Stories for March 2017

Friday, March 31

Miami Marlins’ Ichiro Suzuki Sells L.A. Penthouse to ESports Entrepreneur for $2.45 Million

Miami Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki has sold his downtown Los Angeles penthouse to eSports pioneer Alexander Garfield for $2.45 million.

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Silicon Beach Report March 31: Snapchat Launches Stories Search

Snapchat launches stories search, Paramount launches ‘Ghost in the Shell’ VR experience, and SpaceX considering upper stage recovery of Falcon Heavy rocket.

Soon-Shiong’s NantHealth Reports $184 Million Loss

L.A. biotech billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong’s diagnostics company, NantHealth Inc., reported this week it lost $184 million last year, largely due to lagging sales of its much-touted GPS Cancer diagnostic test.

Movers for Week Ending March 31, 2017

Arts District online advertising platform Social Reality was the week’s big gainer, shooting up 14.5 percent to close at $2.29. Motorcar Parts of America Inc. also put up big numbers, gaining 9.7 percent to close at $30.73. The week’s biggest laggard was Ritter Pharmaceuticals Inc. of Beverly Hills, which fell 21.5 percent to close at $1.42.

High-end Homes May Face Lower Demand

High-end home brokers see signs that East Coast slowdown could move to Los Angeles.

Developers and brokers of high-end homes in Los Angeles are seeing cause for concern in East Coast luxury markets such as New York and Miami, where prices have softened and sales volume has waned.

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Port Regulations May Force Truckers to Sink More Money into Vehicles

Driving Concern

Port trucking companies fear new pollution rules will mean another costly wave of vehicle investment.

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Battery Companies Charge Into Deal

Industrial PowerSource will keep staff, run as Santa Fe Springs subsidiary of new parent, Crown.

Deal for battery maker Industrial PowerSource has the new owner amped up.

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Clearing The Air

Environmental consultancies see client pool expand along with increase in pollution regulations.

Increase in pollution policing has opened the door for firms that provide guidance on coming clean.

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California Bill May Cross Line on Business Taxes

POLITICS: SB 567 Measure would impose levies on companies’ affiliates outside state, U.S.

Business backers blast state bill that would scrap California’s borders in company tax assessments.

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Cash-Advance Firm Plows Money Into Farming

FINANCE: ProducePay fields service to fund-hungry sector.

Cash-advance service ProducePay believes it has a bumper crop of clients in farmers.

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High-End Amenities Help Put Price on Mansions

REAL ESTATE: Developers, designers look to create next big thing to hook ultrarich.

Some multimillion-dollar homes make room for luxury offerings to attract high-net-worth buyers.

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Extended Stay Pays for Hotels

HOSPITALITY: King’s move to China yielded investors.

Developer Grant King checked in with Chinese investors to back his Hollywood hotel projects.

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Urban Farms Gain Ground as Way to Generate Produce, Improve Properties for Tenants

Growing Interest

Restaurateurs, art galleries, and developers are among the growing number of Angelenos seeing urban farms bear fruit.

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Federal Budget Cuts Wrong R/x for Biosciences

Slashing the budget for the National Institutes of Health could undercut L.A.’s bioscience sector, warns David I. Meyer.

Deep Resource

Foes of using chemicals related to oil, gas ignore many positive benefits from production of fossil fuels.

Fossil fuel opponents are not seeing the big-picture benefits, writes Ronald Stein.

California, Uber Alles

California is refusing to coast as the state sticks to a regulatory path now shunned by the Trump administration.

Santa Monica a Hot Spot for Solar Power Venture

ACQUISITION: Sale of office property, adjacent lot brings Hudson Pacific $35 million.

Hudson Pacific Properties Inc. has sold an office building and adjacent plot of land in Santa Monica for $35 million to solar power provider Cypress Creek Renewables.


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Pet-sitting Business Collared By Rival in Expansion Move

The two big dogs of the mobile pet-sitting world are now one.

Bill on Full-, Part-Time Hires Draws Business Fire

EMPLOYMENT: Employers say state measure would tie their hands in filling spots.

Business groups are lining up against an Assembly bill that would require employers with more than 10 employees to offer current part-time workers more hours before bringing in additional hires or contracting out work.

Hockey Teams Net Motor Oil Maker Sponsorship

ADVERTISING: Liqui Moly signs deal with Kings, minor league Reign, German club.

The Los Angeles Kings scored a sponsorship hat trick last month.

Public Stations Receive Budget Warning Signal

BROADCASTING: Trump’s proposed cuts to funding could cue up money drives.

Funding cuts may force public TV and radio stations to channel money from new sources.

Putting Damper on Things

Rain always creates havoc for L.A. commuters, but this year’s record levels have been a boon for some businesses.

While the record rainfall has buoyed some businesses, others have been drained by the deluge.

Software Sews Up Sum

FINANCE: Soxhub scores investment by Donnelley in Sarbanes-Oxley compliance.

Soxhub scores investment boost for its Sarbanes-Oxley Act compliance software.

Revving Up Road Work?

TRANSPORTATION: State plan would pump up taxes on fuels, car registrations.

State proposal calls for fuel and vehicle taxes to pay for transportation projects.

PAGE 3: Old-School Charity

Must be the giving season: Ken and Julie Taffet Moelis have donated $10 million to the University of Pennsylvania to establish a deferred-enrollment program for Penn’s liberal arts undergraduates seeking early admission to the Wharton School’s MBA program.

Owner Turns Page At Celeb Magazine

Us Weekly faces office closure, staff cutbacks after acquisition by new parent, American Media.

Buyer of Us Weekly has bad news for the staff with a planned office closure and layoffs.

Thursday, March 30

Silicon Beach Report March 30: Fandango Relocates Staff to L.A. Office

Fandango relocates staff to L.A. office, SpaceX nails world’s first launch, landing of reused rocket, Snap pitches self-serve geofilters to small businesses, and more.

