Stories for June 2016

Thursday, June 30

Disney Buys Stake in MLB Advanced Media

Walt Disney Co. has agreed to buy a 33 percent stake in the digital arm of Major League Baseball in a deal valued at $3.5 billion, according to media reports on Thursday.

Joint Venture Buys Thousand Oaks Assisted Living Facility

Belmont Village Thousand Oaks, an assisted living and memory care facility, has been acquired by a joint venture between its current operator and original developer, Belmont Village Senior Living, and Boston, Mass.-based private equity investment advisor Blue Moon Capital Partners.

California Resources Rejects Tender Offer

California Resources Corp. recommended Thursday that shareholders reject an unsolicited “mini-tender” offer for shares by a Canadian investment company.

Wednesday, June 29

Klorman Named Subcontractor for Burbank Parking Structure

Klorman Construction in Woodland Hills was named the structural concrete subcontractor for a 525-vehicle parking structure for a Burbank office building, the company announced Wednesday.

Platinum Equity Sweetens Electro Rent Offer

Platinum Equity increased its offer for acquiring testing and computer equipment supplier Electro Rent Corp. by 18 percent, valuing the deal at about $382 million.

Environmental Report Released on Burbank Airport Project

The Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority released on Tuesday the final environmental impact report for a proposed new terminal at Hollywood Burbank Airport.

Tuesday, June 28

Massive Toner-Selling Scam Targeted Small Businesses

The Justice Department has indicted 23 people, including three Valley region residents, for conducting a $126 million scam selling toner for copiers and printers, the agency announced Tuesday.

Salem Launches San Francisco Radio Station

Christian multimedia company Salem Media Group is launching a news talk radio station over the July 4th weekend, which will air throughout the greater San Francisco metro area — including Modesto, Sacramento and San Jose.

ISO Beauty Buys Chatsworth Building for $5.5 Million

ISO Beauty Inc. in Van Nuys has bought a roughly 30,000-square-foot industrial building in Chatsworth for $5.49 million, according to Daum Commercial Real Estate Services, a commercial real estate brokerage with offices in Woodland Hills.

Orbital Expands Missile System Production

Orbital ATK Inc. has added two new production lines to its Northridge facility, the company announced Monday.

Tutor Perini Wins $100 Million Casino Expansion

Tutor Perini Corp. in Sylmar has won a $100-plus million contract to build a hotel at Maryland’s largest casino, the company said.

Burbank Marketing Agency Acquired

Marketing agency Midnight Oil has been acquired by Imagine Print Solutions, a visual marketing communications firm, it was announced Monday.

Monday, June 27

Gannett to Acquire ReachLocal for $156 Million

Online marketing company ReachLocal Inc. will be merged into media company and newspaper publisher Gannett Co. Inc. in a deal valued at $156 million, it was announced Monday.

Research Solutions to Raise $5.2 Million in Private Placement

Research Solutions Inc. on Monday announced it has entered into a private placement agreement with an institutional investor along with the company’s directors and management to purchase $5.2 million in equity.

L.A. Charges Burbank Company With Illegal Dumping

The owner of a Burbank plumbing business was among three people charged by the Los Angeles City Attorney for allegedly illegally dumping materials in Sun Valley.

Crowdfunded College Next Big Thing?

Website facilitates donations for tuition as education costs rise.

As college tuition skyrockets, local startup tries new finance strategy.

It’s About Workplace Opportunity

Valley Industry and Commerce Association: what employers face with the new, higher overtime threshold.

MannKind’s Big Question

Will Mannkind’s second attempt at selling its insulin inhaler directly to doctors repeat past failures or will new factors make a difference?


Calendar of events

Around the Valleys

News and notes from the greater San Fernando Valley

Amgen Inc. announced that the company has appointed Esteban Santos as its new executive vice president of operations, beginning July 25.

Glendale Gains Ground on Tri-City Rivals

MULTIFAMILY: Office, retail projects follow 3,600 new apartments and condos.

After taking longer to recover from the Great Recession than its Tri-City counterparts of Burbank and Pasadena, Glendale is rebounding.

Penthouse CEO

The adult magazine has a new owner who’s determined to take the company back to its roots.

