Stories for September 2001

Monday, September 24

Terrorist attacks further batter faltering economy but whether effects will linger still unclear

Rod Hagenbuch, a principal at a Los Angeles private investment and consulting firm, has told his wife to tell the interior decorator, "I will see her in a few years."

Windfall for L.A. Defense Firms Likely To Be Modest

When it comes to L.A.'s defense industry, this is not Pearl Harbor. Nor is it even the Reagan-led military buildup in the 1980s. Area defense contractors, in fact, are not likely to see much business in the short term from any U.S. military buildup to fig

Shuttle Services Get Access To LAX, But Riders Sparse

For shuttle services, taxis and limousines, the new rules banning cars inside Los Angeles International Airport in the wake of the catastrophic events of Sept. 11 have proven to be a mixed blessing.

Fear Grips Local Middle Eastern Businesses, Customers

When reports emerged that some of the hijackers behind the attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center were from the Middle East, Dolly Chammaa began to worry about whether the Lebanese restaurant she and several family members run would become a targe

Broker Waits in Limbo as Attack Delays Deal Closing

The Sept. 11 terrorist attack on New York and Washington hit home for Chris Maling when the logistical nightmare that followed threatened a $3 million sale he thought was closing.

LABJ Forum---Business as Usual?

With the memory of Sept. 11's terrorist attacks on the minds of most all Americans, businesses in L.A. and elsewhere tried to regain some traction last week but it wasn't easy. Here are some observations on getting back to work.

Office Tenants Face Stepped-Up Security at Higher Cost

Security is expected to take a much higher profile in Los Angeles lease negotiations in wake of the U.S. terrorist attacks. But the added safety measures, which could be a new marketing tool for landlords, would come at a price to tenants.

Travel Woes, Somber Mood Hurt L.A. Caterers

The terrorist attacks are putting a serious damper on people's desire to eat, drink and be merry, and that's causing headaches for local catering outfits.

Japan's Tourists Are Staying Put

At the Miyako Inn in downtown L.A.'s Little Tokyo, nearly two-thirds of the rooms sat empty last week and were expected to remain that way well into October.

Economy, Terror Boosting Religion

Margaret O'Donnell doesn't consider herself a lapsed Catholic. After all, the assistant at a Los Angeles trade association is a believer and attends Mass during Christmas and other holy days.

Majority of L.A. Conferences Will Go Ahead as Scheduled

Despite the tragic events of Sept. 11 and the difficulties in air travel, most businesses and associations are moving forward with their scheduled events and conferences in Los Angeles.

Ahead of the Curve

Latin Abstract: Works of Chilean-born artist Robert Sebastian Matta, who lived in exile in New York during the 1940s, will be on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art at California Plaza from Sept. 30 to Jan. 6. The show brings together 19 paintings a

Ripple Effects From Attacks Deal Blows to Disney Stock

Walt Disney Co. took it on the chin last week, with its stock value plummeting more than 20 percent as investors concluded that the company's media and theme park earnings would be hurt by the terrorist attacks.

Self-Absorbed America May Not Be Ready to Sacrifice

"Sacrifice" is a word that's popped up a lot in the wake of what happened on Sept. 11 starting when several passengers on board a United Airlines flight heroically prevented terrorists from crashing into the Capitol building or goodness knows what.

Traders Find Solace in Lowering Losses

A trader's job can be harrowing under the best of circumstances. It's a life filled with split-second decisions, and mistakes can easily cost thousands of dollars, not to mention restless nights.

Finance Advisers Offer Views on What Moves to Make

- Avoid investments in sectors vulnerable to sustained downturns in consumer confidence, like gaming, leisure, media and travel.

With Uncertainty Looming, Cautious Investments Wise

So often, I've written to you about the unforeseen. By definition, we never know what that's going to be.

There's Even More Reason to Be a Long-Term Investor

At a time like this there's something extra to be said for being a confirmed long-term investor.

Agent's Go-Go Days Gone As Homebuyers Take Stock

In the weeks before the attacks on the United States, life for Coldwell Banker real estate agent Stephanie Vitacco had been a whirl of activity.

Troubled Economy Leaving Few in L.A. Untouched

Rarely have the so-called experts seemed so useless. As the likelihood of recession and the prospect of war became real to Americans last week, no one had the answers to what lies ahead. There only have been guesses and those are usually just good for a

Temporary Placement Firms

Temporary Placement Firms

Big Ad Firms Begin Lowering Their Sights

Bill Imada of L.A.'s Imada Wong Communications Group Inc. used to see little competition for the smaller, Asian consumer-oriented accounts that are the specialty of his marketing and communications firm. But lately, he has seen some much bigger companies

Battered Networks Anxious As Key Fall Season Debuts

Four days after terrorists struck the Pentagon and World Trade Center, Fox scheduling chief Preston Beckman received a semi-frantic phone call from Fox TV Entertainment Chairman Sandy Grushow.