SpaceX Nails World’s First Launch, Landing of Reused Rocket

SpaceX landed a used Falcon 9 first-stage rocket on a water barge in the Atlantic Ocean on Thursday — the world’s first flight and landing of a previously launched orbital-class rocket.

Soxhub Gets Investment from Donnelley Financial in New Partnership

Soxhub Inc. said this week it had received a minority investment from Donnelley Financial Solutions Inc. as part of a partnership between the two companies.

PricewaterhouseCoopers Still Invited to Oscars - Sans Cellphones

Following the high-profile, tweet-related flub at last month’s Oscars that led award presenters to announce the wrong Best Picture winner, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has decided to retain PricewaterhouseCoopers for its accounting and Oscar balloting business. But no cell phones will be allowed backstage.

Wednesday, March 29

State Leaders Unveil Transportation Package with Hikes in Diesel, Gas Taxes

Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders on Wednesday unveiled a $5 billion-a- year plan for road and highway projects, to be funded chiefly by steep hikes in taxes for diesel fuel and gasoline, and a new tax on vehicle registrations.

Silicon Beach Report March 29: Santa Monica’s DogVacay Purchased by Rival

Santa Monica’s DogVacay Purchased by Rival, Science Inc. begins raising $60 million fund, and test firing readies SpaceX rocket for relaunch Thursday.

Santa Monica’s DogVacay Purchased by Rival

Santa Monica pet-sitting app-maker DogVacay was purchased Tuesday by for an undisclosed sum, according to the companies.

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Battery Distributor Industrial PowerSource Acquired by Crown Battery

Industrial PowerSource Inc., a distributor and servicer of industrial batteries has been acquired by Crown Battery Manufacturing Co. for an undisclosed amount.

Tuesday, March 28

George Lucas Donates $10 Million to USC Film School for Diversity Effort

Filmmaker George Lucas has doubled his support for student diversity at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts with another $10 million endowment. The gift from the George Lucas Family Foundation raises the foundation’s student diversity support effort to $20 million.

Silicon Beach Report March 28: Rubicon Sued by Publishing Customer The Guardian

Rubicon sued by publishing customer The Guardian, Tinder plans to launch website version, and Facebook clones Snapchat stories and then puts feature atop newsfeed, and more.

Port of Long Beach to Hand Out $46 Million in Health Grants

The Port of Long Beach plans to give out $46 million in grants to community organizations to develop health programs in areas most affected by port-related pollution in the San Pedro Bay.

Midcourse Hospitality Group Shuffles Its Restaurant Portfolio

When one restaurant door closes, another opens. So it goes for local operator Midcourse Hospitality Group, which closed three of its eight L.A. restaurants this month.

Hudson Pacific Properties Sells Office Building, Land for $35 million

Hudson Pacific Properties Inc. has sold an office building and an adjacent 1.2-acre plot of land in Santa Monica for $35 million to Santa Monica-based solar power provider Cypress Creek Renewables. The deal closed March 21 and was announced this week.

L.A. Adds Solar Jobs, But Slips to No. 2 for Metro Areas

L.A.’s solar power industry grew by 11 percent in 2016 over 2015, but dropped to second place for most solar-related jobs in the nation’s metropolitan areas, according to a report issued Tuesday by the Solar Foundation, a Washington D.C. nonprofit dedicated to promoting the solar power industry.

Monday, March 27

Silicon Beach Report March 27: Faraday Future Cancels Plans to Build Assembly Factory in California

Faraday Future cancels plans to build assembly factory in California, Snap Inc. stock jumps after underwriters give company ‘buy’ rating, and Nasdaq threatens to drop Global Eagle over delayed SEC filing.

Update: New Owners of Us Weekly Confirm L.A. Office Closure, Staff Layoffs

Magazine publisher American Media Inc. confirmed Monday it is closing the West Coast office of Us Weekly, which it bought earlier this month, and laying off less than 30 percent of the publication’s total staff, or around 30 people.

Aging Echo Park Retail Buildings Acquired for $9.5 Million

Champion Real Estate Company has acquired a collection of aging retail buildings on Sunset Boulevard in Echo Park for $9.5 million. The company plans to repurpose them into a mixed-use development of retail, restaurants, and residential lofts called BrickWorks.

Friday, March 24

Us Weekly Closing West Coast Office in L.A., Laying off Staff: Media Reports

Us Weekly is closing its West Coast office in Los Angeles, Page Six reported Friday, while several news sites reported the New York-based celebrity news publication was laying off as many as 40 of its employees.

Federal Judge Rules USC Retirement Class Action Stays in Court

A federal judge on Thursday shot down USC’s attempt to compel plaintiffs to private arbitration, instead pushing forward the class action litigation related to allegations that the university’s retirement plans were rife with excessive fees and costs.

Silicon Beach Report March 24: SpaceX Plans to Relaunch Used Falcon 9 Rocket Next Week

SpaceX plans to relaunch used rocket next week, Black Tux to open showrooms in six Nordstrom stores, and Lions Gate has ‘helluva good day’ with Power Rangers video game launch.

Movers for Week Ending March 24, 2017

Technology and social media company Snap Inc. was this week’s biggest mover, gaining 16 percent to end at $22.74. Differential Brands Group Inc. was also among the week’s biggest movers. The Commerce-based branded consumer platform gained 16 percent to end at $2.15. Ritter Pharmaceuticals Inc. was this week’s biggest loser, dropping 20 percent to end at $1.80.

Largest Los Angeles Spec Home Hits the Market for $75M

The biggest spec house in Los Angeles has hit the market, clocking in at 40,000 square feet.

L.A. County Unemployment Rate Falls to 4.8 Percent as 33,000 Jobs Added

L.A. County’s economy chugged along at nearly full employment in February as the unemployment rate fell to 4.8 percent and employers added 33,000 jobs to their payrolls, state figures released Friday show.

Black Tux to Open Showrooms in Six Nordstrom Stores

Online tux rental service Black Tux plans to open six showrooms inside Nordstrom department stores, starting with a location in Mission Viejo.

