Stories for August 2007

Monday, August 27

Register Publisher Scraps Print Version of SqueezeOC

The SqueezeOC scraps its print edition this week, in the Media & Marketing column

New Construction Boosted Deals, Vacancy Rates

New Construction Boosted Deals, Vacancy Rates

READER LETTERS

Letters to the Editors. Healthcare Reform; Hillary: The Movie; John Wayne, El Toro; Barry Bonds; Iraq, Vietnam

Wanted: Industrial Space

Lack of Development, Few Lease Opportunities Creating Tight Market; Rents Still Rising

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This past week's news from www.ocbj.com and other sources

AROUND THE COUNTY

Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around OC

Healthcare Reform a Threat, Opportunity for Insurers

Tenet Healthcare dismisses Garden Grove worker rally, in the Healthcare column

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Nation Industrial Market

In the second quarter, the greater Boston industrial market rebounded from a lackluster first quarter with a modest gain in tenancy...

Oil Industry Pushes for Delay in State Ethanol Mandate

ENVIRONMENT - Oil companies push for delay in state ethanol mandates, in the Regulation Watch column

Impac Spars With Analyst on Tense Conference Call

Impac spars with analyst on tense conference call, in the Real Estate Column

Tennis Deuce

Tennis coaches wants developers to buy into its vision for a world-class facility

KUDOS

A look at people, companies and institutions receiving awards, accolades, grants and other honors

Boomers Operator Palace Entertainment Selling for $330M

Irvine-based Palace Entertainment Inc., operator of Boomers in Irvine and other family amusement centers across the county, is being bought for $330 million by Spain's Parques Reunidos SA.

California Industrial Market

Demand for Orange County industrial space remained high in the second quarter, despite signs that the national industrial market is leveling off...

Business Software Maker Lands $12M for Sales Push

Communicado raised $12 million for software development, in the Technology column

St. Joseph's $203M Patient Center Geared Toward Hispanics

St. Joseph's new hospital center is geared toward Hispanics

Restaurants Changing Strategy Amid Slowdown

Restaurants change strategies amid a slowdown

Office Holds Steady Despite Slowdown in Local Economy

Office Holds Steady Despite Slowdown in Local Economy

Irvine Co. Changing Power Structure

Irvine Co. has seen more executive changes than ever before

Vizio Leapfrogs Big Names in Q2 Flat TV Sales

Vizio beats out big companies for flat-screen TV growth

Amelio Out to Revive Chip Factory,Again

Gil Amelio is looking to turn around Jazz Semiconductor

Home Sales Hit Slowest Pace in 5 Years

Sales of existing homes dropped for a fifth straight month in July, falling to the slowest pace in nearly five years, while home prices fell for a record 12th consecutive month.

West Industrial Market

With a healthy economy and Boeing Co. regaining its position as the world's top producer of commercial aircraft, the industrial market has seen record-high asking rates...

Acer Buying Gateway for $710M

One of the most talked about potential computer deals of the year finally happened: Taiwanese computer maker Acer Inc. is set to pay $710 million for Irvine-based Gateway Inc.'s business selling computers through stores and online.

U.S. Steel to Buy Stelco for $1.1B

U.S. Steel Corp. agreed to acquire Stelco Inc. for $1.1 billion, bagging the last big Canadian-owned steelmaker and strengthening its position in flat-rolled steel products in North America.

MARKET WATCH

Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

Clothes Maker La Jolla Group Out to Revive Rusty Surfwear

Clothing maker La Jolla buys Rusty surfwear brand to push growth

Private Equity Sets Sights on SureFire

SureFire receives a $50 million cash infusion

Sales Increase, Lease Rates Up, Vacancy Drops

Sales Increase, Lease Rates Up, Vacancy Drops

Anderson's 'Adios' Ends Register Era; Wither OC Post?

Anderson's 'Adios' Ends Register Era; Wither OC Post?

Home Depot to Cut Unit Sale Price by $1.8B

Home Depot Inc. agreed to cut the price in its supply division sale to buyout firms by $1.8 billion, sources said on Sunday, as a housing market drop and a credit crunch forced all sides to renegotiate.

Inviting, Unpretentious Veggie Grill Does Meatless Right

The Veggie Grill in Irvine does meatless right, in the Executive Dining column

Luxury, Classic Rides Coming to Corona del Mar Show

Luxury, classic cars come to Corona del Mar show, in the Marketplace column

REAL ESTATE DEALS

Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

UnitedHealth Starts to Eclipse PacifiCare

UnitedHealth Group is more prominent here after its 2005 buy of PacifiCare

VIEWPOINT

Job Losses From Healthcare Reform. By John Kabateck, executive director of The National Federation of Independent Businesses in California.

