Stories for July 2007

Tuesday, July 31

News Corp., Dow Jones Deal Expected Tuesday

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. is likely to secure a deal to buy Dow Jones & Co. Inc. on Tuesday after drawing the support of a sufficient number of votes held by the company's controlling family, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Advanced Medical Asks Bausch for More Time

Advanced Medical Optics Inc. of Santa Ana wants more time to show shareholders details of its proposed buy of Bausch & Lomb Inc.

Apria Reports Higher Q2 Profit

Apria Healthcare Group Inc., a Lake Forest home healthcare provider, said Tuesday that its second-quarter profit was up 13% from a year earlier on revenue gains, beating Wall Street expectations.

GM Reports 2Q Profit of $891M

General Motors Corp. earned $891 million in the second quarter, a huge reversal from the $3.4 billion loss it posted in the same period last year and the third straight quarterly profit for the nation's largest automaker.

Eyeonics Files for $86.3M IPO

Eyeonics Inc., an Aliso Viejo-based medical device maker, has filed plans to raise up to $86.3 million in an initial public offering.

Circuit Board Maker TTM Slumps on Outlook

A warning for the current quarter sent shares of Santa Ana circuit board maker TTM Technologies Inc. down more than 15% in afterhours trading Tuesday.

Consumer Confidence Hits Six Year High

Consumer confidence hit a six year high in July, a widely watched gauge of sentiment showed on Tuesday, as Americans shrugged off falling home prices to focus on a healthy jobs market, instead.

Monday, July 30

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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

Oakley's Q2 Earnings Show Marketing Push Pays Off

Oakley's quarterly earnings show its marketing push is paying off, in the Media & Marketing column

Advanced Medical to Share Deal Details With Shareholders

Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc. will get to show some shareholders,including one skeptic,details of its proposed acquisition of Bausch & Lomb Inc.

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Summit Developer Plans Aliso Viejo Office Tower

Parker Properties is planning another office building for its Summit Office Campus in Aliso Viejo,

MARKET WATCH

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

Real Estate Watch: Los Angeles County

Los Angeles: Office, Industrial Rents Expected to Inch Upward. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Web Clothing Seller Bucks Large Brands

AntiApparel's Web store sells OC's edgy, up-and-coming clothing brands

Activist Investor Stymies Advanced Medical Offer

An Advanced Medical Optics investor who opposes a buy of Bausch & Lomb is used to getting his way

State Bonds, More Students Trigger $1B in Community College Projects

Orange County's community colleges are in the midst of a development boom

Lab Holdings' First Project Outside of California Nixed

Lab Holdings' plan for a Tempe artist village has been nixed by the city, in the Marketplace column

Paul Musco's Day Job: Gemini Industries

A small Santa Ana chemical company's role in the multibillion-dollar oil industry is precious

Schering-Plough Ends Drug Licensed From Valeant

Schering-Plough ends a drug it licensed from Valeant Pharmaceuticals, in the Healthcare column

Hyatt's Summer Cocktail Promotion Quite Refreshing

Hyatt Hotels stir it up this summer, in the Executive Dining column

Inside QLogic

QLogic's corporate tone is part business, part boisterous, in Corner Offices

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

GIVING

Fund-raisers and charitable donations from companies and people

REAL ESTATE DEALS

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

AROUND THE COUNTY

Project developments and other activity in and around OC

Verizon Quarterly Profit Rises

Verizon Communications Inc. on Monday reported second-quarter earnings that rose 4.5% from a year ago, mainly due to its successful cell phone division. The results met analysts' expectations.

READER LETTERS

Village of Hope. Senate Vote on Iraq. Letters to the Editor.

Picture Perfect

A Q & A; with a Santa Ana interior designer taking local design trends to projects in China

Manufacturing Breakdown

Smaller businesses dominate manufacturing in Orange County, though government numbers aren't always perfect. A look at what makes up manufacturing in OC.

ClearLight Raises $300M Fund, Eyeing Buyouts

ClearLight Partners has raised $300 million in a second fund and is looking for its next investments

Local.com Buys Directory Provider, Sees Patent Wins

Search engine Local.com bought directory provider PremierGuide, in the Technology column

Chapman's Million Dollar Econ Recruits; Moorlach's Operatives

Chapman's Million Dollar Econ Recruits; Moorlach's Operatives

New Conexant Boss Pledges Improvements

New Conexant Boss Pledges Improvements

Memory Products Maker Netlist Opens China Plant

Irvine memory products maker Netlist Inc. has started production early at a new plant in China as it wrestles with falling prices for its products.

FDA Scientist Says Pull Avandia

GlaxoSmithKline's widely used diabetes drug Avandia should be pulled off the market, a U.S. Food and Drug Administration scientist said in a presentation prepared for delivery on Monday.

VIEWPOINTS

Both sides of the debate over retroactive pension benefit increases, in Viewpoints

Friday, July 27

Gross: Stocks Priced Right, Economy Healthy

Stocks prices are where they should be and the economy is healthy, bond fund manager Bill Gross said Friday in a reversal from earlier comments.

Volcom Hammered on Rising Costs

Shares of Costa Mesa-based Volcom Inc. sunk more than 10% in midday New York trading on Friday after the clothing designer reported lower quarterly earnings and said earnings for the current quarter could be less than expected.

Slumping Standard Pacific Nixes Financial Guidance for 2007

Irvine-based homebuilder Standard Pacific Corp. has stopped offering earnings guidance for the rest of the year amid an uncertain housing market.

Medtronic to Acquire Device Maker Kyphon for $3.9B

Medical technology company Medtronic Inc. said on Friday that it would acquire Kyphon Inc. for $3.9 billion to expand its spinal treatment business.

