Orange County Business Journal


OC Congresswoman Joins Health Tax Repeal Efforts

Walters Against Reform Levy on Health Insurers

A freshman member of Orange County’s delegation in Congress has attached herself to a campaign to repeal another federal tax related to healthcare reform.

Manufacturing and Warehouse Sector Tightens Further in Q1

The Orange County manufacturing and warehouse segment’s vacancy rate dropped to 2.3% in the first quarter, compared to the fourth quarter’s rate of 2.6%.

Ex-Blizzard Exec Takes Top Post at Game Developer

20-Year Stint Included President, COO Roles

Longtime gaming exec Paul Sams recently uprooted from Orange County, moved to Austin, Texas, and then ended up taking the top job at Irvine-based game developer Ready at Dawn, which is less than two miles from his former employer, Blizzard Entertainment Inc.

Goodman Birtcher Inks Paper Company for IE Lease

Georgia-Pacific Takes 1.6M-SF Logistics Center

Irvine-based developer Goodman Birtcher has signed one of the largest industrial leases in Southern California in years for a logistics center it’s building in Rancho Cucamonga.

Real Estate Deals

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

A retail property in Anaheim was sold to an undisclosed buyer for $2.6 million, or $212.59 per square foot.

Growth Market

Farms Not Quite History: 5,000 Acres Under Plow, $132M Crop

The Irvine Company’s Orange County portfolio includes 25 million square feet of offices, 32,000 apartments—and 1,000 acres of avocado trees.

Aggressive Stance

Socks in NBA Lineup, Underwear Aims for Holidays

Who knew socks could be hip?

Great Far East Adds in Airport Area on Colton Plaza Buy

REAL ESTATE: Two offices not part of talks on teardowns for apartments

Great Far East Inc.—a local commercial real estate investor with funding from China—has bought a portion of the Colton Plaza office campus that is next to John Wayne Airport.

Vinny’s Latest Play: Croatian Soccer Team

SPORTS: Deal includes 10,000-seat stadium on Adriatic coast

Vinny Smith has added a professional soccer club to the growing list of investments he’s compiled since netting some $800 million on a $2.8 billion sale of Quest Software three years ago.

Fringe to Frontline: Deals Add Up Near Tustin Legacy

Developers Eye Sites Next to Former Air Station

This month’s opening of the 375-home Greenwood project near Jamboree Road and the District at Tustin Legacy shopping center marks another notable chapter in the redevelopment of the nearly 1,500-acre former military site.

CNBC Anchor Gives Plug; Gross Gets Laughs; Hoss on Way

Brian Sullivan is no relation, but he must have a great mind—because the co-anchor of CNBC’s daily Power Lunch program and the Insider think alike.

Ingram Micro HQ Complex Changes Hands

REAL ESTATE: Likely fetches $40M-plus from local buyer

The Santa Ana office complex that holds the soon-to-be former headquarters of Ingram Micro Inc. has traded hands.

Travel Groups Gain Ground on Middle East Push

TOURISM: Five media outlets eat, play, film in Orange County

The Orange County Visitors Association is hosting five Middle East media outlets this month and in July that plan to produce broadcast and written accounts of the area in newspapers, magazines, and a 13-week television series.

Denti-Cal Concerns Cited in Job Cuts

HEALTHCARE: Western Dental trims 237, closes 13 offices

Orange-based Western Dental Services Inc. has laid off 237 workers as it attempts to deal with a shift in its business wrought by healthcare reform.

Sears Store Doesn’t Make Cut on LH Mall Makeover

RETAIL: Latest plans call for apartments on retailer’s old space

The old Sears store at Laguna Hills Mall will be razed to make way for the property’s transformation into Five Lagunas, an open-air center with apartments alongside retail, dining and entertainment venues.

Pacific Wave to Canada Company

Pacific Wave Systems Inc., a microwave component manufacturer in Garden Grove, fetched $20.1 million in a sale to Canada-based telecom systems manufacturer Com Dev International Ltd.

Incipio Buys iPad Keyboard Case Maker

Incipio Technologies Inc. in Irvine acquired ClamCase LLC, a Michigan-based designer and manufacturer of keyboard cases for the iPad family of tablets, on undisclosed terms.

Taco Bell Signs India Franchise Deal

Irvine-based Taco Bell Corp. signed a deal to open its first franchised restaurant in India, according to news reports overseas.