Leupold Joins Business Journal as Managing Editor

Julie Leupold joins the Business Journal as managing editor

San Diego: Industrial, Office Vacancy Rates Up; Retail Drops

San Diego: Industrial, Office Vacancy Rates Up; Retail Drops

L.A. Tenants Pinched by Rising Rents, Limited Supply

L.A. Tenants Pinched by Rising Rents, Limited Supply

IDM Falls on FDA's Denial of Bone Cancer Drug

Shares of IDM Pharma Inc., an Irvine drug maker, fell 19% Monday after the company said the Food and Drug Administration denied approval for Junovan, IDM's bone cancer drug.

L.L Knickerbocker Successor Tries OC-Themed Energy Drink

L.L. Knickerbocker successor RG Global draws on reality TV stardom to launch OCEnergy drink

Friday, August 24

Standard Pacific Reworking Credit Lines

Irvine-based Standard Pacific Corp. wants to lower its credit lines with Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to stay in compliance with terms of the deals as its value drops amid the housing downturn.

Maguire Sells Irvine Office for $112M

Maguire Properties Inc. said on Friday it is selling 18301 Von Karman, an 11-story office tower in Irvine, for $112 million.

Court Clears Way for Whole Foods Merger

A federal appeals court on Thursday cleared the way for Whole Foods Market Inc. to buy rival organic grocer Wild Oats Markets Inc.

FTC Clears Oakley Acquisition

Foothill Ranch-based Oakley Inc.'s $2.1 billion acquisition by Italy's Luxottica Group SPA gained Federal Trade Commission approval on Friday.

July New Home Sales, Durables Orders Rise

Sales of new single-family U.S. homes unexpectedly rose in July and new orders for durable goods posted strong gains that underlined the economy's strength just before a credit crisis socked financial markets.

Tata Interested in Jaguar, Land Rover

India's Tata Group is interested in acquiring Ford Motor Co.'s Jaguar and Land Rover brands, the Indian conglomerate's chairman Ratan Tata said in remarks released on Friday.

Thursday, August 23

Cooper Cos. Names New CEO

The Cooper Cos., a Lake Forest-based contact lens and surgical product company, said Thursday it appointed Robert Weiss as its new chief executive.

Yard House Sells Stake to Private Equity Firm

Irvine-based Yard House Restaurants LLC has sold a 70% stake to San Francisco-based private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners.

British Airways Fined $300M

British Airways PLC was fined $300 million Thursday after pleading guilty to antitrust charges and admitting fixing some prices on international flights.

Ford: No Jaguar Sale Decision Imminent

Ford Motor Co. will not make an announcement about the sale of its Jaguar and Land Rover units until late this year or perhaps early in 2008, the head of the company's European operations said Wednesday night.

B of A Invests $2B in Countrywide

Countrywide Financial Corp. on Wednesday received a $2 billion injection from Bank of America Corp., helping the largest U.S. mortgage lender shore up its finances as it struggles with a liquidity crunch.

Wednesday, August 22

Register Publisher Anderson Leaving

Chris Anderson, publisher of the Orange County Register and a key executive for parent Freedom Communications Inc. of Irvine, is leaving the company.

Microsemi Sells Santa Ana Plant for $10.5M

Irvine chipmaker Microsemi Corp. on Wednesday said it sold off its original plant in Santa Ana.

Report: TD Ameritrade, E*Trade in Merger Talks

Online brokerages TD Ameritrade Holding Corp. and E*Trade Financial Corp. have been in serious merger discussions for weeks but are not yet close to a deal, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Mixed Showing for PacSun, Wet Seal

Restructuring retailer Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. posted a big quarterly loss Thursday, while another mall store operator, Wet Seal Inc., warned about slow sales for the current quarter.

Lehman Shuttering BNC Mortgage

Irvine-based subprime lender BNC Mortgage Inc. is being shut down, according to parent company Lehman Brothers Holdings Corp.

Aerospace Supplier Synchronous Acquired

Santa Ana-based Synchronous Aerospace Group, a maker of aerospace and defense parts, has been acquired by private equity firm Littlejohn & Co.

Accredited Home to Cut 1,600 jobs, Halts Lending

Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co. said on Wednesday it had stopped taking U.S. mortgage applications and would eliminate 1,600 jobs, or 62% of its work force, to cope with turmoil in subprime lending.

Dubai World to Invest up to $5.2B in MGM Mirage

Dubai World said on Wednesday it will invest up to $5.2 billion in MGM Mirage, making the investment holding firm of the Dubai government a major player in Las Vegas, the biggest gambling destination in the United States.

Tuesday, August 21

Drug Maker Watson Gets Approval for Pain Patch

Corona-based Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Tuesday it won approval from regulators for a generic version of Johnson & Johnson's Duragesic, a patch to treat pain.

Memory Board Maker Southland Bought for $23M

A Texas company is buying Irvine's Southland Micro Systems Inc., a privately held maker of memory boards for computers, for $23 million.

Standard Pacific Downgraded

Irvine-based Standard Pacific Corp. had its stock downgraded Tuesday by a Bank of America Securities homebuilding analyst.

