Stories for July 2000

Monday, July 31

Employers Group Gets New Director

The Employers Group, a nonprofit human resource management association, named Cheryl Harrington to head its Orange County office. Harrington spent the last 16 years in the healthcare industry, most recently as president and CEO of Theracare. Prior to that

Big Auto Dealers in High Gear

Boosted by a rising preference for new and pricier cars among enthusiastic consumers, the 15 largest Orange County auto dealerships broke the $2 billion aggregate sales mark for the first time last year, growing their total 15% from 1998, according to the

Hospitals in Bidding War for Nurses

Every Sunday, a bidding war for nurses among Orange County hospitals comes to a head.

First Republic, Sanwa Open OC Branches

The Orange County banking landscape is continuing to change as the hard-charging economy creates opportunities. Several independent banks have started up in the past year, and now some larger institutions are coming in to get a piece of the pie.

BofA Private Bank Adds Staff in OC Branch

Bank of America's private bank branch in Newport Beach has added three staffers and is looking to hire more.

Denver Architect Firm Acquires OC Shop

Denver-based architectural firm, RNL Design, has acquired the Costa Mesa-based Klages Carter Vail & Partners, another architectural firm. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. KCV will operate as RNL design in the United States and as KCV+RNL abroad.

Chip Squeeze

As demand soars, Orange County chip makers are gearing up for a capacity crunch among foundries, the outside plants that perform most of the physical fabrication involved in making semiconductors.

The Irvine Company Going Where the Tech Is

These are busy times for Dick Sim, whose investment properties unit of The Irvine Company has 42 buildings under construction.

Vestar Back in OC Managing Burnham Pacific Sites

Phoenix-based Vestar Property Management has re-entered the Orange County market, having won the contract to manage a 2.3 million-square-foot retail portfolio from Burnham Pacific Properties.

OP Enters New Realm With Acquisition

Irvine-based surfwear maker Ocean Pacific Apparel Corp. has acquired smaller rival the Realm LLC of San Clemente, according to sources close to the deal.

Strader Buys Out Koll, Will Develop Irvine Project Solo

Starpointe Ventures has bought out Koll Development Co.'s stake in a planned 250,000-square-foot office and retail project at the 28-acre former Koll Center South office campus in Irvine.

Chip-Gear Maker Kinetics Expands Yorba Linda Plant

Santa Clara-based Kinetics Group Inc., a maker of semiconductor production equipment, plans to add 50 jobs in the next six months to its Yorba Linda plant, on top of 100 new jobs added there so far this year.

Jackie Reed Leaves as FCB Reorganizes Healthcare Units

Jackie Reed, president and CEO of the recently formed Costa Mesa-based FCB HealthCare West, left last week to spend more time with family, she said. "I'm going to remain in a consulting role," Reed said. FCB Chairman and CEO John Loden is filling in until

Investment Adviser Buys Back Anaheim's Stadium Plaza Site

San Francisco-based pension fund adviser RREEF and Spieker Properties Inc. have a pricey game of tag going on in Anaheim.

EARNINGS

Bergen Brunswig Corp., Orange, reported a loss of $239.5 million (including $251 million in charges related to the sale of units) on revenue of $5.8 billion in the fiscal third quarter ended June 30, compared with earnings of $32.8 million on revenue of

Knobbe Martens Leaving Newport Center for New Irvine Tower

Orange County's second-largest law firm plans to leave its posh Newport Center offices for more spacious digs in Irvine.

Health Net Adding Alternative-Care Coverage

Healthcare service plans are dipping their toes into the alternative-coverage market. Two weeks ago, this column had an item about PacifiCare of California, Cypress, deciding to pay for some alternative medicine options for its commercial HMO patients, pa

Judge Jackson's Ominous Ruling

As most people now know, Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson has issued his ruling in the Department of Justice antitrust suit against Microsoft. He has accepted the government's proposal to divide Microsoft into two companies and to place additional controls o

Ventana Launches New Tech Fund

Irvine-based Ventana Global launched its Technology Gateway Partnership II, a $50 million venture-capital fund that will make equity investments in new technologies.

ICX Hires Markwood to Find Investors

San Clemente-based ICX Electronics.com has retained Markwood Capital Alliance to attract U.S. investors.

TAKING THEIR CUE

When Rick Dutta and Don Ganguly finished college a few years ago, they had a decision to make: return to their native India or stay in the U.S.

DIGITAL WAREHOUSES

Orange County's burgeoning information economy, a flood of upstart telecommunications firms and cramped real estate in other parts of Southern California are luring a new class of building tenants.

Executive Summary

Walt Disney Co. said it will develop a third theme park at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim that may include a water park, hotel or retail center and could open by 2003 ... Sunstone Hotel Investors LLC, San Clemente, acquired 10 hotels for $132 million fr

OC Insider---KOCE May Get Star Billing at Expanded OCPAC

Launching an $8.5 million capital campaign so it can upgrade to digital isn't the only thing happening at increasingly ambitious KOCE. The Insider hears that there have been preliminary discussions about moving the public TV station's studios from Golden

People

The Employers Group, a nonprofit human resource management association, named Cheryl Harrington to head its Orange County office. Harrington spent the last 16 years in the healthcare industry, most recently as president and CEO of Theracare. Prior to that

Big Crybabies

THERE'S SOMETHING AMUSING ABOUT WALT DISNEY AND GENERAL ELECTRIC complaining to the FCC that America Online and Time Warner are too big to merge. You might call it a case of two oligopolists calling two other oligopolists a monopolist.