OC Developers Double Down on Openings, Backlog

2 Million Square Feet Finished, Most Here Since 2008

Orange County’s top commercial developers nearly doubled the number of completed projects in the region in the past year while pushing their backlog of active projects to a level not reached since the last real estate boom.

Smaller Projects Help Construction Firms Post Growth

Jobs, Backlogs Up Despite Few Mega Local Deals

Orange County’s largest commercial construction companies had solid growth in revenue, jobs, and work backlogs last year, despite a relatively small number of mega projects to call their own.

Women-Owned Businesses Wanted for Business Journal’s Annual List

Special report: Focus of July 6 edition

Is your company women-owned? The Business Journal wants to hear from you.


Over 400 guests participated on May 16 in one of Pacific Symphony’s most successful galas to date, Celebrating Carl St. Clair’s 25 Years in Orange County.


Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 38, No. 24

Disneyland Resort pumps more than $5.7 billion into Southern California’s economy each year through its payroll, state and local taxes, and area spending by resort visitors, according to a study commissioned by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

OCBJ Calendar

June 15-24, 2015

This week's business and other event listings.

Eye Care Industry Stars Alight Upon Orange County

Companies’ Life Stages Among Summit’s Topics

Orange County is known as a cradle of the eye device and drug industries, and some of its more prominent figures are gathering here this week to talk “trends, unmet clinical needs, and new business opportunities.”

Taco Bell Charity Leverages Chain’s Marketing Voice

Ad Agency Helps Teen Foundation Pro Bono

The Taco Bell Foundation cashed in on the social media influence of Irvine-based sponsor Taco Bell Corp. to launch its first marketing campaign—Recognize Potential.

Super-Secure Mobile Network Debuts in Beta Trial

Result of ‘Fishbowl’ Project Done With NSA

An Irvine-based startup that collaborated with the National Security Agency for years to develop a private mobile network has released what it calls “the world’s most secure cellphone service.”

Real Estate Deals

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

Michigan-based Charles J. Long Trust sold a medical office building in Laguna Hills to Horwin Investment LLC for $5.9 million, or $239 per square foot.

Mixed Q1 for South OC Industrial Market

The South Orange County industrial market had a mixed first quarter, but its outlook is positive.

Packing House Adds to PRES Portfolio in North OC

Yorba Linda Purchase Estimated at $32 Million

Irvine-based real estate investor PRES Cos. has made another large acquisition in North Orange County.

Gross Says Give It Up for Machine

Donation to Smithsonian Recognizes ‘Critical’ Tool of Finance Industry

Bill Gross didn’t invent the Bloomberg terminal.

Kia's Online Hola!

Automaker Hopes to Ride Telemundo’s Web Series to Sales Boost

Some 20% of new vehicles in the U.S. are sold to Latino-Americans, and Kia Motors America Inc. wants to be a household name in the fast-growing segment of the car market.

Vans to Put Brand on South Coast Metro

REAL ESTATE: 180,000-SF office comes with 15 extra acres

An affiliate of apparel company Vans Inc. is under contract to buy the 1588 South Coast Drive office building in Costa Mesa.

Nicholas: Broadcom Sale Ticket to ‘Next Level’

TECHNOLOGY: Lauds Avago boss Tan, eyes Intel’s crown

Broadcom Corp. cofounder Henry Nicholas has high hopes for the chipmaker as it heads toward the new leadership and financial muscle expected to come with a proposed $37 billion sale to Avago Technologies Ltd.

PE Firms Establish Niches in Quest for Portfolio Growth

At least 8 Active OC Firms Chart Their Own Courses

Orange County’s private equity scene covers a wide range of industries and market segments, a reflection of the diversity in characteristics and specialties of the investment firms here.

More Deals, Smaller Checks on Local VC Landscape

100% Hike in Dollar Volume, 60% Increase Last Year

The biggest venture capital firms in Orange County continued to increase their investments in local companies, though the pace of growth slowed compared with a year earlier.


Every year, the Business Journal makes its best effort to compile a list of the local offices of banks and lenders, in addition to investment banks. A few changes this year include 1st Enterprise Bank now operating as California United Bank since its merger on Nov. 30. Previously listed Independence Bank was acquired by Pacific Premier Bancorp Inc. on Jan. 27.