Stories for March 2011
Thursday, March 31
American Apparel Inc. said that it swung to a loss last year and warned that may have to seek bankruptcy protection.
HCP Inc. has completed its nearly $1.3 billion secondary stock offering. The proceeds will help pay for a pending acquisition of nursing homes and rehabilitation hospitals.
Colony Financial Inc. shares fell more than 6 percent Thursday after the real estate investment trust announced a secondary offering of nearly 12.4 million shares.
Faced with a sudden and serious liquidity crisis, IndyMac Bank borrowed nearly $1 billion from the Federal Reserve in the days leading up to its July 2008 failure, according to new documents released by the central bank.
International Lease Finance Corp. has received commitments for a $1.3 billion loan which it will use to refinance debt. The company also announced that its chief financial officer had been promoted to president.
Wednesday, March 30
MannKind Inc. was among 19 small drug developers targeted by an FDA chemist, who allegedly used advance knowledge of the regulator's decisions to profit from sharp fluctuations in the companies’ stock.
The Sofitel wants to start having commercial helicopter landings on the hotel's rooftop but neighbors are worried about sound and safety.
German media company Bertelsmann AG and New York private equity firm KKR & Co. are partners in a potential $3 billion bid to acquire Warner Music Group Corp., sources told a German newspaper.
Barington Capital Group L.P., which has been agitating for a management shakeup at pipe maker Ameron International Corp., has convinced fellow shareholders to elect the fund’s CEO to Ameron’s board.
Amgen Inc. and partner Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. said an experimental drug had not met their goal of improving overall survival of patients with advanced lung cancer.
Tuesday, March 29
The Los Angeles City Council has approved the $1.2 billion high-rise redevelopment of downtown’s Wilshire Grand hotel site, as well as controversial plans to light up the new towers with digital advertising.
Bernard Roth, a Los Angeles oil magnate and pioneer of the self-serve gas station, died at his home in Beverly Hills over the weekend. He was 95.
Occidental Petroleum Corp. cut its first-quarter production forecast, citing disruptions in Libya and Yemen and slower capital spending in Iraq.
A Philippine man was arrested and charged with illegally selling an unmanned U.S. spy plane known as the Raven, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Tampa, Fla.
Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. has won a contract to provide research operations and support services for the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory at Edwards Air Force Base.
Aecom Technology Corp.'s Aecom-Envirocon joint venture was among six contractors that will share in a large environmental remediation contract awarded by the U.S. Naval Facilities Engineering Command.
Monday, March 28
Teen clothing and accessories retailer Hot Topic Inc. plans to discontinue some operations, including its money-losing online music store, as part of its turnaround plan under a new chief executive
American Apparel Inc.'s share price jumped 12 percent Monday morning after the struggling Los Angeles apparel company disclosed that Chief Executive Dov Charney had increased his stake to 54 percent.
Kennedy-Wilson Inc. plans to privately sell $200 million in senior notes, proceeds of which will be used to pay down its credit facility and other debt.
Family members of a 24-year-old British employee reported missing from a Disney cruise ship last week met with investigators Sunday after the vessel returned to its home port in Los Angeles.
HEALTH CARE & BIOTECH: HCP takes in $1.1 billion in stock sale; LTC expects $104 million.
HCP Inc. and LTC Properties Inc., two local real estate investment trusts specializing in health care properties, went to the equity markets last week, riding continued investor appetite for a piece of the real estate recovery.
Special Report: LABJ BUSINESS PERSON OF THE YEAR
AEG’s Tim Leiweke has won over Los Angeles with his downtown vision, which now includes a pro football stadium.
ADVERTISING & PR: SocialVibe in West Los Angeles rings up $20 million in capital.
SocialVibe, a West L.A. online advertising company, has secured $20 million in venture capital to expand its overseas operations.
DirecTV, Ticketmaster make cut in consumer website competition.
Consumer website drafts DirecTV and Ticketmaster into a competition to be crowned ‘Worst Company.’
Beverly Hills goes after Michael Ovitz over a donated artwork.
Ex-superagent Mike Ovitz insists he didn’t chisel Beverly Hills out of a $61,000 bronze statue.
City has top percentage of entrepreneurs, according to study.
Los Angeles rates No. 1 in a report on the percentage of entrepreneurs in big cities.
