Orange County Business Journal


Banks, Thrift Expand Orange County Deposits by 8%

43 Combine for $84.1 Billion, Mirroring Year-Earlier Rise

Commercial banks in Orange County continued to grow local deposits, notching another 8% increase over the year through June for a total of $84.1 billion.

When Donald Met Steve; Whitaker Gets Off to Strong Start

A big chunk of the Irvine Company’s operations outside of OC got a lengthy overview in a recent issue of the Silicon Valley Business Journal, which put some meat on the bones of a 25-year process that has seen Donald Bren amass 7,000 apartment units and 4 million square feet of office space in the region.

Mitsubishi Calls Play for Super Bowl in Spanish

ADVERTISING: Gets in game with spots on NBC Universo

Mitsubishi Motors North America Inc. highlighted its increasing focus on the Latino-American market with Super Bowl ads slotted for the Spanish-language telecast of the game on NBC Universo.

UCI Could Reconfigure Duties for Medical Post

HEALTHCARE: Likely to oversee all of ‘medical enterprise’

The search for a new chief executive for UC Irvine Medical Center will likely take awhile as another key job gets reconfigured.

Franchiser Waives $75,000 Fee for Vets

RETAIL: Focus on military members active in past 2 years

Orange-based franchiser Budget Blinds Inc. said it will waive a $75,000 franchise fee for qualified recent military veterans interested in starting their own window covering business.

ZPizza Brews Up Response to ‘Fast-Casual’ Competitors

RESTAURANTS: ‘Tap rooms’ in works at about 50 locations

ZPizza International Inc. said it will add 50 “tap rooms” at some of its current locations and all new restaurants expected in a franchising push that comes as the 28-year-old chain responds to competition from fast-casual and build-your-own competitors that have blossomed in recent years.

Montage Laguna Beach Sells for $360M

Chicago-based Strategic Hotels & Resorts Inc. bought the Montage Laguna Beach for $360 million, the hotel investor said.

SJC Big-Data Firm Gets $10.8 Million

San Juan Capistrano-based search engine Maana Inc. raised $10.8 million, according to a recent filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Chapman Names Entrepreneurship Chief

Chapman University in Orange named angel investor and entrepreneur Shan Steinmark the new director of its Leatherby Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Ethics.

USGI Raises $19.5M for Launch of Pose

San Clemente-based USGI Medical Inc. raised more than $19.5 million from equity and debt investors.

Wanted: Best Places to Work for Business Journal’s List

CALL FOR ENTRIES: Website set to take entries until March 20

The Business Journal is working on its annual list of the best places to work in the county.


Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 38, No. 5

Walt Disney Parks and Resorts notified the state Employment Development Department on Jan. 15 that it will lay off 85 employees from a Fullerton location, effective May 29.

Flurry of Sales Show Off Luxury Market’s Range

One Had Been Held By Same Owner for 40 Years

A recent flurry of luxury home sales illustrated the range—in terms of style and price—of the high-end market in Orange County.

OCBJ Calendar

This week's business and other event listings.

Pearson Tells of ‘Miscalculations’ in Allergan Pursuit

Valeant CEO Talks To Financial Times

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc.’s chief executive is speaking out on his company’s unsuccessful seven-month pursuit of Irvine-based drugmaker Allergan Inc.

Comic Star Gives Taco Bell Free Boost on His Show

O’Brien Puts Irish Twist Into Chain’s Test Kitchen

Late-night TV host Conan O’Brien was on a quest to make his IT guru Chris Hayes’ dreams come true with a visit to Taco Bell Corp.’s test kitchen, but he probably did the same for the Irvine-based fast-food chain’s marketing manager, Katie Gardiner.

Inland Empire Maintains Momentum in Fourth Quarter

The Inland Empire industrial market had many positive economic signs throughout 2014, an indication the region is still substantially expanding. Growth of tenants has largely propelled the activity.

Irvine Startup Seeks Spot in Travelers’ Smartphones

App Gives Details On Locales Via Photo

An Irvine startup launched by two siblings who are University of California-Irvine graduates has launched an iOS app that culls information within seconds on locations, attractions and landmarks with the snap of a photo.

Real Estate Deals

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

Nan-Hsing Cheng sold an industrial building in Placentia to Dayton Family Trust for $2.7 million, or $134 per square foot.