Kia Motors 2Q Profit up 36%

Kia Motors Corp., South Korea's second-biggest automaker, on Friday reported a 36% rise in net profit for the second quarter on cost-cutting and strong domestic sales of the large-size Opirus sedan.

Economic Growth is Strongest in a Year

The economy snapped out of a lethargic spell and grew at a 3.4% pace in the second quarter, the strongest showing in more than a year. A revival in business spending was a main force behind the energized performance.

Thursday, July 26

Conexant Boss Debuts With Results, Pledge to Improve

The new chief executive at Newport Beach-based chipmaker Conexant Systems Inc. delivered his first quarterly results on Thursday, with the company reporting lower sales and a lessened loss.

Ford Advances Jaguar, Land Rover Sale Talks

Ford Motor Co. said it plans to continue talks with selected suitors for its Jaguar and Land Rover brands, but stopped short on Thursday of committing itself to selling them.

Qualcomm Posts Higher Profit, Raises Outlook

Qualcomm Inc. posted a quarterly profit that rose 24% on Wednesday, handily beating Wall Street estimates on strong demand for high-end mobile phones using its chips and technology licenses.

Bausch & Lomb Investors Back Advanced Medical Bid

Two investors in Bausch & Lomb Inc. came out Thursday against the company's proposed acquisition by Warburg Pincus LLC, giving hope to Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc.'s embattled bid for the eye care products company.

Tech Earnings Roundup: Ingram, Western Digital, QLogic

A handful of big Orange County technology companies reported mixed earnings for the recently ended quarter.

Report: Blackstone's Sold Most Equity Office Property

Blackstone Group LP, which completed its purchase of Equity Office earlier this year, has sold so much of its office property portfolio in recent months that it has covered some 70% of the deal's $39 billion price tag, according to The Wall Street Journal

Wednesday, July 25

Boeing Reports $1.1B Profit, Raises Outlook

Boeing Co. on Wednesday reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit compared with a year-ago loss, and raised its full-year forecast as it ramped up delivery of its hot-selling commercial planes and defense sales remained strong.

OC Detached Home Prices Up, Sales Still Lagging

The price of an existing Orange County detached home rose nearly $10,000 from May to June as higher-priced homes dominated dwindling sales.

Existing Home Sales Drop in June

Sales of existing homes fell for a fourth straight month in June, and even a small increase in home prices was not enough to lift the gloom surrounding the housing industry.

Orange Coast Magazine Being Bought

Newport Beach-based Orange Coast Magazine is being bought by Emmis Communications Corp., the Indianapolis-based owner of Los Angeles Magazine as well as other publications and radio stations.

Qualcomm Posts Higher Quarterly Profit, Revenue

Qualcomm Inc. on Wednesday posted a higher quarterly profit and revenue rose on improving demand for its mobile phone chips and technology licenses.

Software Maker Epicor Ups Profit Outlook

Irvine-based Epicor Software Corp. on Wednesday upped its outlook for the rest of the year on expected deals with a handful of large customers.

Options Laggard Quest Gets More Time From Nasdaq

Aliso Viejo-based Quest Software Inc., a laggard in resolving backdated stock options, has been given more time by Nasdaq officials to get up to date with its financial reporting.

Beckman Up on Takeover Speculation

Shares of Beckman Coulter Inc., the Fullerton-based medical testing company, were up nearly 10% Wednesday on speculation of takeover talk.

WellPoint Quarterly Profit Rises

WellPoint Inc. posted an 11% rise in quarterly profit on Wednesday, matching Wall Street's expectations, as the largest U.S. health insurer by enrollment improved its control of administrative costs and saw a boost from net investment income.

Tuesday, July 24

NYSE Fines Citigroup's Smith Barney $50M

The regulatory arm of the New York Stock Exchange has censured and fined Citigroup Inc.'s Smith Barney unit $50 million for improper trading practices, including deceptive market timing by its brokers.

Centex Posts Quarterly Loss

Homebuilder Centex Corp. said on Tuesday it swung to a quarterly loss because it took a major charge and sold fewer homes despite lowering its prices.

Pimco's Gross: Possible Double-Digit Drop in Stocks

Weakness in junk bonds and subprime mortgage markets could lead to as much as a double-digit correction in U.S. stock markets, respected bond-fund manager Bill Gross warned on Tuesday.

Spectrum Slumps on Delays With Cancer Pill

Shares of Irvine-based Spectrum Pharmaceuticals Inc. plunged more than 20% in afterhours trading on Tuesday after a Food and Drug Administration panel recommended that the agency get more data before deciding whether to approve the company's prostate canc

Countrywide Profit Down 33%

Countrywide Financial Corp., the largest U.S. mortgage lender, said on Tuesday quarterly profit slid 33% and slashed its full-year earnings outlook, hurt by rising defaults as the housing market slumps.

Gross: Stock Correction Due, End of Private Equity's Reign

Bond fund manager Bill Gross, no fan of high stock prices, predicted a 5% to 10% correction on Wall Street with a spillover effect from the subprime crash and a weak junk bond market.

Ceradyne Falls on Slowdown in Orders

Costa Mesa-based Ceradyne Inc. reported higher second-quarter profits but spooked Wall Street with a slowdown in new bookings.

Bausch & Lomb Set to Reject Advanced Medical Offer

Bausch & Lomb Inc. plans to reject a $4.23 billion takeover bid by Advanced Medical Optics Inc. unless the Santa Ana company can overcome shareholder opposition to the deal.

AT & T; Profit Rises on Wireless, iPhone Disappoints

AT & T; Inc. on Tuesday posted higher-than-expected quarterly profit on strong wireless subscriber growth, but results of the first two days of iPhone sales fell short of forecasts.