Pomona Manufacturer Analytical Industries Acquired by Battery Ventures

Analytical Industries Inc., a manufacturer of oxygen sensors and gas-analysis products for a range of industries including the U.S. military, has been acquired by Boston-based Battery Ventures for an undisclosed amount.

Affordable Housing Initiative Challenged

Out-of-state construction worker files lawsuit over Measure JJJ’s rules on local hiring preference.

Out-of-state worker has filed suit over the hiring requirements of an affordable housing measure.

Delivering on News

USC’s incoming media dean, Willow Bay, discusses impact of Donald Trump, social media on journalism

Incoming USC journalism dean, Willow Bay, talks about how to make news in the Trump era.

Trump’s Ban On Travel Hits Home in L.A.

TOURISM: Board works to reassure international visitors.

City agency looks to position Los Angeles as a draw despite an expected drop-off from U.S. travel ban.

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Software, Hardware by Apium Controls Submarine, Aircraft Swarms

Group Effort

Apium hopes to gang up on the drone industry with its swarm software and hardware.

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Developer Thinks Small With Hotel

Capital Foresight places big bet on micro-room restoration of Mikado building in Little Tokyo.

Developer Capital Foresight sees a big opening for a micro-unit hotel in Little Tokyo.

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Trump’s Ban On Travel Hits Home in L.A.

REAL ESTATE: Brokers see foreign buyers scuttle deals.

Immigration concerns have some foreign buyers moving out of local deals.

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Bill May Open Residences to Prevailing Wage

CONSTRUCTION: Proposal would expand pay guidance.

Residential developers warn prevailing-wage expansion could scuttle projects.

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LGBT Paper Sees Unfolding Opportunity in L.A.

MEDIA: Blade believes niche focus, Trump’s presidency will help it step into market.

LGBT paper the Blade will take a stab at bringing L.A. readers into its fold.

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Electronic Controls Maker Clocks Into Midwest

MANUFACTURING: Pickup of rival will boost presence, revenue of Nelson-Miller.

Maker of electronic controls says its deal for a rival pushes all the right buttons.

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NSB Gets Going on El Segundo Venture Designed by Frank Gehry

DEVELOPMENT: Construction Project Finds More Room for Office

After converting a former Xerox Corp. facility in El Segundo into nearly 200,000 square feet of creative work space, developer NSB Associates has begun construction on an adjacent parcel for a building designed by acclaimed architect Frank Gehry.

Hiring Service Offers Insider’s Edge to Job Seekers

EMPLOYMENT: Network of Purple Squirrel works to link current staffers, candidates.

The perfect job candidate is so hard to find that the human resources industry has a term for the rare specimen: a purple squirrel.

Menswear Maker Aims to Fashion Future in L.A.

APPAREL: New York-based Sene sees market as good fit for its custom-cut garments.

A New York-based men’s custom clothing company that relies on digital technology to customize its garments is stepping into the L.A. fashion scene.

Philharmonic’s President Cued Up Funding Boom

ARTS: Deborah Borda, departing for New York gig, oversaw nonprofit’s growth.

Departing Deborah Borda talks how she conducted the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s business.

Pro Soccer Offer Fielded

SPORTS: Michael Eisner’s Tornante enters talks to buy English team Portsmouth.

Former Disney chief Michael Eisner looks to play ball with British soccer team Portsmouth FC.

Net Gain in Menswear

APPAREL: Five Four scores promotional assist courtesy of Clippers star Chris Paul.

Men’s fashion firm Five Four has put its latest campaign in the hands of hoops star Chris Paul.

Tronc’s Turbulent Times

It’s time to end the turmoil at the Times and return it to local ownership.


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PAGE 3: Disney Connections

Bob Iger – finally! – joined Twitter in January.

Thursday, March 23

What is Soon-Shiong’s Next Step in Fight For Tronc?

The high-stakes chess match for control of tronc Inc., Chicago parent of the Los Angeles Times, reached a fever pitch this week as biotech billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong upped his stake with a series of stock acquisitions that appeared to be part of a move for control of the company.

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Silicon Beach Report March 23: FreedomPop Launches Free Family Cell Phone Plan

FreedomPop launches free family cellphone plan, Oaktree sells stake in tronc back to company, and Jam City eyes late 2017 or early 2018 IPO.

LGBTQ Metrosource Magazine Gets New Owner

Metrosource magazine, which describes itself as the largest LGBTQ media brand serving the Los Angeles and New York areas, has a new owner: New York’s Davler Media Group.

Disney Board Extends Iger Contract

Walt Disney Co.’s board of directors on Thursday extended for an additional year the contract with Chief Executive Robert Iger.

Oaktree Sells Stake in tronc Back to Company

Oaktree Capital Management, the third-largest shareholder in Los Angeles Times’ parent tronc Inc., is selling its holdings back to tronc in a $56 million deal, according to documents filed Thursday with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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Former Disney Executive Eisner in Talks to Take Over English Soccer Club Portsmouth FC

Michael Eisner’s Tornante Co. is in talks to purchase English soccer club Portsmouth FC.

Wednesday, March 22

Purple Squirrel Secures $2.7 Million in Seed Funding

Online networking marketplace Purple Squirrel has secured $2.7 million in seed funding to support the networking platform’s operational growth needs, according to a company announcement.

Silicon Beach Report March 22: Job-Hunting Advice Network Raises $2.7M

Job hunting advice network raises $2.7 million, content management service Edlio acquires app Sangha, and entertainment content startup Pocketwatch raises $6 million.

Lawsuit Challenges Constitutionality of L.A’s Housing Measure JJJ

Measure JJJ, the affordable housing measure approved by nearly two-thirds of Los Angeles city voters last November, is unconstitutional because its local hiring provision discriminates against out-of-state competitors, a federal lawsuit filed last week and made public this week claims.

