Los Angeles Business Journal interviewed the leading candidates for the Democratic and Republican nominations for governor on their reasons for running, their plans to promote California businesses and other issues. B


Walt Disney Co. is certainly holding its own on many fronts, and the battles between Disney and Murdoch's Fox Group Inc. broadcasting empire have taken on the character of a road-show bidding war.

Company Index



Despite a falling crime rate, murder remains the most common form of occupational death in California.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

"We never have time to do it right the first time, but we always find time to do it over again."


Your telephone system can be a powerful tool -- keeping your business in touch with customers, boosting productivity and building revenue. And, if you're shopping for a system, there's never been a wider array of choices. Even single-line phones are pac


30 YEARS AGO THIS WEEK: Computer Sciences Corp. of El Segundo and Western Union Telegraph reached an agreement in principle for CSC to acquire Western Union in an exchange of stock valued at $375 million. The deal was jointly announced by CSC President Fl


With the expansion of LAX mired in turmoil, another L.A. airport is doubling its capacity with nary a peep from local politicians, homeowners or environmentalists.


Vestar Development Co. broke ground last week on its 27-acre Harbor Gateway retail project near Torrance.


Congress intends to tighten the screws on middle-class bankrupts. Legislation being considered in House and Senate committees would stop people from discharging their debts if a judge believed they could pay at least some of their bills.


Put bilingual education and managed care issues aside for a moment. "Californians for Ferret Legalization" have been sending out letters to the state's gubernatorial candidates asking a pressing question: Where do they stand on the issue of legalizing fer


Critics have characterized media mogul Rupert Murdoch's recent foray into local sports ownership as the act of a willful billionaire looking to conquer a new industry. But close observers of the News Corp. chairman and chief executive say that Murdoch is


Precede: When it comes to the Fox broadcasting operations, Rupert Murdoch depends on a small cadre of top lieutenants. The following are some of the critical players on the Fox television sports team.


Alison S. Winter, the first woman chairman of the L.A. Area Chamber of Commerce in its 110-year history, wants to make her mark by achieving a monumental task: Getting L.A.'s disparate businesses to collaborate on addressing regional issues.

Seven Tips

As with anyone who works for a community-based health plan, it is our job to focus on health every day. But proactive healthcare is not a one-way street. . .it never has been. It is a partnership among the health plan, healthcare providers and the patien


The initial public offering for Global Crossing Ltd., the undersea telecommunications cable empire controlled by Beverly Hills financier Gary Winnick, is expected to be about $300 million, according to people involved in the deal.


In Tinseltown, where liposuction and a facelift are sometimes as common as a teeth cleaning, tongue scraping has surfaced as the latest vanity must for the Hollywood set.


Saban Entertainment, which has been criticized by actors for what they called low pay and poor working conditions, reached an agreement with the Screen Actors Guild last week.


Michele Lepkowski has joined Beverly Hills-based Pulsar Advertising as an account manager heading the heath care division, with primary emphasis on the LA Care account. Lepkowski previously was a marketing and sales liaison at Philadelphia-based SmithKlin


The first gubernatorial debate was held last week for Democratic hopefuls Jane Harmon, Gray Davis and Al Checchi, and Republican Dan Lungren. The candidates voiced their opinions on a broad range of topics, from gun control to education. With only three w


Built on the idea that "sports are tribal," Fox Sports Net was launched more than a year ago to provide extensive home-team coverage combined with the kind of cutting-edge production quality associated with national network broadcasts.


Despite strong retail sales in other parts of the country, Los Angeles has been lagging behind largely the result of El Ni & #324;o, the Asian economic crisis and the fact that the area has become inundated with new stores.


Man-made streams meander through boulders and over waterfalls. A grand staircase lined with sculpted cypresses leads to one of several turn-of-the-century mansions. A formal Italian sunken garden is laid out nearby, along with fountains, sculpture and koi


The wardrobe from the television series "Seinfeld," which aired its final original episode last week, is being sold at It's a Wrap, a Burbank re-sale shop that features wardrobes from TV series and theatrical films.


