Review & Preview
Local Attraction: BAE Systems Plc may step into the bidding for TRW Inc., the subject of a hostile $6.7 billion bid from Northrop Grumman Corp. Northrop agreed last month to delay its $53 a share bid for TRW until Sept. 30 as the companies negotiate a buyout deal. BAE Systems, which has a substantial Westside presence and is an important supplier to the U.S. military, said it might offer an opportunity to extend its defense-related business in North America.
Healthy Results: Tenet Healthcare Corp. said its earnings from operations for the fourth quarter ended May 31 were higher than the 90-cent average estimate of analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call. Santa Barbara-based Tenet said admissions to hospitals it has owned for at least a year grew 1.7 percent. Meanwhile, Thousand Oaks-based Wellpoint Health Networks Inc. boosted its profit outlook for the year because of stronger-than-expected growth in health plan membership.
Panic Quits: Milan Panic, the controversial chairman of ICN Pharmaceuticals Inc., has stepped down just a week after dissident shareholders took control of the Orange County company’s board. Panic, who formed ICN 42 years ago, told the Los Angeles Times that “there are better things in life to do than to fight.”
Died: George L. Graziadio, co-founder of Imperial Bancorp, the Inglewood-based financial institution that was acquired last year by Detroit-based Comerica Inc. Graziadio, along with partner George Eltinge, started the bank in 1963 with a mandate to serve small and medium-sized businesses, which were the engine for the area’s growth. Graziadio was also a noted local philanthropist; in 1996 he gave $15 million to the business school at Pepperdine University, which was later named for him.
Ad Buy: Walt Disney Co. will sell more than $1 billion in advertising to ad agency OMD, the largest sale by a single company covering multiple media. OMD, a unit of Omnicom Group Inc., will buy the ads for a group of clients that includes PepsiCo Inc. and McDonald’s Corp. The ads are being bought at lower prices than if purchased individually on each of Disney’s media outlets.
Weak Returns: The California Public Employees’ Retirement System said it expects U.S. stocks to return less than 10 percent in the fiscal year starting July 1, lagging international markets besides Japan. The system recently reshuffled its U.S. equity money managers and began investing in hedge funds to boost returns.
Lines Drawn: The Los Angeles City Council approved new council district boundaries, ending the once-a-decade redistricting process. The council shifted Councilwoman Ruth Galanter’s Westside district to the San Fernando Valley; Galanter lost a bid to have the shift delayed until she leaves office on June 30, 2003. Just before the vote, Councilman Nick Pacheco dropped his bid to add more of downtown to his district, leaving the area to Councilwoman Jan Perry.
Acting Up: A trust in the name of Screen Actors Guild Chief Executive Bob Pisano holds an $865,000 interest in Netflix, an online DVD company whose investors also include Hollywood studios. Pisano, who informed the SAG board of the holdings when he was hired, said the arrangement does not represent a conflict of interest.
Unocal Trial: A Superior Court Judge has ruled that Unocal Corp. could stand trial for human rights violations that allegedly occurred during construction of a $1.2-billion natural gas pipeline in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma. A trial is scheduled for September on allegations arising from a suit filed in 1996 by several Myanmar villagers.
Earnings Due: Lion’s Gate Entertainment is to report its fourth quarter earnings on Monday (17th), while Summa Industries, a Torrance-based fabricator of molded plastics, is set to release its third quarter earnings Friday (21st). There are no projections on Lion’s Gate’s earnings, but Summa is expected to post earnings of 19 cents per share, compared to 30 cents per share for the like-year earlier quarter.
Economic Entries: Among the indicators to be released this week: May’s Consumer Price Index figure, expected to creep up .2 percent (a lesser rise than the .3 percent in April); housing starts, which are projected to move up to 1.6 million in May, a slight increase over the 1.55 million in April; and building permits, which are projected to slip to just above 1.6 million in May. On Thursday (20th) the Leading Indicators data will be released.
Bank Meet: The Los Angeles Community Development Bank will hold its annual meeting Thursday (20th) at the American Apparel building, 747 Warehouse St. The open forum will include a briefing by LACDB staff and an opportunity for the public to address its staff, board and officials.
Taking Flight: For those feeling earthbound, the Airport Aviation Expo takes place Saturday and Sunday (22nd and 23rd) at Van Nuys Airport. Sponsored by Los Angeles World Airports, the air show and ground exhibit features aircraft flyovers and parachute demonstrations and is the Valley’s largest free event. Another flight of fancy comes this weekend in the form of the Mariachi USA Festival. The weekend’s events kick off on Saturday (22nd) with four hours of music at the Hollywood Bowl, starting at 6:30 p.m. Information: mariachiusa.com.
Hitting the Road: Members of the L.A. Area Chamber of Commerce have scheduled two days of meetings with state legislators in Sacramento on Wednesday and Thursday (19th and 20th). The annual lobbying trip will focus on infrastructure, water and transportation issues.
Action: The 10-day Los Angeles Film Festival opens on Thursday (20th) with the 7:30 p.m. screening of Nicole Holofcener’s “Lovely and Amazing” at the Arclight Cinerama Dome in Hollywood. For more information: 866-Filmfest or www.lafilmfest.com.
Hooray for Hollywood: The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce presents its annual Hollywood Economic Summit on Thursday (20th). On the agenda: secession, the local economy and prospects for the numerous redevelopment projects under way in Hollywood. 8 a.m., CineramaDome Entertainment Center, 6360 Sunset Boulevard. Information: (323) 469-8311.