U.S. Foreclosures Rise Sharply in July

Foreclosure filings rose 9% from June to July and surged 93% over the same period last year, with Nevada, Georgia and Michigan accounting for the highest foreclosure rates nationwide, a research firm said Tuesday.

Big Three Pledge Vigilance as Banks Gloomy

Finance chiefs from the world's three biggest economies tried on Tuesday to keep a lid on credit jitters, but U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson admitted that global financial turmoil would take time to play out.

Buffett Could Buy Parts of Countrywide

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett may buy parts of beleaguered mortgage lender Countrywide Financial Corp., some investors are speculating, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Monday, August 20

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Growing Digital TV Sales Stand to Boost Chipmakers

Some chipmakers could get a boost from growing digital television sales, in the Technology column

Countrywide Said to Begin Layoffs

Countrywide Financial Corp., the nation's largest mortgage lender, has begun laying off staff as part of its effort to ride out the credit crunch that has rocked the home loan industry, according to a report published Monday.

Agent Boras' New Digs: The House That Contracts Built

FANTASY BASEBALL - Scott Boras is baseball's power broker

Law Firm Expands With Hires, D.C. Office

Irvine's Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear is growing with the recent hiring of OC lawyers and plans to open an East Coast office,

J Star Opens Second Dealership in San Juan Capistrano

A customized car dealer opened its second dealership in San Juan Capistrano, in the Marketplace column

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

DGWB Advertising Buys Local Online Marketer Argus

DGWB Advertising and Communications plans to make a big play in online marketing with a recent acquisition, in the Media & Marketing column

Emulex Eyeing Dec. Rebound; Continues Diversifying

Emulex Chief Executive Jim McCluney is banking on a big rebound at the end of the year

Fashion Forward

An OC maker of upscale surfwear is hitting a note with high-end boutiques and young adults

Device Maker Plans More Growth for Local Unit

Medical device maker Ev3 has its eye on growing its Orange County operations

Anaheim Boutique is Test Bed for Disney's Urban Marketing Efforts

Mickey Mouse has gone ghetto chic with trendy graffiti-style apparel

Meetings Report Card

Strong Market Suggests Need for More Space to Draw Largest Groups. PLUS: Top 10 Convention Groups for 2008 by Size

Law Firm Extends Lease for Irvine Office, Adds Space

Another one of the county's largest law firms is officially off the market for relocation, in the Real Estate column

Birtcher, Buchanan Sell Home Furnishings Mall

Costa Mesa's South Coast Home Furnishings Centre has been sold for more than $100 million

Meetings are Big Business for Orange County Hotels

Meetings are Big Business for Orange County Hotels. PLUS: Disney Institute Seminars Draw Corporate Market

Impac Dismisses Bankruptcy Talk

Impac Dismisses Bankruptcy Talk

Luminent Mortgage Announces Bailout

Luminent Mortgage Capital Inc., which has struggled with liquidity problems because of mortgage investments, on Monday announced a bailout in which it would sell a majority stake in itself at a deep discount.

MARKET WATCH

Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

REAL ESTATE DEALS

Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

Incentive Programs Go On Despite Budget Cuts

Incentive Programs Go On Despite Budget Cuts. Companies Exert Care but Still Have Fun. PLUS: Ambassadors Partners With New Publication

Industry Consolidation Heats Up Gateway Talk

The rumor mill is churning again for Gateway

Congressman Helps Broadcom; Register Gets TV Tenant

Congressman Helps Broadcom; Register Gets TV Tenant

VIEWPOINT

Managing John Wayne Airport's bulging air traffic, in Viewpoint by Leonard Kranser

Lucca's Latest Take on Fine Dining: Take-Out Service

Lucca in Irvine's Quail Hill Village Center makes the cut as a lovely cosmopolitan cafe, in the Executive Dining column

Analysts Take Shine to Allergan Cosmetic Rival Mentor

One of Allergan's medical cosmetic rivals got love from Wall Street earlier this month, in the Healthcare column

San Diego ConVis Plays Up Local Night Life in 'Active Relaxation' Ad Campaign

San Diego ConVis Plays Up Local Night Life in 'Active Relaxation' Ad Campaign

Aerospace Company Shuttering Tustin HQ

Tustin aerospace contract manufacturer Commerce Overseas Corp. is shipping out

Knobbe Martens Expands With Hires, D.C. Office

Irvine's Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear LLP is making a growth push with the recent hiring of lawyers in Orange County and plans to open an East Coast office.

GIVING

Fund-raisers and charitable donations from companies and people

Toy Maker Moves to Bigger Digs in Anaheim Hills

Fossil kit maker Skullduggery digs its new site, in the Small Business column

Meggitt Hits $100M in Sales, Now Eyeing Buyout Target

Now that Meggitt Defense Systems has hit its sales goal, it has its eye on buyout targets

Lowe's Posts Higher Profit

Lowe's Cos. reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit on Monday, and its shares rose more than 6% as the home-improvement retailer said sales were improving in some regions despite the soft U.S. housing market.