With the various types of SBA Loans available, it can get confusing. Below is a simplified list of the available sources of business capital out there and what differentiates each from the others.


A process server bursts into the office on an otherwise quiet morning and serves you with papers in a lawsuit. You open the envelope, read the first few paragraphs, and that's enough! You stuff the papers in a bigger envelope and dash off a note to you


Merger mania has taken on almost surreal proportions as of late. Combining one behemoth with another has made for some staggering deals, such as SBC Communications and Ameritech ($62 billion), Daimler-Benz and Chrysler ($38.3 billion) and Citicorp and Tra


Despite being a center for cancer research, with several internationally renowned research universities and hospitals, Los Angeles remains a relative backwater when it comes to biomed companies.


Bob Graziano, the new president and chief executive of the Dodgers, recently received a box full of sports books published by HarperCollins Publishers, courtesy of Rupert Murdoch.


Fox Sports anchors Lauren Sanchez and John Walls are running through the Major League baseball scores in a cavernous sound stage inside the Fox Network Center on the Twentieth Century Fox lot in Century City.


Los Angeles may have lost most of its big publicly traded thrifts in recent months, including H.F. Ahmanson & Co. and Great Western Financial Corp., but it gained one last week when the parent of People's Bank of California went public.

Customized Training

Growing companies in Los Angeles stand to benefit from local programs that assist in hiring qualified well-trained individuals. Customized Training Programs sponsored by local Private Industry Councils (PICs) serves such advantages. Customized Training


Roxana Lewis, owner of Chartwell Travel Services, believes that to succeed in business, you have to love what you're doing.


Six months after a major "call to action" summit was held to work on solutions to some of L.A.'s most pressing economic problems, organizers and participants are expressing frustration over what they call a lack of visible progress.

The Entity Dilemma

"Too good to be true;" "All that glitters is not gold;" "The grass looks greener on the other side;" three aged sayings but still worth remembering. Be it a hot tip on the fifth race or a penny stock, the odds are neither tip will be your winner.


Walt Disney Co., well established as having the Midas touch in entertainment, now wants to duplicate its success in the online world. In the process, it's looking to build an Internet empire that rivals America Online.


Sumner Redstone's recent moves to sell off several non-core assets from Viacom Inc. will likely bring good news to Hollywood-based Paramount Pictures.

Loans Made Easy

More times than not, obtaining credit appears to be a mysterious process for a loan applicant, one with its share of paperwork. With some preparation on your part, applying for a business loan can be made a lot simpler, increase your chances for approval

Monday, May 11


I generally applaud the Los Angeles Business Journal's efforts to provide the business community with the latest insights on what's happening in our diverse economy. It is not easily understood or explained.


L.A.-based La Brea Bakery is expanding to the San Fernando Valley, with plans to build a 67,000-square-foot bakery near the Anheuser-Busch brewery in Van Nuys.


20 YEARS AGO THIS WEEK: A study by the UCLA business forecasting project suggested that California may be forever doomed to having a higher unemployment rate than the nation as a whole. Reason: Whenever the jobless rate here dips, more people come to the

Small Business

In an unassuming Culver City neighborhood, set amid a string of mom-and-pop groceries, gas stations and auto-parts dealers, is a cache of diamonds, emeralds, rubies and sapphires.

At Home

A friend of mine told me a story the other day about a co-worker who took her company's offer to give up her office space in return for the opportunity to work at home.


Atlantic Richfield Co. announced a $3.3 billion acquisition last week that will boost its daily oil and gas production and expand its presence in international oil exploration.


SunAmerica Inc. Chairman and CEO Eli Broad is L.A.'s highest-paid executive and he did it, again, by beating the S & P; 500 index.


As Barbie's fortunes have risen, so have those of Mattel Inc. Chairwoman and Chief Executive Jill Barad.

How Do

When a high-level executive brings home an outsized paycheck these days, chances are there will be stock options and bonuses associated with it. But the process by which corporate boards agree to those extras can be a dizzying one.