City prefers fee to tighter rules on signage.
Business groups and sign makers hail the city of L.A. for backing down from sign rules.
Cornerstone stock makes year’s best debut.
Software firm Cornerstone builds a banner IPO on the back of investors anxious for new stocks.
City sells parcel slated for green corridor.
The city of Los Angeles has sold off a downtown parcel as its goal for a green corridor seems to be wilting.
REAL ESTATE: DLA Piper signs for 15 years at home of Creative Artists Agency.
Bucking a trend of law firms moving to downtown Los Angeles, DLA Piper LLP is maintaining its offices in Century City, where it has signed a 15-year lease.
Charles Crumpley sees a hole lot of problems with L.A.’s busted streets.
Some hotels make room for casual competition to score customers.
Local hotels are making a play for more customers by hosting game nights.
Chinese company sets up City of Industry headquarters to raise capital for coal operations back home.
U.S. China Mining has opened a City of Industry headquarters to unearth some investors.
Randy Gordon sees room for secret-ballot voting for union-pressured hotel workers.
OPED: Governor’s proposal to ax CRAs would harm poor neighborhoods with few private-sector options.
A plan to scuttle CRAs would impact the poor the hardest, writes Alvaro Huerta.
Northrop’s X-47B jet for the Navy passes several flight tests.
A Northrop carrier-based drone could provide some lift to the local industry.
Pasadena-based Financial Freedom to exit sector it led under IndyMac.
One-time reverse-mortgage giant Financial Freedom is backing out of the lending sector it once dominated.
National group Sabew praises reporting on bank, stem cells, developer.
A national business editors group honors the Business Journal with awards for three stories covering banking, biotech and real estate.
Venice’s 72andSunny launches $1,000-a-month ‘university.’
Venice firm makes a classy move with its program to teach the industry to potential hires.
Lisa Harper aims to replicate Gymboree success at Hot Topic.
Teen-targeted Hot Topic tries on a former kids’ clothing CEO for size.
AEG project tied to its plan for pro football stadium.
AEG sees room in downtown Los Angeles for a new hotel near its proposed football stadium.
Two seats on Ameron’s board to be decided Wednesday.
The votes are almost in to decide the fate of pipe maker Ameron’s embattled chief.
When your father is Don Cornelius – the man who created “Soul Train” – following him into the entertainment industry might lead to some identity issues.
Sunday, March 27
For the last 12 years, Alan F. Horn’s movie operation has printed money for Warner Brothers, the largest of Hollywood’s studios.
Friday, March 25
The Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies rose for the week as investors reacted to a better-than-expected U.S. gross domestic product report for the fourth quarter.
L.A. County’s jobs picture improved in February as the unemployment rate dipped to 12.6 percent and the county gained 45,000 payroll jobs.
Anschutz Entertainment Group has selected architecture and design giant Gensler to design and prepare environmental studies for the proposed $1 billion football stadium and events center in downtown Los Angeles.
A woman who accused American Apparel Chief Executive Dov Charney of keeping her as a teenage sex slave could be forced to take her case to arbitration, rather than pursue it in court.
Amgen Inc. has completed the sale of a development and manufacturing facility in the San Francisco area to German drugmaker Boehringer Ingelheim.
Thursday, March 24
Amgen Inc. may introduce its first dividend next month, rewarding investors whose stock in the world’s largest biotechnology company has fallen 33 percent since 2006, even as its cash hoard grew to $17.4 billion.
Federal prosecutors have charged Barry Minkow, a former Ponzi scheme swindler turned fraud investigator, with conspiracy to commit securities fraud by disseminating false information in 2009 about homebuilder Lennar Corp.
UTi Worldwide Inc. said higher expenses contributed to fourth quarter earnings that were below Wall Street forecasts. It warned that the crisis in Japan and high fuel costs may hurt its current quarter.
A former American Apparel sales associate filed a lawsuit on Wednesday alleging she was sexually harassed by Dov Charney, the company’s unconventional chief executive and founder best known for promoting his American-made T-shirts and leggings in provocative ads that feature young women.
Wednesday, March 23
American Apparel Inc. has brought in another industry veteran to help turn around the struggling company.