Penthouse Global Media’s new chief executive, Kelly Holland.

With Infinity Gone, Disney Drops Out of E3

VIDEO GAMES: Warner Bros., virtual reality get attention at annual consumer show.

The presence of San Fernando Valley area companies at the annual E3 video game trade show has continued to dwindle, with only five taking part in this year’s show.

Owner Whips Up New Look for Chocolate Shop

CONFECTIONS: Remodel designed to promote new candies, ice cream.

When your establishment has been around since the 1970s without a remodel, change is well overdue.

California Resources Joins Reverse Split Parade

ENERGY: Oil companies avoid penny stock status, wait for price rebound.

California Resources Corp. is the latest in series of energy reverse stock splits.

DIY Weddings on a Budget

CATERING: Stonefire Grill supplied bargain meals for 600 marriage parties last year.

DIY weddings boost Stonefire Grill’s sales.

Business Journal Wins Design Kudos

National judges laud paper’s ‘enticing and interesting’ presentation.

San Fernando Valley Business Journal takes home two awards on design and layout.

During Fire, Horses Know the Drill

Stable hands evacuate 70 animals in rush from Topanga ranch.

Calabasas equestrian center’s emergency plan saves 70 horses during recent fire.

Car Brokers Driven by Philanthropy

After DriveWise pairs buyers with vehicles, it makes a contribution.

Vehicle brokerage startup haggles for you with salespeople and also donates for you to charities.

Accident Leads to New Leadership at Helicopter Firm

AVIATION: Kathryn Purwin takes control after husband's death.

How helicopter firm Helinet reacted to the sudden death of its founder.

Taking a Hit

New tobacco laws thin the crowds at hookah bars

Smoking age is now 21. What’s in store for local hookah bars?

Giants Join to Tackle Diabetes

BIOTECH: Medtronic, Qualcomm to create sugar-tracking system.

Medtronic and Qualcomm’s partnership in blood sugar monitoring has to catch up with competitors.

Hotel Quandary in Calabasas

HOSPITALITY: Height limit forces developer to weigh self-storage.

Three-story hotel or a three-story self-storage facility? Calabasas awaits the future of a 4-acre parcel off Las Virgenes Road.

Friday, June 24

Mission Hills Apartments Sell for $4.1 Million

A family trust has sold a Mission Hills apartment complex for nearly 58 percent more than what it paid for the building just three years ago.

Attorneys Join Encino Firm

Encino-based law firm Greenberg & Bass just added two senior counsels, Martin Rudoy and Benjamin Seigel.

Preview: Taking a Hit

Smoking age is now 21. What’s in store for local hookah bars?

Preview: Hotel Quandry in Calabasas

Suspense is hanging over Calabasas – will it be a hotel or a self-storage facility that gets built on a vacant parcel of land off of Las Virgenes Road?

Thursday, June 23

Amgen Announces Incubator 'Golden Ticket' Winners

Amgen Inc. announced Thursday its new five-year sponsorship of a San Francisco life sciences incubator called QB3@953, which focuses on developing new human health therapies.

Home Prices Rise in May

May was an extremely busy month for residential Realtors in the Santa Clarita Valley.

HomeStreet Bank Buys Two Local Branches

HomeStreet Inc., the parent company of HomeStreet Bank, has agreed to purchase two Southern California banks — one in Burbank and one in Granada Hills — from Boston Private Bank & Trust Co. of Boston.

Special Effects Studio to Open Toronto Office

Effects studio MastersFX announced Thursday it will open a new location in Toronto, a hot spot for science fiction and horror film production.

Wednesday, June 22

Business Friendly? State Gets an F but L.A. a C-

Los Angeles ranked only a bit below average when it comes to creating a friendly environment for small businesses and entrepreneurs, according to a survey released Wednesday.

DreamWorks Acquisition Approved

The Justice Department has given its approval of the acquisition of DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. by NBCUniversal, according to media reports.

Tuesday, June 21

Van Nuys Defense Firm Gets Contract

Defense industry supplier IEE announced Tuesday that it has received a contract from Northrop Grumman Corp. to provide control display units for roadside bomb jamming equipment.

