Stories for May 2001

Monday, May 28

DisplayWorks opens an LA office

Irvine-based DisplayWorks, a trade show and exhibit house that counts the likes of Quiksilver, Broadcom and the Walt Disney Co. among its clients, opened an office in Torrance last week. The 4,100-square-foot facility on Amapola Ave. will serve as a sales

The O'Donnell Group breaks ground on 192,000 square feet of spec industrial space

The O'Donnell Group has broken ground on a 192,000-square-foot Anaheim industrial building with the hopes of luring big distributors to the sprawling site.

Kaiser Permanente is building a $25 million primary-care facility in Costa Mesa

Kaiser Permanente is spending $25 million to build the first two phases of a medical office complex at the corner of Harbor and MacArthur boulevards in Costa Mesa.

McCarthy begins work on a $163 million school-facilities contract

McCarthy Building Cos. has begun the first phase of the Newport-Mesa Unified School District's $163 million improvement program.

Executive Summary

Gov. Gray Davis ordered state officials to give 24- and 48-hour forecasts of when and where rolling blackouts are likely and one-hour notification of precise locations where blackouts will occur Reliant Energy said it would cut prices for power produced

A shakeout coming among memory makers, in the Technology column

It's hard to remember memory being so bad. And the next few months could be a time many memory makers could end up wanting to forget.

Special Report: IPOs Last year, OC's IPOs held their own in a down market

A bad market or not, Orange County was home to some of the best-performing newly public companies of the past year.

Linksys is taking more space at a time most networking firms are shrinking

Linksys Group Inc., an Irvine-based seller of computer networking devices for consumers, is quadrupling the size of its headquarters with a move to a recently refurbished building near John Wayne Airport.

Calendar

Protecting Wishes and Assets (Council on Aging) Mission Viejo $5 (714) 560-0424 Single Professionals Integrated Network meeting Irvine $35 6-9 p.m. (949) 515-8264 Fidelity.com (Fidelity Investments) Irvine 11 a.m. Free (800) 331-5829 Financial Plann

An Argentine trade group pitches energy potential in OC

Last week a trade mission representing the Argentine province of Neuqu & #233;n visited Irvine to promote the province's significant oil and gas reserves as well as its electrical generating capacity.

MainPlace mall is picked to be the site of a new state tourism center

The California Division of Tourism last week designated MainPlace mall as the location for one of two new California Welcome Centers to be opened this year.

Real Estate Deals

Mike and Tilda Sabunjian bought the 10-unit McClay Apartments at 121 N. McClay St. in Santa Ana from Thomas and Paula Miller for $0.6 million. Rick Applebaum and Grant Hahn of Morgan Skenderian Investment Real Estate Group's Newport Beach office represent

PacifiCare's pharmacy unit opens a consulting practice, in the Healthcare column

Prescription Solutions, a Costa Mesa-based unit of Santa Ana-based PacifiCare Health Systems Inc., is moving beyond its mainstay business of managing pharmacy benefits with a clinical consultancy for the drug industry and its clients.

Al Punto lands Wherehouse, in the Marketing & Media column

Tustin-based al Punto Advertising Inc. recently beat eight other agencies to win Torrance-based Wherehouse Entertainment Inc.'s $2 million Hispanic advertising account.

H & R; Block Mortgage Corp. moves to larger quarters and looks to hire

The unit of Kansas City, Mo.-based H & R; Block Inc. currently is in five buildings in the Irvine Spectrum along with Option One Mortgage Corp., another H & R; subsidiary.

Cinram International has closed its Anaheim plant and cut more than 300 jobs

As many as 300 workers have lost their jobs as compact disc manufacturer Cinram International Inc. winds down its Anaheim plant, a company official said.

Note to Gov. Davis: lawyers don't build power plants, an Editorial

GRAY DAVIS CAN'T LEAD AND HE CAN'T MANAGE, AS THE ENERGY CRISIS has painfully demonstrated, but the man can sue.

Some 15 OC firms have withdrawn or delayed their planned IPOs

So far this year, no Orange County company has dared the icy waters of the initial public offering market as eight OC companies have withdrawn their planned offerings and seven more have put theirs on hold.