Freight Costs Climb As Limits Take Hold

Michael Viering was fuming mad at FedEx Corp. late last week. The president of Los Angeles-based Diagnostic Products Corp., unable to find space on any of the air cargo services his company typically uses, eagerly agreed to pay a $50,000 premium to have F

Smaller Firms Try to Persevere in Face of Destruction

NEW YORK Thousands of small companies suffered enormous financial and emotional loss in last week's terrorist bombing of the World Trade Center.

Tips on How Financial Markets Could Help in War on Terrorism

Markets usually only have three identifiable moods, euphoria, panic and boredom, and they switch among them like someone who has been taking too much Prozac. The past week they have added a new mood, one with unpredictable consequences. That mood is defia

Muted Laughter

With some things not so funny anymore, comedians are being forced to replace their edgier material with jokes that fit our nation's more somber mood

A Bear's Eye View

Education: Bachelor's degree in finance, Wharton School; MBA in accounting, University of Chicago

Our View---Cracks in The Armor

There is much to be proud of in the way Americans have handled the terrible events of Sept. 11 a newfound sense of patriotism and community spirit, and a greater perspective in what really matters in our lives.

Spammers' E-Mail Fraud Capitalizes on National Pain

The $40 billion appropriated by Congress to track down and punish those responsible for the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks will surely be money well spent.

L.A. Law, Accounting Firms Undertake Big Changes

The accounting and legal professions might never be the same and beyond handling deals for their New York offices and arranging memorials for colleagues who lost their lives on Sept. 11, any numbers of L.A. lawyers and accountants are starting to consid

Variety of Measures Threaten to Add Billions to Employers' Tab

California businesses, already reeling from higher energy costs and a slowing economy, could get hit with $4 billion to $6 billion in additional annual costs if several key bills passed by the state Legislature earlier this month get signed into law by Go

Tech Companies Take Drastic Measures

Price cuts, shuttered operations, layoffs, salary reductions. As the dramatic sales slide continues, these are the newest tools in the management arsenal along the 101 Technology Corridor in the San Fernando Valley.

The Roving Eye

When actress Carrie Fisher and singer/songwriter Paul Simon split under less than amicable terms in 1986, Simon left an acoustic guitar behind. Perhaps as a joke and perhaps not Fisher said that "as far as I know it was the only alimony I received."

Keeping It All in Perspective

U.S. history full of lessons on how to cope with tragedy, economic turmoil

Fewer Passengers, Higher Costs Pressure LAX Retailers

Airport concessionaires, slammed by the abrupt drop-off in traffic, may not see relief until at least next year, even if air traffic approaches something approximating pre-attack levels.

Shares of L.A. Companies Dive in Broad Market Selloff

Los Angeles stocks took a drubbing in the first few sessions of resumed trading after terrorist attacks closed U.S. markets for nearly a week. Walt Disney Co. and Hilton Hotels Corp. were among the local companies worst hit by the exodus from travel-relat

Crisis Affected Better Part of Humanity

My parents were in Australia when the world went crazy. They called my home upon hearing the awful news, and when I returned their call, the Australian hotel receptionist said they were out. He asked whether there was a message.

Passion for Patriotic Sacrifice Is Leading to Stupid Actions

As the dust settles on lower Manhattan you can see, looming on the skyline, a pair of clashing commercial sentiments.

Fundamentals, Not Events, Determine Final Stock Fate

The recent events in New York could hardly be more horrible, but Wall Street veterans last week cautioned investors to remember that a day does not a market make, or a month, or even a year.

Attack Coverage Wasn't Pervasive In All L.A. Media

Coverage of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11 has been dominating local media in recent days, but there are a few outlets that went without news or commentary about the tragedy.

Monday, September 17

Mediator Brought In to Stalled Wage Talks At KFWB

A mediator has been called into the stalled contract negotiations between the management and news production assistants at KFWB-AM (980). The talks will resume on Oct. 1, according to station officials.

Layoffs Expected as Local Theater Publication is Sold

Seeking to boost revenues in an industry stung by a decline in advertising, Stagebill Media has purchased Los Angeles-based Performing Arts Magazine.

Slow Economy Compounds Travel Woes

If jitters caused by the recent terrorist attacks are not enough to keep corporate travelers off airplanes, the extended wait time to get on board at LAX will surely do the trick.

Law Firms Brace For Onslaught of Post-Attack Suits

There is a bit of optimism in L.A.'s legal community that business will be back to something close to normal within several weeks. But they also forecast some grim legal ramifications.

Office Towers Already Solid as Can Be

The very essence of downtown, the skyscraper creates the silhouette of a skyline and an identity for a city.

Trading Mentor Focuses on Women Students

Up until a few years ago, the Stock Market was the ultimate men's club. Few women felt drawn to , or even welcome on , the raucous trading floor where tickertape falls like confetti from the long arms of sweaty dealmakers. The idea of walking the floor

Telecom Woes Affect Downtown Property

Once touted as a prominent piece of L.A.'s downtown renaissance, the telecommunications industry has, like its dot-com cousin, hit a wall.

Broadcast Outlets Forego Revenues To Cover Tragedy

While the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon brought huge ratings to television and radio stations last week, L.A. media lost countless sums in their effort to cover the history-making tragedy without advertising.

Our View---How to Go On?