Monday, July 23

Break of Dawn: Delightful Cooking in Casual Setting

Dining reaches new horizons at Break of Dawn, in the Executive Dining column

Hewlett-Packard in Pair of Acquisitions

Opsware Inc. shares surged more than 36% Monday, rallying after Hewlett-Packard Co. said it would acquire the data-center software company for a total value of $1.6 billion.

Quest for Ideal Sausage Drove Filipino Food Products Maker

Business is sizzling for Filipino food maker Pampanga, in the Small Business column

SOX, Economy Drive Accounting Firms; Challenge: New Talent

ACCOUNTING FIRMS - SOX, Economy Drive Accounting Firms; Challenge: New Talent

Local Real Estate Investor Eyes Texas for Future Deals

Chase Merritt Investments of Newport Beach is continuing to look to Texas for real estate deals, in the Real Estate column

Edwards Profit Drops on Lower-Than-Expected Valve Sales

Irvine-based Edwards Lifesciences Corp. posted a drop in second-quarter profit on lower-than-expected heart valve sales and cut its outlook for the year.

REAL ESTATE DEALS

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

Transocean to Combine With GlobalSantaFe

Transocean Inc., the world's largest offshore driller, said on Monday it would buy GlobalSantaFe Corp. for nearly $18 billion in a no-premium deal, adding a fleet of shallow-water drilling rigs to its deepwater equipment.

Audit Cycle

Michael Bertolino took over this month as managing partner of Ernst & Young's Irvine office

REVIEW

It's a sweet view from the top of the county

Tourism Cities: Long Beach Booms, Anaheim Debates Housing

Redevelopment in Anaheim and Long Beach has taken twists and turns

Missing Link

There's a common link among OC's medical device industry.

MARKET WATCH

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

Cerberus to Buy United Rentals for $4B

Equipment rental company United Rentals Inc. said on Monday it had accepted a $4 billion takeover bid from private equity fund Cerberus Capital Management LP.

Real Estate Watch: Inland Empire

The Inland Empire's office and industrial markets remain strong. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

KUDOS

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

Mindspeed Narrows Loss, Cautions on Sales

Newport Beach chipmaker Mindspeed Technologies Inc. said Monday it narrowed its loss for the three months ended June 30 but cautioned about sales for the current quarter.

Options Aftermath

Scandals Have Brought Policy Shifts; Installing Software, Tracking Sign-Offs

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Examiner, Creditors Seek KPMG Probe in New Century Bankruptcy

Examiner, Creditors Seek KPMG Probe in New Century Bankruptcy

Turnaround Done, Wet Seal Seeks Growth-Minded CEO

The hunt is on at Wet Seal for chief executive

READER LETTERS

To vaccinate or not to vaccinate our children, in Letters

Face Time

Accounting Firm Goes to Facebook to Find Recruits

Sarbanes Work, Newcomer Hitachi Behind Consulting Gains

MANAGEMENT CONSULTING - Sarbanes Work, Newcomer Hitachi Behind Consulting Gains

Local CB Boss Bower Retiring, Replacement Coming From Ontario

CB Richard Ellis is changing its local leadership

Accounting Assessment

Issues Include Qualified Workers, Industry Regulation, Local Firms Say

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Nicholas Revelations: Pressure On Options

A federal probe into stock options backdating at Broadcom has taken some wild turns of late with one likely goal in mind: pressure

Mixing Religion, Politics

Jim Palmer has made a life out of saving souls and saving money

Surfwear Sales Up on Industry's Popularity, Study Says

Women's items helped drive the surf retail industry up in 2006, in the Marketplace column

Sena Cases Eyes iPhone Popularity With Latest Product

Sena Cases is hoping to piggyback on the popularity of the Apple iPhone by launching cases for them, in the Media & Marketing column

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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

Smaller Companies Set to Join SOX; Costs Taking Bigger Bite

Most Begrudgingly Agree Reforms are Good, But Lament Bigger Toll on Small Companies

Leading Indicators Rose in December

An indicator of future economic activity rose slightly in December, suggesting the economy may grow at a modest clip in the next few months, an industry-backed research group said Tuesday.

Big OCPAC Gift; Times Chief Wants To Reclaim County

Big OCPAC Gift; Times Chief Wants To Reclaim County

Drug Maker Hits Snag in Bid for Key Product

Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, looking to start selling its first brand-name cancer drug, has hit some snags

'Pimp My Ride' Shop Leaves L.A. for Corona

The company that spruced up cars with hip-hop street flair for MTV's "Pimp My Ride" is taking a stab at another reality show from neighboring Corona

Hospital Operator Warns About Need to Rework Debt

Integrated Healthcare Holdings hopes to push ahead with a financing package, in the Healthcare column

Kingston's Taiwan Rivals Gain on Memory Price Drop

Kingston Technology is facing a growing threat from leaner, meaner Taiwanese rivals, according to a report

Big in Movies, Christie Buys Maker of Broadcast Gear

Cypress-based Christie Digital Systems has bought a Phoenix supplier of software and computers for broadcasters, in the Technology column

Friday, July 20

Court Passes on Appeal of Qualcomm Ban

A federal court has dismissed San Diego-based chipmaker Qualcomm Inc.'s appeal of a ban on phones that contain Qualcomm chips found to infringe on rival Broadcom Corp.'s patents.

AMD Reports Higher Quarterly Chip Sales

Advanced Micro Devices Inc. posted a second-quarter loss on heavy acquisition costs and lower microprocessor prices but gave investors hope with rising sales that beat Wall Street's expectations.