Anaheim Credit Union Members OK Its Sale

Members of the Anaheim Area Credit Union on Thursday approved its acquisition by Orange County's Credit Union.

Texas' Austin Has the Power to Charm Visitors

What is it with Austin, Texas? I have had three requests in two months for suggestions on dining in that city. Two were from readers who were staying a few days on business, the third was from friends who have never seen the city and will be going there o

Real Estate Deals

Urban Investment Trust bought a 30,857-square-foot building at 450 W. 4th St. in Santa Ana for about $3 million. Voit Commercial represented both the trust and the seller, Eastcom.

It's Official: Intersil Files as OC-Based Company

Intersil Corp., a maker of wireless networking devices, made its official debut as an OC firm with its first securities filing using a new Irvine address. Its quarterly results were mixed.

ON TRACK

A $328 million project to lower five miles of rail line through Placentia and portions of neighboring cities is gaining steam.

Legoland, Ruby's Diner

Legoland California Inc., operator of the family theme park in Carlsbad, has sued Ruby's Diner Inc. of Newport Beach, claiming the restaurant chain owes the theme park several payments based on a 1999 sponsorship contract.

REAL ESTATE WATCH

Historical figures have been adjusted to reflect changes to the base; consequently, historical figures reported here may not agree with previously reported figures. The Orange County office market includes multi-tenant buildings and parks 30,000 square fe

More Reaction to LA Times' OC-Tech Story

I am not nearly as irritated as others about the July 9 story in the LA Times, "Dreams of High Tech Glory Passing OC By," as I think there are some nuggets of truth in there. While the obvious editorial tone of the story was condescending, and belittled i

Monday, July 24

PEOPLE

ADVERTISINGCosta-Mesa based Marshall Advertising and Design appointed Aaron Roddick as computer production artist.

FutureLink, Personable Boosted by Microsoft Net Plan

FutureLink Corp. of Irvine and Personable.com of Fountain Valley, two early evangelists for the application service provider model, got what amounts to a blessing from the Pope in the software world this month when tech behemoth Microsoft Corp. announced

Independent SBA Lenders

1 Park Plaza, Ste.450Irvine 92714Phone/fax: (949) 251-9010/(949) 251-9016Top local official/title: Wayne Wirth, vice president/sales managerRange: Up to $3 millionSpecialties: Commercial real estate

OC's Venture Capital Dean

Chuck Martin on Local Venture Funding, Silicon Valley and the Dot-Com Bust

Independent Real Estate Lenders

Specialties: Multifamily, retail, industrial, manufacturing housing, office, medical, hotel, credit transactions

BEST OF ARGUS

n The Democratic National Committee announced that President Clinton and Hillary Clinton will speak on the first night of the Democratic Convention. What a huge moment this will be. They haven't spoken since 1998.

Investment Bankers

Specialties: Printing, software, aerospace, technology, hi-tech, computer hardware

OC INSIDER --- Move Afoot to Form Tech Network; Mamie Still Va-vooming at 67

Everybody talks about how Orange County lacks the networking groups that make Silicon Valley and some other tech hotspots hum. Now a few local heavyweights are trying to do something about it. The Insider is told that UCI vice chancellor Tom Moebus (Viewp

Irvine Firm Ready to Tell Cell-Phone Users Where to Go

Lee Hancock doesn't think it unreasonable to expect his 2-year-old startup to become bigger than Yahoo! Inc., more useful than the yellow pages and maybe even the boldest contribution to navigation since Magellan circumnavigated the globe.

Local VCers Invest More in OC

Seven of the 20 venture capital firms with offices in Orange County took a pass at investing in OC-based companies during the first semester of 2000, according to the Orange County Business Journal's list of venture capital firms, but the total invested h

LETTERS

This is in regard to the excellent analysis of the "Supreme Court's Solomon-like Decision on HMOs" by Dr. Michael Arnold Glueck in the July 10 OCBJ Letters section.

Real Estate Deals

Wild Oats has leased a 25,000-square-foot facility within University Park Center at Culver Drive and Michelson in Irvine. Terms of the lease were not disclosed. University Park Center is owned and operated by The Irvine Company.

OC's High-Tech Scouting Report

There are elements of truth in what the Los Angeles Times was trying to say with its July 9 story, "Dreams of High Tech Glory Passing OC By," but the reporters seemed to gloss over, or totally miss, important inflection points over the past several years.

DGWB Vying For State's Anti-Smoking Spots

Irvine-based DGWB Advertising is one of five ad shops competing to replace Asher & Partners in Los Angeles to head up a $45 million anti-smoking campaign planned by the California Department of Health Services.

Union Bank Square for Sale, Attracting Bidders

The Union Bank Square complex of office buildings in Orange is for sale, and the property has generated quite a bit of serious interest, according to sources familiar with the deal.

Local Concierge Bought by Long Beach Publisher

Long Beach-based Rosebud Publishing, headed by Dennis and Sharon McDougal has purchased Local Concierge magazine in Costa Mesa for an undisclosed price estimated to be in the low six figures.

Development of Summit Mid-Rises Begins

Parker Properties has launched speculative construction of the latest two buildings at its Summit Office Campus in Aliso Viejo, introducing the first five-story buildings to the development and making available for lease roughly 310,000 square feet.

