Orange County Business Journal

OCBJ WEEKLY EDITION

Preferred Outcome

Marketing Programs Behind Growth of Service Provider for Independent HotelsPreferred Hotel Group’s 1,600-point hotel inspection is intense.

By Kari Hamanaka February 15, 2014 midnight   $$ Share

Liftoff for Office Landlords?

REAL ESTATE: Shift suggests spec development on horizon

Advantage landlords. That’s the picture that emerges from the most recent data on Orange County’s roughly 100-million-square-foot office market, which wrapped up the first quarter in its strongest position since the onset of the Great Recession.

Newport Sets Sail for Ensenada

Annual Race Tests Mettle of Crews, Helps Kids in Baja

Len Bose has been a part of 29 editions of the Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race, the next of which is set for this weekend.

Laser Maker Uses Time to Advantage With Board Revamp

Newport Corp. Takes Age Limits as Cue for Makeover

Newport Corp. went to great lengths in the past few years to revamp its board with big names in the science and corporate worlds.

Irvine Company Redefines High End of Portfolio

REAL ESTATE: Penthouse planned atop Manhattan tower already leased

Irvine Company has found some extra space to lease in its most valuable building, where it’s poised to create the priciest floor in its nearly 500-building office portfolio.

Security Bigger Part of CFO Role as Big Data Grows

Trend Affects Company Image, Viability, Execs Say

Chief financial officers are increasingly becoming an essential part of the conversation about data security, a topic much discussed today as businesses rely more on collection and analysis of “big data” for various aspects of their operations.

Q&A

The Business Journal’s Jane Yu asked a group of local chief financial officers how they perceive their roles in building corporate culture. The CFOs also discuss factors about Orange County that have an impact on the development of culture. Edited excerpts of their responses follow.

OCBJ Calendar

This week's business and other event listings.

Medtronic Valve Gets FDA OK for Use in Procedure

Product For Patients With High, Extreme Risks

Medtronic CoreValve, a less-invasive heart valve that has Orange County roots, recently received the green light from the Food and Drug Administration for use in what’s known as “valve-in-valve” procedures for treating people whose surgical aortic valves have failed.

Yokohama’s Push for Social Good, Playgrounds

Partners With Nonprofit, Plans Campaigns

Yokohama Tire Corp. said it has expanded its relationship with KaBoom!, a national nonprofit that has opened or improved nearly 16,000 playgrounds since its inception in 1996.

Circuit Board Maker Aims to Buck Sunset Trend

Hopes New Technology Will Cut Costs, Spur Sales

Murrietta Circuits, one of Orange County’s oldest technology companies, believes a new licensed technology will dramatically improve its process for manufacturing circuit boards, positioning the 35-year-old family-run business for growth in a declining U.S. industry.

Real Estate Deals

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

Los Angeles-based Cohen Asset Management Inc. sold a flex building in Brea to Boston-based Intercontinental Real Estate Corp. for $14 million, or about $138 per square foot.

Steadfast Cos.’ Buying Binge Gets National Attention

Apartment Portfolio Now 30,000 Units, Ranked 40th

A healthy amount of acquisitions across the country over the past year has vaulted Irvine-based Steadfast Cos. into the ranks of the largest owners of apartments in the U.S.

Mohamed’s Moxie; NB’s Big Week; I Heart Ballet

The Insider has heard more than once that former Pimco CEO Mohamed El-Erian is a favorite for a cabinet-level job if Hillary Clinton wins the White House in 2016.

Register Publisher Refocuses Growth Plans

MEDIA: Sees potential in local focus, baby boomer audience

The days of “entrepreneurial expansion” at the Orange County Register have given way to more modest hopes for growth based on “ultra-local” coverage and baby boomers as a key readership group.

Western Realco Eyes More Industrial in Brea

REAL ESTATE: 3rd speculative project would be 216,000 SF

Newport Beach-based Western Realco has bought nearly 10 acres of land in Brea, where the developer is planning its third big speculative industrial project in the city since 2012.

Quality Systems Buys Into Big Data

Irvine-based healthcare software maker Quality Systems Inc. continued its diversification effort with the recent acquisition of a “big data” specialist.

CapRock Buys Irvine Office, Plans Creative Redo

REAL ESTATE: $9.6M estimate for 55,474-SF low-rise

Irvine-based CapRock Partners LLC has snapped up an office just off the Costa Mesa (55) Freeway for its latest local creative-office project.

Ups, Downs Even Out as Aerospace Holds Steady on Jobs

THE LIST: IFE sector offsets cuts at top-ranked Boeing

Employment at Orange County’s largest aerospace and defense contractors was roughly flat for the third straight year.