Year-old HealthBridge Children's Rehabilitation Hospital has its first profitable month

A little past the one-year mark, HealthBridge Children's Rehabilitation Hospital in Orange is seeking to shore up its financial picture and boost its profile.

IPO's

IPO's

A lot of energy is going into the power debate, in Letters

Politicians in California have been charged with the enormous responsibility of protecting the interests of residential energy customers as well as the interests of California businesses that were promised lower energy prices under electricity deregulatio

Roy's of Newport Beach will showcase Chalk Hills wines

Event: Chalk Hill Wine Dinner, Monday, June 4, 6:30 p.m., $100 all-inclusive. Reservations imperative

Women in Business Award winners span tech to tacos

When Cynthia Harriss gave the keynote address at last year's Women in Business awards luncheon, she called the winners "individuals who will serve us as role models."

Departing dot-com tenants are being replaced at the University Research Park

Irvine's University Research Park is adding some new tenants after losing a few to the dot-com meltdown and technology downturn.

Uncertainty clouds the outlook for OC's retail real estate market

The Orange County retail real estate market enjoyed a very strong 2000: retail sales in the county increased 8.9% in the year. While sales are forecast (by Chapman University) to increase another 5.9% in 2001, overall market indicators in the first quarte

Exodus Communications pulls out of its 15-year lease at the former Parker Hannifin site

In a sign the once hot data center market has cooled, Santa Clara-based Exodus Communications Inc. may pull out of a 15-year lease for space at Parker Hannifin Corp.'s former aerospace group campus in Irvine, sources familiar with the dealings say.

How long will the current drought last?

While the first half of 2000 was one of the best ever for investment banks involved in underwriting and managing initial public offerings, the months since have been among the worst.

The Times cedes some local news coverage to the Register, but the war for ads continues

Paper Says Focus on Region Is What Readers Want; Advertisers Watch for Fallout

Banks are among the businesses best-prepared for rolling blackouts

From cash reserves to the quality of their loans, banks endure a lot of poking and prodding from government agencies. That same regulatory oversight has made banks among the most prepared for California's power crunch, regulators and executives say.

CB Richard Ellis moves out and Conexant moves in, in the Real Estate column

CB Richard Ellis Services Inc. is relocating some 300 accountants, asset managers and technology workers from Newport Beach to Irvine, near John Wayne Airport.

People

Glenn M. Gelman & Associates added Tommy Glenn and Jeffery Fritz to its Santa Ana-based practice. Glenn will direct the management consultant team. Fritz will be senior audit manager.

The OC Hispanic Chamber aims to double its membership in two years

The Santa Ana-based business group is seeking to more than double its membership from 468 now to 1,000 within the next two years.

Monday, May 21

A developing U.S. coal shortage is not expected to affect California

The last thing needed by California's electric utilities,already strapped for hydroelectric power, natural gas and cash,is another shortage.

Change Sweeping Through Baja's Border Plants

After years of heady growth, Mexico's manufacturing hub along the California border is at a turning point.

Calendar

What's Gone Wrong and What's Next for Our No.1 Partner in Asia? (World Affairs Council and Chapman Univ.) Orange 6 p.m. $15/$43 (949) 249-3015 Executives Go Elementary (Advancing the Business of Technology) Irvine 7:45 a.m. Free (949) 477-5300 ext. 101

A local print shop sees a change in agencies' attitude, in the Marketing & Media column

When advertising and marketing budgets get pinched, Insync Media can feel the squeeze.

The Anaheim Marriott pulls out the stops

We've all seen a lot of glitzy and dramatic productions in our travels, our visits to the theater and at places that specialize in over-the-top entertainment. However, I never expected to be so impressed by a production for a corporate affair as I was by

Advantage Sales & Marketing is OC's largest private firm by revenue

Orange County's largest privately held company has operated below the radar as a marketer of potato chips and other grocery items. The Irvine-based company handles products from Tropicana Products Inc., Unilever NV and Mars Inc.

Gil Amelio is returning to OC, as a partner in Sienna Ventures

While a deal for Gil Amelio to take the reins at an upstart Irvine technology company has fallen through, the former Rockwell International Corp. executive still plans to return to Orange County,this time for Bay area venture capital firm Sienna Ventures.