Credit Card Veteran Targets Immigrants With Prepaid Cards

Credit card veteran Andy Phillips is going after those who deal in cash but want the benefits of plastic

Friday, August 17

Nokia Follows Broadcom in ITC Fight Against Qualcomm

Irvine's Broadcom Corp. has an ally in its fight against Qualcomm Inc.: Finland's Nokia Corp.

Lender NovaStar Closing Lake Forest Office

NovaStar Financial Inc., a Kansas City-based subprime mortgage lender, said on Friday it is closing its Lake Forest wholesale operations due to tough market conditions.

Paul Frank Settles With Founder

Costa Mesa-based Paul Frank Industries has settled its lawsuit with founder and designer, Paul Frank Sunich.

Fed Cuts Discount Rate

The Federal Reserve approved a half-percentage point cut in its discount rate on loans to banks Friday, a dramatic move designed to stabilize financial markets roiled by a widening credit crisis.

Dell to Cut Prior Earnings Up to $150M

Dell Inc. executives have finally wrapped up a yearlong internal investigation into accounting problems at the computer company, and the mistakes could end up costing them as much as $150 million.

Borse Dubai bids $4B for Nordic OMX

Borse Dubai launched a $4 billion cash offer for Nordic exchange owner OMX on Friday, trumping an agreed deal with U.S. exchange Nasdaq, in a bid to create a group with global reach.

Thursday, August 16

NNN Realty Q2 Revenue Up 78%

Santa Ana-based NNN Realty Advisors Inc.,parent company of real estate investor Triple Net Properties LLC,posted second quarter revenue of $44.4 million, compared to $25 million a year ago, the company said on Thursday.

Bear Stearns Cuts 240 Subprime Jobs

Bear Stearns Cos. said on Thursday it will cut about 240 subprime lending jobs, including 100 jobs at an East coast office of Irvine-based Encore Credit Corp.

Boeing Moving Missile Defense Program From Anaheim to Alabama

Boeing Co. is set to pack up its Anaheim-based Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense program and ship it to Alabama.

Sprint Earmarks $5B for WiMax Network

Sprint Nextel Corp. said on Thursday it could spend as much as $5 billion by the end of 2010 on a new network based on WiMax, an emerging high-speed wireless technology.

Irvine Co. Makes Exec Changes

The Irvine Co. announced several changes to its executive management team on Thursday, including a replacement for the retiring Joe Davis, who has headed up the Newport Beach-based company's housing development efforts since 1997.

Hewlett-Packard Earnings Up on Strong PC Sales

Hewlett-Packard Co. said Thursday that earnings for the third-fiscal quarter jumped 29%, thanks to strength in PC sales along with a decline in prices for components such as memory chips.

Countrywide Borrows $11.5B From 40 Banks

The nation's largest mortgage lender borrowed $11.5 billion from a group of 40 banks to fund loans, in a move that shows just how deep the lending crisis has become.

Fannie Mae Profit Down 36%

Fannie Mae, the largest U.S. buyer and guarantor of home mortgages, reported Thursday that its profit dropped 36% in 2006 and said it expects higher delinquencies and credit losses this year from the turbulence in the mortgage market.

Wednesday, August 15

Bear Stearns in Talks to Buy Ford Unit in India

Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. is in talks to buy a Ford Motor Co. financing unit in India as a way to secure an additional license to beef up what it can offer clients in that expanding market.

Countrywide Tumbles on Downgrade, Rumors

Countrywide Financial Corp. shares tumbled Wednesday after being downgraded by a Merrill Lynch analyst and on rumors that the mortgage lender was not able to raise money in the commercial paper market.

Irvine Sensors Widens Loss, Gets Sales Boost From Acquisition

Costa Mesa's Irvine Sensors Corp., which makes stacked chip assemblies, miniature cameras and night-vision goggles, said Wednesday it widened its loss during the three months ended July 1.

Standard Pacific Shares Slide 12%

Shares of Standard Pacific Corp. fell 12% on Wednesday as concerns over the mortgage and housing markets battered the Irvine-based homebuilder.

Existing Home Sales Fall in 41 States

Sales of existing homes fell in 41 states during the April-June quarter while home prices were down in one-third of the metropolitan areas surveyed, a real estate trade group reported Wednesday.

Inflation Slows in July, Output Gains

A big drop in the cost of gasoline in July contributed to the smallest rise in consumer prices in eight months while industrial output posted a solid gain.

Impac Dismisses Bankruptcy Talk

Officials for Irvine-based mortgage lender and investor Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc. said on Wednesday that the company is in good enough financial shape to weather the current volatility in the mortgage and housing markets.

Tuesday, August 14

SenoRx Narrows Loss, Boosts Revenue

SenoRx Inc., an Aliso Viejo medical device maker, on Tuesday said it narrowed its second-quarter loss, its first full earnings after its $45 million initial public offering in March.

