A little extra to go with our front-page piece on the financial shape of the L.A. Times and other California publications now in the hands of Patrick Soon-Shiong … The biotech billionaire says he’s intent on keeping his stake in Tribune Publishing, which comes to about 8.8 million shares, or around 24 percent of the Chicago-based seller of the Times. That could bring a minor windfall for Soon-Shiong, whose net worth is estimated at $21.6 billion in our most recent list of Wealthiest Angelenos, by the way … Word around Chicago suggests rival Tribune Publishing shareholder Michael Ferro – who holds the single-largest stake in the company – has been privately pushing a $2-per-share special dividend out of the $500 million sale price for the Times, et. al. That would come to about $17.6 million for Soon-Shiong … Only time and the marketplace will tell whether Soon-Shiong acquired a premium publication for the price he ponied up for the Times, the San Diego Union-Tribune and various community and Spanish-language publications that came in the deal … Premium status will likely require the Times to win significant numbers of new readers, listeners and viewers – Soon-Shiong takes a comprehensive view of journalism – outside Los Angeles. Only two metro dailies in the U.S. – the New York Times and Washington Post – can claim premium reach outside their home circulation territories. I know there are many who think Soon-Shiong’s new Los Angeles flagship title is in that club already – although it seems they’re mostly journalists. Plenty of hard-eyed observers, meanwhile, see a long row for Soon-Shiong to hoe before his Times gets there … That’s not to suggest there’s no hope for such ambition. A recent jaunt provided plenty of time to peruse the June-July issue of National, the onboard magazine of Amtrak, which offered plenty of support for the contention recently made here that L.A. has ascended to top-shelf status on the national and global stages in a steady climb that started with the recovery from the Great Recession… Readers could hardly turn a page in the National’s current edition without finding something about L.A. … A full-page was dedicated to Gordon Parks, a photographer-turned-film director whose 1950 shot of Vogue’s Frances McLaughlin-Gill and Bettina Graziani of Givenchy is part of the “Icons of Style” exhibit that opens at the Getty this week … Then came a quick review of “The High Art of Riding Low” at the Petersen Automotive Museum, with a slick photo to boot ... The National and the Nevada Museum of Art teamed up to give L.A. a publicity assist with a half-page worth of coverage for the institution’s plan to send the “world’s first satellite sculpture” into space. It’s billed as a “100-foot diamond balloon” that’s dubbed “Orbital Reflector” and expected to be delivered from a rocket to be launched by Hawthorne-based SpaceX … The Weiss Watch Co. got a two-page spread about its line of timepieces that are made in Torrance under the guidance of Swiss-trained USC dropout Cameron Weiss … You can turn to page 1 of this publication for our Shwanika Narayan’s story on five other L.A.-area companies that got onto Walmart’s shelves as part of the retail titan’s “Made-in-America” program … Back to the National, where Geman Lam, who didn’t drop out of USC, got a full page as the winner of the magazine’s periodic photo contest … Jake Michaels put some of L.A.’s grit in the context of the city’s fabulous light with a photo essay that was the longest single feature in the National, at eight full pages … The trend continued with the magazine’s ads, too, which included one from men’s clothier Balani touting its new store on the Sunset Strip … L.A. got even more attention thanks to Santa Anita-based Triple Crown winner Justify, who proved he could run any distance in pursuit of glory. Did you know Justify’s stablemate Dr. Dorr is named for Dr. Lawrence D. Dorr, a renowned orthopedic surgeon who practices at USC Keck Hospital and founded Operation Walk to provide free hip and knees surgeries for folks in need around the world? … Sullivan Says: Best Pun at Retail goes to The Way We Wore, a spiffy vintage clothing shop on the 300 block of South La Brea.
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