Stadium Crossings Retail, Office Site Sold for $36M

By A Taiwanese investor has paid $36.2 million for the roughly 12-acre, 164,000-square-foot Stadium Crossings office and retail complex across from Edison International Field in Anaheim.

SOY CRUSADER

To combat the effects of osteoporosis or heart disease, you'd expect a doctor to give patients the latest prescription drug. Not Ari Babaknia.

Real Estate Watch

Approximately 29% of the Orange County Office market is made up of high-rise projects, buildings seven stories or greater. The high-rise sector of the market prospered in the second quarter, with increased absorption and lowered vacancy rates. Net absorpt

Another Anaheim Hotel Project Gets Under Way

The Anabella Hotel, an ambitious project that aims to replace two low-end motels at the edge of the Disneyland Resort with a 358-room upscale hotel, began its first phase of construction this month.

Second Big Sale: Pacific Gulf Gets $120M for Apartments

Pacific Gulf Properties Inc., continuing to remake itself, is close to a deal in which it will sell its 1,631-unit family-style apartment portfolio for roughly $120 million to an unnamed buyer, the second major sale by the Newport Beach-based company in t

Commercial Banks

Specialties: Commercial real estate, business, high-tech, title-escrow, entertainment, dealer floor plan, SBA, small business, personal trust, private banking, institutional trust

Brave Dianne

short list of vice presidential candidates came out against, say, his plan to overhaul Social Security or to reform education, the media would have a field day.

EXECUTIVE BRIEFCASE

A self-contained ecosystem. From Yorba Linda Greenhouse. $35 plus tax. Call (714) 528-4431.

Factoring Companies

Irvine 92612

Death to Death Taxes

nonetheless did the right thing last week and in separate actions voted to repeal the estate tax and the marriage penalty. A few Democrats (eight on one vote, nine on the other) joined the Republican majority in approving the tax breaks, but the margin wa

Investors Learning to Like Corinthian Colleges

Santa Ana-based Corinthian Colleges Inc. is enjoying its best stock run-up since going public early last year, jumping more than 60% in the first three weeks of July alone.

Tech Networking Group Sets First Event

A new networking group, Digital Orange County, which is targeting those who work in the technology industry, is launching its first event Wednesday Aug. 2 at the Galaxy Theatre in Santa Ana.

Calendar July 25 - 31

How to Control Taxation on Retirement Plan Distributions (Merrill Lynch) Costa Mesa Noon-6 p.m. Free (714) 429-3092 Computerized Bookkeeping and Financial Statements (Service Corps of Retired Executives Association) Costa Mesa 9 a.m.-Noon $25 (714) 550-

EARNINGS

Conexant Systems Inc., Newport Beach, reported a net loss of $53.3 million (including acquisition-related charges totaling $104.9 million net) on revenue of $530.5 million for the second quarter ended June 30, compared with earnings of $24.4 million on re

GO-TO GUYS

For nearly 20 years, C.P. Chin has been content with the obscurity of his Express Manufacturing Inc., shunning the publicity relished by many in the hype-driven technology sector, including many of his customers.

Troquet: a Quiet French Bistro Amid the Bustle

While Troquet has often been presented to me as "that little bistro on the top level of South Coast Plaza," it is anything but a simple, small bistro. It oozes sophistication like the belle epoque brasseries that have endured for many decades in Paris.

Quest Software Leases More Space in Spectrum

Quest Software Inc. has signed a four-year, $4.5 million lease for a 65,000-square-foot building in Irvine, where the company plans to expand its rapidly growing operations.

Savings & Loans

AMERICAN GENERAL BANK4590 MacArthur Blvd., Ste. 125Newport Beach 92660Phone/fax: (949) 955-0536/(949) 863-2995Web site: americangeneralbank.comTop local official/title: Tom Crance, president

Nursing Home Hopes Appeal Will Restore Federal Payments Federal Payments

The owner of a Santa Ana nursing home is hoping a federal administrative law judge will restore its Medi-Cal and Medicare funding, which was cut off after it failed a state inspection in December.

Crystal Cove at Newport Coast Moves from Bold Concept to Exciting Reality

As this distinctive coastal enclave inspired by historic Santa Barbara and Palos Verdes rapidly takes shape, Crystal Cove at Newport Coast is progressing from a bold concept to an exciting reality for the few buyers who will be calling this unique ocean-v

Commerical Banks

ACACIA BANK23601 Moulton Pkwy., Ste. ELaguna Hills 92653Phone/fax: (949) 461-5939/(949) 461-5989Web site: acaciabank.comTop local official/title: Mona McGrury, vice president/branch managerRange: $1-$3 millionSpecialties: Commercial real estate

Blizzard Has Big Hit With Diablo II Game

Irvine-based Blizzard Entertainment's Diablo II has sold more than a million copies during the first two weeks of the release, making it the fastest-selling computer game in history, the company said.

Maggots Get Under UCI Researcher's Skin

A study led by a professor and researcher with the UCI College of Medicine looks like it has debunked common literature on maggots (fly larvae) that infest wounds of patients in healthcare facilities.

Equipment Leasing/Financing

Specialties: Medical, high technology, construction, telecommunications, printing

Newport Center's Newest Digs Lure Big-Money Names

Two big names in the financial services sector just became roommates in the newest office building at Newport Center.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The Irvine Company will buy Fox Plaza in Century City from Davis Cos. for $350 million ... Conexant Systems Inc., Newport Beach, will acquire Israel-based Novanet Semiconductor for $115 million and NetPlanne Systems, Dedham, Mass., for $130 million; Conex

Sunday, July 23

Title Companies

Title Companies

Monday, July 17

Interest Rates Slow OC Homebuilding Boom

Thanks to higher interest rates, building in Orange County is slowing but shows no signs of stopping any time soon, particularly when it comes to commercial development.