Cherokee Up on Revised Yearly Outlook

Shares of Tustin-based Cherokee International Corp. got a boost Tuesday when the company upped its outlook for the end of the year, citing new design wins and a big backlog of orders.

VMware Surges With Much-Anticipated IPO

Shares of rapidly growing software maker VMware Inc. skyrocketed more than 75% Tuesday in one of Silicon Valley's most anticipated stock market debuts since Google Inc. mesmerized Wall Street three years ago.

Wal-Mart Profit Jumps But Outlook Cut

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. reported a 49% increase in second-quarter profits, but the world's largest retailer cut its profit outlook amid weak economic conditions that are crimping consumer spending globally.

Kaiser Swings to Profit in Q2

Shares of Foothill Ranch-based Kaiser Aluminum Corp. jumped 7% on Tuesday after it posted a second-quarter profit that was more than double analysts' expectations.

Countrywide Foreclosures at Multi-Year High

Foreclosures and delinquencies among home loans that Countrywide Financial Corp. services rose in July to their highest in at least several years, the largest U.S. mortgage lender said on Tuesday.

OC Home Prices Drop in July, Sales Continue to Slow

The median price of an Orange County home slipped $5,000 in July from the record levels of a month ago, while sales in the county continued to lag.

Monday, August 13

Bren Giving $20M to UCI Law School

University of California, Irvine, on Monday said that Donald Bren, chairman of The Irvine Company, gave a $20 million gift to its law school, which now will bear his name.

CB Richard Ellis Names Managing Director for Anaheim

CB Richard Ellis has finalized the makeup of its OC management team, in the Real Estate column

STEC Shares Rise on Rosier Q3 Outlook

Shares of Santa Ana's STEC Inc., a maker of memory devices for industrial uses, rose in afterhours trading after the company reported a better-than-expected outlook for the current quarter.

Medicare Mishaps

Health Insurers Changing How They Market Fee-for-Service Senior Plans

Fine Dining at a Bargain at South Coast Plaza Event

Mark your calendar to save big at these South Coast Plaza restaurants, in the Executive Dining column

Mortgage Borrower Fraud Claims Grow

Investigators are looking into fraud by home loan borrowers

Impac Posts Q2 Loss of $152M

Irvine-based mortgage lender and investor Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc. said it lost $152.5 million in the second quarter, compared to profit of $26.4 million a year ago.

Lucky 13 Hits Note With Vintage, Rockabilly-Punk Inspired Clothes

Clothing maker Lucky 13 goes for a punked-out, rockabilly look

AROUND THE COUNTY

Projects, developments and other activity in cities across OC

Irvine Co. Nabs Pair of Law Firms for 20 Pacifica

The Irvine Company is starting small with its first batch of leases at 20-40 Pacifica

Gateway Looks to Colored PCs to Boost Slumping Sales

Gateway has jumped on the computer fashion bandwagon, in the Technology column

Real Estate Watch: High-Rise Office Market

Vacancy for high-rise office space in the county ended the second quarter up 1%. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Dental Insurers Post Membership Gains; Delta Nabs Top Spot

Dental Insurers Post Membership Gains; Delta Nabs Top Spot

HMO Insurers Post Another Year of Membership Gains

HMO Insurers Post Another Year of Membership Gains

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

MARKET WATCH

Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

Factor54 Breaking Surfwear Mold With Stickers, Logo Buzz, Artwork

Costa Mesa-based Factor54 is about to get some big time exposure with its surf and skate garb

District Mall Hopes to Stand Out With Stores, Events

Some people wonder if there will be enough shoppers to go around now that The District at the Tustin Legacy is open, in the Marketplace column

READER LETTERS

John Moorlach addresses his involvement in pension benefits; Plus: AB 8 Healthcare Bill.

Lincoln Club Aims For Hillary; OC Tops Subprime List

Lincoln Club Aims For Hillary; OC Tops Subprime List

Impac Mortgage Battles Bankruptcy Talk

Impac Mortgage Holdings is struggling to differentiate itself from fellow lenders of Alt-A mortgages

Blackstone Net Income More Than Triples

Private equity firm Blackstone Group said on Monday that second-quarter net income more than tripled, boosted by merger and real estate deals, sending its units up nearly 8%.

Critical Director Takes Issue With Quality Systems Again

A director and outspoken shareholder at Quality Systems is speaking up again in SEC filings, in the Healthcare column

Development Plans Welcome News for Med Office Market

Development Plans Welcome News for Med Office Market

Beechhead

Beech Street is becoming the model for its parent company's expansion plans

Register Lays Off in Editorial as Sales Slump Continues

The Orange County Register has laid off workers in the newspaper's editorial department as an advertising sales slump continues, in the Media & Marketing column

Solid Retail Sales Boost Hopes for Growth

Consumers spent more boldly than expected last month as declining gasoline prices shielded household budgets, government data showed on Monday.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This past week's news from www.ocbj.com and other sources

Simon Says

Ron Simon built a cabinet empire from the ground up

Big Medical Scanner Finishes Bankruptcy

InSight Health Services has emerged from a quick bankruptcy restructuring

Big Debate

Industry Officials Weigh In on Proposed Changes to State's Healthcare System

REAL ESTATE DEALS

Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

Accredited Home Sues Lone Star to Complete Merger

Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co. has sued private equity firm Lone Star Funds to force it to complete the $400 million takeover of the money-losing subprime mortgage lender.