Shareholders re-elected Walt Disney Co.’s board slate, including ailing Apple Inc. Chief Executive Steve Jobs, whose inclusion had been criticized by proxy adviser firms and union pension funds.
A Bay Area videoconferencing company has bought El Segundo’s Accordent Technologies Inc., a developer of webcasting software for businesses.
HCP Inc. and LTC Properties Inc. have priced secondary offerings of stock, which both of the real estate investment trusts plan to use to help them acquire nursing homes and other care facilities.
Tesaro Inc., a Boston cancer drug start-up, has signed an exclusive licensing deal with Amgen Inc. to develop some of the Thousand Oaks biotech giant’s technology into a potential lung cancer drug.
Elizabeth Taylor, the violet-eyed film goddess whose sultry screen persona, stormy personal life and enduring fame and glamour made her one of the last of the classic movie stars and a template for the modern celebrity, died Wednesday at age 79.
Tuesday, March 22
West Los Angeles private equity firm Leonard Green & Partners LP is weighing a possible acquisition of BJ’s Wholesale Club, in which it has a large stake.
LaSalle Hotel Properties Inc. has paid $80.1 million for the Viceroy Santa Monica hotel.
HCP Inc. will sell 24 million shares of stock to help fund its $6.1 billion acquisition of HCR ManorCare’s real estate assets, rather than give HCR’s owners some HCP stock as originally planned.
In the latest volley of a more than three-year-old patent dispute, EasyLink Services International Corp. filed a suit against j2 Global Communications Inc., alleging that j2’s digital faxing technology infringed on its patents.
MasterImage 3-D Inc. said that the venture capital unit of Korean electronics giant Samsung Electronics Co. is investing $15 million in the company’s 3-D technology.
Monday, March 21
The city spent $1.6 million in federal grant money to bring Borders into the Pico Rivera Towne Center and to help pay its rent for nearly eight years.
LTC Properties Inc. plans to offer 3.5 million shares of common stock, proceeds of which will be used for acquisitions and to pay down debt. The REIT also announced a new $200 million credit facility.
Hot Topic Inc., which earlier this month hired a consultant to review its struggling teen retail business, said that Betsy McLaughlin had resigned as chief executive and a board member was appointed to permanently replace her.
Health insurer WellPoint Inc. has reduced its proposed premium increase for individual policy holders in California and will delay co-pay and deductible increases until Jan. 1.
HCP Inc. said that Chief Financial Officer Thomas Herzog will resign from the company as of May 15.
This is the tease of the story.
REAL ESTATE: Residential deal is the 10th for two-year-old Montage Beverly Hills.
The 10th condominium was sold this month at the Montage Beverly Hills, putting the luxury hotel and condominium complex, which opened more than two years ago, at 50 percent capacity.
Q&A: Iraqi immigrant made his name in America with his infomercial-supported line of branded skin care products.
Dermatologist Howard Murad has found success that’s more than skin deep with his branded line of products.
Lack of ad pages in high-gloss Hollywood Reporter has show biz industry buzzing.
High cost and lack of ads share top billing in the story of the Hollywood Reporter’s magazine makeover.
OP-ED: Preparing tomorrow’s work force requires putting kids on the right path at a preschool stage.
High-quality preschool education is key to a strong work force, writes Celia C. Ayala.
Charles Crumpley decides not to anticipate the unexpected.
Organizer drops city’s name from food fest, adds Hollywood site.
Beverly Hills officials have a bad taste after a dining event drops city’s name.
Newsstand operators go beyond print for products that will boost sales.
Santa Monica serves eateries steep rent hike
The outdoors isn’t looking so great as Santa Monica hikes the sidewalk rental rates for restaurants that seat outside.
Special Report: BANKING & FINANCE QUARTERLY
Troubled banks provide opportunities for new ventures.
Special Report: BANKING & FINANCE QUARTERLY
Troubled banks provide opportunities for new ventures.
Special Report: BANKING & FINANCE QUARTERLY
Troubled banks provide opportunities for new ventures.
CHIEF DWELLINGS: $14.9 million hacienda home picked up by Alex Von Furstenberg.
Listings and sales of executive homes.
MANUFACTURING: Ruling vacated in case over alleged pesticide use back in the 1970s.
Dole Food Co. finally closed the chapter this week on a notorious lawsuit that involved its Nicaraguan operations and dated back to the 1970s.