Up until last Tuesday, those were just words to most anyone under 65 anyone who wasn't around during Pearl Harbor and its aftermath. Books and movies helped put some context on those terrible days, and we nodded sympathetically when our parents and gran

Company Losses Are Both Human and Financial

Westfield: Brief Moment of Glory Gets Buried in World Trade Center Collapse

DMJM: Architects Face Difficulties in Rehab of Pentagon

With three times the billings of its nearest competitor, Daniel, Mann, Johnson & Mendenhall is a big firm that takes on big projects.

Women's Roles in the Workplace Evolve: Leave of Absence Rules Become More Family-Friendly

Reflecting a fundamental increase of women in the workplace in the last 10 years, a variety of state and federal laws now mandate that an employer provide time off to employees for medical reasons, including to care of ill or injured family members, to bo

Vigilance Needed Against Company 'Numbers Game'

In September 1998, former Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Arthur Levitt addressed the problem of managed earnings in a speech titled, "The Numbers Game." In the speech, he railed against American managers consistently manipulating financial st

Survey Finds Women Business Owners Philanthropic Leaders

Women and men business owners surpass the general population in their level of involvement in philanthropy, both in money donated and time volunteered, according to a new survey that was conducted by the National Foundation for Women Business Owners (NFWB

Ahead of the Curve

Apocalypse Then: The landmark television movie "Friendly Fire" is being presented at the Museum of Television & Radio in Beverly Hills at 7 p.m. on Sept. 21. The 1979 award-winning movie will be introduced by Fay Kanin, who wrote the screenplay. The movie

Distance Fails to Shield L.A. From Attack

In addition to the stories on the opposite page, countless L.A. businesspeople had direct experience with last week's terrorist attacks or knew people who did. Here are some of their stories.

Reporter Finds Himself in The Middle of a Maelstrom

NEW YORK I was in a taxi, heading down Manhattan's West Side Highway for a conference at the World Trade Center when the first airliner flew over us and crashed into the North Tower. It was 8:50 a.m.

Western Avenue at Center of East Hollywood Comeback

As development continues at traditional spots around Hollywood, Western Avenue is quietly emerging as Tinseltown's new eastern boundary.

Commercial Real Estate Brokerages

Commercial Real Estate Brokerages

Disaster Preparations Remain Inadequate, Unreviewed

Last week's terrorist attacks brought home a terrible reminder to local businesses: disaster can strike without warning, taking lives and reducing years of sweat and toil to rubble in a matter of minutes.

A New Generation of Women Achieve Business Success

Women-owned firms established within the past decade are making substantial contributions to the economy and are poised for continued growth in the future. They have reached the same level of business achievement as women-owned firms started in the past,

Nurses Band Together in Staffing Crisis

Organized labor makes great strides in signing up medical professionals frustrated with worsening working conditions at hospitals

Farmers Market Latest North Hollywood Revival Plan

After years of failed attempts to revitalize the North Hollywood commercial district, local business leaders have one more trick up their sleeves: a farmers market in the parking lot of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

The Weekly Briefing

The path to Jerry Scott's career began in Philadelphia at age 6, when he pulled his little red wagon around his neighborhood, collecting waste paper and bottles to sell at a nearby recycling center.

Hospital and Union Leaders Debate Staffing Shortages

Labor has a lot of complaints these days about the way hospitals are run, but nothing crystallizes the debate more than the issue of "safe staffing." Unions contend that registered nurses are quitting hospitals because they are being forced to work ever-l

A Beam of Light Gives Hope to Cancer Patients

When physicians informed 47-year-old Patricia O'Rourke* that cancer had spread from the base of her skull to enclose a portion of her spine, the Los Angeles-area social worker knew that her spinal cord was being held a virtual hostage. Since injury to her

Homecare: Joining Unions has Done Little for Low-wage Jobs

Louis Carter is a card-carrying union member. Yet the Pasadena father of three has to hold down two jobs to make a living.

Economic Shockwaves To Hit Area Businesses

By now you will have seen too many pictures and read too many words and yet, as the new week dawns, it still remains too horrible to believe.

Padilla Out Front With Hahn Away

Crises like last week's terrorist attacks bring with them the opportunity for political leaders to show what they are made of. Just ask former L.A. Mayor Richard Riordan, who used the 1994 Northridge quake to show he was a "can-do" leader; from that point

Market Closures May Have Spared L.A. From Sell-Off

By staying closed for most of last week, U.S. stock markets may have been saved from the worst of the panic-driven selling that could have followed the terrorist attacks that toppled New York's World Trade Center.

Doctors: More Physicians Join Unions and Find Mixed Results

Of all members of the medical profession, doctors would appear to be the most unlikely to join unions. Indeed, a majority of the nation's nearly 800,000 doctors are prohibited by federal antitrust laws from collective bargaining because they are considere

Opportunities at Trade Shows Outweigh Attendant Hassles

Marilyn Simes, chief executive of Digital Instincts Inc. in Tuckahoe, N.Y., was one of the more than 2,000 women who crowded into Navy Pier in Chicago last week for the 15th annual Entrepreneurial Woman's Conference. She flew from New York to Illinois loo

Legacy of Laughs

From Lucille Ball to Ally McBeal, some of TV's classic moments have been captured at Ren-Mar Studios

High-Rise Reality Will Abide in Face of Random Threat

Don't expect last week's destruction of New York's World Trade Center to undercut the high-rise real estate market.