Why Cut Capital Gains Taxes? Here's Why

The following is taken from the "Annual Report on the United States Government," a mailing to constituents by U.S. Rep. and House Policy Committee chairman Chris Cox, R-Newport Beach:

#X@%!!!! News Story Has Business Leaders Fuming

Orange County business leaders have something to chew on,a front-page, all-editions Sunday story in the July 9 Los Angeles Times that says OC has fallen behind in the race to become a leading center of high technology.

Long Beach Heats Up for Apartment Builders

Everyone, it seems, wants to build multifamily housing in downtown Long Beach these days.

OC Insider --- Spectrum Center Expanding Again, with Retail Emphasis

The five-year-old Irvine Spectrum Center is expanding again. The Insider is told that ground will break this week on another 180,000 square feet of food, entertainment and shops, on top of the existing 484,000. This Phase 3, though, will have a heavier em

Buena Park's Hanford Hotel Under New Ownership

Newport Beach-based Hanford Hotels sold its 175-room Hanford Hotel Buena Park at Beach Boulevard and the Santa Ana (I-5) Freeway to Pinnacle Co., a San Diego hotel management and ownership company, for $6.4 million. Costa Mesa-based Atlas Hospitality Grou

Meruelo Enterprises Acquires Doty Bros.

Meruelo Enterprises Inc., Buena Park, reached an agreement to acquire 300-employee Doty Bros. Equipment Co., a pipeline-construction firm founded in 1935.

REAL ESTATE WATCH

The Mid-Counties office market started off the New Year as a strong market with positive absorption and declining vacancy rates. Net absorption for office space in the first quarter reached 209,624 square feet of positive activity. The largest absorption

Dixie Group Buys Fabrica International

Chattanooga, Tenn.-based The Dixie Group, a carpet and rug manufacturer, has acquired privately held rug maker Fabrica International, Santa Ana.

THEY KEEP GOING UP

OFFICE

Newport Beach Loses Tourism Bureau Head

Orange County's tourism industry lost a key player last month when Rosalind Williams, the 55-year-old president and chief executive of the Newport Beach Conference and Visitors Bureau, died from complications resulting from breast cancer.

Bay Area Tech Insurer Opens Newport Office

The family-run Costello & Sons Insurance Brokers Inc. out of San Rafael has opened an office in Newport Beach to handle its growing list of technology clients in Southern California.

Calendar July 18 - July 24

The Psychology of Investing (Salomon Smith Barney) Brea 7-8:30 p.m. Free (800) 359-1333 Business Mixer and Mini Expo (Relationship Building Network) Irvine 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. $25/$20 (949) 830-5776 Millionaire's Club (Borders) Costa Mesa 7 p.m. Free (7

PacifiCare to Offer Acupuncture, Chiropractic Coverage

Alternative medicine has grown in popularity over the past few years in California, as well as other parts of the United States. Because of that fact, several healthcare service plans have had to decide whether to pay for such treatments.

Karen Pelle's Drive Lifts Megatrux

It's never been easy for Karen A. Pelle. Not when she was a mother of two young children undergoing a divorce and a foreclosure on her home in the 1970s. Not when she began her company 15 years ago and a partner walked off with $150,000.

Irvine Co. Sees Early Buildout of Research Park

University Research Park,The Irvine Company's effort to link business and Orange County's most prominent university,is filling up so quickly that the developer is beginning final-phase construction with a possible buildout by 2002, five years earlier than

Cox Pushing Class-Action Legal Reform

After spearheading a bill that limited infamous strike suits against companies with falling stock prices, Rep. Chris Cox is launching another salvo across the bow of trial lawyers. Late last week, he was expected to introduce new legislation to limit clas

Office Solutions Buys South Coast Stationers

Yorba Linda-based Office Solutions, the largest independent commercial office supply company in Southern California, has acquired South Coast Stationers of Costa Mesa.

Costa Mesa Tech Investor Looks to Data Centers, Asia

A new Costa Mesa venture capital firm formed by Japanese businessman Toshihiro Hirosaki is targeting local technology companies with existing or potential ties to the Pacific Rim.

EURO-INVESTORS QUIETLY MOVING IN

Europeans have been quietly filling the vacuum left by the Japanese and South Koreans as the main foreign real estate buyers in Southern California.

Turnaround or Buyout: What's Next For Western Digital?

Matt Massengill knew what he was getting into when he took the top spot at computer disk drive maker Western Digital Corp. in January.

Broadcom Up On Earnings Outlook, Joining S & P; 500

As investors await Broadcom Corp.'s quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, shares in the Irvine communications chipmaker have enjoyed a heated run-up that has surmounted losses from spring's technology sector meltdown.

International Paper Invests in NexTier

International Paper Co. has made an investment in Aliso Viejo-based nexTier Solutions, a 2-year-old developer of an online purchasing system for the magazine and catalog industries.

County May Sue to Block Health Initiative

A proposed health-industry-sponsored initiative on how the county should divvy up $27 million annually in tobacco-settlement funds may face a court challenge before it gets on the ballot in November.

PacifiCare Launches Prescription Drug Warehouse in Carlsbad

Prescription Solutions, the mail-order prescription drug arm of PacifiCare Health Systems Inc., is set to open a new warehouse in Carlsbad that's expected to employ 300 people by year's end and grow to 500 in three years.