Tuesday, March 21

Luxury Condo and Townhome Project Coming to Pacific Palisades

A mix of 53 townhouses and condos are under construction in the Pacific Palisades and about to begin presales, according to the developers.

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Silicon Beach Report March 21: Hootsuite Acquires Snapchat Analytics Tool from Naritiv

Hootsuite acquires Snapchat analytics tool from Naritiv, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies begins construction on pod, and FilmOn loses cable broadcasting appeal.

LAX Announces Massive Airline Relocations in May

Los Angeles International Airport officials on Tuesday announced a massive airline relocation plan for May involving 21 airlines moving to different terminals or to different locations within terminals.

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Soon-Shiong Ups tronc Stake, Within 1% of Ferro

L.A. biotech billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong has upped his stake in Los Angeles Times parent tronc Inc. to 24 percent, nearly overtaking majority shareholder Michael Ferro in a move that may further stoke rumors he could be positioning himself to make a run at the company.

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Ready Pac Foods Sells for $409 Million

Irwindale pre-packaged salad maker Ready Pac Foods Inc. has been sold to French multi-national food company Bonduelle for $409 million, according to the companies.

Monday, March 20

Luxury Car Dealer Sells Malibu Mansion for Nearly $16M

The owner of a luxury car dealership in Texas has sold his five-bedroom, six-bathroom oceanfront dwelling in Malibu for about $15.9 million, according to listing agent Madison Hildebrand of Partners Trust Malibu.

Bibibop Asian Grill Moving into Los Angeles ShopHouse Locations

The name posted on L.A.’s five ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen restaurants is about to change, but the food will remain similar now that another Asian restaurant concept has taken over the leases.

Silicon Beach Report March 20: SpaceX Studying Mars Mission Landing Sites

SpaceX studying Mars mission landing sites, Snap Inc. gets first buy rating from Wall Street firm, and Two Bit Circus develops VR and motion simulator.

Creative Appeal Draws Buyer to Culver City

Developer Bow West Capital is set to buy a 28-year-old warehouse in Culver City for more than $10 million with plans to convert the 17,490-square-foot property into a creative office.

Anda Realty Picks Up $15M Pasadena Office

Anda Realty has purchased a downtown Pasadena office building for $15 million, or $273 a square foot, in an area it knows very well: the corner across the street from its headquarters.

Soylent Nabs Downtown Arts District Office Lease

Rosa Foods Inc., maker of the Soylent meal replacement drink, just boosted the nascent office market in downtown’s Arts District, signing a large lease just under $4 a square foot monthly, according to a source familiar with the deal.

Friday, March 17

Soon-Shiong Out as Vice Chair of L.A. Times Parent

Los Angeles Times parent company tronc Inc. is reportedly forcing out its vice chairman and second-largest shareholder, L.A. biotech billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong.

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Movers for Week Ending March 17, 2017

Billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong’s NantHealth Inc. was the week’s biggest gainer. The Culver City biotech firm shot up 27.3 percent to close at $5.51. Beverly Hills-based Capricor Therapeutics Inc. was also a big gainer, rising 16.6 percent to close at $3.30. The week’s biggest laggard was The Rubicon Project Inc., which, in addition to seeing founder Frank Addante step-down from his position as chief executive, saw its stock plummet 33.3 percent to close at $5.80.

USC Receives Grant to Develop Defect-Free Electronic Chips

USC’s Information Sciences Institute, a division of its Viterbi Engineering School, received a roughly $40 million contract this week from Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity, a federal government agency.

Cornfield Park Set to Open in April After Three-Year Closure

Residents of L.A.’s urban jungle will soon have access to more open green space.

Silicon Beach Report March 17: Kite Pharma Names UCLA Researcher to Board

Kite Pharma names UCLA researcher to board of directors, Embark Ventures looks to raise $50 million venture capital fund.

Co-Working Company Pulls Out of Row DTLA

Real Office Centers has pulled out of its 15-year lease for 27,000 square feet at Atlas Capital Group’s Row DTLA in downtown’s Industrial District, said Ron McElroy, the co-working company’s chief executive.


Calendar of Events

Climate Change With Attorney?

LAW: Trump appointee may back off environmental focus.

Trump’s U.S. attorney appointment could shake up prosecution of environmental cases.

Market in Play

MANUFACTURING: Jakks, Mattel take Chinese partners.

Toymakers form Chinese partnerships to play ball in the growing market.

Busted Deals Don’t Raise Fear of China-Hollywood Breakup

ENTERTAINMENT: Huge audience big showbiz draw.

Analysts say a spate of busted deals won’t drop the curtain on U.S.-Chinese ventures.

New CEO Comes On Line at Ad Firm

Internet veteran Michael Barrett takes over at Rubicon Project after disappointing projections.

Executive shuffle continues at ad tech firm Rubicon Project after poor first quarter revenue projections.

Ports Boxed Out By Lunar New Year

Observation of Chinese holiday blamed for February’s slowdown at Long Beach, Los Angeles.

Lunar New Year delivered bad tidings for cargo numbers at the L.A. and Long Beach ports.

PAGE 3: On-Campus Activity

Lots of news from the academy last week.

Home Goods Reshuffle

INTERNET: Brian Lee gives Honest Co.’s CEO seat to sector veteran Nick Vlahos.

Honest Co. co-founder Brian Lee signs off as CEO of the home goods e-tailer.

Company Looks to Shore Up Island’s Attractions

HOSPITALITY: Four-year, $40 million plan aims to feed Catalina’s tourism growth.

Catalina Island Co. plans to unleash a new wave of attractions and upgrades to draw visitors.

Studios Hit Silicon Beach With Digital Production

ENTERTAINMENT: Virtual reality, traditional services on offer at new facilities.

New studio spaces will give digital production a real presence in Silicon Beach.

Firm Looks to Take Step Up in Deal Size With $6.5 Billion Fund

Platinum Equity has closed its latest buyout fund, a $6.5 billion vehicle with more than 200 limited partners subscribed, among them local institutional investors such as the Los Angeles City Employees Retirement System and the Los Angeles Fire and Police Pensions.