The Irvine Company cuts asking rates in the Irvine Spectrum and others follow suit

Real estate officials say The Irvine Company has cut lease rates for some Irvine Spectrum buildings to where they were six months ago and others are following suit amid slackened demand from technology companies.

The Insider is finding more folks to schmooze with as the economy sputters

A funny thing is happening in this economic slowdown. More people are attending professional events. NAIOP's May 3 Night at the Fights, OC United Way's May 8 real estate industry luncheon, last week's Harvard Business School Association of OC's Entreprene

Commercial Real Estate Update The industrial market slowed in the first quarter, but no one's panicking

Builders, Owners Remain Upbeat as Tight Industrial Market Loosens in First Quarter

ICN's annual meeting next week could be a donnybrook

There's an old-fashioned corporate donnybrook going on at Milan Panic's always-controversial ICN Pharmaceuticals Inc.

OC's biggest third-quarter deals and construction projects

These are the major commercial buildings under construction in Orange County:

Overviews of the OC office, industrial, retail and hotel markets

After five years of steady and sometimes explosive growth, the Orange County office market showed signs of settling during the first quarter.

OC hospitals will have to revamp computer systems to meet new patient privacy rules

After years of debate and over the objections of the healthcare industry, an exacting set of federal rules intended to protect patients' medical records were allowed by the Bush administration to take effect last month.

Equipment leasing firm Amplicon is starting a bank

Another bank is in formation in Orange County, but California First National Bank in Santa Ana is not going to act like most other banks.

Intersil teams to fight a patent case, in the Technology column

Tag teaming isn't just for pro wrestling, as Irvine chipmaker Intersil Corp. and Holtsville, N.Y.-based Symbol Technologies Inc. are demonstrating.

What's happening in the Southern California, Western and U.S. markets

Driven by the combination of a general national economic slowdown and the closing or downsizing of a number of key Orange County high-tech facilities, for the first time in six quarters office absorption in Orange County overall came in at a net negative

People

Interior Architects Inc. promoted Jeanne Cranford to associate. She was previously a project director. Her responsibilities include design and management of projects in the corporate, healthcare, financial, justice and retail market segments.

Schwinn/GT will move from Santa Ana to Fontana in June

Schwinn/GT Corp. has signed a $6 million, five-year lease to occupy a 323,660-square-foot facility in Fontana and will move its operations there from Santa Ana in June.

Buchanan Street Partners raises a $25 million fund for real estate investments

Newport Beach-based Buchanan Street Partners Inc. has raised a $25 million joint-venture equity and mezzanine investment fund for real estate deals.

Private Companies

Private Companies

Wilmington Trust will open a Costa Mesa office

Wilmington Trust, a 98-year-old Delaware-based investment firm with $26.1 billion in assets under management, will open an office in Costa Mesa in July.

A local doctor researches an alternative source of stem cells, in the Healthcare column

Philip Schwartz, a scientist and coordinator of the brain and tissue bank for developmental disorders at Children's Hospital of Orange County, is part of a group studying alternatives to fetal tissue as a source of viable brain cells.

AccentCare gets $25 million and two board members in a third round of funding

AccentCare Inc., an Irvine-based elder-care services company, has received $25 million in a third round of private financing.

The dot-com collapse caught up with LA in the first quarter

The Los Angeles industrial market in the first quarter managed to outperform last year's first quarter in many areas: vacancy and lease rates held steady and construction activity increased.

Consumers, not taxpayers, should pay energy costs, in Letters

Taxpayers are at risk for several billion dollars because the state has used public funds to underwrite the cost of electric energy for homes and businesses.

Japanese noodle maker Maruchan is a hit with Hispanics

Tom Yoshimura says he always carries a Spanish dictionary with him. It's his best weapon in Southern California's Asian noodle battleground.

Generators and a retooled interruptible program brighten Conexant's energy picture

As other Orange County technology companies nervously await more rolling blackouts this summer, Conexant Systems Inc. isn't sweating.

The economy has wreaked havoc on OC tourism projections for the year

As economic concerns proliferate, even the most recent projections for the 2001 summer tourist season appear as dated as a 14.4K modem.

David Wilson Auto Group passes $1 billion in sales

The owner of Orange-based David Wilson Auto Group, the largest independently owned car dealer in OC and the county's No. 7 private company, grew sales by 43% last year to $1.03 billion, spurred by four new dealerships.