TECHNOLOGY: Quake and tsunami spike use of Everbridge messages.
The earthquake and tsunami in Japan have put a Glendale company’s technology to the test.
Network’s deal for Clicker shows move into digital distribution.
Recently acquired online video tracker Clicker pushed the right buttons for new parent CBS.
Van Nuys’ Superior looks for ways to boost production capacity.
Sales of its aluminum wheels are driving Van Nuys’ Superior to increase production.
As managing partner in an accounting firm, Joel Anik is used to hearing requests from his employees.
Long Beach Post news website to branch out into print edition.
Long Beach Post publisher hopes his online site clicks with readers in print.
Daily Grill restaurant shares home with new late-night bar concept.
Daily Grill in downtown L.A. has something new on the menu: a whole other restaurant concept that opens at night.
Fraud case against top execs could complicate sale of comedy company National Lampoon.
Fraud allegations against National Lampoon’s top execs could impede the sale of the comedy company.
Developer Wayne Ratkovich’s project apes Web giant’s HQ.
Wayne Ratkovich designed his new office complex after Google’s HQ in order to click with tenants.
Fortune Fashions becomes unit of Van Nuys’ Jerry Leigh.
Clothing company Jerry Leigh sees a good fit in its recent acquisition of T-shirt maker Fortune Fashions.
Special Report: BANKING & FINANCE QUARTERLY
Private equity firms lead the charge of investors picking up banks on the cheap.
L.A. may move to shut Santa Monica Airport.
Flight school owners fear L.A. City Council members are looking to permanently ground Santa Monica Airport.
Sunday, March 20
The Writers Guild of America surprised the biz Sunday evening by informing members that it has reached a tentative agreement for a three-year master contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.
Saturday, March 19
Warren M. Christopher, the courtly and reserved secretary of state in President Bill Clinton’s first term and the chief negotiator for the 1981 release of American hostages in Iran, has died in Los Angeles. He was 85.
Friday, March 18
Los Angeles city prosecutors have won judgments ordering a former parking lot operator and a Koreatown hotel owner to pay a total $7.8 million in unpaid taxes.
The Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies fell slightly for the week as investors continued to worry about the economic impact of the crisis in Japan.
A subsidiary of Teledyne Technologies Inc. has acquired a majority interest in Nova Research Inc., a Central Coast developer of camera electronics.
Los Angeles private equity investment firm Brentwood Associates has acquired K-MAC Holdings Corp., one of the largest Taco Bell franchisees in the United States.
Thursday, March 17
Walt Disney Co. has suspended all administrative and store operations in Tokyo in the aftermath of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
In a setback for non-union contractors, the Los Angeles Harbor Commission approved an agreement requiring contractors to use union labor on $1.5 billion in port construction projects over the next five years.
Shares of Cornerstone OnDemand Inc. jumped Thursday after the initial public offering of the human resources software company priced higher than expected.
Hythiam Inc., which markets a proprietary treatment program for alcoholism and stimulant dependence, said that it had changed its name to Catasys Inc.
Wednesday, March 16
A Wednesday morning twin-engine plane crash killed five of the six people aboard, including Long Beach developer Tom Dean and his partner at Studebaker Properties, Jeff Berger.
Blue Shield of California, a nonprofit health insurer, said that it would no longer seek a rate increase this year for individuals who buy coverage on their own rather than through an employer.
Guess Inc. reported better-than-expected fourth quarter earnings, but the apparel chain said some same-store sale slipped slightly and its outlook for the current quarter was lower than analysts expected.
Caruso Affiliated plans to build a Nordstrom department store at Americana at Brand shopping center on recently acquired land that now contains a hotel. The store will replace the Nordstrom at the nearby Glendale Galleria.
Barry Minkow, a convicted con man who became a minister and anti-fraud crusader, is in talks with U.S. prosecutors in Miami to plead guilty to insider trading of Lennar Corp.
National Lampoon Chief Executive Timothy Durham has been indicated by a Indiana grand jury on securities and wire fraud charges in connection with another company.
Superior Industries International Inc.’s shares jumped 15 percent Wednesday morning after reporting that a recovering automotive industry enabled it to move from a loss to a profit in the fourth quarter.