Extra! OC Dying!

recognition as a world-class technology center, it reads that its days as a technology hub are numbered.

Verizon Quietly Launches Internet Service Via Cell Phones

Verizon Wireless isn't trumpeting its phone-based Internet service yet, but as enterprising customers have discovered in the past couple of weeks, the nifty addition is finally up and running.

Executive Summary

PacifiCare Health Systems Inc., Santa Ana, sued Orange-based St. Joseph Health System over St. Joseph's decision to stop accepting new HMO patients; a judge ordered St. Joseph to provide care to PacifiCare members, pending a full hearing ... FutureLink Co

BACK TO EARTH

Orange County's major developers added less commercial space to the area's inventory in 1999, a reflection of the depletion of ready-to-build land and another measure of how strong the market was in 1998.

Landlords Rule, But For How Long?

The economy is humming, real estate is booming and vacancy levels are low. It's a landlord's market, a welcome change for many real estate owners after the brutal recession of the early 1990s. But how long will the good times last for OC landlords? The Bu

Real Estate Deals

AC Industrial Properties bought a 128,640-square-foot building at 9700-9770 Bell Ranch Drive in Santa Ana for $6.46 million. John Tenaglia, Elizabeth Hughes, and Cliff Fincher of Lee & Associates represented both AC Industrial and the seller, Pacific Gulf

WATG Picks Hospitality Vet for New Position

Architecture and design firm Wimberly Allison Tong & Goo, Newport Beach, hired veteran hospitality consultant Jim Burba to the newly created position of worldwide director of advisory services. Burba, co-founder and chair of UCLA Extension's Annual Hotel

REITs START TO SEE REBOUND

After waiting patiently on the sidelines for years, Los Angeles-based real estate investment trusts have been jumping back into the game.

Mexico Vote Could Mean Business for OC, Southland

As Mexico revels in its biggest political overhaul in more than 70 years, it's looking like the Southern California economy also could become a big winner as a result of the landmark election.

BEST OF ARGUS

n "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" went on sale at midnight and sold six million copies. That's the good news. The bad news is, half the kids who bought the book spent all night trying to jam it into the VCR.

CATCHING THE WAVE

Tim Su of Bodywaves came up with the name for the Garden Grove-based surfwear maker's label for women and girls while having trouble sleeping one night.

Tales from the Vintners: No 'Wining' About This Book

Have you ever wondered about winemakers' secrets to matching the perfect foods with their wines? That is but one of the subjects well covered in the new book "The Wine Sense Diet" by Annette Shafer, with a foreword by Robert Mondavi. We now know that a li

The Case for Public Television

KOCE is Orange County's television station. As you know, the Los Angeles stations largely ignore the county unless a police chase happens to stray to the south. Orange County has a population equal to that of Kansas City. Kansas City has seven or eight te

New Huntington Beach Bank Gets Fast Start

Thanks to a robust economy, start-up Pacific Liberty Bank in Huntington Beach was able to squeak out a profit in only its tenth month of operation.

People

Wright, Ford, Young & Co., Irvine, hired 25-year accounting veteran Peni Ingram-Rowe as audit manager. The mid-size accounting firm provides tax consultation and estate planning services.

EXTRA INNINGS

Steve Duffy of Ernst & Young's Orange County operations says he's happy to trade the 180-degee ocean view of his former office at Newport Center for the company's new local digs,what he calls the "workplace of the future" at Lakeshore Towers near John Way

Construction and Commercial Firms

Construction and Commercial Firms

Extreme Sports Filmmaker on Board With AMC

On Board Entertainment, a youth-oriented entertainment division of Disson Furst & Partners in Huntington Beach, has signed a one-year contract with AMC Entertainment Inc. to exhibit its Adrenaline Theater action sports films at 40 AMC theater locations ac

New Economy Meets Old Industry

A new tech center under construction at Taylor Yard has signed its first tenant and more deals are in the works.

THE BIG DEALS

17901 Von Karman Ave., 17771 & 17781 Cowan Ave., 5665 & 5757 Plaza, 9501 Jeronimo, 1063 McGaw, 1500 Quail, 17601 Fitch, 19000 MacArthur Blvd., 3200 Bristol St.

Telecom Exec Buys Studio Caf?

Newport Beach landmark Studio Caf & #233; on the Balboa Peninsula has been sold to Granville Kirkup, founder of Telmar Logistics Inc., an Irvine distributor of telecommunications products with about $75 million in 1999 sales. The 158-seat restaurant, which first

Hospitals See Another Medicare Hit Coming

Orange County hospital administrators are bracing for new federal regulations that will change how their institutions get paid for delivering Medicare outpatient services, such as X-rays or emergency care.

PENSION FUNDS ARE BACK

They're Buying Real Estate Again,Especially From Ailing REITs,to Balance Portfolios

After A Solid Year, Builders See Some Slowing Ahead

The largest construction firms in Orange County have been busy as a result of the booming economy, but a slowdown in new contracts at some big firms suggests the heady growth of the past year may be tempering.

ADVENTURES IN WILD CALIFORNIA

IMAX film by MacGillivray Freeman Films, presented by Wells Fargo, executive produced by K2 Communications; now playing at Edwards IMAX Theatre, Irvine Spectrum Center

Quantum Group Buys Recycling License Holder

Tustin-based The Quantum Group, a maker of equipment that recycles automobile tires, has acquired Advanced Recycling Sciences Inc., a subsidiary of Plant City, Fla.-based UTEK Corp.

