OCBJ WEEKLY LISTSABOUT THE LISTS: Click on a headline for a summary and analysis of a weekly List (each story includes a FREE download for paid subscribers)
Brokerage Business, Data Firms on Shopping List
Orange County’s largest title insurance providers are looking at acquisitions both inside and outside their core business lines to help them grow operations and improve efficiencies in a climate of interest rate hikes likely to cut into their refinancing work.
Top Three Unchanged, Represent 37% of Growth
Banks in Orange County enjoyed another banner year as deposits climbed 13% to $109.6 billion for the year ended June 30, up 60% over five years earlier.
Ongoing Projects, Pipeline Add Slew of New Homes
Lake Forest, despite being in the shadow of California’s two best-selling master-planned communities, has been holding its own during the latest residential building boom.
30 Centers Take in $7.2B; UCI Hospital Still at Top
Last year Renton, Wash.-based Providence Health & Services and Irvine-based St. Joseph Health merged to form a seven-state healthcare system, a transaction that further consolidated its Orange County-based hospitals under the umbrella of St. Joseph Hoag Health.
78 Combine for $18.7B, Employ Nearly 14K in OC
Revenue at the largest minority-owned businesses with headquarters in Orange County climbed almost 10% to $18.7 billion last year, led by acquisitions, mortgages and granite countertops.
Paséa, Great Wolf Drive Climb to Over 1.3M SF
Two hotels that opened last year in Orange County added 55,000 square feet of meeting space to local inventory, enough to drive the Business Journal’s annual account of hotel meeting space above 1.3 million square feet.
ECONOMY: First entries reflect growing commercial presence here
China’s continued expansion on the world stage and a strong year for hiring among Orange County’s largest foreign-owned companies combined to bring a jump in overall employment in the category here.
Volunteers Increase 10%, Staff Up 4% at 93 Groups
Orange County’s nonprofit organizations continued to grow revenue in the past year as more OC residents requested their services.
Grow Local Workforces 2.5% to 273,000, Up 3.5% Companywide
Orange County’s biggest employers continued to expand their workforces over the past year, though at a slightly slower pace than last year.
Biggest Shopping Centers Post 1.7% Increase, Top $8B in Sales
The largest shopping centers in Orange County managed a seventh straight year of growth in taxable sales with a 1.7% gain.
AUTOS: 1.5% hike for biggest; Karma top automaker for jobs
The 40 largest auto dealers in Orange County combined for $5.3 billion in sales for the 12-month period that ended June 30, a 1.5% increase that marks a significant slowdown from recent years, according to this week’s Business Journal list.
Top Five Unchanged; Profits Up 31% to $138M
Orange County-based commercial banks continued strong year-over-year growth as they increased assets 39% to about $33.5 billion for the year ended June 30.
Struggle on Profits, With 1% Dip to $73 Million
It’s been a mixed year for Orange County’s credit unions as they grew assets by about 7.8% to $19.4 billion for the year ended June 30 while combining for a 1.3% decline in net income to about $73.4 million for the first six months of 2016.
Fastest-Growing Public Companies Combine to Hike Revenue 75% to $25 Billion
The 47 fastest-growing public companies in Orange County are growing faster.
64% of Advisers at Top 5; 4 Firms Debut on List
The combined pool of registered investment advisers in Orange County grew about 12% to 1,905, and the 29 firms on the Business Journal’s list combined to employ overall staffs totaling 7,022, up 16.5%.
Slight Decline 2nd in Row For Biggest With Operations Here
Orange County’s largest aerospace and defense contractors posted a modest drop in local employment in the past year.
Online Schools Lead List Of 41 SoCal Programs
Numbers are up in the Business Journal’s annual survey of MBA programs in Orange County. The Business Journal publishes an unranked list of 41 MBA programs throughout Southern California (see related graphic, page 25).
Biggest Rise Fastest, Account 75% of Total
Orange County’s insurance brokerages grew for a sixth straight year to combine for about a 7% increase in local revenue to $623.6 million in 2015.
Renovations Up for Office, School, Retailer Clients
Orange County’s architecture firms combined for about $451.1 million in local billings in the past year, up about 4%. Firmwide billings dropped 11% based on numbers reported by half of the firms.
OC Market Defies US Slide on Oil Price Decline
Orange County’s top engineering firms had a mixed year with an increase in local billings as companywide revenue dipped.
The Business Journal’s annual list of fastest-growing private companies includes OC-based businesses owned by individuals, groups of people, families, venture capitalists, private-equity firms and other investors.