Featured Newsmaker

Albert Mayer, senior vice president and regional sales manager of Fred Sands Realtors, never planned on a career in real estate.


With the U.S. dollar continuing to surge against Asian currencies, imports from the Far East are pouring into the seaports at a rate not usually seen until the holiday shipping season gets underway during the summer and fall.


The decision of the Planning Commission to unanimously support the Village Center Westwood project should be applauded by everyone who believes in the power of this project to revitalize Westwood and bring life back to Westwood Village.


As co-chairman of Westside-based investment firm Maritz, Wolff & Co. he controls some of the most luxurious establishments in the nation, including the Four Seasons Biltmore in Santa Barbara.


CarMax, one of the new wave of used-car superstores that feature no-haggle prices, is coming to L.A. but don't expect any signs of panic among the local dealers.


The L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency's claim that it will pump $25 million to $50 million into East L.A., mostly to spruce up buildings, needs clarification ("On Track for Redevelopment in East L.A.," April 27). Over this past year while I have been a


That was the question posed when Time Inc. and CBS News gathered a panel at the Getty Center on May 4 to discuss the century's most important artists and entertainers. Was it Elvis, Madonna, Steven Spielberg, Marilyn Monroe or Ernest Hemingway?


Curb cuts may all look the same, but in Los Angeles each one is individually designed by city engineers, according to Mayor Richard Riordan.


Anna Wong has been named controller at A Band Apart Commercials. She will oversee all financial activities and operations for the parent company and its two divisions, A Band Apart .35 mm and A Band Apart Music Videos. She previously was director of opera


After decades as one of the world's leading aircraft manufacturers, the aging Douglas Aircraft facility in Long Beach could see its fate decided by a short-hop, 106-seat jet that has yet to make a single flight.


Zoot suits are relics from the early 1940s, when Latino men known as "pachucos" favored long coats, suspenders, wide pants and pocket-watch chains.


The controversial sale of Queen of Angels-Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in East Hollywood to Tenet Healthcare Corp. seems headed for approval by the state Attorney General's Office, perhaps as early as this week.


They are made from polyolefin foam and include vinyl covers, a plug-in heater and three bubble jets.


Smart and Final Stores Corp. is relocating its corporate headquarters and Smart University training and consultation center from Vernon to the Commerce Citadel, an office, hotel and factory outlet center complex in the City of Commerce.


There's little argument that California's current system of bilingual education is a mess and needs significant fixing. It's a system that has forced students to take bilingual classes for years and it often leaves them neither fluent in English nor aca


For the first time, the Dodgers are planning to open retail stores outside of Dodger Stadium, and a sophisticated inventory-tracking system is being installed at the stadium's retail store and souvenir stands.


Sparing themselves the experience of driving around neighborhoods in search of "for sale" signs, a growing number of prospective home buyers are hitting the Internet to check out online house listings.


To look only at the top-paid executives of Los Angeles-based public companies is to dismiss an important reality of the local economy: After waves of corporate mergers, many of L.A.'s biggest players are based elsewhere.


When Time magazine and CBS News decided to hold a symposium on the 20th Century's top artists and entertainers, they didn't pick the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the Century Plaza ballroom or a soundstage at the Warner Bros. lot.

Corp. Focus

Selling clothing to teenagers, whose tastes seem to always turn on a dime, can be tough sledding. But Hot Topic Inc. has a few compelling numbers on its side.


An optimist, they say, is someone who jumps off a 30-story building and, on her way past the seventh floor, shouts, "so far, so good."


The stock option juggernaut shows little signs of abating, as top executives from L.A.'s publicly held companies keep reaping tens of millions of dollars not based so much on salaries or even bonuses, but on the fortunes of Wall Street.


First it was the list of most profitable public companies, when researcher Edvard Pettersson found himself knee-deep in return on equity, net income, revenue and book value.

Gray Davis

With the June 2 primary less than a month away, California voters will have the chance to elect the state's first new governor in eight years. Business Journal editors and reporters interviewed the leading candidates for the Democratic and Republican nomi


For a growing number of corporate executives, the standard paycheck is becoming as anachronistic as carbon paper or ticker tape.