Wise Hotel Investments Brokers Hawaii Deal

Corona del Mar-based Wise Hotel Investments has brokered the $25 million sale of Hawaii's Outrigger Kauai Beach Hotel to West Palm Beach, Fla.-based Driftwood Ventures.

Incubator Showcase Slated by Venture Point

Venture Point, a nonprofit high-tech small business development center affiliated with the OC Business Council, and the Pacific Incubator Network will co-host an incubator showcase at the Veteran Wadsworth Theater in Los Angeles on July 22.

Epic Selling New Economy Tools to Old-Line Firms

Web development firms serving the precarious dot-com sector might be in a state of panic, but you won't see Jim Ashby and fellow co-founders of Santa Ana-based Epic Partners Inc. fretting about any technology slowdowns.

Monday, July 10

Calendar July 11-17

Organizational Skills for Supervisors (Cal State Fullerton) Fullerton 9 a.m.-Noon $220 (714) 278-2611 RSVP Maximizing Revenue; Minimizing Risk (WIT Orange County) Costa Mesa 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. $75/$95 (714) 963-8346 RSVP Financing Your Business (U.S.

Mexico's Big Change

First came 1994's North American Free Trade Agreement, which formally tied Mexico's economy to the U.S. and Canada. Then came the Zapatista uprising, the 1995 peso crisis and Mexico's ensuing economic meltdown. Now you can add dramatic political change to

The Shops at Mission Viejo Boosting Nearby Properties

In Mission Viejo, the renovated and renamed The Shops at Mission Viejo mall continues to have a positive effect on surrounding real estate.

Executive Summary

Bergen Brunswig Corp., Orange, will sell its Stadtlander Drug Co. unit to CVS Corp. for $124 million and post a $250 million charge in its fiscal third quarter related to the deal and the earlier sale of its Bergen Medical unit to Cardinal Health (Bergen

MIXED MARKET:

The spigot for public stock offerings may be drying up in the rest of the country, but for Orange County companies, there still are some pools of optimism.

Executive Briefcase

New water park adjacent to Knott's Berry Farm; Open daily 10 a.m.-8 p.m. through Labor Day; $19.95 adults; $13.95 kids 3-11; under 3, free; parking $7

BEST OF ARGUS

n Philip Morris recently announced the purchase of Nabisco. That's the company that makes Oreos, Marlboros, Miller Beer, Maxwell House and Sanka Decaf. Philip Morris now has the addict covered from cradle to grave.

LoanWorks Gets Help From Expanded Corporate Family

Irvine-based LoanWorks just got itself a new sibling with $350 million in deposits that the company hopes will help the online lender expand its business.

People

Newport Beach-based Donahue Schriber, a real estate investment trust, named Lawrence P. Casey executive vice president and chief financial officer.

Investment Matchmaker Debuts in County

Golden State Capital Network, a matchmaker for entrepreneurs and investors, is opening its first office south of Sacramento this week in Newport Beach.

Picking Up Dot-Com Pieces

Albert Reda and Louis Cherry don't fit the stereotypical image of baby-faced geeks running an Internet company out of their parents' basement. The duo counts 54 and 72 years under their belts, respectively.

Tustin Base Under Attack in 'Pearl Harbor'

The former Tustin Marine Corps Air Facility is set to be used for portions of the new Walt Disney Co. film "Pearl Harbor," directed by Michael Bay ("Armageddon," "The Rock") and featuring a cast that includes Ben Affleck, Alec Baldwin and Cuba Gooding Jr.

Real Estate Deals

Georgia-Pacific Corp. bought a 420,000-square-foot industrial building at 6565 Valley View St. in La Palma. Brian De Revere, Bob Goodmanson, and Brad Bierbaum of CB Richard Ellis assisted in completing the $17.25 million transaction.

New Stores, Upbeat Consumers Lift OC Malls

Orange County's largest shopping centers grew sales 9% last year to $4.8 billion, outpacing the state's overall 7% retail sales growth in 1999, according to this week's Business Journal list.

Freedom Not Done Buying

Irvine-based Freedom Communications Inc., parent of the Orange County Register, is looking to follow up its recent acquisition of five Arizona newspapers with another pending buy.

Former OC Execs: Few Changes Since Bankruptcy

Dysfunctional. That's the way Jan Mittermeier describes the Orange County government she used to head before the Board of Supervisors ousted her last month. It's a "disaster waiting to happen," said Bill Popejoy, who served as county executive in 1995 bef

Dr Mike: Supreme Court's Solomon-like Decision on HMOs

As a physician, I dislike involuntary managed care as much as most patients, but the thought of lawyers running the medical delivery system for their own benefit is even more distasteful. The recent Supreme Court decision limiting class action lawsuits ag

High-Speed Charity Links Schools to the Web

A Huntington Beach-based nonprofit group is wiring some needy Orange County schools with high-speed access to the Internet.

Your Name Here: How to Let Me Know About Dining News

Someone asked me recently why certain restaurants, hotels and, lately, bars get mentioned fairly frequently in the columns of OC restaurant writers, including mine. Simple answer: they have more going on that the serious diner or wine-friendly person want

Game Makers Look To Web, Consoles

The score doesn't look good now, but Orange County's entertainment software makers insist the game is far from over for the sector locally.