Tuesday, March 15
Pasadena gourmet ice cream maker Choctal Inc. has been acquired by Ben Stanley Holdings, a Florida holding company.
The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles continued to see higher year-over-year container traffic in February, although the growth was somewhat slower compared with the stronger gains seen much of last year.
The Vernon Chamber of Commerce is protesting a bill in the state legislature that would disincorporate the city of Vernon and leave it open to be annexed by another city.
Healthcare facility landlord HCP Inc. raised its guidance for this year, in part because of gains from early repayment of debt. It also entered into a $1.5 billion unsecured credit facility.
In the movie business, sometimes a flop is just a flop. Then there are misses so disastrous that they send signals to broad swaths of Hollywood. “Mars Needs Moms” is shaping up as the second type.
Monday, March 14
Univision Communications Inc., owner of the most-watched Spanish language TV network in the U.S., said Executive Chairman Haim Saban will assume added duties after the resignation of Chief Executive Officer Joe Uva.
Eddy Hartenstein, publisher of the Los Angeles Times, wants a judge to approve his parent company's plan to emerge from bankruptcy protection as soon as possible.
Los Angeles billionaires Stewart and Lynda Resnick’s Paramount Citrus company said that it is entering the Persian lime market with the acquisition of 9,500 acres of lime orchards in the state of Tabasco, Mexico.
Dole Food Co Inc. moved to a loss in the fourth quarter, hurt by higher restructuring costs and lower banana prices in Asia.
United Talent Agency filed in Los Angeles a breach of contract and fraud lawsuit against World Of Wonder Productions over the packaging of the hit Oxygen TV series, Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood.
Hawthorne commercial rocket firm Space Exploration Technologies signed another satellite launch agreement, this time with European telecommunications satellite giant SES.
Eli Broad, the billionaire philanthropist and co-founder of KB Home, sold a co-op on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan for $8 million, more than two years after listing it for almost twice as much.
Electric freight trains, not trucks would move port containers.
A bold new rail plan is taking shape, but will it go anywhere?
Incumbents win new terms; Beverly Hills oil tax goes down in defeat.
Last week’s election outcomes favored local business interests, notably the defeat of a Beverly Hills oil tax.
Shareholders sell off two energy stocks after lengthy price run-up.
Shareholders take profits from oil company stocks, driving down the share prices of BNK and BreitBurn Energy Partners.
Anyone who wants to turn last year’s saga of the trapped Chilean miners into a movie or book will have to go through Bela G. Lugosi.
Starline teams up with TMZ to spotlight some infamous locations.
Starline is adding a tabloid touch to its celebrity tours courtesy of new partner TMZ.
Skechers steps out with promotion of its No. 2 footwear status.
Shoemaker Skechers likes the look and fit of “No. 2 footwear brand” in its marketing.
REAL ESTATE: Minority shareholders seek control of downtown's largest landlord.
It’s been two years since Richard Meruelo’s Meruelo Maddux Property Inc. – the largest landlord in downtown Los Angeles – filed Chapter 11.
Virtual agency Thought Bubble cuts costs by foregoing office and full-time staff.
Virtual ad agencies have become popular because they save customers money. But some wonder if they can deliver.
PROFILE: A counseling program helped Richard Klein to recharge and eventually grow his battery business.
A Goldman Sachs counseling program helped Richard Klein recharge his battery business.
HEALTH CARE & BIOTECH: Torrance’s Hisamitsu finds success with transdermal patch.
Hisamitsu America Inc. is among many U.S. subsidiaries of Japanese companies that have set up shop over the years in Torrance, a popular enclave for Japanese expatriates.
ADVERTISING & PR: Formation of Total Market designed to reach ethnic consumers.
Phelps Group, an advertising and PR firm in Santa Monica, has spun off a new company, Phelps Total Market LLC, to reach ethnic consumers.
Public relations exec Michael Levine raps industry members for enabling clients’ poor behavior.
OP-ED: Los Angeles would be a good home for a proposed Center for Cures that would bring together medical research.
Robert Kotler proposes Los Angeles as the home for a new center concentrating on medical research.
P. Jacob Yadegar wants to recall elected leaders’ approach to deficits and the economy.
OP-ED: Cooperation between employers and workers is the only way to control the spiraling costs of health care.
Employers and employees must work together to stop hemorrhaging insurance costs, writes Patricia A. Moore.