Friday, August 10

Medical Scanner Back From Quick Bankruptcy

InSight Health Services Holdings Corp., a provider of medical scanning services with yearly sales of $300 million, has emerged from a quick bankruptcy restructuring that saw the company turn over most of its ownership to bondholders.

Fed Acts to Stem Credit Turmoil

The Federal Reserve, trying to calm turmoil on Wall Street, announced Friday that it will pump as much money as needed into the U.S. financial system to help overcome the ill effects of a spreading credit crunch.

Countrywide's Debt Protection Costs Rise

The cost to protect the debt of Countrywide Financial Corp. jumped on Friday after the U.S. home loan provider said turbulence in the mortgage market is likely to hurt operations in the near term.

Triangle Square Unveils Redevelopment Plans

The planned redevelopment of Costa Mesa's Triangle Square mall includes a 10-story building with nine floors of condominiums, street-level live-work units, improved parking and the removal of nearly 40% of the mall's retail space.

Consumer Confidence Rebounds in August

Consumer confidence rebounded in August, rising to a five-month high as receding gasoline prices and a mostly solid employment climate made people feel better about the economy's prospects and their own financial situations.

Cabinetmaker Ron Simon Does Business on His Own Terms

When Ron Simon came up with a plan to compete with Taiwanese cabinetmakers, the new owners of Perma-Bilt Industries called him crazy. Then he resigned.

Thursday, August 9

Emulex Shares Fall on Earnings Outlook

Shares of Costa Mesa-based Emulex Corp., which makes host bus adapters that link computers on data networks, plunged Thursday after the company gave a weaker-than-expected outlook for the current quarter.

PacSun, Wet Seal See Sales Fall, Lower Outlooks

Orange County's two big mall retailers, Anaheim's Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. and Wet Seal Inc. of Foothill Ranch, reported sharply lower July same-store sales. Both also lowered or narrowed their profit outlook for the current quarter.

Retailers Report Sluggish July Sales

The back-to-school shopping season had a disappointing start in July as consumers rattled by a weakening housing market and other financial pressures stayed away from stores and malls.

St. John Hires CEO From Dolce & Gabbana

Irvine's St. John Knits International Inc. has hired Glenn McMahon, president of Dolce & Gabbana USA, as its new chief executive.

BNP Paribas Freezes Security Funds

A major French bank, BNP Paribas, announced Thursday that it was suspending three of its asset-backed securities funds, saying it could no longer value them accurately because of problems in the U.S. subprime mortgage market.

More Cost-Cutting Announced at Option One Mortgage

H & R; Block Inc. disclosed that further cost-cutting is happening at its ailing Option One Mortgage Corp. business ahead of the unit's planned sale.

Wednesday, August 8

Broadcom Up on Nokia Deal, Cisco

Shares of Irvine-based Broadcom Corp. were up 10% Wednesday after the chipmaker won a deal with Nokia Corp., and another big customer, Cisco Systems Inc., reported a stronger outlook.

William Lyon Swings to Loss in Q2

Newport Beach homebuilder William Lyon Homes Inc. reported a pre-tax loss of $77.8 million in the second quarter on Wednesday.

Sprint Quarterly Profit Falls, Beats Expectations

Sprint Nextel Corp. posted a lower quarterly profit on Wednesday but beat Wall Street expectations as the No. 3 U.S. mobile phone service added customers, sending its shares up more than 3%.

Online Boom Boosts Cisco Profit, Shares

Cisco Systems Inc. shares jumped nearly 6% after the network equipment maker reported fiscal fourth-quarter results that beat Wall Street's expectations and boosted its financial forecast.

Masimo Debuts With a Bang

Irvine medical device maker Masimo Corp.'s public offering debuted with a bang on Wednesday.

Toyota Sees Lower Industrywide 2007 U.S. Auto Sales

Toyota Motor Corp. expects industrywide U.S. auto sales to slow for the second straight year in 2007, with a rebound beginning in 2008, the company's U.S. sales chief said on Wednesday.

Tuesday, August 7

Tyco Falls to 3Q Loss

Tyco International Ltd. said Tuesday it fell to a fiscal third-quarter loss due to hefty charges primarily related to a legal settlement, but adjusted results managed to top Wall Street's expectations.

Fed Holds Interest Rates Steady, Inflation Main Concern

The Federal Reserve on Tuesday held benchmark U.S. interest rates steady and said that while tightening credit conditions had increased downside risks facing the economy, inflation was still its main concern.