Solar Outfit Buys Los Al Aerospace Firm

Los Alamitos-based Alliance Spacesystems LLC, which manufactures composite structures for the aerospace industry, was acquired by SolAero Technologies Corp., an Albuquerque, N.M.-based solar panels maker.

Startup Raises $23M for Investment App

Newport Beach startup Acorns Grow Inc. raised $23 million in a Series C round to fuel the growth of its smartphone app, which aims to bring microinvesting to the masses.

Share Sale Cuts Top Habit Owner’s Stake

The private equity firm that has controlled Irvine-based Habit Restaurants Inc. since leading an investor group in a 2007 buyout of the fast-casual burger chain was expected to trim its holdings to less than a majority stake through a secondary share offering.

Vietnamese Paper Files for Bankruptcy

The Little Saigon News Inc. in Garden Grove filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, according to documents filed with U.S. Bankruptcy Court Central District of California in Santa Ana.

Private Companies Wanted for Annual List

Special Issue: List will be centerpiece of June 22 edition

The Business Journal is preparing its annual list of privately owned companies for publication in June.

PHILANTHROPY

The Orange County chapter of JDRF, a global organization that provides funding for Type 1 diabetes research, hosted its annual Dream Gala “Join the Revolution” on March 28 at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach.

ADDENDUM

Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 38, No. 16

The U.S. Department of Education fined a subsidiary of Santa Ana-based Corinthian Colleges Inc. $29.7 million for alleged misrepresentation of job placement rates in 947 cases by San Francisco-based Heald College.

Way Up In Arts District

Proposal for Luxury Condo Tower to Costa Mesa Planners

The owners of the Avenue of the Arts Wyndham Hotel are moving ahead on plans to build the first high-rise condominium tower in Costa Mesa’s arts district.

Signs of Fresh Start for Fisker

AUTOS: Company circles April 20 amid buzz about new name, model

It appears April 20 will mark another milestone in the tumultuous run of the Fisker brand.

How to Unchain Your Dragon

Apparel Maker’s Ambitions Tied to Costa Mesa HQ, China Production

Dragon Crowd Garment Inc. relocated its headquarters three years ago from downtown Los Angeles to Costa Mesa to be closer to a bunch of OC-based customers, including Oakley Inc., Vans Inc., Quiksilver Inc. and Pacific Sunwear of California Inc.

Broad Range for UCI’s Push on Innovation

EDUCATION: Blueberries to microchips, toothpaste

The $5 million in seed funding that Newport Beach-based Beall Family Foundation provided for the University of California-Irvine’s new Institute for Innovation is bearing commercial fruit.

Panel’s Prediction: Predictive on Rise

Industry Execs Caution on Trade-Off of Privacy

The chief marketing officer of the future could look more like Star Trek’s Captain Kirk than the guys from the “Mad Men” show.

Ad Agencies Top $1 Billion, Led by Gains at Top

Newcomers Help Boost List’s Total, Account for 40%

Orange County’s largest advertising agencies posted an estimated 9% gain in revenue last year, enough to push the group over the $1 billion benchmark.

Printers Reach Beyond Paper, Ink for Revenue Gains

Use of Data to Help Clients Refine Targets One Key

The largest commercial printers based in Orange County combined for $585 million in revenue last year, a 7.5% increase from their total in 2013.

Aitken on Angels; Segerstom Memorial; OC-China Update

Anyone who doubts Wylie Aitken’s will probably hasn’t seen him in a court of law.

Medical Office Project Moves Ahead in NB

REAL ESTATE: Land buy, redesign for Birch Street project

A long-planned medical office development in the Santa Ana Heights area of Newport Beach is moving ahead following a recent sale of the nearly 4½-acre site and a redesign of the proposed project.

Pac Life Offers ‘Swell’ Idea for Younger Investors

FINANCE: ‘Cause-themed’ portfolios include big givers

Pacific Life Insurance Co. has rolled out a research subsidiary that’s targeting younger people with the prospect of adding an element of social consciousness to their portfolios.

Sun’s AVP Inks Deal With NBC

SPORTS: Broadcast, cable streaming part of picture

Donald Sun has inked a new broadcasting deal with NBC Sports Group, ensuring his Costa Mesa-based Association of Volleyball Professionals with a significant chunk of revenue and exposure before players hit the sand next month for the 2015 tour opener in New Orleans.

ReShape Gets Pass on FDA Panel for Obesity Device

HEALTHCARE: Could get final approval for market in June

A San Clemente-based medical device maker cleared a big regulatory hurdle and landed on a faster track to commercialization.