New-hotel construction and renovations of existing lodgings are transforming the coast

Orange County has long been the stepsister to Los Angeles in the visitor market, but when it comes to high-end beachfront resorts, OC may be taking the lead.

Colliers Seeley makes a pair of industrial deals, in the Real Estate column

Colliers Seeley International Inc. has found recent success in the industrial sector,an area that has some in the real estate community nervous (see story on page 26).

Executive Summary

The state Public Utilities Commission approved rate hikes of 36% for commercial users of electricity, 50% for industrial users, and zero to 71% for residential customers, depending on their level of consumption Moody's Investors Service downgraded $25 b

Real Estate Deals

The Irvine Company purchased the 171,979-square-foot Palm Court at 15616 to 15635 Alton Parkway in Irvine from Connecticut General Life Insurance Co. The Irvine Co. represented itself. A. Martin Morgenstern, Rick Hamilton, Jon Nesbitt and Rick Kaplan of C

OC's list of private firms is dominated by distributors

This week's Business Journal list of the top 45 private companies is heavy with movers of food, petroleum, metal and other goods. Seven of the companies,including four of the top 10,are involved in the distribution of products or services.

Conexant faces higher borrowing costs just as a cash crunch looms

Newport Beach-based chip maker Conexant Systems Inc. faces the prospect of more costly borrowing just as the company could most use some cash.

Change is in the air in Mexico, but Fox has to put it on the ground, a Notebook

Five months into the job, Mexican President Vicente Fox's approval rating hovers around 65%. Just about everyone, even those who didn't vote for him, seem to lend Fox support because of the dramatic change he represents.

Monday, May 14

A Q & A; on hotel financing and what's in store for OC

At the recent "Meet the Money" hotel conference in Los Angeles, major players agreed that debt and equity financing for hotels have become increasingly difficult. Changes in the market are likely to mean fewer deals this year. As a result, OC is likely to

Ingram Micro may cut more jobs, says CEO Kent Foster

After trimming nearly 1,000 jobs company-wide since January, Ingram Micro Inc. Chief Executive Kent Foster says more cuts could be coming, and many could be in Orange County.

Venture Funding Falls Again

The number of venture capital deals in Orange County has almost dried up and only a few companies here got lucky in the first quarter.

Executive Summary

Rolling blackouts hit OC and elsewhere last week as demand due to warm temperatures overstressed the state's electricity grid The Legislature passed and Gov. Gray Davis signed a bill authorizing a $13.4 billion bond to fund state energy purchases Davi

For 25 years, Bob McKnight has ridden the wave of an industry known for wipeouts

Robert B. McKnight Jr. has the soul of a surfer but "dude" isn't part of his vocabulary.

Hotels

Hotels

Freerealtime.com tries to dig out from bankruptcy

After filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection a few weeks back, the Internet stock quote and financial content site has met with possible buyers who could pump some capital and life back into the company.

Special Report: Tourism New attractions are vying with a slow economy

When the Walt Disney Co. last year announced the opening date for California Adventure, other tourist attractions in Southern California knew they had to ramp up their efforts to draw business or risk losing it to the mouse.

U-Haul reports more people are leaving OC

If U-Haul International Inc.'s migration trend numbers are any indicator, then Orange County got a little less crowded in the first four months of this year.

There are signs of a slowdown in the Inland Empire's first-quarter numbers

The blistering pace of market activity set during 2000 may be yielding to more normal rates. While some key market indicators maintained or surpassed those of the first quarter of 2000, others could be the first signs of a cooling trend. Transaction activ

Californians could use a state tax cut, in Letters

Over the last few years, the biggest problem with the state budget has been what to do with all the additional money. California's general fund spending has nearly doubled in six years.

OC firms clamor for more notification before rolling blackouts

Last week's rolling blackouts renewed calls by Orange County manufacturers for better notification by Southern California Edison of future outages.

How Suite it IS

50 Largest Hotels Have More Guests, Rooms and Jobs; New Disney Digs Debut at No. 4

SimpleTech hopes to avoid layoffs in the current memory slump, in the Technology column

Normally, what executives don't plan to do isn't necessarily news. But when the executive sells computer memory products,the prices of which have fallen at a rapid clip,and other memory companies already have sacked workers, well, it is news.