Judge Overturns $1.5B Ruling Against Microsoft

A U.S. judge on Monday threw out a record $1.5 billion verdict against Microsoft Corp., ruling the world's largest software had not infringed on audio technology patents held by France's Alcatel-Lucent.

Impac Stops Funding Alt-A Loans

Irvine-based Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc. said Tuesday it plans to stop funding loans known as Alt-A a day after rival American Home Mortgage Investment Corp. filed for bankruptcy protection.

Artificial Bone Maker Being Bought for $51M

IsoTis Inc., an Irvine maker of artificial bone material, said Tuesday it's being acquired by Integra LifeSciences Holdings Corp. for $51 million.

Tenet Posts Loss, Misses Wall Street View

Tenet Healthcare Corp., one of the biggest U.S. investor-owned hospital chains, on Tuesday missed Wall Street expectations and cut its 2007 forecast, blaming worse-than-expected declines in patient volume.

Monday, August 6

Software Maker Raises $6M in First Round of Funding

A software maker has raised $6 million in its first round of funding, in the Technology column

Heavenly Hostess Makes Couture Aprons Fit for a Party

Aprons are going haute couture,1950s style, in the Small Business column

Blenheim Farm Selling for $40M; Ko Retiring But Not From Scene

Blenheim Farm Selling for $40M; Ko Retiring But Not From Scene

Billionaire's Club

The county's wealthiest people saw the value of their holdings increase during the past year

REVIEW

OC Roller Girls are an adventurous, quirky way to spend a Saturday night, in a Review

Saddleback Program Focuses on Rapid Prototype Production

In a small workshop at Saddleback College, two guys believe they're molding the future of manufacturing

MyPrint Eyeing Production Facilities for Its eTools Unit

MyPrint is looking for fulfillment and distribution centers for its eTools unit, in the Media & Marketing column

Rival's Bankrutpcy, Downgrade Rattle Impac Mortgage

Shares of Irvine-based Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc. closed down nearly 15% on Monday after an analyst downgrade and American Home Mortgage Investment Corp. of Melville, N.Y., filed for bankruptcy protection.

REAL ESTATE DEALS

Sales and leases of offices, industrial buildings, retail space and apartments

OTHER CENTIMILLIONAIRES

Here's a list of those estimated to be worth $100 million or more, though an exact number is hard to pin down.

Buyout Speculation Turning to Beckman

Beckman Coulter could be an attractive way to get into the $10 billion medical testing market

Rich Home Buying: Yacht Docks, Stables, Theaters, Views

Yacht Docks, Stables, Theaters, Views. Forget three- or even four-car garages.

MARKET WATCH

Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

Finance Fortunes: Niche Loans, Venture Capital, Banking, Bonds

Fortunes from finance link several of Orange County's wealthiest.

KUDOS

A look at people, companies and institutions receiving awards, accolades, grants and other honors

Blue Money

County's Wealthy Democrats Enjoy Heyday, Courted by Clinton, Obama, Edwards

Eyeonics Testing Public Waters With $86.3M IPO Plans

Eyeonics is looking to follow a small group of device makers with its plan to go public, in the Healthcare column

Auto Sales Slump in First Half; Lexus Leads Mercedes

OC Auto sales were down nearly 7% in the first half of the year, in the Marketplace column

Ex-Home Depot Boss to Lead New Chrysler

Chrysler began its new life as a private company on Monday with an auto-industry outsider taking the wheel.

Real Estate Watch: Construction

The office market has fueled the county's commercial construction

White House Upholds Qualcomm Ban

The U.S. Trade Representative upheld a ban Monday on cell phones that contain Qualcomm Inc.'s chips found to infringe on rival Broadcom Corp.'s patents.

County's Office Market Counts $3.6B in Deals So Far

This year's office market is likely to go down as the Year of the Flip, in the Real Estate column

TTM Shares Fall on Q3 Outlook

A warning for the current quarter sent shares of Santa Ana circuit board maker TTM Technologies Inc. down more than 15% last week.

Medical Device Maker B. Braun Expanding

B. Braun Medical has struck one of the largest industrial leases here of late

New Century Legal Bills Could Surpass $100M

New Century's bankruptcy has been a boon for law firms and other professional firms

Kirkorian Tops List of Southland's Richest, Followed by Bren

Kirkorian Tops List of Southland's Richest, Followed by Bren

Soft Spoken Boss

Soft Spoken Boss - Robert Escalante could very well be Mr. Packard

July Job Growth Slowest in Five Months

The U.S. unemployment rate rose to 4.6% in July as employers added jobs at the slowest rate in five months and the government actually reduced its workforce, the Labor Department said on Friday.

The Weekend Wealthy

If you can't live here, you still can play here.

VIEWPOINT

Surfing Segregation

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Standard Pacific Plunges on Debt Worries

Shares of Irvine-based homebuilder Standard Pacific Corp. closed down 13% Monday after falling as much as 35% during the day on debt worries.

