A Los Angeles City Council committee has endorsed Anschutz Entertainment Group’s proposal to build a $1.2 billion downtown football stadium and revamp the Convention Center hall. The approval came just days after Denver’s Anschutz Co. announced it was putting its AEG unit up for sale. AEG Chief Executive Tim Leiweke attempted to calm concerns, assuring council members that AEG was committed to building the stadium and pursuing a National Football League franchise even under new ownership. The full council was scheduled to vote on the Farmers Field stadium plan Sept. 28.
Azusa cosmetics company Physicians Formula Holdings Inc. has rejected a buyout offer from private-equity firm Swander Pace Capital in favor of a higher bid from Markwins International Corp., a privately held competitor in City of Industry. Physicians Formula said the new offer represented a 33 percent premium to its closing share price of $3.68 on Aug. 14, the last trading day before the company announced the deal with Swander Pace. That bid offered a 14 percent premium.
Kythera Biopharmaceuticals, which is developing a prescription treatment to reduce chin fat, last week moved closer to an initial public offering of 4 million shares, saying in a regulatory filing that the stock likely will price at $14 to $16 a share. The Calabasas company would raise about $60 million at the midpoint of that range. Kythera recently enrolled patients for two U.S. late-stage clinical studies and one Canadian study of its injectable fat-dissolver, and expects to use part of the IPO proceeds to complete the studies and move the drug toward final Food and Drug Administration review.
Xirrus, a maker of Wi-Fi network technology, has closed a $23.5 million financing round. The Thousand Oaks company said the Series E round was led by existing investors that include August Capital and Canaan Partners. Xirrus makes access devices for wireless networks. The technology is used at schools, hospitals, shopping centers and similar locations. It plans to use the new money for sales, and research and development.
Los Angeles County continued its summer jobs stall in August, losing about 10,000 payroll jobs that were largely due to seasonal cuts in education. The state Employment Development Department also said that the county’s unemployment rate dipped to 11 percent in August from 11.2 percent in July; the rate was 13 percent in August 2011.
The Los Angeles City Council has given preliminary approval to an 11.1 percent electricity rate hike over the next two years. Commercial businesses might see their bills increase by about $15 a month. The city’s Department of Water and Power said the hike was necessary due to the cost of state-mandated upgrades to its infrastructure, as well as investments in energy-efficiency programs and renewable energy sources such as wind and solar.
Santa Monica investment firm Clearlake Capital Group LP has acquired the assets of Mformation Technologies Inc. of Edison, N.J., for an undisclosed amount. Mformation’s technology enables businesses such as mobile-service providers and corporations to remotely configure, manage and secure the cell phones, tablets and other mobile devices of customers and employees.
Jamie McCourt has filed a motion in Los Angeles Superior Court claiming that her ex-husband, former Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, misrepresented the couple’s Dodgers assets as worth less than $300 million during their divorce case. The team went into bankruptcy protection in June 2011, but Frank McCourt sold the team in May to a group for $2.15 billion, a deal that left him with net assets of $1.7 billion. Jamie McCourt received $131 million in the October 2010 divorce case and now wants that settlement set aside.
Bond trading guru Jeffrey Gundlach is offering a $1.7 million reward for the safe return of art stolen from his Santa Monica home last month. The $10 million theft included Jeff Cornell’s ‘Medici Princess.’ The offer by Gundlach, founder of DoubleLine Capital in Los Angeles, is considered one of the highest rewards on record for the return of stolen art.
Shareholders of Image Entertainment Inc. have approved a merger with RLJ Acquisition Inc. Black Entertainment Television founder Robert Johnson in April announced plans to acquire the Chatsworth film distribution company via his RLJ Acquisition “blank check” company in Bethesda, Md. Johnson intends to combine Image with Acorn Media Group of Silver Spring, Md., to create RLJ Entertainment Inc. in a deal valued at $127 million. The new company would have home entertainment media rights to more than 3,700 DVD titles.
Ten Southern California branches of Pacific Western Bank were rebranded as Opus Bank last week. The rebranding follows the Opus acquisition of the locations from Pacific Western’s Century City holding company, PacWest Bancorp. The acquisition enables Irvine-based Opus to enter the Inland Empire market and expand its presence in Los Angeles and San Diego. Affected local branches include Westwood, Encino, Monrovia and South Pasadena.
STEEL BUY: A subsidiary of Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co. plans to acquire Metal Solutions Inc., a steel processor and fabricator in Alabama, for an undisclosed amount. The L.A. company, the largest operator of metals service centers in North America, said Metal Solutions, founded in 1958, generated revenue of about $44 million last year.
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