M & A; Missing in Action

With the market plunging, the bust of Internet companies and an economic slowdown, investment bankers found deal-making in the first quarter a harder proposition than selling ice to an Eskimo.

Calendar

Financing Real Estate in an Uncertain Economy (ULI District Council) 7:30 a.m. 9:15 a.m. $20/$55 (949) 380-3308 Power and Energy Issues (Forum for Corporate Directors) Costa Mesa 5:30 p.m. Free/$75 (714) 771-3404 Understanding the Energy Crisis-Wha

Unique Partners has opened a $125 million fund to invest in small manufacturers

From modest offices next to a factory in an industrial park, Anaheim-based Unique Partners LLC doesn't look like anything spectacular. But the acquisition and management firm's $40 million, 12-company portfolio has returned $85 million in the past six yea

The Insider looks under the hood of OC's airport taxi imbroglio

Forget "Survivor" or even "Ultimate Fighting Championship." When it comes to tough and nasty, there's nothing like a taxicab turf battle. Take John Wayne Airport. A consortium led by former airport franchise holder Larry Slagle of Yellow Cab of North Oran

Premier Commerical Bank, in formation, will target the tourism industry

But when his Orange National Bank was acquired by Citizen's Business Bank, he left under a non-compete agreement.

Transwestern is repositioning Koll Center Irvine, in the Real Estate column

Reflecting its more aggressive management and marketing regime, the Koll Center Irvine office complex is being renamed Irvine Center Towers. The new name follows the January hiring of Transwestern to handle the property management and leasing of the 900,0

People

RiechesBaird hired Marc Rogers as a Web project manager. Rogers will be responsible for the analysis, design and production of Web-based applications. Prior to joining RiechesBaird, Rogers worked at Blue C Communications as an account executive in new bus

Low-profile Allegiance Capital is OC's No. 2 bond manager

A very low-profile privately owned Huntington Beach-based bond manager,Allegiance Capital Inc.,has in 13 years grown to become the second-largest bond manager in Orange County, next only to the mighty Newport Beach-based PIMCO Advisors LP.

The president's energy stance is proving prescient, an Editorial

THAT COULD BECOME A NICKNAME FOR GEORGE W. BUSH. For "Slow George" is proving to be a seer.

Who's promoting OC?

When the Anaheim/Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau was formed in 1961, it conducted business from a farmhouse surrounded by orange groves and its members simply hoped to make Anaheim a year-round destination.

State Sen. Joe Dunn is carrying a bill to help hospitals pay for seismic upgrades

Orange County hospitals are wondering where they'll come up with the millions needed to pay for meeting the state's law requiring hospitals to be able to withstand a major earthquake.

Visiting the Tourism Council

The Council, formed in 1996 by the Orange County Business Council, lost its funding in 1999 and in 2000 its first executive director, Bruce Brown, who retired last year.

MSC.Software comes to OC on a roll

The newest software maker on the block looks pretty tough, at least from Wall Street.

Real Estate Deals

Kensington Jamboree LP acquired the 60,000-square-foot Jamboree Promenade in Irvine.

Brazil offers opportunity and challenges to OC firms

For Orange County exporters, Brazil is the China of Latin America. It's as big and promising as it is onerous and intimidating.

Rising costs could boost Web-based health programs, in the Healthcare column

The Internet as a large part of healthcare hasn't yet caught on in a big way among U.S. employers, regardless of size.

DWP//Bates pitches against the tide to tech firms, in the Marketing & Media column

Like other marketing firms, the Irvine office of DWP//Bates Technology is vying for new business at a time when most technology companies are cutting back on marketing. But DWP//Bates, an Atlanta-based unit of Bates Worldwide, also faces the challenge of

Crown Realty hopes to build on its Stadium Crossing home run

The compactly built, ruddy-faced Robert "Bob" Flaxman throws off an unblinking stare that recalls another Bob,Bob Conrad, whose 1970s-era Duracell commercials dared you to knock the battery from his shoulder.

Kelly Financial Services opens an Orange office

Kelly Financial Resources, the finance and accounting division of Troy, Mich.-based temp agency Kelly Services Inc., earlier this month opened an office in Orange.