The runaway costs at the local community college district shouldn’t be a surprise, Charles Crumpley writes. No business people were in charge.
TRADE & TRASNPORT: New Gerald Desmond Bridge is $200 million cheaper.
The economic meltdown has had an upside at the Port of Long Beach: The replacement of the Gerald Desmond Bridge looks to have become noticeably cheaper.
Design Center in West Hollywood asks $5 per square foot.
The Red Building at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood is opening at a challenging time for office leasing.
Strong financial results may be verdict for recovery.
L.A.’s legal industry looks like it’s in full recovery mode.
Praise puts off humble Koos chief executive, who prefers to let his work ethic speak for itself.
Jeans maker Yul Ku even avoids having his own office to keep the focus on work.
Marketer targets the problems of loud sleep with 1-800-Snoring.
The founder of 1-800-Dentist tries the same trick to sell treatments for snoring.
Natural gas glut drags down value of new deals for power generation.
Cheaper natural gas prices have drawn down profits at Edison.
Perez wants to grandfather in low business costs.
Proposed legislation dissolving Vernon may be changed to protect existing businesses there, but the opposition isn’t placated.
L.A. apparel makers building real and virtual stores
Despite the Internet shopping boom, L.A. apparel companies such as Joe’s Jeans are opening more real world stores.
Two L.A. companies hitting ‘tweet’ spot.
Beverly Hills company ad.ly is making good money thanks to Charlie’s Sheen bad-boy antics.
Ratings slid when PBS programs pulled, but chief says ‘It’s up from here.’
Despite plummeting ratings and an exodus of memberships, KCET’s chief executive believes things can be turned around.
Friday, March 11
The Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies edged down slightly for the week, as the prospect of lower oil consumption in Japan following its massive earthquake reduced earlier losses driven by rising oil prices.
Sam Nazarian’s SBE Entertainment Group plans to shutter the Sahara Hotel & Casino on May 16, saying it’s no longer economically viable to operate the aging Las Vegas resort.
99 Cents Only Stores has received a bid from the family that runs the company along with Leonard Green & Partners L.P. to take the company private for $1.34 billion.
Los Angeles air and sea traffic were affected Friday by the major earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan overnight, with the Port of Los Angeles and other entities taking precautionary measures.
Thursday, March 10
David King has resigned as chief financial officer of Tetra Tech Inc. to accept a position with a solar company based in China.
Actions by the U.S. government and Federal Reserve in the wake of the financial crisis diminished opportunities for distressed investors to make deals, Colony Capital LLC Chairman Thomas Barrack said.
DirecTV Holdings LLC has closed the sale of roughly $4 billion of senior notes, some of which may be used for share repurchases and a distribution to its parent.
GameSalad, a developer of software that makes it easier to create games for the iPhone and other Apple devices, has appointed Steve Felter as chief executive to take over from the company’s founder.
Wednesday, March 9
Things have gotten chilly here for Natural Selection, the film production company backed by Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s son Saadi.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has reached settlements with five companies that agreed to pay more than $3 million to help clean up contaminated groundwater at Superfund sites in the San Fernando Valley.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said that Los Angeles apparel manufacturing company Ms. Bubbles Inc. has agreed to pay a $40,000 civil penalty related to potentially dangerous hooded jackets for children.
Spirit Airlines sparked a fare war Tuesday as it announced it would enter the crowded Los Angeles-Las Vegas market on May 5.
BreitBurn Energy Partners L.P. reported a larger-than-expected fourth-quarter loss because of big losses in derivative instruments it uses to manage price volatility.
Korn/Ferry International Inc.'s third quarter earnings met Wall Street forecasts but revenues exceeded expectations as the company showed strong growth in fees for its executive recruiting and staffing services.
Tuesday, March 8
Fourth Wall Studios, a Culver City company that creates massively multiplayer online games, augmented-reality worlds and other forms of experiential entertainment, has secured an investment worth as much as $215 million from Los Angeles' richest man, billionaire entrepreneur Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong.
The founder of the American Apparel clothing line allegedly held a teen worker captive and forced her to perform sex acts, she charges in an suit filed New York.
Skechers USA Inc. said it has filed suit against Sears Holdings Corp., accusing it of selling knock-off footwear that infringes on patents and trademarks for its Shape-up toning shoes and other lines.