Fed Chief: Subprime Losses Punished Poor Lending

St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President William Poole said on Friday that losses to lenders and investors in subprime mortgage markets were even-handed and the result of poor underwriting and investing decisions.

Spectrum Plunges on Potential Drug Delay

Shares of Spectrum Pharmaceuticals Inc., an Irvine drug developer, were down more than 20% Friday after regulators raised the prospect of a delay in approving the company's prostate cancer pill.

Wachovia Profit Rises 24%

Wachovia Corp. said Friday that second-quarter profits rose 24% as the nation's fourth-largest bank benefited from the acquisition of Golden West Financial Corp. and its growing lending business.

Masimo Outlines Public Offering Terms

Masimo Corp., an Irvine medical device maker, outlined terms of its pending initial public offering on Friday.

Thursday, July 19

Ford Gets Bids for Jaguar, Land Rover

Ford Motor Co. has received several bids for its Jaguar and Land Rover units, but a spokesman said they were preliminary and no sale of either British automaking business was imminent.

Consultant SM & A; Replaces Short-Lived CEO

The chief executive of Newport Beach-based SM & A; has resigned after less than four months on the job, the aerospace and defense consultant said Thursday.

Oakley Sees Sales Jump, Ups Revenue Outlook

Foothill Ranch-based Oakley Inc. reported a big gain in second-quarter sales and upped its sales outlook for the rest of the year, the sunglasses and clothing maker said Thursday.

UnitedHealth Posts Higher Quarterly Profit

Insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc. said on Thursday that second-quarter profit rose 22%, beating analyst estimates, as premium revenue increased and operating margins improved, but an important medical-cost gauge worsened from the first quarter.

Motorola Posts Quarterly Loss, Revenue Falls

Motorola Inc. on Thursday posted a quarterly loss as revenue fell amid weak phone sales, as it loses market share.

Smith Micro Acquires Software Products

Aliso Viejo-based Smith Micro Software Inc., a maker of software for mobile phones that allows users to download and play music files, has acquired the products of Australia's busineSMS Software.

Broadcom Reports Expected Drop in Results, Deal With Verizon

Irvine chipmaker Broadcom Corp. reported a big drop in profits and a slide in sales for the second quarter with results that were in line with Wall Street's modest expectations.

Wednesday, July 18

Bernanke: Growth More Subdued This Year

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told Congress Wednesday that the economy has emerged from its anemic spell, but overall growth for the year will be lower than expected. Inflation remains the chief concern, he said.

Orange Office Complex Sells for $92M

Newport Beach real estate investor WCB Properties LP has acquired Union Bank Square, a nearly 400,000-square-foot set of office buildings in Orange, for $92 million.

June Housing Starts Up 2.3%, Permits Plummet

The pace of home construction rose 2.3% in June but building permit activity, a sign of future construction plans, sank to its lowest rate in 10 years, signaling further weakness in the listless housing market.

Pfizer Profit Falls 48%

Drugmaker Pfizer Inc. said Wednesday its second-quarter profit fell 48% year-over-year, hurt by the loss of patent exclusivity for its Zoloft and Norvasc drugs and by sluggish sales of blockbuster cholesterol drug, Lipitor, in the United States.

Downey Earnings Drop as Mortgages Become Less Profitable

Less profitable loans led Newport Beach-based savings and loan operator Downey Financial Corp. to report a big drop in second-quarter earnings.

Nicholas' Legal Issues Include Settlement, More Sex, Drug Allegations

The legal issues of Henry Nicholas, who faces a federal criminal probe over options backdating and a salacious civil suit, also include a 2002 legal settlement over a lair he had built under his former Laguna Hills home, according to the Los Angeles Times

Tuesday, July 17

Merrill Lynch Q2 Profit Rises 31%

Merrill Lynch & Co. said on Tuesday second-quarter net earnings surged 31% on strong investment banking results, helping the company shrug off concerns that subprime mortgage-related activities would be a spoiler.

WSJ: News Corp., Dow Jones Reach Tentative $5B Deal

Dow Jones & Co. Chief Executive Richard Zannino tentatively agreed on Monday to a $5 billion takeover bid by News Corp., though the company's controlling Bancroft family remains divided on the deal, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Basell to Buy Lyondell for $12 Billion

Chemical maker Basell said on Tuesday it would buy Lyondell Chemical Co. for about $12.14 billion, giving it access to Lyondell's commodity assets and refining capacity.

Memory Products Maker Jumps on Upgrade

Shares of Santa Ana-based STEC Inc., a maker of memory products for industrial uses, soared Tuesday after an analyst upgraded the stock.

New Century Creditors Back Probe of KPMG

Creditors of Irvine-based New Century Financial Corp. have followed the lead of a court-appointed examiner by asking a judge to compel KPMG LLP to divulge details about its work for the failed subprime mortgage lender.

Schering-Plough Nixes Drug Acquired from Valeant

Drug maker Schering-Plough Corp. is ending a deal to commercialize hepatitis B drug pradefovir, which Aliso Viejo-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals sold the worldwide rights to last December.

OC Home Prices Hit New Record in June, Sales Still Lag

The median price of an Orange County home reached a new record high in June, topping out at $645,000, but lagging sales continued here for another month.

Monday, July 16

Interior Designers, Plus Architects With OC Design Services

List of Interior Designers, Plus Architects With OC Design Services

Decker Named Association Chairman

Conexant Systems Inc.'s Dwight Decker is kicking off his semi-retirement with a side gig.