Brewery Snaps Up Property Next to Angel Stadium

Win-Dor Site Once Eyed For 20-Story Office Tower

Golden Road Brewing, a growing craft beer maker based in Los Angeles, has snapped up an industrial building across the street from Angel Stadium for its first Orange County location.

Stem Cells Step Forward With OC Manufacturing

HEALTHCARE: Latest FDA trial, manufacturing set to start here

What could be the most advanced attempt to bring stem cell treatments to the market could start any day now in Orange County.

Can Lu Lift Fisker?

AUTOS: Chinese billionaire vows to restart stalled luxury hybrid brand

About 140 employees at Fisker Automotive and Technologies Group LLC are packed in a conference room to meet the man behind the automaker’s comeback bid.

Ingram Micro Sets Up Shop in Irvine

REAL ESTATE: Park Place lease could bring sale of Santa Ana HQ

Ingram Micro Inc., Orange County’s largest company by sales, is expected to move its headquarters from Santa Ana to Irvine after signing a large office lease at the Park Place mixed-use campus.

Mints to Marketing, Coffee to Cabbies

Orange County’s hotel and resort properties have spawned an industry of local companies that help with everything from purchasing and Pinterest to mints on the pillow.

Platinum Triangle Preps for 2nd Act of Development

Office, For-Sale Projects Eyed Alongside More Apartments

The development of the Platinum Triangle area in Anaheim is entering its second decade, and the 820-acre swath of land around Angel Stadium remains poised to be a hub of apartment construction.

Irvine Land Deals Top $100M, Usher in New Plans

Offices Could Join 1,600 Planned Apartments

Nearly 30 acres along a busy stretch of Jamboree Road in Irvine have sold over the past few weeks or are expected to soon, with plans for apartment and office development expected to start on the sites.

Office Market Moves Up in Fourth Quarter

The Orange County office market, building on an already-successful 2014, is gaining momentum through the turn of the year.

Industrial Market Clients Scrounge for Space in Q4

The Orange County industrial market was tight throughout most of 2014, a sign that the region is in need of a significant amount of new construction and development projects on top of its current 253 million or so square feet.

Times Taps OC for Big Hire; Revenge of Mt. Rushmore?

The L.A. Times plucked its latest big hire from the OC Register’s backyard, tapping UCI grad and Monarch Beach resident Don Reis as chief revenue officer.

Cosmetics Brand Takes Creative Office in Irvine

REAL ESATE: Too Faced adds space amid reports of sale

Too Faced Cosmetics LLC, an Irvine-based cosmetics company that’s said to be considering a sale, has inked a lease for a much larger headquarters in its hometown.

Kodiak Capital to Fold NY Office Into OC Base

FINANCE: NB-based firm busy with small-stake strategy

Newport Beach-based investment firm Kodiak Capital Group LLC is off to a busy start this year with several deals on the books and plans to consolidate its East Coast operations in Orange County in coming months.

Jobs Decline at Top Foreign-Owned Cos.

THE LIST: Blizzard buyout tipped field’s total

The biggest foreign-owned companies in Orange County employ just more than 27,000 workers here, a decrease of about 1% from a year earlier.

Auto Club Diamonds, Travel + Leisure Nods for OC Hotels

HOSPITALITY: High-end resorts compare well with LA, SD

A couple of annual rankings and ratings of hotels, resorts and restaurants provide some fresh perspective on Orange County’s hospitality trade, which shows up strongest at the highest end when compared with neighbors to the north and south.

Del Taco to Expand to Northeast US

Lake Forest-based Del Taco LLC said it will begin franchising in New Jersey, its first restaurants in the Northeast.

Two Colleges to Add 4-Year Degrees

Santa Ana College and Cypress College were named to a list of 15 community colleges in the state that can offer four-year college degrees, according to the California Community Colleges chancellor’s office.

Alliant Buys Australia Firm’s US Arm

Newport Beach-based Alliant Insurance Services Inc. agreed to pay about $300 million to acquire QBE US Agencies, the U.S. operations of Sydney, Australia-based QBE Insurance Group Ltd.

Builders Named for Great Park Homes

Irvine-based Standard Pacific Corp. is the lone locally based homebuilder tapped to build homes at Beacon Park, the second community planned for Great Park Neighborhoods.