Weekly Briefing

Ellen Daigle's life changed after her divorce from her husband. She was a registered nurse, but after getting custody of her three small daughters, she wanted a job that would allow her to work out of the home. With that goal in mind, Daigle took a sign-p


In the high-tech world of video games, where software developers compete to have the coolest, most futuristic offerings, Activision Inc. has embraced an unusual strategy nostalgia.


In the May 4 story on Signal Hill, the names of Chem Oil and Signal Hill City Manager Ken Farfsing were misspelled.

Entrepreneur's Notebook

People don't spend much time analyzing their company's culture, but it's usually the source of many recurring problems.


Bel Air Camera recently moved from Westwood Boulevard to Kinross Avenue after the store's new landlord jacked up the annual rent from $13,000 to $90,000, according to Frank Ponder, the store's general manager.


L.A.'s highest-paid executives made an average of $5.8 million last year, with some of the region's top corporate chieftains pulling down far more than that much of it from stock options. The Business Journal asks:


Back in the early 1990s, in an effort to gain more control over executive compensation, powerful institutional investors pressured the Securities and Exchange Commission to impose a new set of disclosure rules on U.S.-based public companies.


When it comes to getting the most profits from your chief executive, it helps to be a very large company operating in the energy sector.


Occidental Petroleum Corp. Chairman Ray R. Irani has the 15th most lucrative compensation package among L.A. executives, at $10.4 million until, that is, you add in his recent contract re-negotiation pay-out.

Monday, May 4


Can the man who gave Universal CityWalk its distinctive look jazz up the Los Angeles Zoo?

Suitmaker to the Stars

Frank Mariani has been called L.A.'s dynamo of custom tailoring. He'll be 80 years old next month, but still shows up at his Beverly Hills shop five days a week to craft some of the finest clothes west of Saville Row. His current list of clients includes


The Legislature still has an opportunity to move forward to prevent frivolous Year 2000 lawsuits and protect businesses and consumers from costly litigation ("Software, Finance Firms Form Year 2000 Coalition," April 20). Fixing the Year 2000 problem befor


He's been called a fake and an embarrassment to broadcasting, but KCAL-TV Channel 9 says it has no plans to yank tabloid talk-show host Jerry Springer off the air.


Next week's final episode of "Seinfeld" is no big deal to the folks at BC Ethic Manufacturing Co. Inc. even though the Lincoln Heights company at one time was known as the creator of Kramer-wear.


General Electric Co.'s British subsidiary has made an offer to buy the defense-electronics businesses of L.A.-based Northrop Grumman Corp. and Bethesda, Md.-based Lockheed Martin Corp., according to a report in a London newspaper.

Company Index Final



Born: Sept. 22, 1946 in Long Beach. His father was personal physician to Richard Nixon.


For investment banker Bob Howard, wearing a quiet business suit to work is a requirement of the job.


Amid last week's scare on Wall Street over the prospect of the Fed boosting interest rates, analysts were quick to cite the inflationary effect of rising home prices pointing specifically to Southern California, where prices are expected to rise at leas


In the April 20 Real Estate Quarterly, the name of Newport Beach-based Layton-Belling & Associates was misspelled.


60 YEARS AGO THIS WEEK: The Metropolitan Water District was preparing to issue bonds to fund construction of the 242-mile Colorado River aqueduct. The initial $60 million bond issue out of a total contemplated issue of $200 million was expected to be


Reports have surfaced that What a surprise! many of the fistfights on the syndicated "Jerry Springer Show" are staged and the guests are actually coached. Springer denies those horrific charges, but then notes: "To be on our show, you have to be outra


Five senior employees of Brentwood-based RNC Capital Management have resigned and launched their own money-management firm, Oakwood Capital Management.


Santa Monica adman Jim Smith prefers to work in soccer shorts and sandals. But he admits there's always "a suit hanging in the back of the car."