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Investing in Workforce

Leaders in education, business must join with politicians to help prepare future employees with proper skills.

Gary L. Toebben cautions that youths may not be learning the skills for tomorrow’s jobs.

Public-Private Ventures May Build Up Infrastructure

Charles L. Harrington calls for the public and private sectors to team up on infrastructure.

Fewer Raids, Better Planning

Immigrants are deeply woven into the fabric of Los Angeles; federal policy needs to keep that in mind.

Business Groups Aim to Take Down ‘Job Killers’

POLITICS: One targeted bill looks to protect some state standards from federal shifts.

Business groups see “job killers” lurking in Sacramento.

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Hyperloop Firm Makes Tracks to Crowdsourcing

TECHNOLOGY: Equity-paid workers recruited by venture to speed system to market.

Hyperloop Transportation looks to get moving with equity-paid, crowdsourced workers.

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Robot Gears Up as Cook

MANUFACTURING: Chain CaliBurger beefs up burger service with Miso’s ‘Flippy.’

Miso’s patty-cooking robotic arm, “Flippy,” is giving CaliBurger a hand in the kitchen.

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Waterfront’s Future Adrift After Redondo Beach Voters Reject $400 Million Project

Coast Unclear

Redondo Beach voters throw cold water on a $400 million facelift for the city’s aging pier.

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Celebrities Become Well-Known as Tech Funders

INVESTMENT: Some firms take shine to helping startups connect with stars’ money.

Firms have grown familiar in helping celebrities put their money on the next rising-star startup.

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Delta to Lead 24 Airline Relocations to New Terminals at LAX

Up, Running

In May, 24 Airlines will do some traveling at LAX as they shift to new terminals across four nights.

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Doctor’s Venture Nurses Physicians’ Home Loans

REAL ESTATE: Lenders say there’s less risk banking on medical field’s high incomes.

Dr. Peter Kim has found a healthy side gig in helping secure physician home loans for clients.

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Meal Replacement Company Bites on Downtown

LEASE: Rosa Foods grows presence in area with deal for office space in Arts District.

Rosa Foods Inc., maker of the Soylent meal replacement drink, just boosted the nascent office market in downtown’s Arts District, signing a large lease just under $4 a square foot monthly, according to a source familiar with the deal.

Thursday, March 16

Pepperdine Makes Major Jump in U.S. News Rankings

The Pepperdine Graziadio School of Business and Management’s full and part-time MBA programs made major jumps in U.S. News & World Report’s 2018 ranking of the nation’s top business schools.

Silicon Beach Report March 16: Honest Co.’s CEO Brian Lee Steps Down

Honest Co.’s CEO Brian Lee steps down, venture capital firm Blockchain Capital plans to raise funds by selling digital currency, and SpaceX successfully launches EchoStar satellite.

Honest Co.’s CEO Brian Lee Steps Down

Honest Co. co-founder Brian Lee stepped down Thursday from his role as chief executive.

Wednesday, March 15

Silicon Beach Report March 15: ServiceTitan Raises $80 Million

ServiceTitan raises $80 million, ProducePay raises $77 million in debt and equity, and Soylent signs lease on 29,000-square-foot property.

Jakks Announces $19 Million Stock Sale to Meisheng Culture Company

Jakks Pacific Inc. announced Wednesday that it is selling 3,660,891 million shares of the company’s common stock to Hong Kong based Meisheng Culture Company Ltd. for a total purchase price of $19.3 million.

ServiceTitan Raises $80 Million in Series B Funding

ServiceTitan, a Glendale-based provider of business software for home service businesses, announced Wednesday it closed an $80 million Series B funding round.

Los Angeles Philharmonic Chief Leaves Post for New York

Los Angeles Philharmonic’s 17-year President and Chief Executive Deborah Borda will step down from the post to become chief of the New York Philharmonic, the organization she headed in the 1990s. She will assume the new position Sept. 15, replacing Matthew VanBiesen, who announced his resignation in January, effective in the spring.

Tuesday, March 14

Silicon Beach Report March 14: Rubicon Project CEO Steps Down Following Rough Year

Rubicon Project chief executive steps down following rough year, Softbank invests in artificial intelligence startup Oben, and Vice Media to produce original Snapchat shows.

USC’s Raphael Bostic Appointed President of Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Raphael Bostic, a University of Southern California professor and former President Barack Obama housing administration official, has been named the next president and chief executive of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Port of Los Angeles Cargo Declines in February

The Port of Los Angeles saw container volumes decline in February after a record-setting January.

Rubicon Project CEO Steps Down Following Rough Year

Rubicon Project Founder Frank Addante has stepped down from his role as chief executive following an exodus of senior executives at the company over the last month and lowered revenue forecast in the company’s fourth quarter filing released after the market closed on Tuesday.

Tronc Deal to Acquire Us Weekly Expected To Be Called Off

Last week, Los Angeles Times parent company tronc Inc. was in talks to buy celebrity magazine Us Weekly for $85 million to $95 million, but media analyst Ken Doctor says the deal is off.

Monday, March 13

Silicon Beach Report March 13: SpaceX Plans to Launch Commercial Satellite Tuesday Morning

SpaceX plans to launch a commercial satellite Tuesday morning, Snap Inc. hires former Apple News head to lead its Discover portal, and Snap Inc. building sales team in Germany.

Platinum Equity Closes $6.5 Billion Fund, Purchases Staples’ Australia and New Zealand Business Units

Platinum Equity announced Monday the closing of a $6.5 billion fund and the new investment vehicle’s latest acquisition, a buyout of Staples Inc.’s Australian and New Zealand business for an undisclosed sum.

Amazon May Be Looking to Book Space in L.A. Inc. announced plans last week to open its 10th bookstore in its hometown of Seattle. Los Angeles could be next.

LGBT Newspaper Plans to Launch Sister Publication in L.A.