Local Public Companies Lead; Net Gain of 970 Workers
Medical device makers with operations in Orange County added nearly 1,000 employees over the past 12 months for a growth rate of nearly 6%, according to Business Journal research.
Allergan Still No. 1 for Local Employment
The largest drugmakers with headquarters or significant operations in Orange County employed 3,210 here during the 12-month period that ended Aug. 30, about the same as a year earlier.
Combine to Donate $180M, Increase Local Gifts 46%
Orange County’s private foundations gave more locally and overall in their most recent fiscal years.
OC Contributions Up 5% To Nearly $20 Million
Corporate foundations active in Orange County continued what’s now a six-year trend of increasing overall cash contributions to OC charities.
17 Biggest Down 756 Jobs To Just Under 4K Workers
Big job cuts at Broadcom Ltd. following its $37 billion sale in February to Singapore-based Avago Technologies Inc. and a string of divestitures fueled one of the steepest local employment drops in the chip sector in years.
The Brand Amp Stays Atop List With 21% Increase
The majority of the biggest public relations firms in Orange County increased their staffing levels during the 12 months ended July 31, combining to more than double the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ projected 6% pace of national industry growth.
Led By T-Mobile, Which Added 175 Employees
The continued growth of T-Mobile USA Inc. and Mobilitie LLC’s local operations boosted the employment of the largest telecommunications companies in Orange County over the year ended July 31.
34 Incorporated Areas Still Topped By Anaheim
Orange County’s population expanded by about 29,000 people last year, or a hair under 1%, ending 2015 at slightly above 3 million.
Growth on Hold As Planned M&As Scrutinized
Orange County’s top eight health maintenance organizations grew slowly during the 12 months through July.
Membership Flat at 13 Biggest To 2.6 Million
Membership at managed dental healthcare plans operating in Orange County slightly declined over the year ended last month after a surge in 2015.
How OC’s Wealthiest Got Much Wealthier
This year’s crop of OC’s richest residents managed to outpace the market by a longshot, thanks to a number of additions and several deals that helped boost the combined wealth of the 45 entries to $72.5 billion.
Top Firms Employ Perks From Pizza to Flex Time
Would you go bowling with your boss?
30 Firms Do $909M In Work, Grow Revenue 16%
Orange County’s 30 largest tenant-improvement contractors continued to grow last year, combining for $909 million in local work.
Boost Employment By 6%, Big Four Again Lead Pack
Orange County’s largest accounting firms combined to grow the industry’s local work force by 6% over the year through June for the fifth consecutive year of gains as the economy and business regulation expanded.
Local Employment Up 9%, Firmwide Staff Rises 19%
Orange County’s top management consulting firms experienced 9% growth to employ about 1,760 locally in the year ended June 30, many of them adding staffers.
ECONOMY: Largest up 20% overall, 9.2% on local hires
Orange County’s biggest women-owned businesses generated more than $3.75 billion in revenue last year, a 7% annual increase and the sixth consecutive year of growth.
Big 5 Strengthen Positions; 8 Newcomers on List
Orange County-based restaurant chains continued to grow in the past year, reaching $16.4 billion in revenue, a hike of about 8% from a year ago.
Increase for Largest Here Surpasses State, Nation; Revenue Up 9.1%
Call it a Triple Crown: The largest Orange County-based private companies combined to post impressive increases in revenue, as well as local and company employment, Business Journal research shows.
Nearly 3M SF Completed; Projects Spread Across OC
Orange County’s top commercial real estate developers posted their most active year of completed projects in a decade with a variety of sizeable product types opening across the region over the year ended April 30.
Revenues Here Highest Since ’09, Backlog Down
Orange County’s largest commercial construction companies took in the most revenue since the Great Recession, although a shrinking backlog and ominous economic reports raise questions about the industry’s continued growth.
Toba New No. 1 After Versant, Ventana Exit OC
The most active venture capital firms with local headquarters or significant operations and ranked by amount invested in OC companies combined for about $56 million in 39 portfolio deals last year. That’s about 35% less money than the top VCs invested in 2014 in about the same number of completed local deals.
Slow Growth Comes As Biggest Tweak Leadership
A lot can happen in a year, and the past 12 months were no exception for the 53 largest apparel companies based in Orange County. The top three on this week’s Business Journal list are under new leadership, one emerged from bankruptcy, and several others have traded hands. A few firms also notched significant local staffing changes, the metric the list is based on.
HOSPITALITY: Great Wolf raises top 50 to 21,508 rooms
There have been a few changes on a list that rarely sees them.
TECHNOLOGY: 39 Largest Combine For 8,000-Plus Jobs
The county’s largest software makers grew employment by 5.1% in the 12 months through April as several emerging companies joined the ranks of the largely mature local industry.