AeroVironment Inc. shares jumped 13 percent in after-hours trading Tuesday when the drone aircraft maker reported higher quarterly sales and profit that beat Wall Street expectations.
Glendale's Golden Key Hotel will close at the end of the year, paving the way for developer Rick Caruso to expand his Americana at Brand.
Hot Topic Inc. swung to a loss in its fiscal fourth quarter, largely due to expenses related a cost-reduction plan.
Warner Bros.has reached a deal with Facebook to test a system to rent its movies on the popular social networking site.
A conflict of interest did creep into an effort to seek out qualifying companies to bid on the latest round of retail and dining contracts at Los Angeles International Airport.
Monday, March 7
IPC The Hospitalist Co. Inc.'s fourth-quarter earnings rose 31 percent as its physician groups treated more inpatients.
Barbie moved out of her Shanghai dream house today after Mattel Inc., the world’s biggest toymaker, closed the only store in China dedicated to its bestselling doll.
Warren Buffett said shareholders of his Berkshire Hathaway Inc. may have their financial interests harmed by the company’s planned stock-and-cash deal to take a 100 percent stake in Pasadena-based Wesco Financial Corp.
Crown Media Holdings Inc. said that Andrew Rooke has been appointed chief financial officer.
After 27 months of legal wrangling, Tribune Co. and its creditors are finally headed into what could be the deciding chapter of the company's tangled bankruptcy saga.
New parent Nordstrom likes outlook for HauteLook.
New parent Nordstrom should extend the shelf life of flash-sales site HauteLook as more rivals enter the sector.
David&Goliath chairman now faces the giant task of taking over the racy ad campaign for Carl’s Jr.
David&Goliath Chairman David Angelo has a tall order taking over the racy ad campaign for Carl’s Jr.
As insurers scrimmage on TV, Farmers takes to field
Farmers has turned to sports sponsorships to compete with rivals in an increasingly crowded ad field.
Emak CEO sees sale of toy unit as a way to focus on core businesses.
Ad conglomerate Emak’s bankruptcy plan and sale of its toy business may end the fight for control of the company.
Some properties on L.A.’s Westside buck trend and see hefty gains.
Home sales slowed in February as prices also tumbled to 2009 lows.
Santa Monica Internet company signs up celebrity cook Rachael Ray to boost sites.
Demand Media hopes to heat up its how-to website by signing Food Network star and talk show host Rachael Ray.
OP-ED: L.A.’s City Council must boost the chances for a downtown stadium while protecting public funds.
Wayne Avrashow advises L.A. City Council members to keep their heads in the game while pursuing a downtown stadium.
Since city and state lawmakers live in glass houses, maybe they shouldn’t throw stones at Vernon, Charles Crumpley writes.
Hollywood’s Film Fresh aims to deliver its movies across a range of devices in order to compete with larger rivals.
Film Fresh hopes to boost its Hollywood role by accessing a variety of playback platforms for its movie content.
L.A. e-mail firm fights postal service again over patents.
E-mail services firm RPost alleges the Swiss postal service isn’t minding the letter of a patent violation settlement.
REAL ESTATE: F.C.C. pays $5.3 million for property in Rancho Dominguez.
In a sign of the rebound in trade activity at the ports, a Chinese logistics company has purchased a vacant industrial building in Rancho Dominguez for $5.3 million.
Local fast-food joint adds healthy items with help from TV guru.
Dino Perris of Patra’s Burgers got a taste of reality TV with a visit from health crusader Jamie Oliver.
Westwood businesses want to see its return.
Westwood Village is getting down to business on reviving its improvement district.
Concern for Green Dot’s revenue drops company’s share value.
Debit card company Green Dot paid dearly in stock value for SEC filing disclosures.
CHIEF DWELLINGS: Art Kleinman puts $6.3 million price on house above Sunset Strip.
Listings and sales of executive homes.
RETAIL & APPAREL: SBE’s Sam Nazarian to launch a Hyde Lounge in Sin City.
Sam Nazarian is placing his bets on Las Vegas – again.
LAW: Carlos Moreno commuted to San Francisco for 10 years.
When former California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno starts his job at Irell & Manella LLP next week, he’ll take on duties different from the ones he had for the previous 10 years.