The Washington Blade, the nation’s oldest LGBT newspaper, plans to launch a sister publication in Los Angeles.

Friday, March 10

Top NBA Agent Ousted, Sued By Former Firm

A shakeup at Independent Sports & Entertainment – formerly a division of Hollywood mogul Ryan Kavanaugh’s Relativity Media – has bled into court, with the agency suing one of the National Basketball Association’s most powerful agents.

Smart & Final Net Income Dips After Haggen Acquisitions

Discount grocer Smart & Final Stores Inc. saw its income decline in 2016, it reported this week, a loss executives attributed to the company’s acquisition of dozens of bankrupt Haggen Inc. stores.

Former Billionaire Cannabis Entrepreneur Settles Securities Fraud Charges for $12M

Marijuana business management company Notis Global Inc. and its founder – whose wealth was briefly calculated in the billions in 2014 – settled securities fraud charges related to a stock inflation scam on Thursday.

Hotelier Jeff Klein Set to Buy Sunset Tower Hotel

West Hollywood’s Sunset Tower Hotel is slated to sell to a long-time stakeholder after going on the market last month. Hotelier Jeff Klein, who owns just under a quarter of the Sunset Strip property, is in escrow to buy the remaining stake for about $75 million, according to sources familiar with the deal. That would make the building’s full value $95 million, or $1.2 million a room.

Silicon Beach Report March 10: Volvo Signs Deal for AeroVironment’s EV Chargers

Volvo signs deal for AeroVironment’s EV chargers, Hulu Live TV won’t include Viacom networks, and DirecTV sports fee varies wildly by zip code.

Movers for Week Ending March 10, 2017

MRV Communications was this week’s biggest mover, gaining 36 percent to end at $10.15. Puma Biotechnology was also among the week’s biggest movers. The Los Angeles pharmaceutical company gained 19 percent to end at $40.05. Culver City-based healthcare company NantHealth was the week’s biggest loser, dropping 40 percent to end at $4.33.

Dick Clark Production’s $1 Billion Dalian Wanda Deal Fails

Eldridge Industries’ much ballyhooed $1 billion deal to sell Dick Clark Productions to China’s Dalian Wanda Group is off.

Retail Investor Intends to Bag Grocery Properties

REAL ESTATE: Westwood Financial will join battle for space on packed West Coast.

Shopping center owner Westwood Financial looks to ring up West Coast grocery spaces.

Facebook’s Use of Cloned Snapchat Features May Step on Snap’s Growth

INTERNET: Social Media Giant Not Playing to Make Friends

Snap may have little legal recourse as Facebook scores big with cloned Snapchat features.

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Home Brokers Put Money on Snap’s Millionaires

HOUSING: Agents scramble to connect sellers, buyers in pricey, tight Westside market.

Residential brokers are homing in on Snap employees enriched by the recent IPO.

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Market Known for Rental Properties Moves into Condo Projects

Diving in Downtown

Condo projects have come knocking downtown, a market traditionally targeted for rentals.

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Winnick Dials Up Deal for OTT-Streaming Site

TECHNOLOGY: Former Global Crossing chief aims to take on Netflix, Hulu.

Word broke last week that Los Angeles billionaire and former telecommunications mogul Gary Winnick was back in the game, taking a majority stake in startup streaming service Qello.

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Battery Maker Romeo Woos Highly Skilled Manufacturing Staff

Power Play

Battery maker Romeo Power seeks highly skilled workers to plug into production.

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Pot Ventures Hopeful About Building Buzz

MARIJUANA: City of L.A. yet to get on board weed ads.

Pot businesses remain cautious in smoking out advertising opportunities.

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Rival Puts Bite On ‘Superfood’

FOOD: Overseas buyer grabs Essential Living on the cheap.

Bankrupt “superfood” dealer Essential Living proves a tasty target for snack company.

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Measure S Fallout Continues to Develop in City

REAL ESTATE: The controversial initiative’s backers find silver linings.

Measure S failed to pass, but its impact is expected to be felt for years to come.

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Time to Act

While the national conversation circles around paring back government regulation and lowering taxes as a way to rein in bureaucrats run amok, L.A. voters signaled confidence last week in its elected leaders.

Amazon May Be Looking to Book Space in L.A.

RETAIL: Brokers say e-tailer checked out areas including Old Pasadena, Century City. Inc. announced plans last week to open its 10th bookstore in its hometown of Seattle. Los Angeles could be next.


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Insurance Brokerages Placed Premium on Corporate Culture

After years of spurning suitors, Keenan & Associates is getting hitched.

Telemedicine Venture Gets Line on Seed Financing

HEALTH CARE: IExhale’s over-phone therapy sessions ring up $1.86 million round.

Telemedicine startup iExhale has closed a $1.86 million seed round led by New York family office Dorilton Capital, according to a statement released last week.

Hotel Books New Owner

HOSPITALITY: Host pays $219 million for W property that resurrected Hollywood.

New owner checks in to Hollywood W Hotel property with $219 million deal.

News Hits Firms’ Stock

BIOTECH: Money donated by Patrick Soon-Shiong at heart of damaging report.

Shares of two Patrick Soon-Shiong-controlled firms swoon after questions are raised about a donation.

PAGE 3: Assist for HomelessPrivate Job Search

John Emerson is back from Germany, easing his way back into employment.

Voters Get Behind L.A. Development

WWhile restrictive Measure S goes down to defeat, weed regulation, aid for homeless move forward.

Voters elect to reject anti-development Measure S while backing pot regulation and homeless aid.

Newspaper’s Parent May Add Star Power

Pickup of magazine Us Weekly could bolster celebrity coverage of tronc’s Los Angeles Times.

Stargazing tronc might fold celeb-focused magazine Us Weekly into stable of newspapers.

Pizza Chain CEO Fails to Pan Out

800 Degrees brings in seafood veteran Tommy Lee to replace Steve Overholt in exec shakeup.

Chief Executive Steve Overholt is no longer a piece of the pie chain for 800 Degrees Pizza.