Social Security Privatization Would Be Confusing Mess

When enthusiasts talk about private accounts as part of Social Security, they're selling a dream. It's as easy as your company 401(k), they say.

Organizer Spreads The Word In Drive to Unionize Hospital

It's noon, and Mia Brucelango just finished her third back-to-back meeting of the morning.

My Favorite Sites

This is a site dedicated to the public and private finance industry, but it has a lot of venture capital and private equity news that you can't find anywhere else. I'm an ex-investment banker, so I just look at general financial news that is interesting

Giant Baby Steps

Core Business: Designer, manufacturer and distributThe dot-com bubble was inflated by companies built to please consumers but lacking any real plan to turn a profit.

Jarred by Sudden Violence, Angelenos Witness Horror

After last week, Judi Ciasulli isn't sure she'll ever be able to go back to New York.

Rising Costs Start Churn in Century City Real Estate

Wanting to cut costs in the decelerating economy, several major Century City tenants are scrambling to relocate to more-affordable offices.

Consistent Earnings, Share Buybacks Push Bank Stock

The quarterly net income figures for Foothill Independent Bancorp are ticked off with metronomic regularity: $1.6 million, $1.7 million, $1.7 million, $1.7 million.

L.A.'s Greatness Makes It Prime Target for Terrorists

It would be na & #271;ve to suspect that Los Angeles, as a major world city and center of the hated materialist mass culture, will remain safe from the schemes of terrorist leaders. Last week's attack was not merely aimed at specific targets, but on the entire e

Despite Microsoft Reprieve, Antitrust's Muscle Remains

It might seem as if software colossus Microsoft Inc. has pushed the federal government back on its haunches, and that it and other sector-dominant companies have less to fear from antitrust regulators.

Defense Stocks Should See Bounce as Country Responds

The terrorists who hijacked four planes and destroyed the World Trade Center in New York killed thousands of people. But they did not kill the U.S. financial system. History suggests they won't even come close.

Register Trims Sales Effort Outside County

The Orange County Register plans to eliminate single-copy sales in areas outside of Orange County, a move that comes soon after the Register decided to eliminate home delivery outside of the county.

Terrorism Could Slow Spending and Trigger Recession

TOKYO As an American, a New Yorker by birth and a resident of Washington D.C. until a month ago, last week's terrorist attacks were especially surreal for me.

Attack Should Have No Long-Term Impact on Funds

Amid the horror evoked by the carnage in New York and Washington, there really isn't much for most long-term savers and investors to do.

Months to Lapse Before Economy Regains Stride

As the financial community anxiously awaits the markets to return to even near-normal operations, it's becoming increasingly clear that local dealmaking would remain disrupted in various ways for months to come.

Product Had Key to Profitablility, Just Lacked Customers

The dot-com bubble was inflated by companies built to please consumers but lacking any real plan to turn a profit.

Boeing: Plane Manufacturer Likely to Be Required to Install New Safeguards

One likely response to last week's attacks will be new federal requirements for anti-terrorist equipment to be installed on commercial airplanes. And with Boeing Co. the largest private-sector employer in L.A., that would mean more work for local aerospac

Nursing Homes: Labor Movement Ranks Rise in L.A. Care Fascilities

An organizing campaign that is signing up underpaid and overworked caretakers. A legislative assault for safe staffing legislation. A publicity blitz painting facility operators as uncaring for the health of their patients.

Hollywood Adjusts to Reflect Changing Public Mood

As programming executives continue to scour their slates to delay or cancel material that could be seen as insensitive to last week's chilling attacks in New York and Washington, the entertainment industry is keeping a keen eye on the public mood and taki

Other Voices

On Tuesday, civilization's modern nightmare materialized as terrorists attacked American cities, destroying national landmarks and exacting a terrible human toll. But even as smoke billowed across Manhattan and dust settled over Washington, this mighty na

Newsmakers---Investment Banker Eyes Middle Market

In an effort to bolster its L.A. presence, USBX Advisory Services LLC has hired Brooks Dexter, 44, as managing director. The two-year-old mergers and acquisitions advisory firm represents both buyers and sellers in all aspects of their transactions.

Religion Plays Ongoing Role as Ally to Labor

The spartan offices of the Healthcare Action Campaign look similar to the temporary digs politicians set up when running for office: bare floors, stacks of literature and an assortment of maps and boards on the walls.

More Than 300 Attendees Celebrate L.A.'s Women Leaders

The Los Angeles Business Journal, in partnership with NAWBO and the Women of Los Angeles, held its tenth annual Women Who Make a Difference Awards ceremony and event at the Peninsula Beverly Hills Hotel on the evening of Monday, September 10th, 2001. The

Fashion Forward

Most Admired Person: Michael Weiss, president and chief executive of The Limited Inc.'s Express stores. "He has a great eye for what people want to buy before they know it."