Hospital Earthquake Law Could See Changes Based on Risk

Some of Orange County's hospitals may get more time to meet the state's earthquake safety laws

William Lyon: Home Orders Down, Except in California

The slow housing market continues to be a drain on William Lyon Homes

Big at Home, D-Link Eyes Business Sales

D-Link Systems is in the throes of a three-year plan to grab a piece of the back office

NNN Gets OK to Buy Grubb & Ellis

Santa Ana-based NNN Realty Advisors Inc.,parent company of real estate investor Triple Net Properties LLC,has received federal approval to buy Chicago-based brokerage Grubb & Ellis Co.

Advanced Medical Bid Months in the Making

Advanced Medical Optics' interest in rival Bausch & Lomb started months before its $4.3 billion takeover bid earlier this month

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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

Paciolan Sale to Ticketmaster May Be Worth $60M, Plus

Ticketing software maker Paciolan is joining the Ticketmaster team, in the Technology column

Vibrant Visuals

Interior Designers' Latest Work Is a Mix of Fashion, Technology, Eco-Friendly

Lamborghini OC Expands With Local Dealership Buy

The owners of Lamborghini Orange County are sweeping up a dealership at the Santa Ana Auto Mall, in the Marketplace column

THEY SAY

Behind the Liquidity Boom

Former O'Neill CEO Structuring Rip Curl

Kelly Gibson is shaking things up at Rip Curl USA

State Set to Add Methanol to Prop. 65's Warning List

Companies in coatings, automotive and adhesives are bracing for yet another listing of a popular solvent as hazardous, in Regulation Watch

Broadcom Gets PR Aid in Patent War; Bloated Bus Numbers

Broadcom Gets PR Aid in Patent War; Bloated Bus Numbers

Volvo Sale Reported; Ford Downplays

Ford Motor Co. has decided to sell Volvo, according to published reports, though the company stressed it's not now in talks to sell the automaker with its U.S. headquarters in Irvine.

Eaton Quarterly Operating Earnings Top Forecasts

Eaton Corp., a diversified manufacturer, posted better-than-expected quarterly earnings on Monday as sales growth from acquisitions offset weakness in its truck division.

Vodafone Denies Planning $160B Bid for Verizon

Wireless telecommunications company Vodafone Group PLC denied a report that it was considering a $160 billion bid for Verizon Communications Inc., a move that would consolidate ownership of their wireless joint venture.

Rising Material Costs: Tough for Contractors, No End in Sight

Rising Material Costs: Tough for Contractors, No End in Sight

VIEWPOINT

Open Letter to Vinnie Back in NYC. Commentary by Paul Hughes

IHOP To Buy Applebee's for $2.1 Billion

IHOP Corp. for $25.50 per share, as the newly restructured company seeks growth outside its iconic pancake chain.

Edwards Progresses on New Type of Heart Valve

One of Edwards Lifesciences' major projects is moving along and gaining notice among analysts

Condo Developer Centurion Busy in Aspen, San Diego

Business travel has its upsides for resort developer Centurion Partners, in the Real Estate column

Five Crowns Sees Menu Tweaks, No More Wench Ware

Five Crowns in Corona del Mar has undergone nearly $1 million in renovations, in the Executive Dining column

Beneficial Occupancy

Tenants Eye Landlord Concessions; No Sign of Lowering Rents Despite Rise in Vacancy

New Century Seeks More Time on Bankruptcy Plan

Irvine-based subprime mortgage lender New Century Financial Corp. is seeking more time to develop a Chapter 11 bankruptcy plan, the company said in a recent court filing.

Real Estate Watch: South County

The commercial real estate market in South Orange County has remained healthy. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

REVIEW

FESTIVAL OF ARTS, LAGUNA BEACH

Chipmaker Jazz Ups Sales Outlook

Shares of Newport Beach's Jazz Technologies Inc. jumped after the chipmaker upped its sales outlook for the second quarter on increased demand from customers.

Investor Makes Presence Known at Advanced Medical

Advanced Medical Optics has seen an activist hedge fund up its stake in the company, in the Healthcare column

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Orange Office Buildings Bought for $92 Million

Real estate investor WCB Properties has acquired Union Bank Square in Orange

Disney Looks to Tech, Marketing With Finding Nemo Subs, Pirates

Disney has bumped up its efforts to bring technology to its parks, using it to cross-market its movies, rides, characters and retail products

REAL ESTATE DEALS

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

AlPunto Pushing Hispanic Marketing for Robbins Bros.

AlPunto Advertising beat out several shops to be named Hispanic agency of record for the "The World's Biggest Engagement Ring Store," in the Media & Marketing column

GIVING

Fund-raisers and charitable donations from companies and people

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Trial by Fire for Dr. Fresh

A long and winding road led Dr. Fresh to his OC tooth care kingdom

Private Equity Firm Shopping for Companies

New private equity firm VMG Equity Partners has raised $325 million and plans to load up on small OC companies

Friday, July 13

GE Profit Up 9.6%, Selling Subprime Unit

General Electric Co. reported earnings in line with Wall Street's expectations on Friday, citing strong demand for jet engines, gas turbines and other heavy equipment, sending shares to a five-year high.

Energizer To Buy Playtex for $1.16 Billion

Battery and razor maker Energizer Holdings Inc. in an all-cash deal worth about $1.16 billion to grow Energizer's personal care product range.

Samsung Q2 Profit Hurt by DRAM

Samsung Electronics, the world's top memory chip maker, reported its worst quarterly profit in four years after steep declines in computer memory chip prices overshadowed improvements in flat screens.

WSJ: Broadcom Probe Focusing on Nicholas, Behavior

A federal probe into backdating of stock options at Irvine's Broadcom Corp. has shifted to cofounder and former chief executive Henry Nicholas and his personal life while at the chipmaker, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

Thursday, July 12

Mixed Showing From Retailers PacSun, Wet Seal

Anaheim-based Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. saw sales at stores open at least a year rise more than expected in June, though the teen clothing retailer cut its profit outlook for the current quarter.