TV’s New Story

ENTERTAINMENT: Writers bid for deal in streamed world.

Content creation for streaming platforms has altered the big picture as writers seek a new deal with producers.

Thursday, March 9

Study Says USC Responsible for $8 Billion Impact on California Economy

An independently conducted study commissioned by USC found that the university spurs $8 billion in economic activity in California every year.

Silicon Beach Report March 9: Global Crossing Founder Winnick Takes Majority Stake in Streaming Service Qello

Global Crossing founder Winnick takes majority stake in streaming service Qello, Tele-therapy startup iExhale raises $1.86 million, and Snapchat Spectacles shop pops up in Venice.

Global Crossing Founder Winnick Takes Majority Stake in Streaming Service Qello

L.A. billionaire and former telecommunications mogul Gary Winnick has a new tech venture.

Tele-Therapy Startup iExhale Raises $1.86M

Telemedicine startup iExhale announced that it closed a $1.86 million seed round led by New York’s Dorilton Capital on Thursday.

Port of Long Beach Cargo Declines in February

The Port of Long Beach saw container volumes decline in February after a significant rise in January, due in part to the Lunar New Year holiday.

Wednesday, March 8

L.A.’s Marijuana Measure M Passes

Angelenos Tuesday overwhelmingly voted to pass Measure M, the city ballot measure that implements a new licensing system and levies taxes on medical and recreational marijuana businesses.

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ICM Partners Hires Political Strategist Hannah Linkenhoker

ICM Partners has hired political strategist Hannah Linkenhoker to offer advisory services to clients interested in issue-oriented political engagement, the talent and literary agency announced Wednesday. Linkenhoker joins the agency from NMA Consulting Partners, which has offices in L.A. and San Francisco, where she has served as managing director since 2015.

Silicon Beach Report March 8: Tinder Running Members Only Version of Its App

Tinder running members only version of its app, Conversion Logic raises $9 million, and Soylent launches artificially intelligent spokeswomen

Anti-Development Measure Trounced at Polls; Sales Tax Increase for Homeless Services Appears to Squeak By

Measure S, the measure that would have restricted major developments in the city of Los Angeles, was overwhelmingly defeated at the polls on Tuesday, prompting a sigh of relief from business groups, developers and affordable housing advocates.

Tuesday, March 7

800 Degrees Pizza Replaces CEO Steve Overholt

Westwood-based 800 Degrees Pizza has replaced Steve Overholt as chief executive less than a year after he was named to the post.

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Tronc Zooms In On Us Weekly Magazine Acquisition

Tronc Inc. is in talks to buy celebrity magazine Us Weekly for $85 million to $95 million, according to media analyst Ken Doctor.

Silicon Beach Report March 7: Snap Inc. Shares Fall as Short Sellers Move on the Stock

Snap Inc. shares fall as short sellers move on the stock, Hyperloop One unveils photos of test track in Nevada, and Two Bit Circus hires theme park executive.

Monday, March 6

Bel Air Spec House Asks $24.9 Million

A $24.9 million spec house has hit the market in Bel Air, developed by former Hollywood producer-turned-developer Tariq Jalil and architect Cain Calderon Leon, who also designed the home.

Toymaker Jakks Pacific Renews Disney Deal

Santa Monica toy company Jakks Pacific Inc. announced Monday it had renewed a multi-year licensing agreement for more than 50 Walt Disney Co. entertainment properties for distribution in China.

Silicon Beach Report March 6: Snap Shares Fall 12 Percent

Snap shares fall 12 percent, Disney Research tests robot interaction with children, and Björk to bring VR exhibition to L.A.

Friday, March 3

Southland Air Regulators Approve Tougher Emission Rules

Local air quality regulators on Friday adopted a sweeping air emission reduction plan that cracks down on industrial polluters, especially local oil refineries. In a separate action, the regulators also enacted a new rule to limit emissions from metal finishing plants, which until now have been mostly exempt from regulation.

Silicon Beach Report March 3: Virgin Galactic Spins off Satellite Launch Division

Virgin Galactic spins off satellite launch division, NBCUniversal invests $500 million in Snap, and Mediation app Developer Headspace appoints new CEO.

L.A. County Unemployment Rate Dips Back Below 5 Percent

L.A. County’s unemployment rate dipped back below 5 percent in January despite the usual seasonal loss in payroll jobs, according to state figures released Friday.

Virgin Galactic Spins off Satellite Launch Division

Virgin Galactic of Long Beach has spun off its small-satellite launch division into a new company called Virgin Orbit, according to a statement.

NBCUniversal Invests $500M in Snap

NBCUniversal made a strategic investment of $500 million in Snap Inc. as part of the Venice app maker’s initial public offering on Thursday.

Glendale Credit Union Completes Merger

California Credit Union has merged with North Island Credit Union to serve Los Angeles and San Diego counties.

More News for Investor

MEDIA: Additional shares pad Patrick Soon-Shiong’s stake in L.A. Times’ parent.

Billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong has beefed up his stake in L.A. Times’ parent, tronc, with a big buy.

Chinese Food Giants Dish Up Apartment Project

DEVELOPMENT: Cherngs of Panda Express chain plan two buildings in Pasadena.

After building an empire of fast-food restaurants, Peggy and Andrew Cherng are taking on a different sort of building project: an apartment complex in Pasadena.

Investors in Chain Get More Servings of Bad News

DINING: Dim sales forecast, another executive departure batter stock of DineEquity.

DineEquity Inc.’s woes aren’t over.

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E-sports Teams Draw Pro Players With Money, Management

Scoring Talent

Gamers have become hot commodities as e-sports teams make a play for a bigger audience.

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Workers in Silicon Beach Find Coast Costly

HOUSING: Playa Vista units prove pricey despite high pay.

Playa Vista’s pricey units reside outside the reach of many of those employed in the community.

