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Publisher

By MATTHEW A. TOLEDO

It has been an extraordinary year at the Los Angeles Business Journal.

As our publication enters its 19th year, we have excelled in many ways by going beyond our core news coverage to become one of L.A.’s most important newspapers and certainly the most complete source of Los Angeles business news.

With L.A.’s vibrant economy now based less on huge Fortune 500 companies and more on small to medium-sized enterprises, we at the Business Journal have taken several important steps to reflect that change. These include:

– Introducing a weekly small-business section that brings alive the successes and challenges of our area’s entrepreneurs.

– Focusing intensely on L.A.’s emerging technology companies.

– Covering the Asian and Latino business communities, which are fast becoming critical components of the regional economy.

Leading this effort has been Editor Mark Lacter, who has shown a personal dedication and standard of excellence that stands out in this or any other business. Since his arrival, Mark has assembled a team of editors, reporters and researchers that each week makes the extra effort from which you, our readers, benefit.

Although all our reporters have had successes in 1997, I feel compelled to single out some exceptional efforts, including the recent Koreatown package by senior reporter Larry Kanter; the examination of the San Gabriel Valley’s Asian business community by contributing reporter (and former staff member) Douglas Young; the ongoing developments involving the Playa Vista project by Joyzelle Davis; the continued coverage of L.A.’s efforts to get a new sports arena and National Football League franchise by Daniel Taub; the revealing profiles of top entertainment industry executives by Frank Swertlow; and the intriguing cross-connections of L.A.’s investment banking community by contributing reporter (and weekly columnist) Benjamin Mark Cole.

There are many other examples worth citing especially involving our special reports on the richest Angelenos, the collapse of the L.A. aerospace industry, the five-year anniversary of the Los Angeles riots, to name just a few. What it all adds up to is a continued commitment to provide thoughtful yet provocative reporting on the important issues affecting L.A.’s economy.

And we’re telling those stories in a more attractive, more accessible way. As many of you know, we went through a major redesign of our paper in 1997 that not only gave us more modern typefaces and graphics, but improved the packaging of our stories and features. A key to this effort was segmenting the newspaper according to department Up Front, Media & Technology, Small Business, People, Investments & Finance and Real Estate.

From a commercial standpoint, we have had another record year. There have been important contributors to the success of the Business Journal.

All these people play critical roles each week in providing you with what we believe to be the best regional business newspaper in the country.

Needless to say, I am extremely proud of the men and women who make up the Los Angeles Business Journal. For many years, I have envisioned running an organization that had people committed to excellence people who had common goals, values and ideas. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a publishing company or a furniture company so long as everyone has that common vision.

I am gratified and proud that we have reached that point at the Business Journal. I hope your business has, as well. And as we enter a new year, let me take this opportunity to wish you a joyous and prosperous 1998.

Matthew A. Toledo is publisher and president of the Los Angeles Business Journal.

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