The Bluewater Grill's Oyster Bar is the next best thing to a personal chef

Here's a lunch and dinner idea I do not want you to miss. A few months ago, I wrote extensively about convivial bars in the county that lend themselves very well to dining while you happen to be there having a drink. Let me tell you about another of the g

Monday, May 7

Limo maker Ed Grech sells an Anaheim industrial complex, in the Real Estate column

GK Investments purchased a five-building industrial complex in Anaheim. The San Francisco-based real estate investment firm paid $4.85 million in acquiring the 64,000-square-foot complex.

SR-The OC 50---Profiles of the county's most influential business people

In this issue, you'll find the OC 50, the Business Journal's annual grouping of the county's most influential businesspeople. The listing includes some familiar faces, notable newcomers and interesting drop-offs.

John Martin is back, and he's running an eBay-related business

John Martin, who made news late last year when he resigned as chairman of both Diedrich Coffee Inc. and Easyriders Inc., has been quietly working on a new-economy retail venture.

Public Companies

Public Companies

The Insider is the first to welcome Larry Thomas back to The Irvine Company

Larry Thomas' sabbatical lasted a year and a half. The rejuvenated 53-year-old will return to The Irvine Company July 15 with a promotion, to group senior VP-public affairs, the Insider has learned. Thomas will oversee not only his old corporate communica

Style may beat substance in the airport debate, an Editorial

+++The Clinton Library Project in Little Rock was hit with a huge lawsuit. It claims that the plan to fund the library is not legal. Look, either you're building a monument to Bill Clinton or you're not.

OC's equity funds were mauled in the first quarter

The bear market finally mauled Orange County's equity money managers in the first quarter.

Surf Expo will challenge Action Sports Retailer with an OC show

Sparking a potential trade show battle, Surf Expo is on its way to Orange County, home of the rival Action Sports Retailer Trade Expo in Laguna Beach.

OC restaurant chains fattened up in 2000, but this year may be a different kettle of fish

Sales for 16 privately held Orange County-based restaurant chains grew a collective 10.1% last year to $1.9 billion, according to Chicago-based Technomic, a food-service research and consulting company.

Henry Butler is named dean of Chapman University's business school

Chapman University in Orange has lured Butler from the University of Kansas to become dean of its Argyros School of Business and Economics. Butler is set to become business school dean and economics professor in July.

Jeannie and Rick Lawrence sell 2100 Oceanfront

Event: Cooking-class fundraiser for the Foundation for Advancements in Breast Care, May 14, 6 p.m.

The high-rise market sees continuing construction

The Orange County high-rise office market is defined as buildings that are seven stories or taller. They are concentrated primarily in areas rich with amenities, and the high-rise office market is home to many high-profile companies looking for space in s

People

Arthur Anderson tax partner R. Scott Mund has moved to the firm's Irvine office to lead the international tax services practice. Mund has 14 years of experience with technology, manufacturing, retail and distribution and entertainment industries.

From Lima to Ipanema with Franz Wisner, a Viewpoint

Former Irvine Co. spokesman Franz Wisner is travelling around the world with his brother Kurt. This is his fourth installment.

Gigante USA plans to open two OC grocery stores this year

Santa Ana-based Gigante USA Inc. said it plans to open two supermarkets in Orange County within a year after reaching a pact with grocery union workers late last month.

Japanese fans are coming here to see their countrymen play major league baseball

Last month, some die-hard Japanese baseball fans made the 5,500-mile trip across the Pacific Ocean to Anaheim to join a crowd of 31,087 at Edison International Field.

Oakley and Pacific Sunwear detail their executive compensation in filings

Recently filed proxy statements show that top executives at sunglasses maker Oakley Inc. were handed raises and hefty bonuses last year, but their counterparts at Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. did not fare as well.

OC's smallest public companies had a rough 2000

This week's Business Journal list of OC-based public companies ranks Nos. 101 to 150 by sales and includes a subprime lender, a rare coin and art dealer and an online stock quote service that recently filed for bankruptcy protection.