ECONOMY: WD, Toshiba react to external, internal factors, trim staff
Orange County is home to a vibrant sector of companies that make and market consumer electronics, the largest among them accounting for more than 4,500 jobs, even with a recent rough patch for local employment at the top.
$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.
Tight Worker Supply Brings Creative Challenge
Orange County employment agencies had solid revenue gains last year while placing essentially the same number of workers—a sign, they say, of an uptick in demand to find new workers for clients in their bread-and-butter businesses.
ECONOMY: Edwards Lifesciences fills vacuum, claims top spot
The two biggest sales of locally based public companies in Orange County’s history brought an equally historic reduction to the rest of the field. The 100 entries that make up this year’s list of the largest public companies had a combined market capitalization of $98 billion as of March 31, down 53% from a year earlier.
Year of Corporate Tweaks; Advantage Remains No. 1
Orange County’s largest advertising agencies posted an estimated 12.8% gain in revenue last year, the second consecutive year the group has surpassed the $1 billion benchmark.
30 Biggest Combine to Stay About Even at $618M
The local printing industry isn’t dead, but it’s not growing either. That’s the takeaway from a review of Orange County’s 30 largest commercial printers, which combined for $617.7 million in sales last year, about the same as in 2014.
Special Issue: list will be centerpiece of June 20 edition
The Business Journal is preparing its annual list of privately owned companies for publication in June.
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.
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.
Slight Declines Seen In Jobs, Billings Flat
Orange County’s largest environmental consultants faced a tough landscape last year, with no big increase in government spending—a staple of the segment—and aftershocks from the difficulties in the energy sector.
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.
THE LIST: 3,000 workers here, 45,000 overall
The Business Journal’s inaugural list of food and beverage suppliers based in Orange County shows an industry that notched a 5% increase to more than $16 billion in revenue last year.
ECONOMY: 80 Take in $16B- Plus, Keep Employment Flat
The largest minority-owned businesses with headquarters in Orange County combined for just a little over $16 billion in revenue last year, up 9% over 2014’s number and the same percentage increase as last year’s.
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.
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.
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.
List of 86 Offices Includes Nine Newcomers
Partner ranks at Orange County law firms grew more in the past year while the number of overall attorneys and firm employees were flat.
Numbers for 43 Biggest Up About 16%, Ranks Shift
Orange County banks and thrifts increased local deposits 15.8% for a total of $96.9 billion in the year ended June 30.
36 Biggest Still Employ 27,000-Plus in County
The biggest foreign-owned companies with regional headquarters or significant operations in Orange County employ more than 27,000 here, about the same as a year earlier.
Slight Increase in Current Stock, Several Newcomers in Works
Meeting space is meeting space, right?
88 Biggest Serve More In OC, Up Volunteers 10%
Most of Orange County’s nonprofits should be pleased with the way 2015 turned out, based on the averages in the Business Journal’s annual list.
The top 33 shopping centers in Orange County notched a sixth straight year of growth in taxable sales, with an overall performance that suggests the local retail scene is hot heading into the crucial year-end holiday season.
The 40 largest auto dealers in Orange County combined for $5.3 billion in sales for the 12-month period that ended June 30, based on this week’s Business Journal list.
ECONOMY: 3.4% hike to 267,243 jobs; Disney keeps No. 1 spot
Orange County’s biggest employers grew their combined work force at the fastest rate in years.
Regulations, while they remain a common key challenge for all financial institutions, aren’t the only burden on bankers’ minds. There are other concerns that may be specific to a bank or credit union, including its size, customer base, and other factors. The Business Journal’s Jane Yu asked local bank and credit union executives to discuss their current concerns other than regulations. Their responses touch upon a variety of topics, ranging from data security and competition from online lenders to finding skilled talent and catering to younger generations. Here are edited excerpts of their responses:
20 Institutions Based Here See 38% Increase to $24.2 Billion
Orange County-based commercial banks have recorded the biggest year-over-year increase in assets in more than 10 years.
25 Biggest Combine For 8% Increase to $18 Billion
The biggest local credit unions have picked up the pace of growth, notching an 8% increase in combined assets to $18 billion.
Boost Employment Bases By 4%; None Drop Jobs
The largest chipmakers in Orange County added jobs in the past year amid a wave of industry consolidation that included four companies with local operations.
Revenue Up 41%, Local Hires Double Overall Economy
Orange County’s fastest-growing public companies got faster this year.
Industry Watchers Speculate It Could Be Ripe for Consolidation Trend
Improving fortunes in the housing market and a disciplined operating plan have provided a boost to the fortunes of William Lyon Homes Inc. during its return to the public markets.