National Security Dissolves in Smoky Skies Above New York

The new war began with pictures of smoke, mushrooming smoke, billowing clouds of smoke, smoke that rose above the busiest skyline in the busiest city in the busiest nation in the world, yellow smoke and white smoke and a deathly shade of gray smoke. Smoke

Monday, September 10

WOMEN---Skirting Brick Walls

Hollywood's Old Boys Club lives on sort of. Just look at the Business Journal's list of top dealmakers. Only one woman among them.

LABJ Forum---Shopping for a Computer

The pricetag for personal computers has been on a steady decline as of late, much to the chagrin of the major manufacturers. But while profit margins are down, the technology continues to advance. Though it seems like a good time to get a great deal, many

CORPORATE FOCUS---Returning Attention to Core Business Aids Medical Firm

It looks like investors finally have absolved International Remote Imaging Systems Inc. for the sin of straying from its core business.

Jane Applegate---Practically Painless Business Cost-Cutting Strategies

It takes some serious belt-tightening to strengthen your business if your sales are down, your customers have disappeared and you are dipping into personal savings to meet the payroll. Here are some practical, easy-to-implement, cost-cutting strategies to

WEEKLY---Pasadena Paper Seeks to Rake a Little Muck

When Pasadena Weekly Editor Kevin Uhrich met David Comden, he knew the sleepy community newspaper was in for a jolt.

HISTORIC---Historic Proportions

Relaxed zoning reguations spur an onslaught of downtown development activity


Your editorial, ("Stores To A Fault?" July 30) is critical of the convergence of so many new retail developments in Los Angeles. However, you overlook that each of the areas you identified not only has its own distinctive flavor, each has a population clo

HOSPITAL---Local Hospitals Face Worsening Financial Crisis

A majority of the state's hospitals saw their financial condition deteriorate over the last decade to the point where they had negative operating margins and, in a potential crisis for the health care system, could close should economic conditions grow wo

GIVEBACKS---Pothole Dollars Going Unspent

As any L.A. motorist could readily attest, local streets are in rough shape. In some parts of town, you can't go two blocks without running over a pothole or bumping along on cracked pavement. And when you call to complain, you're told it will take months

LAW ---Law Firm Layoffs Bringing Jitters to Legal Community

The decision by San Francisco-based Cooley Godward to lay off lawyers and support staff is sending ripples through the legal community, which has been holding its breath for signs of the first massive law firm layoff.

GARCETTI---Garcetti Assumes Key Role, Placates Skeptics, for Now

When newly elected L.A. City Councilman Eric Garcetti was named to chair the council's economic development and employment committee, more than a few eyebrows were raised in L.A.'s business community.

HOMESTORE---Accounting Issues Dog

Read's press releases and things look pretty good for the Westlake Village-based Internet real estate services company.

Real Estate---Retail Takes Up Slack as Westwood Theaters Depart

Despite lease expirations and the departures of several movie theaters, leasing activity in Westwood remains positive as anticipation builds around the reopening of the Bullocks Westwood/Macy's site.

LA County Airlines

LA County Airlines

COMPUTER---As Game Maker Girds for Battle, Investors are Wary

Computer game software publisher THQ Inc. is known for such titles such as "WWF Royal Rumble" and "Jedi Power Battle." But in the past few weeks, the Calabasas-based company has been preparing for its own kind of warfare.

AVALON---Businesses Sue to Halt Housing Development

Two entertainment companies are seeking to overturn the Los Angeles City Council's approval of a $65 million apartment complex that the companies said would force them out of their Westside industrial park.

HEALTH---Restaurants Catch Bellyache Trying to Keep Good Grades

One night in July, Muhammed Rahman, his wife and family scrubbed their Van Nuys restaurant until 3 o'clock in the morning. When they had finished, Passage to India, the restaurant Rahman has owned for more than 15 years, sparkled.

Deals & Dealmakers

As expected, the Los Angeles City Council signed off on developers' plans to build a $1 billion entertainment center with a 1,200-room hotel and 7,000-seat theater next to Staples Center.

FOOD---Au Naturel

L.A. is getting a taste of the raw foods craze where celebrities and regular food buffs alike pledge their palates to the uncooked meal--crunchy concoctions untouched by boiling, broiling or frying

Chet Currier---Make Resolution to Diversify as Business Year Begins

Mutual-fund investors needn't look far to find a reason to celebrate September and the business new year.

Roving Eye

After being shelved for more than 10 years, the fashion headband is experiencing a major revival.

PROFILE---Eye of the Storm

Most Impressive Deal: Renegotiating Dick Wolf's back-end compensation for "Law & Order"

Entrepreneur's Notebook---Marketing Strategy Should Breed Business Referrals

Who doesn't like business referrals? The people who are directed to a specific vendor gain confidence from doing business with an outfit recommended by someone they know. The individuals who make such referrals provide a value-added service by steering th

Kathryn Harris---Granite Loan Problems Capture Attention

At first blush, Granite Broadcasting Corp. looks like one of many TV-station companies pummeled by the slump in ad revenues.