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Trucking Firms Fear Hiked Fuel Taxes Will be Steered From Road Repairs

Driving Issue

Trucking businesses back fuel tax hikes but worry the money will be steered away from road repairs.

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Big Order to Fill

SHIPPING: New alliances for megaships could tangle ports.

New cargo alliances formed to fill up megaships could bring big challenges to the ports.

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Business Groups Draw Line Against Linkage Fees

DEVELOPMENT: Critics of mayor of L.A.’s proposal say cost hikes would kill projects.

Local business groups are lining up against Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s proposed development linkage fees, saying they are too high and would discourage projects.

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Hoteliers May Be Running Out of Room for Deals

HOSPITALITY: Number of acquisitions has trailed off after postrecession pickup.

Market for hotel sales could be running out of room to make deals after a postrecession flurry.

Making Bigger Deals

Maple Media’s Clark Landry has rooting interest in seeing L.A. tech funding grow beyond seed level

Maple Media’s Clark Landry talks L.A.’s need to build up to bigger venture capital funds.

Apparel Maker Plans to Retailor With Chapter 11

BCBG has filed for bankruptcy as the clothing maker attempts to refashion its retail strategy.

Owner Ships Boat Show Operator to London Firm

EVENTS: Active Interest’s Yachting Promotions sold in $133 million transaction.

Active Interest Media sets sale for boat show producer Yachting Promotions in $133 million deal.

Fintech Companies Expect to Click Again in 2017

FINANCE: Some local execs unfazed by steep dropoff in sector’s deal activity last year.

Financial tech firms still expect to find investment money despite last year’s downturn.

USC Moves on Medical

REAL ESTATE: University purchases formerly leased property for $110 million.

USC checks into medical office building on its campus in deal with rival UCLA.

PAGE 3: For the Children

Steve Ballmer and his wife, Connie, have given a $600,000 grant, payable over three years, to Para Los Niños.

Aerospace Pioneer Circles Moon Trip

SpSpaceX has some technical issues to clear up before taking on plan to launch two tourists into orbit.

Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX, announced plans last week to send two tourists around the moon by the end of next year.

Councilman Suffers Monumental Defeat

Bob Hope’s family wins battle to keep estate in Toluca Lake from being hit with cultural status.

The battle that pitted the family of legendary entertainer Bob Hope against a Los Angeles City Council member has come to a close.

Fashion Label Likes Fit of Los Angeles

Nasty Gal buyer Boohoo intends to maintain local presence with acquisition of once-hip brand.

Nasty Gal’s label – and L.A. presence – will live on after the bankrupt company’s sale to British online retailer was finalized last week.

Investor Pairs Tower Pickups

REAL ESTATE: DivcoWest doubles up in diverse markets.

DivcoWest doubles down in disparate markets with office tower deals in Santa Monica and Glendale.

Time to Dive Into Water Efficiency

David Hodgins calls for a new wave in water efficiency for L.A.’s businesses.

Bad Foundation for Business

Approval of Measure S would curb development with costly fallout for housing market, workers, employers.

Tracy Hernandez and Josh LaFarga warn that the approval of Measure S will cost Angelenos.

No on S, Yes on H

It has been clear on this page where we stand on Measure S, the so-called Neighborhood Integrity Initiative, but with the election this week we feel the need to reiterate, in unequivocal terms, what a bad idea it is.


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Snap Opening Day Jump Leaves Some Wondering If Cash Left On Table

Snap Inc.’s public debut last week was no disappearing act.

Profit Push May Rewrite Magazine’s Local Angle

MEDIA: New parent Hour could lighten up reporting at Los Angeles publication.

New parent of Los Angeles magazine may write off the publication’s lengthy investigative pieces.

Thursday, March 2

Report: L.A. Income Inequality Seventh-Highest in Nation

Los Angeles County ranks seventh in income inequality out of the nation’s 150 largest metro regions, according to a new report.

Peter Guber Sues Insurance Broker Over Lost Roman Sculpture

Peter Guber has literally lost his head. That’s according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court, which details the billionaire sports and entertainment magnate’s quest for an insurance payout covering the loss of a “multi-million dollar antiquity known as the Bronze Roman Head of Lucius Aelius Verus as Caesar.”

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Silicon Beach Report March 2: Snap Shares Soar 44 Percent

Snap shares soar 44 percent and Nimble raises $9 million.

Active Interest Media Sells Operator of World's Largest Boat Show

El Segundo-based Active Interest Media has sold the operator of the largest boat show in the world to a British firm.

Snap Shares Soar 44 Percent

Snap Inc. made an explosive initial public offering on Thursday as the price of its stock rose 44 percent to close at $24.48 a share following its debut at $17.

Crowdfunder Inc. Investigated by SEC According to Ousted Exec’s Lawsuit

A lawsuit filed Wednesday claims Marina del Rey equity crowdfunding startup Crowdfunder Inc. was under investigation as recently as July by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Wednesday, March 1

Silicon Beach Report March 1: Snap Prices Shares at $17 for Thursday’s IPO

Snap prices shares at $17 for Thursday’s IPO, Hyperloop One pitching Indian government on system, and Snap Inc. said to be working on drone.

USC Buys Medical Office on Health Sciences Campus

USC has added a medical office building to its immense real estate portfolio, purchasing the 150,000-square-foot site on the USC Health Sciences Campus where it had leased space from owner Doheny Eye Institute, a nonprofit affiliated with rival school UCLA.

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DTLA’s Angels Flight Railway to Reopen by Labor Day

The historic but troubled Angels Flight railway in DTLA will reopen to the public by Labor Day, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced Wednesday.

Snap Prices Shares at $17 for Thursday’s IPO

Despite questions about slowing user growth and a $500 million loss on its 2016 balance sheet, Snap Inc. priced its initial public offering at $17 a share Wednesday, a day before it starts trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

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DineEquity Share Price Plunges as Applebee’s Sales Expected to Continue Decline

Restaurant company DineEquity Inc.’s share price plunged today with the announcement that the company expects sales at Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar to continue their decline this year.