DODGERS DRAMA: Tom Schieffer took over as the Major League Baseball-appointed monitor of the Los Angeles Dodgers business and finance operations. The former Texas Rangers president was appointed by MLB Commissioner Bud Selig, who was concerned by reports of a cash crunch at the franchise that had lead club owner Frank McCourt seek a variety of loans. McCourt continues to assert that a pending deal with Fox, the team’s television partner, would provide sufficient financial stability for the business.
VERNON BILL: AB 46, a bill to dissolve the industrial city of Vernon, overwhelmingly passed the state Assembly despite fierce opposition from Vernon businesses and labor groups. Assembly Speaker John Perez, D-Los Angeles, whose district includes Vernon, introduced the bill in the wake of a scandal that led to the indictment of a former city administrator on conflict-of-interest charges. Supporters said that because Vernon has only about 90 residents, the only way to rid the city of corruption is to dissolve it and have the area administered by Los Angeles County or a neighboring city. The state Senate is expected to consider amendments to address cost concerns raised by Vernon businesses.
SUED: The cities of Los Angeles and Glendale have filed fraud lawsuits against Advanced Development and Investment Inc., one of Southern California’s largest developers of low-income housing. The lawsuits accuse the company of shoddy work and padding its billings on 15 low-income apartment projects. Los Angeles had paid the developer more than $29 million over the course of 10 years. Glendale gave ADI roughly $34 million for four low-income projects. The U.S. attorney in Los Angeles also has opened an investigation, since ADI also received millions of dollars in tax credits from the state.
DONATION: Margie Petersen, the widow of automotive magazine publisher Robert E. Petersen, has given $100 million in money, buildings, land and cars to her husband’s namesake Petersen Automotive Museum on Wilshire Boulevard. The gift from the Margie and Robert E. Petersen Foundation includes the museum’s Miracle Mile facility and adjoining parking garage, and Robert Petersen’s collection of 135 cars, many of which have been on display at the museum over the years. The museum, which opened in 1994, draws about 150,000 visitors a year, plans to use some of the money to refurbish the museum and hire staff for a planned endowment campaign.
PROMOTIONS: As part of its succession strategy, Aecom Technology Corp. has appointed Chief Executive John Dionisio chairman, effective Oct. 1, and promoted three other executives. Dionisio, 62, who has been president-chief executive since 2005, has been with the L.A.-based engineering services company since 1971. He will continue to be CEO and succeed founder and longtime Chairman Richard Newman, 76, who will remain on the board in the role of chairman emeritus. Chief Financial Officer Michael Burke will take over Dionisio’s president job.
CASH INFUSION: A group of Canadians has agreed to invest nearly $15 million in American Apparel Inc. and could add as much as $28 million in the next six months to enable the L.A. apparel maker and retailer to avoid bankruptcy. The investors will be able to exchange their cash and warrants for shares priced at a significant discount. If they exercise all their warrants as expected, they would own nearly one-third of outstanding shares.
GOOGLE DEAL: Woodland Hills online marketing company ReachLocal Inc. has announced a search advertising partnership with Google Inc. ReachLocal helps small to midsize businesses show advertising to local customers on the Internet. Under the Google deal, ReachLocal will be a preferred global partner in overseas markets for the Google search engine’s AdWords system, which links search results to ads. In addition to the United States, ReachLocal already operates in Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and Germany.
NEW TENANTS: The owners of the former MGM Tower have found a new major tenant for the 35-story Century City office tower. Investment bank Houlihan Lokey has signed a lease to move its headquarters to the fourth, fifth and sixth floors of the building at 10250 Constellation Blvd. in a $60-million lease transaction. MGM announced it would be breaking its lease and moving to a less-expensive facility in Beverly Hills after emerging from bankruptcy protection in December. The tower has been renamed Constellation Place by its owners, a partnership lead by JMB Realty Corp.
SOLD: Independent non-profit television station KCET-TV has sold its studio on Sunset Boulevard to the Church of Scientology for an undisclosed amount. The station, which at the beginning of the year gave up its role as PBS’ flagship station for Southern California, is in discussions to move to other production facilities in the L.A. area. Since leaving PBS, the station moved to an eclectic lineup that includes “BBC World News,” “Al Jazeera English” and reruns of the Helen Mirren police series “Prime Suspect.”
EARNINGS: Occidental Petroleum Corp. reported net income of $1.55 billion, 46 percent higher than a year earlier. Revenue rose 24 percent to more than $5.73 billion. … East West Bancorp Inc. reported net income of $54.4 million, 189 percent higher than a year earlier. Total revenue rose 9 percent to $193 million. … City National Corp. reported net income of $39.7 million, 197 percent higher than a year earlier. Revenue rose 9 percent to $275 million. … Northrop Grumman Corp. reported net income of $530 million, 13 percent higher than a year earlier. Revenue fell 3 percent to $6.73 billion. … Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. reported net income of $92.3 million, 106 percent higher than a year earlier. Sales increased 32 percent to $1.91 billion. … CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. reported net income of $34.4 million compared with a net loss of $6.6 million a year earlier. Revenue rose 16 percent to $1.2 billion. … DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. reported net income of $8.8 million, 59 percent lower than a year earlier. Revenue fell 33 percent to $108 million. … Avery Dennison Corp. reported net income of $44.8 million, 18 percent lower than a year earlier. Revenue grew 7 percent to $1.66 billion. … Teledyne Technologies Inc. reported net income of $32 million, 28 percent higher than a year earlier. Revenue rose 16 percent to $468 million. … ReachLocal Inc. reported a net loss of $3.4 million, 48 percent larger than a year earlier. Revenue rose 32 percent to nearly $84.1 million. … Skechers USA Inc. reported net income of $11.8 million, 79 percent lower than a year earlier. Sales fell 3 percent to $476 million. … Wilshire Bancorp Inc. reported a net loss of $52.1 million compared with net income of $2.4 million a year earlier. Interest income fell 14 percent to $35.6 million and noninterest income rose 19 percent to nearly $8.7 million.
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