TECHNOLOGY: Recent funding round to help pay for more staff at Gogii.
Gogii Inc., a Marina del Rey mobile communication company that recently completed its third financing round, is gearing up to nearly double its staff.
BANKING & FINANCE: Improved capital level boosts outlook for American Continental.
Federal regulators have lifted an enforcement order against American Continental Bank after the small City of Industry institution made strides in improving its financial condition.
City is in talks with L.A. agency to take over struggling facility.
Ontario looks to edge out businesses to land control of its local airport from the city of Los Angeles.
Separation from parent boosts TASC’s ability to pursue contracts.
Defense contractor TASC is beefing up its L.A. presence as former parent Northrop is scaling back.
Andrea Herz Payne has done some gutsy things.
Online firm helps companies line up models and actors.
GotCast takes an online social-network tack to line up models and actors for companies.
Non-profit’s shop helps special-needs youths get job experience.
A Sherman Oaks non-profit is sold on helping special-needs youths acquire retail sale skills.
Friday, March 4
CBS Corp. said that it is buying the Los Angeles-based online video guide Clicker Media Inc. and will make the company’s co-founder president of its CBS Interactive unit.
The Business Journal’s index of largest local public companies edged up only slightly for the week as economic concerns over high gas prices slowed gains by local stocks.
Los Angeles’ jobs picture darkened in January as employers slashed 77,000 jobs from their payrolls, mostly from post-holiday layoffs. But the county is still doing better than last year, with a gain of 6,000 jobs.
Demand Media Inc. has acquired CoveritLive, a popular live blogging tool that may eventually be integrated into its eHow, Livestrong and other specialty interest sites.
Miami developer Crescent Heights has submitted paperwork to the City of Los Angeles Planning Department for a 283-unit condo tower in Century City.
Thursday, March 3
One morning in early January, healthy eating disciple David Murdock awoke to an unsettling sensation. Incredibly, infuriatingly, he had a sore throat.
Cornerstone OnDemand, a developer of online learning and employee management software, expects its initial public offering will price between $9 and $11 a share.
Public Storage Inc. said that its Shurgard Europe self-storage business has paid more than $238 million to acquire all of two joint ventures that operate in several European countries.
Crown Media Holdings Inc. reported fourth quarter growth as the cable company saw more viewers tuning into its new Martha Stewart shows and holiday programming.
DineEquity Inc. reported a larger loss for the fourth quarter as it reduced debt and saw fewer patrons at its IHOP and Applebee's restaurants.
Ralphs Grocery Co. has been fined nearly $68,000 and placed on three years' probation for overcharging customers for prepackaged and weighed products at stores throughout Los Angeles.
Wednesday, March 2
MPG Office Trust Inc. reported a smaller net loss for a fourth consecutive quarter as the Los Angeles office landlord continued to dispose of non-core properties, including another large office complex in Orange County.
Blockbuster Inc.’s creditors agreed to a standstill on their opposition to a sale process for the bankrupt movie renter that a judge called “aggressive.”
Staar Surgical Co. reduced its fourth-quarter loss and said that 2010 was the first time in 11 years that it had a profitable year.
Aecom Technology Corp., which provides technical and management support services around the world, said that it has withdrawn its employees and their families from Libya and was not sure if or when they would return.
Tuesday, March 1
John Molina, chief financial officer for Molina Healthcare Inc., has been appointed to the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s board for the Los Angeles branch.
The Motion Picture Association of America said that former Connecticut senator Christopher Dodd will become the new chairman and chief executive of the film and television studio lobbying group.
Billionaire Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Cos. has invested $10 million in AquaHydrate Inc., a bottled enhanced-water company based in San Bernardino County.
The Small Business Administration’s Los Angeles office has received $1.6 million to expand its seven small business development centers in Los Angeles County.
Live Nation Entertainment Inc. said a particularly poor fourth quarter nearly tripled its annual loss last year, as concert attendance slumped and ticket sales for other events declined.
Demand Media Inc. has inked a deal with another celebrity, announcing that cooking and lifestyle TV personality Rachael Ray will anchor the food channel on its flagship eHow online site.
DTS Inc. beat Wall Street expectations for the fourth quarter as increased Blu-ray sales created a growing market for the company’s audio format.