Weekly Briefing

When Jack Tamkin returned home from a two-year stint in the U.S. Army in 1957, his future was waiting for him in his father's business, Tamkin Towel Service. He managed a crew of 250 employees contracted to wash laundry for Los Angeles' junior high and hi

Fund Managers Won't Call For Executive Pay Reforms

Mystified by the failure of big shareholders like mutual funds and pension funds to complain about the ever-rising executive pay at companies they invest in?

INTERVIEW---Complaint Division

Education: Bachelor's degree from Georgetown University, master's degree from University of Hawaii, Stanford Law School

WHO'S WHO---The New Generation

Today's industry power brokers are a younger breed who are leaving their mark on an ever more complex entertainment scene

COMMENT---The Real Power List

During my brief stint covering the entertainment industry, I was continually urged to make friends with lawyers. Behind all of Hollywood's glamour and ego, my colleagues advised, they are the ones who know most everything.

John Dorfman---Cash-Flow Valuations Prove Viable Stock Measurement

A year ago I was wiping egg off my face regarding some stocks I had recommended based on their low price-to-cash-flow ratio.

PROCESS---Multiple Players Often Involved in Hollywood Deals

We all know that success has many parents and failure is an orphan. But in Hollywood, every deal win or lose has an extended family.

FUJITA---Fraud Case Settled, Fujita's Debt Remains

Fujita Corp. USA was one of several Japanese companies that swarmed L.A.'s real estate market in the 80s.

TIMES---Closure of L.A. Times Weekly Papers Could Be Near, According to Sources

The Los Angeles Times appeared poised to announce the closure of its three weekly newspapers late last week, according to various sources.

BANK---Growth Drives City National to Office Market

City National Bank is shopping for 240,000 square feet of office space downtown or in Burbank where it can consolidate its back office banking operations.

Cybersense---U.S. Efforts on Open Web Access Should Begin at Home

It's heartening to hear that the United States government is planning to fund a system to help Internet users avoid online censorship.

BANKERS---Banking Firms Face Conflicting Market Signals

Like the scarecrow in "The Wizard of Oz," L.A.'s investment bankers are pointing in two directions at once, saying that each path will lead to success.

Newsmakers---New Chief Oversees Reason Foundation

As new chief executive of the Reason Foundation, David Nott wants to be at the forefront of the next intellectual movement.

MERGERS---Merger Pace, Values Drop In Slowdown

Los Angeles mergers-and-acquisitions activity slowed significantly in August, with 20 percent fewer deals announced than were struck in August 2000, according to Mergerstat, an L.A.-based research firm.

Wall Street West---Tale of Two Car Companies Reads Like a History Lesson

Historians say the real money was made not by gold miners in the California Gold Rush, but by suppliers. Every miner, of which there were several hundred thousand by 1854, needed food, clothes, and most importantly, equipment. Store owners prospered durin

Leonard Pitts---Parents May Be Ones Needing Spanking

That, in essence, is the finding of a recent Time/CNN poll. Most of us think most of our kids are overindulged, materialistic brats.

Our View---Downtown's Conundrum

Once again, there are signs that downtown Los Angeles is reaching a kind of critical mass in its much-promised turnaround.

FASHION---Downtown Landlord Capitalizes On Changes at CaliforniaMart

With tenants moving into the CaliforniaMart this week as part of a deal to lease 1 million square feet to gift and home accessories sellers, displaced apparel showroom occupants are contacting him for new space in his art deco building next door.

PUBLISH---Mounting Debts Leave Detour Scrambling to Avoid Liquidation

Detour Magazine has taken a major wrong turn. Faced with mounting debts, failed ventures and internal problems, parent company Detour Media Group Inc. is looking for a partner to help keep the L.A.-based fashion and lifestyle magazine alive.

OVERVIEW---Hollywood's Dealmakers

Young, maybe, but callow? Never. Well-trained, aggressive and deeply immersed in a culture driven by the media, Hollywood's new dealmakers are ready to take the reins when their mentors step aside.

Jane Bryant Quinn---Universities Vowing to Take Bidding From Loan Process

Some big-name private colleges and universities say they're taking a new tack on student aid.

ACE---Proving its metal

Core Business: Manufactures metal components for aerospace and electric companies

Ahead of the Curve

Bowl Finale: Get ready for Fireworks at the Hollywood Bowl. On Sept. 14, 15 and 16 there will be a big bang in celebration of John Mauceri and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra's first 10 years. They will be playing a combination of show tunes and classical pi

Media---Cross Promotion Keeps Listeners On Public Radio

Two separately owned public radio stations in L.A. have joined forces to promote each other on the air.

The High Costs of Taiwanese Independence

Should Taiwan be an independent country? And should the U.S. support Taiwan in its quest for independence?

POLITICS---Chamber's Search For a New Leader Coming to an End

The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce will likely name its new president and chief executive this week or early next week, according to sources familiar with the chamber. And, for the first time in at least 15 years, the new president may be a career c

My Favorite Sites

It's extensive, and there's tons of stuff for small business owners. I use this site mostly for general information on small business. The most interesting sections for me are "Start-Ups," "Marketing" and "Management." From a business perspective, it's an

L.A. Stories

Sun Microsystems, Variety and Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment are among the sponsors of next month's Entertainment Globalization Initiative conference at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Monday, September 3

Jane Bryant Quinn---Facing a Tighter Budget is a Matter of Setting Priorities

Are you suddenly feeling too far out on a spending limb? Time to dial back, spend less, save more.