Tarzana’s Gelt to Build Apartments in Reseda

Tarzana investment and property management firm Gelt Inc. said it has bought land to develop more than 250 apartments in Reseda.

ApolloMed Lands Salinas Hospital Deal

Health management company Apollo Medical Holdings Inc. announced Tuesday that its affiliate medical group ApolloMed Hospitalists has been contracted to provide its services to Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital in Salinas in the Monterey Bay area.

Monday, June 20

Westlake Village Shopping Center Sells for $123 Million

North Ranch Shopping Center in Westlake Village has sold for nearly $123 million, according to the Los Angeles office of brokerage Savills Studley.

Executive Shuffle at Public Storage, PS Business Parks

Glendale’s Public Storage and PS Business Parks Inc. have named new leaders of the two commercial real estate investment trusts.

Amgen Names New Operations Manager

Amgen Inc. on Friday announced that the company has appointed Esteban Santos as its new executive vice president of operations, beginning July 25.

Avita Medical Appoints Local COO

Avita Medical Ltd. announced Monday that it has appointed Troy Barring as its chief operating officer.

Friday, June 17

Ceres Acquired by Land O’ Lakes

Forage-seed developer Ceres Inc. on Friday announced it will be acquired by agriculture and food business Land O’ Lakes Inc. in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $17.2 million.

Tarzana Firm Buys Santa Clarita Apartments for $45.5 Million

Tarzana real estate investment and management firm Gelt Inc. has closed on a $45.5 million purchase of a Santa Clarita apartment complex.

Cast & Crew Acquires CAPS Payroll

Cast & Crew Entertainment Services has acquired a production payroll and accounting services firm for commercial production, venues, music tours and other entertainment niches.

County Unemployment Falls Below 5 Percent

L.A. County’s unemployment rate fell to 4.9 percent in May, the first time below 5 percent in nine years, according to state figures released Friday.

Thursday, June 16

Disney Opens Chinese Theme Park

Walt Disney Co. opened on Thursday its newest theme park and the first on mainland China in Shanghai.

Guitar Center Appoints New President

Guitar Center Inc. has appointed a new president to oversee all aspects of the company’s operations.

NetSol Lands Motorcyle Leasing Client

MotoLease, a provider of loans for motorcycle and power sports vehicle buyers, has implemented software from NetSol Technologies Inc. for mobile payments, the company announced Thursday.

Wednesday, June 15

Pasadena Business Center Sells for $67 Million

After its conversion to a creative office floorplan, the Pasadena Business Center has sold for about $67 million, nearly 85 percent more than what investors paid three years ago, according to commercial real estate brokers who negotiated the deal.

California Top State for Feature Films

California topped competing states and countries in the number of feature films made in the state last year, largely thanks to the state's film tax credit, according to a study by entertainment industry nonprofit FilmL.A.

Tutor Perini Raises $200 Million

Sylmar’s construction firm Tutor Perini Corp. said it has closed on its $200 million private offering of convertible senior notes set to mature in 2021 and will use the money to repay debt and for other purposes.

Tuesday, June 14

New Owner to Upgrade $19 Million Tarzana Apartments

Two Tarzana apartment buildings have sold in an off-market deal for nearly $19 million, according to their L.A.-based buyer Lion Real Estate Group.

Simi Automotive Dealership Property Sells in All-Cash Deal

Land leased by automobile dealership Simi Valley Buick GMC has sold for about $5 million in an all-cash deal to an Orange County investor, according to commercial real estate brokerage Investment Real Estate Associates in Encino.

On Assignment Launches $150 Million Buyback Program

On Assignment Inc.’s board approved a new stock repurchase program that allows the company to buy up to $150 million of its common stock over the next two years, the company announced Monday.

Investor Buys Red Lobster Location in Valencia

Great location and national tenant stability motivated a buyer to purchase property occupied by Red Lobster in Valencia for $3.6 million, according to Encino brokerage NAI Capital Inc.

Monday, June 13

Cheesecake Opens Shanghai Disney Restaurant

Cheesecake Factory Inc. expanded into Eastern Asia this month with the launch of its Shanghai location at Walt Disney Co.’s Shanghai Disney Resort.

