GOING PRIVATE? 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 chain private for $1.34 billion in cash. The Schiffer-Gold family, which owns about 33 percent of the Commerce-based discount retailer, has partnered with the Santa Monica private equity firm to offer other shareholders $19.09 per share, a 14 percent premium to the stock’s closing price before the deal was announced. The board said it would form a special committee of independent directors to consider the proposal. Both co-founder and Chairman David Gold and his son-in-law, Chief Executive Eric Schiffer, sit on the board.
CRASH: Five people were killed, including three prominent South Bay business leaders, when their Salt Lake City-bound twin-engine plane crashed along a runway at Long Beach Airport and burst into flames March 16. The victims were real estate broker Mark Llewllyn Bixby, real estate investor Thomas Fay Dean and his business partner Jeffrey Albert Berger, Bruce Michael Krall of Ladera Ranch and pilot Kenneth Earl Cruz of Culver City. A sixth passenger, Long Beach real estate executive Mike Jensen, was hospitalized in critical condition.
STRONG IPO: Cornerstone OnDemand Inc. has held the most successful initial public offering so far this year, raising more than $135 million for the company and early investors in an offering that priced at a higher-than-expected $13 a share. The Santa Monica company, which sells online learning and employee management software, has yet to be profitable, reporting 49 percent higher revenue of $43.7 million last year, but a $48.3 million net loss.
BACK IN TROUBLE?: Former Reseda carpet-cleaning tycoon Barry Minkow, who claimed he had reformed after going prison for a 1980s Ponzi scheme, is expected to plead guilty to a charge of insider trading related to his latest venture. After finishing his sentence in the ZZZZ Best Carpet case, Minkow became a minister and formed the Fraud Discovery Institute in San Diego, His model was to reveal corporate fraud while holding short positions in the companies he exposed, allowing him to profit on declines in stock prices and pay for the investigations. One of his targets, Miami home builder Lennar Corp., fought back and prompted a federal investigation.
ACQUISITION: L.A. billionaires Stewart and Lynda Resnick’s Paramount Citrus company announced that it is entering the Persian lime market with the acquisition of 9,500 acres of lime orchards in the state of Tabasco, Mexico. Paramount Citrus, based in the Central Valley town of Delano, is part of West L.A.-based Roll Global, which holds the Resnicks’ Pom Wonderful Pomegranate Juice, Fiji Water, Wonderful Pistachios and other specialty food companies. The company plans to rehabilitate and expand the lime groves.
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