IHOP---IHOP Franchisees Say Expansion Too Rapid

On the heels of the Aug. 20 resignation of IHOP Corp. Chief Operating Officer Dennis Leifheit, a number of franchisees have stepped up their criticism of operational decisions made by the Glendale-based chain. They see overly aggressive expansion in the m

Our View---Opportunity Lost, Again

Besides Gary Condit, the news vacuum these last few weeks has been filled with reports that the federal government's much-ballyhooed surplus is dramatically shrinking and that Social Security funds are likely to be used to make up for the operational shor

Interior Design Firms

Interior Design Firms

PLAYA---Playa Vista Launches Major Ad Campaign

After years of environmental protests, financial squabbles and lost business, the folks at Playa Vista are looking to make over their image with a flashy advertising campaign.

INSURANCE---French Firm Seeks Consolidation of Insurer Litigation

In what may be the largest fraud litigation in California history, attorneys representing French bank Credit Lyonnais last week filed a motion in U.S. District Court to have one of three related cases transferred from San Francisco to Los Angeles, where i

DEAL---L.A. Wire Maker Acquired By Canadian Rival

Industrial Wire Products Corp. of Los Angeles has been acquired by Tree Island Industries Inc. of Canada for an undisclosed price, creating the second-largest wire manufacturer on the West Coast.

POLITICS---With Revenue Left Uncollected, City Seeks Leadership

The post was created two years through a city ordinance sponsored by then-Councilwoman Laura Chick after a report from then-City Controller Rick Tuttle concluded that the city was failing to collect some $50 million in business taxes and tens of million

Letters---Insider Confidence

As highlighted in a recent Business Journal cover story ("Insider Sales Skyrocket at L.A. Companies," Aug. 20), investors frequently look to insider selling activity in public companies to assess confidence in a company's future. Far from being in the thr

Wall Street West---Securities Veteran Finding Earnings Lessons in History

It was 1956, the Olympics were on in Melbourne, Dwight Eisenhower was in the White House and Ed Wedbush, now president of downtown-based Wedbush Morgan Securities, was taking in a UCLA B-school professor on why the newly rich stock market was not a fleeti

RIORDAN---Riordan's Bumpy Ride

Richard Riordan arrives back in Los Angeles this week, fresh from an Italian vacation with fellow mogul Eli Broad and their wives. Next up: a whirlwind courtship of Republican Party conservatives.

SHUBERT---Going in Style

For three decades, the Shubert has been delighting L.A. theater-goers. As the venue heads into its final months, critics perhaps remember it best

WHEREHOUSE---Trimming Outlets, Retailer Retunes Market Approach

Wherehouse Entertainment Inc., which climbed out of bankruptcy protection four years ago to emerge as one of the nation's largest music retailers, is once again undergoing a makeover to refocus its farflung chain after getting caught up in the overall ind

Ahead of the Curve

Hot Nights: The Hollywood Bowl will heat up with the sounds of New Orleans jazz musicians Pete Fountain and Dr. John at 8:30 p.m. on Sept. 7 and Sept. 8. Dr. John began his career as a session guitarist during the 1950s' heyday of R & B; in New Orleans.

INTERVIEW--- TheVision Thing

Education: A.B. Biology, Providence College; M.D. School of Medicine, John Hopkins University

ECONOMY---Business Leaders Flock to Forecast, Seeking Answers

When the going gets tough, the tough get anxious so they go to an economic forecast, hoping to get a glimpse of the road ahead.

HMOs---State Seizure of HMOs Points to Market Stresses

When regulators seized WATTSHealth Foundation Inc. last month, it was the second HMO the state had moved against since May when it took control of Maxicare Health Plans Inc.

SECURITY---Security Concern

Core Business: Security consulting, executive protection and private investigation

SPEAKER---Wesson Bids to Continue L.A.'s Hold on Speakership

Culver City - Crenshaw-area Democratic Assemblyman Herb Wesson last month emerged as heir apparent to termed-out Assembly Speaker Robert Hertzberg. If he gets the post and a vote could come as early as January it would mark the third consecutive L.A.

Weekly Briefing

Although Richard Snyder had no idea growing up what he wanted to do, he knew exactly what he did not want: school. After dropping out of Los Angeles Valley College in 1976, he took various sales clerk positions before landing a $7-an-hour job at F & S Fab

NURSING HOMES---Nursing Home Chain Teetering As Debts Mount

At Sharon Care Center on Third Street in Los Angeles one recent morning, a group of patients lounged easily, sipping coffee and chatting against the backdrop of a caf & #233;-like patio.

L.A. Stories

Here's another Oscar statuette director Steven Spielberg may want to consider saving from commercial exploitation.

Cybersense---Microsoft-Sponsored Bogus Letter Campaign an Affront

My name is MR. ABRAHAM LINCOLN, and I'm an ordinary "grassroots" citizen writing to complain about the harsh treatment Microsoft has received from your municipality/county/state/nation.