Biotechnology Company Raises $7M

Coda Genomics Inc. of Laguna Hills said Thursday that it raised $7 million in a third round of financing.

Retail Sales Notch Modest Gains in June

Retailers reported modest June sales results on Thursday as industry leader Wal-Mart Stores Inc and teen favorite Abercrombie & Fitch Co topped Wall Street's conservative expectations, while a number of department stores and women's specialty retailers fo

First American: SEC Ends Options Look

Santa Ana-based First American Corp. said Thursday the Securities and Exchange Commission has wrapped up a look into the company's stock option grants and doesn't plan to take any action.

June Home Foreclosures Drop, But Spike Likely

Home foreclosures fell in June after jumping to a 30-month peak in May, but default rates will escalate as a horde of mortgages resets at higher loan rates, real estate data firm RealtyTrac said on Thursday.

Rio Tinto Bids $38B for Alcan

Mining giant Rio Tinto has offered to buy Canadian aluminum company Alcan Inc. for $38.1 billion in cash, the companies said Thursday, in a friendly takeover that tops a hostile bid by U.S.-based Alcoa.

Abbott Seen Seeking New buyer for Diagnostics Unit

Abbott Laboratories Inc. may seek another buyer for its diagnostics business after its $8 billion deal to sell it to GE Healthcare fell through, Wall Street analysts said on Thursday. The unit competes with Fullerton's Beckman Coulter Inc.

Resources Connection's Shares Up on Earnings

Shares of Costa Mesa's Resources Connection Inc., an accounting and financial consulting company, jumped on Thursday after reporting better-than-expected quarterly results.

Wednesday, July 11

Ceradyne Buying Supplier for $27.5M

Costa Mesa-based Ceradyne Inc., a maker of ceramics for military armor, dental braces and automotive products, is paying $27.5 million to buy a supplier of powders to one of its divisions.

Icahn Sweetened Lear Buyout Faces Stiff Opposition

Billionaire Carl Icahn's sweetened $3 billion buyout offer for auto parts maker Lear Corp. has gained little traction among top advisory firms or shareholders ahead of a scheduled vote next week.

U.S. Home Sales, Prices To Slip More This Year: NAR

U.S. home sales and prices will fall further in 2007 than earlier expected, the leading realty trade association predicted on Wednesday.

Attorney General's Office Denies Anaheim Memorial Sale

The California attorney general's office on Wednesday denied the proposed $55 million sale of Anaheim Memorial Medical Center to Prime Healthcare Services Inc. of Victorville.

Advanced Medical Takes on Shareholder Over Bausch Bid

Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc. on Wednesday blasted ValueAct Capital Partners LP, its third-largest shareholder, for opposing its $4.3 billion takeover bid for rival Bausch & Lomb Inc.

Dow Jones Meets Investors on Alternate Bid: Source

Dow Jones & Co., met with supermarket magnate Ron Burkle and Internet entrepreneur Brad Greenspan on Tuesday in an effort to find an alternative offer, a source familiar with the situation said.

Yum Posts Higher Q2 Earnings

Fast-food giant Yum Brands Inc. said Wednesday that its second-quarter profit rose by 12%, beating Wall Street projections, amid ongoing growth in its international business that offset an essentially flat U.S. performance.

Tuesday, July 10

HireRight Updates IPO Terms

Irvine-based HireRight Inc., which does employee background checks and drug screening for employers, expects to raise up to $50 million in its initial public offering, the company said Tuesday in a filing with regulators.

Bausch & Lomb Talking With Advanced Medical

Bausch & Lomb Inc. said Tuesday it remains in talks to be bought by Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc., though a rival bid from Warburg Pincus LLC received antitrust clearance from regulators.

Report: BHP Seeks Partner for Alcoa Bid

BHP Billiton Ltd., the world's biggest miner, is in talks with private equity firms to team up for a possible $40 billion bid for U.S. aluminum company Alcoa Inc., the Times said on Tuesday.

Home Depot Sees Deeper Profit Drop on Housing Woes

Home Depot Inc. on Tuesday forecast a deeper profit drop for 2007, citing weakness in the U.S. housing market.

Movie Projector Maker Christie Makes Acquisition

Cypress-based Christie Digital Systems Inc., a maker of digital and film projectors, is buying a maker of video processing systems based in Phoenix.

D.R. Horton Orders Fall, Sees Loss

Home builder D.R. Horton Inc. said on Tuesday declining home values would lead to its first quarterly loss since it listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1995, sending its shares to a three-year low.

Monday, July 9

Infection Scare May Aid Lens Maker Cooper

Cooper Cos. could benefit from recent news linking contact lens cleaning solutions to serious eye infections

KUDOS

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

HD Supply Signs Lease for Home Improvement Store

HD Supply Repair & Remodel plans to open its second OC store in Santa Ana, in the Real Estate column

Deal's Off for Diedrich Coffee

A Berkeley-based coffee distributor has decided not to acquire a 66% stake in Irvine's Diedrich Coffee Inc.

REAL ESTATE DEALS

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

Accutrac Software Sold to File Manager Iron Mountain

Accutrac Software was bought by Boston's Iron Mountain, in the Technology column

Google To Buy Web Security Company Postini for $625M

Google Inc. said on Monday it has agreed to buy Web-based security provider Postini for $625 million, expanding its package of online applications to compete with Microsoft Corp.'s Office.