Banc of California Focuses on Service In SoCal for 176% Revenue Growth
Fast growth continues for Banc of California Inc.
Terra Tech Sales Up 754%, Largely On Cannabis Demand Surge
Terra Tech Corp.’s crops of basil, oregano, thyme, parsley and lettuce are a steady line of business, but the Newport Beach-based company’s newer line of products derived from another leafy green is the big growth driver.
Top 25 Down to 1,705 Advisers in Past Year
The combined number of local registered representatives at Orange County’s biggest financial advisory firms dropped while the firms boosted their total OC work forces.
Programs, Research Added to Meet Increased Demand
Orange County colleges and universities are launching and expanding programs in big data to train students to capture and analyze the reams of information that’s become available in an age when data storage capacity has ballooned.
Schools Teach Students To Turn Inspiration Into Work
Chapman University plans to open a business incubator for arts and culture-based enterprises at the end of a two-year, $200,000 grant the European Union awarded the school last month.
Specialization, Speed Enhance Schools’ Efforts
Numbers are down in the Business Journal’s annual survey of MBA programs that serve Orange County—and that’s a good thing.
Biggest Firms Combine For $570M, Up 13%
Orange County’s insurance brokers grew for the fifth straight year, notching a 13% increase in combined revenue last year.
40 Biggest Combine For $474M in Local Work
Orange County’s architecture firms combined for a 9.1% increase in local billings this year following a modest 1.6% increase in local billings last year, and are on track to return to the 13% surge they had in 2013.
Increase Total By 1.7% Following 1.5% Decrease
Orange County’s top engineering firms with headquarters or significant operations here have recovered from a 1.5% drop in billings last year, posting a 1.7% increase in local billings during the 12-month period ended June 30.
Fewer Companies, More Jobs in All 3 Categories
The number of entries on this week’s Business Journal lists of fastest-growing private companies based in Orange County is down by about 10% from a year ago.
Combined to Donate $145M, Increased OC Giving 22.8%
Private foundations based in Orange County spent more money in their own backyard last year as they trimmed their overall giving.
36 Active in OC Donate $1.2B, $21M+ of it Local
Corporate foundations active in Orange County marked their fifth year of yearly increases in total cash contributions and cash contributions to OC charities.
18 Biggest Companies Add Just Nine Employees
Employment at the county’s largest contract electronics makers was flat over the past 12 months, despite steady sales growth in the industry worldwide.
MARKETING: Biggest here add duties, combine for 12% hike in jobs
The 40 biggest public relations firms based in Orange County are doing more with more—additional services, bigger budgets, new hires.
Verizon Trims 1,000 in OC, Leads to 2nd Drop in a Row
A companywide restructuring fueled the second straight year of significant job losses among Orange County’s largest telecommunications companies.
Anaheim Stays Atop List, Irvine Grows Most at 3.2%
Orange County’s population growth kept pace and inched up by 1% last year to slightly above 3 million.
Wealthiest List Shows Diversity of OC’s Fortunes
Real estate, technology, healthcare, inheritances.
Firm Uniquely Emphasizes Office Design, Worker Space
Hyundai Capital America is often identified locally in connection with the large, transparent building next to the San Diego (405) Freeway in Irvine known as The Michelson.
Dollar Value Up 16.2% After 29%, 20% Increases
Orange County’s largest tenant-improvement contractors continued their growth trend last year but slowed in all aspects, including local revenue and number of employees.
A diversity of business sectors, ample capital held by investor groups, and demographic factors are some key drivers behind a robust mergers-and-acquisitions scene in Orange County. The fast pace of M&A activity means professional services providers, such as accountants, are in high demand to carry out sound due-diligence procedures and provide guidance. The Business Journal’s Jane Yu asked local accounting firm executives to share their thoughts on M&A activity in Orange County, as well as to discuss expectations for future trends and client concerns. Here are edited excerpts of their responses:
Employment Up 4.4%, Top Spots Unchanged
Orange County’s largest accounting firms combined to grow the sector’s local workforce by about 4% over the past year, marking the fourth straight year of modest gains.
27 Firms Eke Out 1% Gain to 1,551 Jobs Here
The pace of employment growth at Orange County’s top management consulting firms slowed over the past year, driven primarily by job cuts at the biggest.
Orange County’s biggest women-owned businesses generated $3.5 billion in revenue last year, notching a 5.6% increase and extending a streak of gains to five years.
More Than $70M in Sales To A-List Customers
Priti Sharma moved to Chicago from India at age 16 and at the time had no idea that she would one day own a multimillion-dollar company.