MANUFACTURING---L.A. Loses Top Manufacturing Position

Los Angeles has lost its title as the manufacturing capital of the U.S., a spot it has held for the last five years, according to a study being released this week by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp.

STOORZA---Stoorza Cuts Units In Move to Create Boutique PR Firm

Once among the top 25 public relations firms in Los Angeles, with a client list that has included giants such as Chevron Corp. and City National Bank, Stoorza Communications has shrunk its local operation to three employees as part of a company-wide downs

State Must Get Out of Electricity Business

If the Legislature fails to act on two key energy-related issues, California will have taken a major step toward establishing a government-run, statewide utility system.

GRAMMYS---Latin Grammys Put Forum's New Owners at Center Stage

Next week's Latin Grammys may well demonstrate that the house that Jack Kent Cooke built and Jerry Buss bought is still capable of raising the roof.

Mitch Albom---Discrimination Suit Has Ring of Pettiness

This one comes from the Houston area, where a mother felt compelled to explore legal action after enrolling her child in kindergarten only to find that gasp! the school had a dress code.

CORPORATE FOCUS---Westwood One Riding Out Slump in Media Advertising

As other entertainment companies look for ways out of the hole created by the advertising slump that hit last year, Westwood One Inc. has used more conservative financial strategies to remain on solid ground.

My Favorite Sites

This is the Web site for the American Zoological and Aquarium Association. The reason this site is important is it gives me information on other zoos in the country. If someone opens another exhibit I'd like to see what problems they might have. When you

Media---KCOP-TV Trims 12 Staff Positions After Station Sale

After months of speculation in local TV circles, KCOP-TV Channel 13 has laid off 12 employees in the accounting and programming departments, according to sources at the station.

Chet Currier---Emerging-Market Bonds Fill High-Yield Investing Needs

A bit player in the world of mutual funds looks ready to try out for a larger role. The performer in question is the emerging-markets bond funds population, which started out small in the early 1990s and has stayed that way. Until recently their obscurity

HOUSE OF BLUES---Ruling Due in 'Blues Brothers' Royalty Case

The inspiration for the House of Blues nightclub chain originally sprung from the 1980 cult classic "The Blues Brothers," starring John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd.

LAW---Creditors Circle as Skepticism Grows On Energy Bailout

Gov. Gray Davis' proposed $2.9 billion bailout plan for Southern California Edison hasn't gone over too well so far. But it may not matter.

LABJ Forum---Setting Year-End Goals

Summer's over, and it's back to school time. Before you know it, the holiday season will be upon us, with its whirlwind of obligations, and then 2001 will be history. As the months slip by, setting goals can be helpful in getting things accomplished befor

Taking Cell Phones Out of Drivers' Hands No Panacea

Since lawmakers worried about auto safety have begun taking cell phones out of the hands of drivers, for consistency's sake they should address the mascara problem as well.

HOSPITALS---Sides Give on Quake Legislation

There's nothing like the threat of a hospital closure to get lawmakers' attention.

LOFTS---Downtown Loft Boom Spurs Development Partnership

Spurred by the successes of the developers with whom they've worked, two contractors are jumping headlong into the downtown loft business.

Newsmakers---L.A. Takes Delivery of New Postmaster

James Smith has just taken on one of the toughest jobs in town making sure 3.6 million people and 100,000 businesses receive 900,000 daily postal deliveries.

Entrepreneur's Notebook---Major Litigation May Have Big Impact on Firm's Future

If you are a business owner, it is inevitable that your company will bring or defend the "big case." The big case is the kind of litigious matter that will have a profound effect on the future of your company. It may even be a case where you are betting t

John Dorfman---Turning to 'Sane Portfolio' for Conservative Investors

It's time for a visit with an old friend the Sane Portfolio. I designed the Sane Portfolio in August 1999 for "slightly conservative investors." The original 12 stocks have produced a two-year return of about 34 percent, compared to a loss of about 12 p

Jane Applegate---Optimism May Hinder Efforts to Revive an Ailing Firm

Turnaround consultants have a tough time getting their clients to talk about them. When they are attempting to save a troubled business, the owner is usually too upset to discuss their efforts. After the crisis, when the business is back on track, the bus

Real Estate Column---Nearly Doubling Lease Size, AON Lands Naming Rights

By nearly doubling its space at 707 Wilshire Blvd., AON Service Corp. established enough of a presence to secure building-top signage rights and the right to eventually rename the second-tallest building in downtown Los Angeles.

BEN & JERRY'S---Ice Cream Magnate Targets L.A. For 'Responsible' Apparel Effort

The man behind a socially responsible ice cream company on the East Coast has plans to create a socially responsible apparel company on the West Coast.

Roving Eye

When neighbors heard that a self-storage building was going up near their historic homes, they feared it would be some boxy structure with dull concrete walls and no windows.

HOLLYWOOD---Capitol Improvements

While much of the attention is focused on the fall opening of TrizecHahn Development Corp.'s Hollywood & Highland a mixed-use project at its namesake intersection others have been working to anchor the eastern side of the once-tarnished neighborhood.