Orange County Business Journal


Entrepreneurial Chef Builds Local Culinary Empire

International Fare Draws Clients Wherever He Goes

Chef Azmin Ghahreman, founder and owner of Sapphire Laguna restaurant on Pacific Coast Highway in Laguna Beach, will be spending the next couple of months at patient-monitor maker Masimo Corp., tweaking the new cafeteria-style restaurant he opened at the company’s headquarters in Irvine.

Franchise Finance Phase Often Done Nontraditionally

Newer Loan Programs Join Loved Ones’ Help

A.J. Jafrey, founder and owner of Scoops N’ Scoops in Irvine, already had many of the elements needed to operate a franchise. He’d worked in a few franchises that his extended family owns, and he has an entrepreneurial education.

SBA Lending Up By Number of Deals, Dollar Value

$225M Provided, Up 31%, In 440 Loans, Up 16%

Small-business lending in Orange County continued to grow in recent months, based on this week’s Business Journal ranking.

Brokers Boost Sales, Leases for Sixth Year of Gains

Investment Sales Help Push Up Total By 16%

Increased property sales volume, particularly for larger buildings and land sites, in addition to gains in leasing activity, resulted in another strong year for Orange County’s largest commercial brokerages.

Top Property Managers Grow OC Accounts for 4th Year

5M SF of Buildings Added Over Past Two Years

Orange County’s largest commercial property managers’ local portfolios grew modestly over the past year as they made larger gains outside the area.

OC’s Top Deals Double in 2015 to Cumulative $3.6B

Creative-Office Trend Up, Distressed Deals Down

Local investors turned their attention to large fixer-upper properties across Orange County last year as insurance companies looking to invest here largely placed their money in more stabilized assets in a banner year of dealmaking.

Title Insurance Work Picked Up Steam Last Year

43% Increase on Gains In Home, Commercial Work

Orange County’s largest title insurers’ business picked up last year, and they’re preparing for another active year in transaction volume and potential industry consolidation.

Restaurateur of the Year Built 2nd Career on Memories

Italian Food at Home, Trips To Italy Inspired Eateries

Cathy Pavlos, co-owner and chef of Lucca in Irvine and Provenance in Newport Beach, has earned her place as one of Orange County’s most admired chefs. She is our 2016 Restaurateur of the Year.

Builders Go Big, Nab Large Land Sites Across OC

Largest Deals of Past Year To Hold 2,500+ Homes

If there’s a housing downturn on the immediate horizon in Orange County, someone forgot to tell the homebuilding industry and its land buyers.

New-Home Sales Slide in ’15 Amid Declining Supply

New Community Count Now Picking Up Across OC

New-home sales in Orange County took a step back last year as two of the region’s three largest master-planned developments brought no new offerings on line until late in the year.


Orange County hospital and medical group executives say this year will be a busy one for them, with new outpatient centers, technology and changes in how they deliver healthcare. The Business Journal’s Vita Reed asked several local CEOs to share their plans as the year rolls out. Edited excerpts of their responses follow.

UCI Health’s New Leader Forges Vision for Enterprise

Plans Efficiencies, New Academic Programs, More

A new leader has taken the helm of UC Irvine Health, the University of California-Irvine’s healthcare enterprise, directly overseeing its academic work and with proximity and oversight of its clinical work, something he said is unique among the five UC campuses with extensive medical operations.

Hospitals’ Patient Revenue Up 11% Over Year to $6.9B

Biggest Combine to Reverse Previous Year’s 21% Decrease

Net patient revenue at Orange County’s 28 largest hospitals jumped significantly over the past 12 months while the centers posted a narrow pretax loss.


The Business Journal’s Deirdre Newman asked locally based attorneys about their offices’ plans to innovate and grow this year and what they expect in general this year, including any foreseen effects of the presidential election in November. Here are edited excerpts of their responses:

International Case Gives Attorney Career High

Says US Supreme Court Win Boosts OC Law Cred

If someone buys a Eurail pass online in the U.S. and then gets injured on a train in Austria, does he or she have the legal right to sue overseas entities in U.S. courts?