Spy V Style: First Trendy Golf Clothes, Now Uniforms

Mission Viejo's Spy V Style is behind the uniforms you see on workers at some OC food joints, in the Small Business column

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

REVIEW

Laguna Beach's Pageant of the Masters at the Festival of Arts

Duane's Way

The diverse empire of the frozen burrito king

Lear Accepts Sweetened Bid From Icahn Company

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn's American Real Estate Partners LP to about $3 billion after shareholders balked at a previous buyout proposal.

Acquisition Minded

Kaiser Aluminum, a year out of bankruptcy, could be back in the market for acquisitions

Ford Takes On California Hybrid Partner

Ford Motor Co. and Southern California Edison will team up to test rechargeable hybrid vehicles in an effort to speed up mass production of the new technology.

MARKET WATCH

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

Lennar's Hush-Hush El Toro Laboratory; Dine with Ballplayers

Lennar's Hush-Hush El Toro Laboratory; Dine with Ballplayers

Automaker Kia Wins Lawsuit on Seatbelts

A jury has put the brakes on a class action lawsuit against Kia Motors America

Bar Hopping: Nightspots Doing Booming Business

Partying is a booming business in OC. Challenges abound; bars, clubs feeling fallout from mortgage sector's comedown

IPhone Debut Draws Crowds, Mostly Guys,No H

As far as retail frenzies go, Apple iPhone had its own flavor, in the Marketplace column

Why Jannard Opted to Sell: Price, Changes, Side Project

The story behind Oakley's buyout

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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

NetScope Hires People, Nabs More Work, Now Moving

NetScope is getting ready to move to bigger offices after hiring more people and bringing in new business, in the Media & Marketing column

Retail Device Maker ExaDigm Raises $12M

ExaDigm Inc., a Santa Ana-based maker of credit card terminals and software, said today it landed $12 million in its second round of venture funding.

Executives' Q3 Outlook Slips to Four-Year Low

Economic sentiment among local chief executives, business owners and managers has dipped for the second straight quarter

Bidding Au Revoir to Beloved La Brasserie in Orange

Au revoir to La Brasserie in Orange, in the Executive Dining column

READER LETTERS

It's that time of year again when the California Legislature rushes to pass bills we don't need and that harm our state, in Letters

Monarch Renews, Adds Office Space in Irvine

Monarch HealthCare is one company that's not feeling the pinch of rising insurance premiums

Insurer State Fund: First Scandal, Then Shake-Up, Now a Suit Filed

Litigation against California's State Compensation Insurance Fund charges fraud and conflict of interest

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Male Doctors Moving From General Care to Specialties

Male doctors are shying away from general care and eyeing specialty fields, in the Healthcare column

Q1 Subprime Market Sees Big Drop, Shifts

What a difference a year makes. The subprime mortgage industry heavily rooted in Orange County saw loans fall by 40% in the first quarter from a year earlier, according to a survey by trade publication National Mortgage News.

Friday, July 6

Alcan Says Alcoa Bid Lacking, Mulls Options

Alcan Inc., the big Canadian aluminum maker, said on Friday that a $28.6-billion hostile takeover offer from Alcoa Inc. remains inadequate, and that it is pursuing alternatives such as talks with other groups.

Kia Prevails in Seatbelt Lawsuit

A jury has put the brakes on a class action lawsuit against Irvine's Kia Motors America Inc. Last month, Kia, part of South Korea's Hyundai Motor Co., prevailed in a trial over seatbelts in its 2001 and 2002 Sephia and Spectra cars.

CME Beefs Up CBOT Bid

Chicago Mercantile Exchange Holdings, winning the support of Caledonia Investments Pty. Ltd., CBOT's biggest shareholder.

Frozen Burrito King Roberts Eyes Mexican Food Chain

Duane Roberts made an initial fortune by laying claim to the first frozen burrito. Now he's trying his hand at another Mexican food venture.

Beall Gives $6.6M to UCI Business School

Don Beall, who led Rockwell International during its days in Orange County, has given $6.6 million to the University of California, Irvine's business school.

Dow Jones, News Corp. Talks Not Completed

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. as discussions continue, representatives for Dow Jones and its controlling Bancroft family said on Friday.

Thursday, July 5

Jones Apparel Gets New Unsolicited bid for Barneys

Jones Apparel Group Inc. said on Thursday it received an unsolicited bid from Fast Retailing Co. to acquire Barneys New York Inc. for $900 million, which tops Jones' existing pact to sell the upscale clothing chain for $825 million.

SEC Raises New Century Probe to Formal Status

New Century Financial Corp., a collapsed subprime lender that is liquidating in bankruptcy, said on Thursday the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has elevated its investigation of the company to formal status.

Advanced Medical: $4B Offer for Bausch & Lomb

Advanced Medical Optics Inc. has offered about $4.1 billion in cash and stock for rival eye care company Bausch & Lomb Inc., according to a Thursday report on the Wall Street Journal's Web site.

Subprime Lender Option One Loses Credit Line

Irvine-based Option One Mortgage Corp. has lost a $1 billion credit line in a move that raises questions about the subprime mortgage lender's pending sale.

Mortgage Applications Little Changed

Mortgage applications were little changed from the prior week, with an increase in demand for loans to buy homes offset by a drop in applications to refinance, an industry group said on Thursday.

Microsemi Up on Upgrade

Shares of Irvine-based chipmaker Microsemi Corp. rose Thursday after an analyst upgraded the stock and said the company has "considerable momentum" for growth.

Hilton Would Pay $560M Blackstone Break-Up Fee

Hilton Hotels Corp. said on Thursday that it must pay Blackstone Group $560 million if it receives a better offer and terminates a takeover agreement with the private equity firm.

Tuesday, July 3

Half of Boeing Workers Pass on Colorado Move

Half of the some 900 workers at a Boeing Co. satellite venture in Huntington Beach have opted to stay put and not move to the Denver area as part of a planned relocation of the business.