Real Estate Watch

Together, the North and Central areas of Orange County account for nearly 29% of the county's office base. Average asking lease rates for office space in the North and Central market areas are the lowest of any area in Orange County. To start off the year

Iacocca Joins Commonwealth Energy Board

Lee Iacocca has joined the advisory board of the controversial Commonwealth Energy Corp. of Tustin.

Shopping Malls

Shopping Malls

Newly Public Pacific Mercantile Eyes Online Banking

Pacific Mercantile Bancorp raised $20 million in its June 22 initial public stock offering, though it may not be enough for its founder.

Donahue Schriber Names EVP/CFO

Newport Beach-based Donahue Schriber, a real estate investment trust, named Lawrence P. Casey executive vice president and chief financial officer.

GameSpy's Mission: Connecting Players Online

The company's Irvine headquarters buzzes with the electronic blips of arcade games and the clatter of stray ping-pong balls falling from the second floor.

ThinkTank.com's eJets Caters to Moneyed Jet-Setters

ThinkTank.com, the Internet company incubator created by Orange County entrepreneur Scott Blum and funded by Japanese holding firm Softbank Inc., has unveiled its newest hatchling, eJets.com.

Home Depot in Negotiations for Parker Site

Home Depot Inc. is in escrow to acquire the coveted 42-acre Parker Aerospace parcel in Irvine, with initial plans to build an Expo Design Center on part of the site and sell the rest to an unnamed third party for use as a business park or technology compa

St. Joseph Urges Fixes to 'Broken' Payment Formula

Two top officials of St. Joseph Health System, Orange, are calling for a re-evaluation of the industry's fixed-payment system for healthcare in the wake of the hospital company's decision to stop accepting new patients from health maintenance organization

OC Insider

One more sign that Fidel Castro's days are numbered: Mike Lutton is coming. The Newport Beach developer expects about 30 fellow Young Presidents Organization members to join him on a State Department-sanctioned trip to Cuba next March. "There's sort of a

Cigars, Old Cars and Other Cuban Paradoxes

Last February, 27 members of the Southern California Chapter of the Young Presidents Organization and the associated World Presidents Organization traveled to Cuba for several days on a State Department-backed educational and cultural exchange trip.

Monday, July 3

Providence Venture X Teams to Buy Last ConAgra Parcel

Laguna Niguel-based Providence Venture X has teamed with Los Angeles-based Dynamic Builder to purchase a 13-acre industrial parcel in Fullerton from ConAgra Grocery Products, snapping up the last piece of an 85-acre parcel that housed Hunt Wesson's tomato

Giving and Getting Respect

Two years ago, he moved the corporate offices of CheckMate Staffing Solutions Inc. from Diamond Bar to Orange.

Register Names Senior VP of Operations

The Orange County Register promoted Kathy Weiermiller from senior vice president, CFO and CIO to senior vice president of operations.

Western Digital Lands WebTV Business

Irvine disk drive maker Western Digital Corp. has snatched a high-profile piece of business from rival Seagate Technology Inc.

Why OC GOP Voted 'No' on Budget

The state budget passed by the Assembly on June 22 lacks adequate permanent tax relief for the hard-working families of California, grows government at an alarming rate, undermines welfare reform and short-changes Orange County's transportation and educat

OUT OF TIME

For most companies, obsolete products can be the kiss of death. But not for some small businesses in Orange County.

Flush With Cash, Westcorp Looks to Build on Comeback

It's been a busy year so far for Westcorp, an Irvine-based commercial bank and auto lender.

Herbert Hafif Firm Scores Wins vs. Lyon, Disney

The law office of renowned Claremont trial attorney Herbert Hafif is on a roll, claiming victory in a series of high-profile judgments and settlements totaling more than $120 million during the past year, including a $54.4 million hit on the William Lyon

Roy's Stirs New GM, Exec Chef Into the Mix

There are some changes,good ones,at Roy's of Newport Beach. The new General Manager is Barry Pierce, a name familiar to many diners. Barry lives in Laguna Niguel and for the past three years has managed the Daily Grill in the International Terminal at LAX

Real Estate Deals

A Santa-Barbara-based family trust bought the 34,810-square-foot Pico Pavilion Shopping Center in San Clemente for $7.85 million. Reza Etedali of Sperry Van Ness represented both the buyer and the seller.

Digital Media Is Publishing Online as Others Perish

Forget for a minute the dire predictions of dot-com analysts, the well-publicized troubles of Internet publications and even the model skull and gargoyle sitting on Lou Wallace's office shelf. Online publishing is not dead.

BEST OF ARGUS

Scientists finished mapping the DNA blueprint for human beings. With this knowledge, in time science could make everybody genetically identical. The Bush-Gore race is just a preview.

Imperial Bank Opens New Orange Office

Imperial Bancorp has opened a loan office in Orange, the third Orange County office for the Inglewood-based bank.

El Pollo Loco Launches Campaign, Beefs Up HQ Staff

El Pollo Loco this week is launching a beach-bucket promotion featuring a 64-ounce pail filled with soda for 99 cents with the purchase of an eight- or 12-piece chicken meal.

UCI B-School Gets OK to Double Student Count

The Graduate School of Management at the University of California, Irvine, has been authorized by the UC system to nearly double its full-time MBA enrollment, a boost to UCI's on-going effort to increase the national reputation of its business school.

Now What?

that next to the proposed El Toro Airport itself, the biggest loser in last month's Measure F vote was Jan Mittermeier."