Maguire Puts Local Offices Up for Sale

A trio of office buildings is being shopped by Maguire Properties

OC'S WEALTHIEST

Capsule profiles and a list of the county's 25 wealthiest people.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This past week's news from www.ocbj.com and other sources

Chipmaker Jazz Reports Lesser Quarterly Loss

Newport Beach based chipmaker Jazz Technologies Inc. narrowed its loss in the second quarter from the prior one.

Cosmetic Comeback

The founder of Bare Escentuals is taking a stab at another mineral-based makeup business

American Home Mortgage Files for Bankruptcy

American Home Mortgage Corp. filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday, the latest casualty of a mortgage industry that has plunged into distress.

Antiques Collector Left Acting for Radio World

Vintage collector Art Astor gave up acting for a gig in radio

Investments of Passion

Collectors Amass Cars, Coins, Stamps, Even Ancient Shark Teeth

Hilton Kicks Off Season of Jazz With Local Musicians

Hilton's kicking off its Season of Jazz, in the Executive Dining column

Friday, August 3

OC's Wealthiest Estimated at $33.5B

Orange County's 28 wealthiest people count a combined estimated wealth of $33.5 billion, according to the Business Journal's annual list in the Aug. 6 issue.

Once Critical Analyst Upgrades Advanced Medical

Advanced Medical Optics Inc. on Friday got an upgrade from an analyst who's been critical of the contact lens care and eye surgery company in the past.

July Job Growth Slowest Since February

Employers boosted payrolls in July at the slowest pace since February, adding 92,000 jobs as the jobless rate ticked up to its highest since the start of the year, a government report on Friday showed.

Samsung Electronics Chip Output Hit by Power Cut

Samsung Electronics Co. said on Friday it shut down six of its chip production lines after a power cut at a plant near Seoul, prompting expectations of tighter supply and a rise in prices.

Saddleback College Lab Focuses on Rapid Prototype Manufacturing

In a small workshop on the campus of Saddleback College, Ed Tackett and Ken Patton believe they're molding the future of manufacturing.

Circuit Board Maker Plunges on Poor Results

Shares of Anaheim circuit board maker Multi-Fineline Electronix Inc. fell more than 25% on Friday, a day after reporting a quarterly loss and a big drop in sales.

Buyout Firms Adjust for Less Debt, Smaller Deals

Buyout firms will start to use a higher percentage of equity and seek smaller deals at lower prices as they face an end to the easy money which fuelled an unprecedented wave of takeovers.

Thursday, August 2

Gateway Slumps on Sagging Sales

Shares of Irvine computer maker Gateway Inc. fell 8% Thursday on disappointing second-quarter sales.

Bear Stearns Exec Calls Market Fall Healthy

A top executive of Bear Stearns Cos. which has been hit by the collapse of two of its hedge funds and forced to halt redemptions at a third, shrugged off concerns about a global credit crunch on Thursday and said the recent market decline was healthy.

Advanced Medical Posts Big Loss

Charges and lost sales from a contact lens solution recall drove a larger second-quarter loss at Santa Ana's Advanced Medical Optics Inc., a day after the company gave up its bid to buy rival Bausch & Lomb Inc.

June Factory Orders Rise Disappointing 0.6%

New orders at factories rose by a less-than-expected 0.6% in June and fell somewhat once the volatile transportation component was stripped away, government data on Thursday showed.

Subprime Lender Accredited Says May Struggle to Survive

San Diego's Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co., a subprime mortgage lender in the process of being sold, on Thursday raised concern about its ability to stay in business as the U.S. housing market slumps.

Valeant Swings to Profit in Q2

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International on Thursday said it swung to a second-quarter profit, thanks to a decline in restructuring charges.

Wednesday, August 1

Pending Home Sales Rise in June

Pending sales of existing homes rose by 5% in June compared with the previous month, a surprisingly positive sign for the beleaguered housing market, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday.

Allergan Profit Up on Higher Sales

Allergan Inc. of Irvine said Wednesday that its second-quarter profit nearly doubled on higher sales of drugs, breast implants and wrinkle removers.

Advanced Medical Ends Bausch Bid

Advanced Medical Optics Inc. of Santa Ana on Wednesday ended its $4.23 billion bid to take over rival Bausch & Lomb Inc.

Impac Mortgage Slumps on American Home Woes

Shares of Irvine-based Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc. were down another 20% Wednesday on word a similar mortgage company could be nearing bankruptcy.

News Corp. to buy Dow Jones for $5.6B

News Corp. said on Wednesday that it would buy Dow Jones & Co Inc. for $5.6 billion, adding the Wall Street Journal to its worldwide media empire and ending a century of family ownership of one of the top U.S. business news sources.

Bear Hedge Funds File for Bankruptcy

Two Bear Stearns Cos. hedge funds heavily exposed to the flagging mortgage industry filed for bankruptcy protection late Tuesday, two weeks after the company told investors one was essentially worthless and the other had lost more than 90 percent of its v