Goddard Group to Design Russian Theme Park

Themed attraction design firm Goddard Group has received permission from the Russian government to move ahead on a $4 billion theme park.

Upgrade Boosts Price for Simi Shopping Center

Calabasas commercial real estate brokerage Marcus & Millichap Inc. has negotiated the $10 million sale of Shops at Target Center in Simi Valley after it was revamped, according to the brokerage.

Finance Gets Personal in Classroom

Entrepreneurs sponsor curriculum on budget, investment skills.

Financial literacy classes, sponsored by businesses, score high marks at local schools.

Will Car-Tracking Phone Alter Insurance Rates?

TECHNOLOGY: Encino team creates app to provide data for calculating premiums.

Answer Financial has done a soft launch on a new smartphone app that can detect safe driving habits and turn that into discounts on auto insurance premiums.

Retro-Style Auctioneers

COLLECTIBLES: Couple continues family legacy of selling mid-century memorabilia.

Art and memorabilia auction business gets boost from role on TV’s “Antiques Roadshow.”

Tease photo

Holograms Light Marketing Way

Holographic image displays by Van Nuys’ Vntana can interact with consumers at stores, trade shows or movie theaters.

Tease photo

Electric Trucks Ready to Roll in Lancaster Factory

TRANSPORTATION: BYD sees huge market for short-haul vehicles that don’t use gas.

A line of electric trucks could be a green pot of gold for BYD Motors.

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Wall Art

Investors find creativity pays on remodel projects

New Standard Equities’ bold and successful apartment makeovers are heavy on creativity, light on expense.

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Defense Firm Pivots to Biotech

MEDICAL DEVICES: AdaFlow addresses circulatory conditions.

Robotics business Magzor Corp. finds it’s not so easy to switch industries after accidentally developing a medical device.

Taking Flight in Burbank

Hollywood Burbank Airport – to renovate, or not to renovate?


Calendar of events

Around the Valleys

News and notes from the greater San Fernando Valley

The defense business unit of Teledyne Technologies Inc. has received a contract to contribute components to a micro satellite project for high-speed internet access.

Brokers Bid for Residential Listings on Website

INTERNET: Homeowners select agents based on their service, commissions.

The For-Sale-by-Owner process for home sellers could get a lot easier now that there’s a new player in the space.

The Stick-To-It Man

Mitchell Butier, new chief at label maker Avery Dennison, talks about building a durable company culture.

SoCal native Mitchell Butier talks teamwork and execution as the new head of label maker Avery Dennison Corp.

Cycling Studio Spins Forward for Fundraising

FITNESS: Owner hopes to host monthly nonprofit event at the premises.

With the abundance of spin studios in the Los Angeles market, new cycling studio SoloCicla is late to the game. Still, the Studio City establishment has developed a niche it hopes will differentiate it from competitors.

Hospitals, Insurer Form Cost-Cutting Partnership

PROVIDER: Narrow-network plan will offer employers ‘value-based care’ option.

In an effort to lower costs for employers, health insurer Aetna Inc. of Hartford, Conn. and Providence Health & Services of Renton, Wash., have partnered to create a medical network called Aetna Whole Health in L.A. County.

Semtech Sells Snowbush for $32 Million Plus

ELECTRONICS: Chip maker could see future revenue from buyer’s inventions.

Camarillo’s Semtech sells off another business unit but could still make money from its IP.

How to Shrink Cell Phone Data Bills

Consultant finds companies can save thousands monthly.

Cell phone overcharges create a niche market for a local company.

Campaign Paints Nails as Patriotic

Hues include ‘Pale to the Chief’ and ‘Madame President.’

Local nail polish maker capitalizes on election season to debut new colors influenced by politics.

Cardless ATM Makes Money Convenient

Bank of America brings mobile technology to 35 Valley locations.

Bank of America catches up with cardless ATM technology and brings it to several Valley retail sites.

Applebee’s Tab Tops $75 Million

RESTAURANTS: Brand revamp largest in the chain’s history.

Will new grills, new steaks and new staff training cook up a healthy rejuvenation for Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar?

Friday, June 10

Wendy's Location Sells for Nearly $3 Million

A property occupied by a Wendy’s restaurant in Canoga Park has sold to a private investor.

