San Fernando Valley
Fifty-eight employees of Amcor Rigid Packaging USA will lose their jobs starting in December as the company closes its Chatsworth plant. An additional 10 temporary employees will also be let go. Kristin Kelley, a spokesperson for Amcor Rigid Packaging, in Ann Arbor, Mich., said the division has two plants in the Los Angeles area, in Chatsworth and Chino, and that both were not needed to meet demand. The Chatsworth plant at 9541 Mason Ave. produces home and personal care items such as containers for shampoo, conditioner and hand soap. The layoffs will begin on Dec. 20 and last until March 27. Among the employees being eliminated are 28 packers, seven blenders and eight in quality control. Several have already accepted roles at the Chino plant.
An industrial fire destroyed three businesses in North Hollywood Nov. 1 before being extinguished by firefighters. The blaze started at Auto Giant Supplies at 6836 Lankershim Blvd., near Vanowen Street. It quickly grew to engulf the whole 10,000-plus-square-foot facility, then spread to neighboring businesses, including a film set design studio and an art supply warehouse, both of which contained highly flammable materials. Flames leapt above the roofs for more than three hours before a team of more than 120 firefighters drowned the fire the following morning. After reviewing security camera footage, the Los Angeles Fire Department arson unit determined the fire was caused accidentally when a pile of oily rags spontaneously combusted due to a chemical reaction. No injuries were reported.
About 100 people turned out Oct. 24 at a protest to demand closure of the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility near Porter Ranch. The protesters want Gov. Gavin Newsom to close the facility because it still poses a threat to the health of nearby residents. About 40 of the protesters were right on the front line of the facility’s gate with about half of those tied together and to cement-filled barrels. Video posted by Save Porter Ranch at its Facebook page showed the protesters in front of the gate to the natural gas facility chanting and holding up signs, including a large one with Newsom’s face on it reading “Governor Newsom Shut Down Aliso.” The protest came a day after the fourth anniversary of the start of the nation’s largest natural gas leak at Aliso Canyon, which is owned by Sempra Energy’s Southern California Gas Co. The leak was plugged in February 2016.
An 88-unit apartment complex in Sherman Oaks, known as the Cambridge Apartments, has sold for $29.4 million. Per a Bisnow report, Interstate Equities Corp. has purchased the complex from Bailard. Marcus & Millichap Institutional Property Advisors Joe Grabiec, Kevin Green and Greg Harris represented both seller and buyer. Built in 1962 and renovated in 2004, the two-story Cambridge Apartments, located at 14340 and 14350 Addison St., is comprised of two contiguous 44-unit buildings on separate and adjoining parcels. According to CoStar Group data, square footage at the complex totals 83,040 square feet.
Van Nuys toy manufacturer Funrise Inc. has launched a line of crude action figures in retail stores. Fart Ninjas, a line of eight motion-activated electronic action figures, are now on shelves at Target, Amazon.com Inc. and other major retailers. Funrise is billing the figures as prank toys — they make flatulent noises when activated by a motion sensor or a remote control. The company is also marketing the toys for the holiday shopping season. The line comes in basic and XL sizes that retail for $5.99 and $14.99, respectively.
A commercial property at the northeast corner of Van Nuys Boulevard and Kittridge Street in Van Nuys has been approved for a mixed-use project. The property will see a five-story building rise with 54 one- and two-bedroom apartments. On the ground floor will be 3,160 square feet of retail space and a semi-subterranean parking garage that can accommodate 76 vehicles. Panorama City entity Kitvan LLC and Plus Architects have collaborated on the contemporary, balcony-laden development.
A bankruptcy judge has approved the sale of the Barney’s chain of fashion stores to Authentic Brands Group and its financial partner B. Riley Financial in Woodland Hills, according to media reports. Barney’s entered bankruptcy in early August. At the time, B. Riley and Brigade Capital agreed to provide $218 million to shore up the retailer’s finances, with $75 million available immediately, as reported by the Business Journal. The final sale to Authentic Brands was financed by B. Riley to the tune of $271 million. Judge Cecilia Morris of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York approved the sale. Vogue’s website said the “new owners are expected to close the majority of its stores, let go thousands of employees, liquidate its remaining assets, and license the Barneys New York name and intellectual property to Saks Fifth Avenue.”
Endonovo Therapeutics, which develops electro-therapeutic devices for pain management, announced a proposed reverse stock split. According to a statement from the company, the split of its common stock would be at a ratio between one for 100 and one for 1,000. The proposal is contingent upon Securities and Exchange Commission approval; filing an amended certificate of incorporation; and a review by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. “This reverse stock split is an important step in our future and our goal for … creating long-term shareholder value and attracting a broader, more diverse shareholder base, especially in light of the SofPulse sales and our national rollout,” Alan Collier, chief executive of Endonovo, said in a statement. Common stock will trade under the ticker symbol “ENDVD” for 20 trading days after the reverse stock split takes effect.
Santa Clarita Valley
Neuronoff Inc., a development-stage medical device company in Valencia, has been awarded a $2.2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, according to a statement from the company. The grant will help Neuronoff test its Injectrode product, an injectable metal electrode used as an alternative to treat chronic back pain. NIH chose to fund Neuronoff as part of its Helping to End Addiction Long-Term Initiative, as Injectrode would alleviate pain and reduce dependence on opioids. Implanting the electrode would be minimally invasive, eliminating the need for a large surgical incision and reducing recovery time and costs, Neuronoff said in a statement.
Tobinworld, an educational nonprofit for autistic and emotionally challenged children, plans to lay off more than 100 employees in December with the closing of several schools in Glendale. Tobinworld elementary, middle and high schools plus the Tobinworld Brill School of Autism and CBI School will close effective Dec. 20, according to a notice the school sent to the state Employment Development Department on Oct. 16. Among the 115 employees losing their positions are 20 teachers, 40 assistant teachers, 12 administrators, nine office staff and 11 bus drivers. The city of Glendale purchased the property at 900-920 E. Broadway to develop it into affordable housing for seniors and families.
Sumantra Sengupta, assistant dean of the management school at California Lutheran University, has resigned his position, effective Dec. 2, he announced in an email to colleagues. Sengupta came to the university 3.5years ago. He serves as academic director for the Executive MBA, MBA and Master of Science in Management programs. In an interview with the Business Journal earlier this year, he described these programs as a response to the diverse students who attend the school. Sengupta also handles national student recruitment for the school.
– Compiled by Andrew Foerch