THE OC 50 Continued

OC's top venture capitalist. Has put OC on the map of venture investing with his highly calculated, aggressive bets. Has invested in more than 65 startups. Firm has more than $1 billion invested in some 200 companies. Hits include Innovent Systems (acquir

OC Hispanic ad shops debut several campaigns, in the Marketing & Media column

Tustin-based al Punto Advertising Inc. recently unearthed the first Spanish-language campaign for Laguna Hills-based Del Taco Inc.

Executive Summary

Duke Energy proposed in a letter to Gov. Gray Davis that the state end investigations and lawsuits over power pricing by the firm in return for possible monetary concessions by the firm and political help for Davis Davis approached the creditors committ

Real Estate Deals

Brown Associates bought the 5.29-acre La Verne Retail Center in La Verne from F & W; Development for $5.4 million. Reza Etedali and Mehran Foroughi of Sperry Van Ness' Irvine office represented Brown Associates. John Kiley of Kahl & Goevia represented F & W

The OCTA and its bus drivers close in on a new contract

Orange County Transportation Authority officials say they are making slow but steady progress on contract talks with their 1,012 bus drivers, and union officials now say a strike seems unlikely.

Tobacco money funds a new mental-health facility, in the Healthcare column

For some time, Orange County health officials have wanted to expand local services for people with severe mental illnesses. The county's Health Care Agency unveiled one of those efforts earlier this month.

Cheney talks sense on energy, an Editorial

DICK CHENEY LAST WEEK OUTLINED THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION'S NATIONAL energy strategy. While the details will follow, the approach emphasizes production over rationing, private initiatives over bureaucracies and efficiency over austerity. Cheney plugged the v

THE OC 50

"When people think of Boeing, people think of airplanes. We are changing our image into a space company," Albaugh says.

Mezzanine funders are seeing more business in OC

If public offerings and venture capital are the sexy sides of business financing, then mezzanine funding is the nuts and bolts, the block and tackle, the vanilla ice cream.

Calendar

Orange County's United Way Real Estate and Building Industry Luncheon 2001 Irvine 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. $100 (949) 263-6176 Measuring and Delivering Customer Satisfaction (USC Orange County Center) Irvine 7-9 p.m. $35 (949) 752-5505 The Role of the U.S

Broadcom's shares rise after it offers new options, in the Technology column

It looks like employees at Broadcom Corp. who choose to replace their old, worthless stock options may get to see some of the schizophrenic mood swings in stock price we saw in the fabled 1999 market.

Rainbow Technologies strikes a distribution deal with an Indian firm

Irvine-based software security developer Rainbow Technologies Inc. last week announced a partnership with Mumbai, India-based Global E-Secure to market Rainbow's iKey workstation security product to companies throughout India.

The tech crash has hit ultra-high-end home sales

For months, rumors have circulated that economic uncertainty and, specifically, the dot-com collapse is squeezing the sales of million-dollar homes in Orange County.

OC's Internet firms lay plans to cope with rolling blackouts

The chief information officer at Irvine-based Buyproduce once considered the threat of rolling blackouts "media hype",until a wave hit Orange County a few weeks back.

Allergan seeks the FDA's OK to market Botox for cosmetic use as a rival looms

Irvine-based specialty drug maker Allergan Inc. is basking in Wall Street's good favor, thanks to some tiny toxic injections.

Homebuilders are adding a new selling point: high-speed data lines

Orange County, with its tech-savvy residents and new housing developments to accommodate them, is seeing more homes equipped with high-speed fiber wiring, along with built-in appliances and other amenities. The result, local technology executives and deve

Big Ballot's sports clients are helping it weather the slow economy

A year or two ago, the Irvine-based marketing company that runs sweepstakes and promotions was hunting down dot-com businesses and savoring the flavor of fat advertising budgets and a robust economy.

Ivo Tjan is thinking big with his Commerce West Bank

While most start-up banks like to model themselves after other banks, Newport Beach-based CommerceWest Bank is modeling its business after a department store.

A Wall Street Journal survey of employers rates UCI's business school No. 29

The University of California, Irvine, Graduate School of Management received a first-place rating for overall value, a fourth-place for long-term return and was ranked 29th overall in The Wall Street Journal/Harris Interactive Business School survey relea

Local firms look forward to a trade pact with Chile

Sparking a potential trade show battle, Surf Expo is on its way to Orange County, home of the rival Action Sports Retailer Trade Expo in Laguna Beach.