MannKind to Collaborate on Diabetes Research

MannKind Corp. announced Friday that it has entered into a collaborative contract with New York-based JDRF, a nonprofit formerly known as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Preview: Wall Art

Investors find creativity pays on remodel projects.

Preview: Applebee's Tab Tops $75 Million

As consumer preferences continue to swing in favor of fast-casual restaurants, Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar and other casual-dining chains are losing market share.

Thursday, June 9

Cherokee Misses Expectations

Cherokee Global Brands reported quarterly results for its first fiscal quarter of 2017 on Thursday, missing Wall Street earnings estimates.

Simi Developer Buys Westlake Village Office for $9 Million

A Westlake Village office building has sold for $9 million, according to L.A.-based commercial real estate brokerage CBRE Group Inc.

Second Sight Rises on Fox News Report

Second Sight Medical Products Inc.’s stock on Thursday traded at five times its average volume – and its price jumped more than 20 percent – after a Fox News story aired about the company’s primary medical device, the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System.

Van Nuys Hosts Aviation Conference

More than 2,000 people were expected to attend a regional forum of the National Business Aviation Association taking place Thursday at Van Nuys Airport.

Wednesday, June 8

Tutor Perini to Raise $125 Million in Convertible Notes

Tutor Perini Corp. on Wednesday announced it is offering $125 million in convertible senior notes, which will mature in 2021.

ERP Adds Board Member

Electric power supply manufacturer ERP Power appointed Jeffrey Frank to serve on its board of directors, the company announced.

Northridge Hospital Appoints Staff President

Vascular surgeon Dr. Shawki Saad has been elected as the new president of medical staff at Northridge Hospital Medical Center.

Tuesday, June 7

Investor Buys Newbury Park Shopping Center

The Terrace, a two-level shopping center in Newbury Park, has sold for more than $15 million, according to commercial real estate brokerage, CBRE Group Inc.

Growth Slows for Simulations Plus

Simulations Plus Inc. announced Tuesday preliminary revenues for its fiscal third quarter, showing growth of less than 1 percent.

Monday, June 6

Semtech Sells Snowbush IP Unit

Semtech Corp. will sell its Snowbush IP business unit for $32.5 million, the company announced Monday.

Teledyne Lands Satellite Contract

The defense business unit of Teledyne Technologies Inc. has received a contract to contribute components to a micro satellite project for high-speed internet access.

IHOP Rolls Out Tropical Summer Menu

IHOP Restaurants has announced new menu items for summer that features tropical flavors.

Friday, June 3

Tribune Publishing Changes Name to Tronc

Tribune Publishing Co., the Chicago-based media company that owns the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and San Diego Union Tribune, announced Thursday that it’s changing its name to tronc Inc., an abbreviated version of tribune online content.

Report Forecasts Five-Year Job Surge in County

A new report from Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. predicts that the county's economy will create 346,100 new jobs during the next five years.

Thursday, June 2

ERP Bought by Private Equity Firm

Power supply products manufacturer ERP Power has been acquired by Angeles Equity Partners LLC, the companies announced Wednesday.

Panorama City Apartment Complex Changes Hands

Calabasas real estate brokerage firm Marcus & Millichap Inc. said it has arranged for the sale of a Panorama City apartment complex for nearly $10.3 million.

Second Sight Scores $19 Million From New Offering

Second Sight Medical Products Inc. on Wednesday announced it has completed its May 13 rights offering to existing shareholders, which was oversubscribed.

Wednesday, June 1

CRC Reverse Splits Its Stock

Oil and gas producer California Resources Corp. on Wednesday announced that after the market closed on Tuesday, a 1-for-10 reverse stock split went into effect, where each 10 shares of the Chatsworth company’s outstanding common stock now equal 1 share of common stock.

Glendale Office Building Sells

A nine-story Glendale office building has changed hands for about $27 million, according to L.A. commercial real estate brokerage Madison Partners.

Cherokee Expands Footwear at Flip Flop Shops

Cherokee Global Brands will sell its Everyday California brand footwear in its Flip Flop Shop stores, the company announced Wednesday.