Title Insurers Hunker Down for Another Long Year

Fidelity National's acquisition of Chicago Title Co. has vaulted it past perennial leader First American to No. 1 in the hard-hit OC title insurance industry.

Creamer Dickson Basford Merged Into New Agency

Irvine-based Creamer Dickson Basford has been merged with the California offices of two new sister firms and renamed Magnet Communications.

Ontario Cargo Up 43% in May

While air passengers have been slow to warm to Ontario International Airport, air cargo operations at the airport are taking off.

KUDOS

The Oak Creek community was named project of the year and Terry Hartman of the Irvine Co. was named 1999 engineer of the year by the American Society of Civil Engineers OC Chapter.

People

AdvertisingMarc Rogers, formerly of Bozell Worldwide (Xygote Interactive) and Artisan Creative, joined Blue C Communications, Newport Beach, as account executive, new business development.

Points of Light

The Home Builders Council, Santa Ana, raised $18,434 at a recent event. The money will support scholarship programs for future builders and developers.

Big OC Advertisers, Agencies Feel Strike's Effects

The actors' strike has made life more complicated for some of OC's largest advertisers and their ad shops.

Executive Summary

TOP STORIESThe Board of Supervisors terminated the contract of County Executive Officer Jan Mittermeier and named Health Care Agency Director Michael Schumacher interim CEO, pending a search for a permanent replacement ... Boeing Co. will eliminate up to

March Air Base Conversion Moving Forward

While efforts to attract an air-cargo carrier to the state's largest runway at the March Air Reserve Base near Moreno Valley haven't borne fruit yet, several other projects are setting the stage for large-scale commercial use of the base, officials say.

Rambus Looks to Win Memory War Either Way

The battle over the next generation of computer memory technology might be over before it really gets started.

76 Lubricants Greases Wheels on New Ad Campaign

76 Lubricants, the Costa Mesa-based division of Tosco Corp., recently awarded Bulldog Drummond in San Diego its $3 million advertising account. The ad shop, which competed with eight other national and regional agencies, including four OC contenders, repl

Letters

El Toro cont'd Roger Gibb's June 19 letter attacking me and the proposed Great Park at El Toro has a familiar ring to it. It's the same kind of negative nonsense the pro-airport, pro-development crowd has been spouting for years now.

Huntington Beach Materials Maker Being Acquired

San Diego's Composite Solutions Inc., a maker of fiber-reinforced polymer composites, is buying Anchor Reinforcements of Huntington Beach for undisclosed terms.

Fidelity Putting $75M-Plus Into Web Project

Irvine-based Fidelity National Title Co. is planning to spend at least $75 million within the next three years to create a new system for transacting title insurance over the Internet.

Real Estate Watch

The West Orange County market includes 78 office properties totaling approximately 4.5 million square feet, 6% of the total office market in Orange County. Due to its small size, the West Orange County market experiences greater fluctuations in vacancy an

OC INSIDER--Times May Drop OC Name; Beer's Back at El Toro

The big rumor around the Times Orange County is that it won't be called "Orange County" much longer: The OC designation is coming off the top of the front page, part of a strategy by new owner Tribune Co. to position the Los Angeles Times as the paper for

SellingPros Sells to Fry's

SellingPros, Irvine, said it has signed a deal with San Jose-based Fry's Electronics to provide incentive-based e-learning programs to the consumer-electronics retailer.

Calendar July 4-10

Toastmasters Water Meeters meeting Irvine 7:10-8 a.m. Free (949) 453-5712 . . . Speak for Success and Be Evaluated by a Professional Coach (Communication Practice Club) Newport Beach 7-8:30 a.m. $35 (949) 675-7195 . . . Leads Club meeting Orange 7:15 a.m.

Retail: Meade Intruments

Meade Instruments Corp., Irvine, reported earnings of $1.4 million on revenue of $22.8 million for its first fiscal quarter ended May 31, compared with earnings of $1.1 million on revenue of $17.1 million in the prior first quarter.

State Mandate for Mental Health Insurance Kicks In

Insurance coverage for selected mental illnesses is now the law in Orange County and the rest of California. And employers will have to dig into their pockets a bit more to pay for it.

Tech Issues Drive

June turned out to be a pretty good month for Orange County technology and other stocks in their climb back from the spring market meltdown.

Local CFOs Like E-Commerce, See Recruitment as Problem in Second Half

OC financial officers still see the Internet as a revenue source and recruiting as the biggest obstacle to growth in the second half of the year, according to a survey by the OC chapter of the Financial Executive Institute.

Billabong's Aussie Parent Weighs Initial Public Offering Down Under

The Australian parent of Orange County's No. 2 surfwear company Billabong USA is looking to go public on the Australian Stock Exchange in an offering that could raise as much as $240 million.

Actor Strike Boosts OC Filming

In the battle between striking actors and ad producers in Los Angeles, ad agencies and their clients are fleeing to this side of the proverbial Orange Curtain to find a haven.

UCI Team to Lead International Study of Nerve Functions

A University of California, Irvine, scientist is leading an international research team that is preparing to examine how certain fat molecules act as chemical messengers in the nervous system.

Accesspoint Shares Start German Trading

Irvine Internet services company Accesspoint Corp. said its application to have its shares traded on Germany's Frankfurt Stock Exchange was approved last week.

OC Soccer Team Hoping to Make Waves

The Orange County Waves soccer team has a new owner with big plans for squad,including a proposal for new stadium in the Irvine Spectrum.