Orange County Business Journal


AcuFocus Casts Eye on Boomers

HEALTHCARE: Gets FDA approval for device to supplant reading glasses

Well-heeled baby boomers will be able to reach for something besides reading glasses now that Irvine-based AcuFocus Inc. can debut its flagship eye device in the U.S.

Western Digital Hunts for New Ad Agency

MEDIA: Raises bar on campaigns for global market

Western Digital Corp., the world’s largest disk drive maker, is looking for a new advertising strategy and partner to boot.

Vinny in VR; Serial CEOs; What Tops Louisiana Purchase?

Count Vinny Smith in the class of investors who see some virtue in virtual reality.

Yogurtland Looks to Stretch Menu, Reputation

RESTAURANTS: Greek yogurt seen as draw for lunch

Irvine-based Yogurtland hopes to grow revenue with additions to its menu intended to draw customers earlier and often.

Greenlaw Adds to Orange Holdings With Buy

REAL ESTATE: Eyes hotel, apartments for area properties

Greenlaw Partners has added another notable property to its portfolio of offices next to the Outlets at Orange shopping center.

Santa Ana Offices Fetch $24 million

REAL ESTATE: 50% hike in value boost in two years

The Freeway Corporate Park office campus next to the Costa Mesa (55) Freeway in Santa Ana sold for $24 million in the latest big commercial property sale on a busy stretch of the freeway.

American Restaurant Holdings Sets Growth Plans for 3 Chains

RESTAURANTS: Franchises, local openings now order of day

Irvine-based American Restaurant Holdings Inc. has bought three restaurant chains over the past 15 months with combined systemwide sales “approaching $40 million,” Chief Executive Tim Betts said.

Software Makers Grow Employment 4th Year Straight

Biggest Here Eke Out Modest Gain, Employ 7,991

The largest software makers in Orange County added jobs for the fourth straight year, albeit at a slower clip.

UCI Taps UC Davis Dean as Provost, EVC

University of California-Irvine said Enrique Lavernia will be provost and executive vice chancellor, reporting to Chancellor Howard Gillman.

Financiers Loan Device Maker $12M

San Clemente-based medical device maker ReShape Medical Inc. received a $12 million loan from a pair of financiers.

Recycler Bought By Canada Company

Anaheim-based recycling services provider Certified Recycling was acquired by Tricor Pacific Capital, a Vancouver-based private equity firm with an office in Chicago. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Incipio Signs Deal With Luggage Maker

Incipio Technologies Inc. signed a multiyear licensing deal with Tumi Holdings Inc. to design, manufacture and distribute a range of premium mobile device accessories for the South Plainfield, N.J.-based luggage maker.

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.


Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 38, No. 17

Tilly’s Inc. started a search for a new chief financial officer to replace Jennifer Ehrhardt, who’s leaving in June to “pursue other professional interests.”

Luxury Homes Sales Blossom First 2 Weeks of April

Include Crystal Cove Home, Laguna Beach Landmark

Luxury home sales blossomed in the first two weeks of the month, with 11 above the $4 million mark between March 31 and April 15.

OCBJ Calendar

April 27-May 6, 2015

This week's business and other event listings.

Insurers Want More Scrutiny of Reusable-Device Makers

DC-Based Group Requests Increased FDA Tracking

A managed care lobbying group is calling for tighter controls over the approval, monitoring and maintenance of reusable medical devices, according to news reports.

Kia Teams With Yahoo for Sorento ‘Getaway’ Ads

Videos Coax Viewers To Take Vehicle on Adventures

Kia Motors America Inc. selected Yahoo Inc. as a digital partner to deliver the latest ads for the 2016 Sorento CUV.

Inland Empire Markets Mixed in First Quarter

The momentum of substantial Inland Empire industrial growth in 2014 carried over into 2015 as gross activity spiked in the first quarter, totaling 9.9 million square feet.

Vizio Unveils New Smart TVs in Trendy Chelsea

Lineup Follows Skip Of CES in Las Vegas

Vizio Inc.’s new product launch strategy was on full display at a recent showcase in New York City, where the Irvine-based company introduced a lineup of smart TVs and audio accessories in the trendy Chelsea neighborhood.

Real Estate Deals

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

Bose Family Trust sold a 17,864-square-foot industrial building in Orange to OC Baking Co. for $2.2 million, or $123.15 per square foot.

Allergan Job Reduction Could Lead to Less Space

Expected to Exit 3 Floors At 2600 Michelson Tower

The first example of Allergan Inc. retrenching its local real estate presence in Irvine following its $72.5 billion sale to Actavis PLC is expected to take place at a high-rise office where Allergan was leasing space.

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.


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.