Kraft Bids $7.2 Billion for Danone Unit

Kraft Foods Inc. announced Tuesday that it offered $7.2 billion in cash to acquire the cookie and cereal division of French food company Groupe Danone SA in a deal that would give America's biggest food and beverage company an even larger foothold around

Blackstone Group To Buy Hilton for $26 Billion

U.S. private equity firm Blackstone Group for about $26 billion cash.

Factory Orders Dip in May

America's factories saw demand for their products dip by a smaller-than-expected 0.5% in May, suggesting that despite some pockets of weakness the manufacturing revival remains intact.

Drug Maker Avanir Selling Product for $42M

Aliso Viejo drug maker Avanir Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Tuesday it is selling its FazaClo schizophrenia treatment for $42 million to Azur Pharma Ltd. of Ireland.

Private-Equity Firm KKR Files for $1.25 Billion IPO

Leveraged-buyout giant Kohlberg Kravis Roberts joined the growing list of private-equity firms hoping to be traded in the public market late Tuesday, with a widely anticipated filing to raise $1.25 billion through an initial public offering.

Irvine's Paciolan Being Bought by Ticketmaster

West Hollywood-based Ticketmaster is buying Irvine's Paciolan, one of its few competitors in the ticket business.

Pending Home Sales Near a Six-Year Low

Pending sales of existing homes dropped to their lowest level in almost six years, a real estate trade group said Tuesday, demonstrating the persistence of the housing slump.

Monday, July 2

Real Estate Watch: West Orange County

Trade-Related Businesses Fill Developments. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Half of Boeing Workers Pass on Colorado Move

Nearly half of the some 900 workers at a Boeing Co. satellite venture in Huntington Beach have opted not to relocate to Denver

Freed From Deal, M-Flex Seeks to Diversify

Multi-Fineline Electronix dodged a bullet last week in a shotgun marriage

First American President Retiring

Craig DeRoy, president of Santa Ana-based title insurer and data services provider First American Corp., plans to retire at the end of the year.

Ingram Warns of Charge Related to SEC Probe

Ingram Micro Inc., the Santa Ana-based distributor of technology products, said it lowered its second-quarter outlook on Monday and warned of a $15 million charge related to a Securities and Exchange Commission probe.

PEOPLE

Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Out at Register, But Buscaglia May Still Join Freedom

Out at Register, But Buscaglia May Still Join Freedom

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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

Hedge Fund Och-Ziff Capital Files for IPO

Och-Ziff Capital Management Group LLC, a multi-strategy investment fund with about $26.8 billion under management, filed for an initial public offering on Monday, making it the latest alternative investment firm to seek a public listing.

Falling Memory Chip Prices Prompt Netlist Warning

Irvine's Netlist Inc., a maker of computer memory products, said Monday it expects to swing to a loss in the second quarter on weak demand from customers and falling memory chip prices.

St. John Knits Alum Starts Euro-Styled Baby Boutique

The Flying Pram offers high-end children's clothing and equipment, in the Marketplace column

Nestle Completes Novartis Unit Takeover

Nestle SA completed its $2.5 billion takeover of Novartis Medical Nutrition, the food and drinks giant said Monday.

New Owner Expanding Johnson/Ukropina, er, "J-U"

The new owner of Johnson/Ukropina has wasted no time bringing in more work and talent, in the Media & Marketing column

Revived Nursing Home Operator Eyes Aging Population

Sun Healthcare Group and others serving seniors are poised to benefit from the aging of America, in the Healthcare column

Lennar Moving Ahead With County Projects; Sales Still a Big Worry

Lennar says it has no intention of backing out of its OC projects despite a tough national housing market

READER LETTERS

For the 241 Toll Road, the greens are running amok and their tunnel vision is stopping progress. Millions of Americans would still vote Al Gore for president.

LRG Out to Grow, Keep Edge; Rapper Kayne West: Fan, Model

URBAN OUTFITTERS: Two OC streetwear makers are living LRG

Hedge Fund Ups Advanced Medical Stake

Santa Ana's Advanced Medical Optics Inc. has seen an activist hedge fund up its stake in the company to 12.2% from 9.9%.

Advanced Medical's Recall Bill, Strategy

Advanced Medical Optics faces a steep loss and sharply lower sales in the wake of its contact lens solution recall

CALENDAR

A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Smarties

CardLogix faces increasing competition in the smart card market

Arden's $2B Deal Includes 16 Local Office Buildings

L.A.'s Arden Realty has snapped up 16 OC office buildings, in the Real Estate column

AROUND THE COUNTY

Project developments and other activity in cities across OC

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

Beckman Shuttering Fullerton Metal Shop

A metal shop closure at Beckman Coulter is a small example of changes under Chief Executive Scott Garrett

Slower Chip Sales in Q1 Prompts Lower 2007 Outlook

Chip sales growth could be less than expected in 2007, in the Technology column

Trinity Broadcasting Unfazed by Rival's Speculated Foothold

A potential Southern California foothold for Daystar Television Network isn't putting the fear of God into its Costa Mesa-based rival

RESTAURANT OF THE YEAR

Napa Rose Run By World Class People, Boasts Famed Cuisine. Napa Rose at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel is Fifi's Restaurant of the Year

GIVING

Fund-raisers and charitable donations from companies and people

U.S. Manufacturing Sector to Expand

The nation's factories, plants and utilities should continue picking up steam in coming months, a research group said Monday, suggesting hardy consumer spending and moderating inflation are boosting confidence among manufacturers.

Allergan's Juv & #233;derm: Potential Next Botox?

Allergan wants to turn wrinkle-smoother Juv & #233;derm into its next big hit