Congress must seriously consider the drastic consequences of the proposed McCain legislation on tobacco. This bill calls for a huge tax increase on the price of cigarettes that will significantly damage not only tobacco growers and producers, but mom-and-


When they struck their deal last year, developers of the Staples Center sports arena said the terms set by Los Angeles officials left so tight a margin for error that it would take a "home run" to ensure the project penciled out. There was even some brief


Not too long ago, conventional wisdom held that Los Angeles was down for the count. Businesses believed that we were decimated by the riots, the Northridge earthquake, Malibu fire, mudslides and a recession, and that any talent or industry of substance ha


Dress suits are becoming dinosaurs in Los Angeles. The traditional corporate suit with matching pumps and itchy, elegant nylons is being squeezed out by women who are opting for "corporate casual" mix-and-match slacks, skirts and jackets that are comfor


In an era of multimillion-dollar amusement parks, a low-tech slice of yesteryear perseveres the good old traveling carnival.


Founders National Bank could evolve into the nation's most unusual inner-city bank under its new controlling owners former basketball star Earvin "Magic" Johnson, pop singer Janet Jackson and record industry executive Jheryl Busby.


It's 9 o'clock in the evening, you're in an unfamiliar part of town, and you've run out of cash.


With all the concern about a rate hike by the Federal Reserve Board, we turned to our resident bond and interest-rate experts for insights on probable Fed actions. With the economy in a sustained drive, many national commentators expect Fed chief Alan Gre


John Buck, the new director of Western regional sales for the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau, has a somewhat misleading title.


What's a picture of a provocatively attired Ally McBeal doing on the cover of this week's Business Journal? It's just our way of illustrating not only how fashions for working women have changed, but how L.A.'s eclectic business environment creates daily

List story

Local universities offer a variety of options for those pursuing advanced business degrees, including full-time MBA programs, part-time or evening tracks, executive MBA programs and other specialties. USC's Marshall School has the largest program with 758


The Port of Los Angeles announced several moves to accommodate growth of its container business and cruise ship facilities.


For many businesswomen, the question is what to wear. For retailers, it's what to stock.

Ask Lorraine

Question: When I graduated from college, I knew I wanted to be my own boss. So together with a few of my sorority sisters, we started a catering business. Like the majority of small businesses, it failed. We filed for bankruptcy protection and we split up

Northrop correction

An April 27th story misstated the position by Northrop Grumman Corp. concerning the introduction of a new incentive plan for the company's corporate employees. In fact, Northrop is considering such an incentive plan, but has not made a final decision.


High prices, aging facilities and a shortage of large industrial spaces in the San Fernando Valley are driving manufacturing and distribution companies north to Valencia.


Grasshopper-like oil pumps bob up and down all over town three in the parking lot of Curley's Cafe, as well as at the end of the newest subdivision overlooking Long Beach harbor and behind the commercial strip along Cherry Avenue.


L.A. workers may soon be hit with higher out-of-pocket health care expenses and cuts in benefits as a result of major premium increases recently announced by managed care companies.

Computer Column

We are always grateful to the readers who write us either by fax, e-mail, or snail mail ? about this column.

LA Stories

Mattel Inc. Chairwoman and CEO Jill Barad was scheduled to preside over last week's official unveiling of the company's World Cup Barbie, a soccer-playing version of the world's best-selling doll.


Chad Therapeutics Inc., the once high-flying Chatsworth maker of portable oxygen systems for the home health market, has come crashing back down to earth.


A state-guaranteed loan program designed to help small physician groups and non-profit health clinics upgrade their facilities is off to a slow start, with only two loan applications being submitted since the program began last fall, state officials said.


Ally McBeal, the perky and at times ditzy attorney in Fox TV's hit series that bears her name, seems to have sparked a quiet debate among working women in Los Angeles.


So far, the new Education IRA has been pretty much a bust. Middle-income parents may skip them in favor of the new education tax credits. Higher-income parents may consider this IRA too small to bother with.


Backers of the effort to bring pro football back to a rebuilt Memorial Coliseum have turned their attentions to Sacramento.