Stories for January 2005

Monday, January 31

Cooper Gets Tax Fight Along With Ocular Buy

Cooper acquired a tax fight with its $1.2 billion buy of Ocular Sciences


Market analyses of industrial markets in the West

Big Story Turned Case Study: Irvine Co.'s Bid Pullout

There was some high drama involving the Irvine Co. in the past few weeks, in the Real Estate column

No Revelation Here: Women's, Men's Brains Different

UCI researchers found big differences in how men and women derive intelligence, in the Healthcare column

Vacancies Remain on High Side Despite Sharp Boost in Activity

There was lots of activity in the Mid-Cities industrial market during the fourth quarter, but it came with higher vacancy rates and negative net absorption.

QBs, Jessica, Idols, Senators: Steinberg Is Back

Agent Leigh Steinberg has rebounded from some tough times

Caliber Grows, Fixes Eyes on Ford, Chevy Auto Buyers

Caliber Motors is expanding to woo customers from Ford and Chevy lots, in the Marketplace column by Sherri Cruz

NikeTown Closes Doors

It's official. NikeTown Orange County is no longer at Triangle Square, closing its doors on Monday.

Real Estate Deals

This week's postings of Real Estate sales and leases

KeyEye Taps Broadcom Alum for Irvine Design Center

KeyEye is opening an Irvine design center headed by a former Broadcom executive, in the Technology column

LifeMasters Inks $19M Credit for Expansion Plans

LifeMasters lined up $19 million in financing for its expansion plans


Letters to the Editor: Freedom Bowl; More Angels; El Toro, Cont.

Olen Properties Buys Dual Airport Towers

Olen Properties entered the airport high-rise derby with the buy of two airport area towers

Asian Chipmakers Settle Patent Suit

One of China's top chipmakers has settled a high-profile intellectual-property suit with Taiwan's largest chipmaker, but it's doubtful that the two have buried the hatchet.

St. John Reports Yearly Results

New stores helped Irvine-based St. John Knits International Inc. see a 7% rise in sales to $396 million for the 12 months ended Oct. 31, according to a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Maguire Nabs Washington Mutual Campus for $151.2M in Top Sale

Largest OC office sales in the fourth quarter

FoxConn Electronics Takes 233,461 Sq. Ft. in Top Q4 Lease

Largest OC industrial leases in the fourth quarter

DRS Technologies Signs Biggest Office Lease With 91,506 Sq. Ft.

Largest OC office leases in the fourth quarter


Market analyses of industrial markets across the rest of the nation

OFFICE MARKET - Net Absorption Up, Vacancy Declines, Lease Rates Jump

The Orange County office market in 2004 improved from a year earlier.

SBC to Buy AT & T; for $16 Billion

SBC Communications Inc. on Monday said it will buy AT & T; Corp. for about $16 billion, in a move to bolster its business with large companies and ending the independence of its former parent that for decades held a monopoly on the U.S. phone market.

Real Estate Watch: Los Angeles County

Real Estate Watch: Los Angeles County. Office, Industrial Vacancy Declines in Q4. PLUS Chart of Net Absorption, Vacancy Rates

Dog Deal: Pet Products Maker Bought

Aliso Viejo's Firstrax Inc., a maker of pet supplies, has been bought by Cincinnati-based United Pet Group Inc. for undisclosed terms.

Leasing Activity Strong, Boosted by Major Deals

Orange County's office market continued to grow in the fourth quarter.


Largest OC industrial projects under construction in the fourth quarter

OC Investment Pools Earn AAA Rating

A pair of Orange County investment pools again got a top rating from Fitch Ratings Inc. on Monday. Fitch's annual credit review reaffirmed the AAA/V1+ rating given to the Orange County Investment Pool and the Orange County Educational Investment Pool.

San Gabriel Store Operator Converting Former Kmart

Another Asian market,and a big one at that,is coming to Westminster

Angels Skip Mayor's Event; May Chargers Be Looking North?

Angels Skip Mayor's Event; May Chargers Be Looking North?

MetLife in $11.5 Billion Travelers Deal

MetLife Inc. said on Monday it would acquire Travelers Life & Annuity from Citigroup Inc. for $11.5 billion, in a move to become the largest individual life insurer in North America.

Absorption Hits 1M, Vacancy Declines, Lease Rates Rise

The fourth quarter showed that Orange County's industrial market is recording a strong recovery.


Focus on the changing nature of OC's industrial landscape

Red Hill Pullman Business Center Tops Q4 Sales at $13 Million

Largest OC industrial sales in the fourth quarter

Triangle Square: From NikeTown to Nightlife Vibe

The operators of Costa Mesa's Triangle Square are preparing for life after its anchor tenant leaves

San Diego Office Market Boom Could Be Close to Peak

San Diego's office market could be eyeing the peak this year.

RETAIL MARKET - Lease Rates Up, Absorption Gains, Vacancy Declines

The Orange County retail market was one of the nation's healthiest in the fourth quarter

PacifiCare: 85,000 in New Plan

Cypress-based PacifiCare Health Systems Inc. said Monday it has enrolled some 85,000 people in its SignatureFreedom self-directed health plan.

Fifi's Cultural Smorgasbord: Mardi Gras, Giant Buddhas

From Mardi Gras to giant Buddhas,it's Fifi's cultural smorgasbord, in the Executive Dining column by Fifi Chao

Marsh to Pay $850M

Marsh & McLennan Cos., the world's biggest insurance broker, on Monday said it will pay $850 million to settle charges it conspired with insurers to rig bids.

ViewSonic Taking On Linksys, D-Link in Wireless Networking

ViewSonic is taking on Linksys in the wireless networking market

Pond Turns to Concerts, Other Shows to Fill Ducks Gap

The Arrowhead Pond looks to concerts and other events to pick up the slack while the Ducks are on ice, in the Media & Marketing column by Jennifer Bellantonio

Putting a Price on LAX South

Los Angeles wants El Toro? That'll be $4 billion, an Editorial by Michael Lyster, Editor


Orange County United Way is set to honor five "Hispanic Influentials" at its Feb. 11 dinner ceremony in Irvine benefiting Somos Familia, a program for helping Hispanic communities.

Friday, January 28

Q4 GDP Growth Slows, Inflation Up

The U.S. economy grew at a weaker-than-expected 3.1 percent annual pace in the final quarter of 2004 year, its slowest since the beginning of 2003 as the country's trade performance deteriorated and inflation picked up, a government report on Friday showe

Maguire Buying Portfolio for $1.5B

Maguire Properties Inc. said Friday that it agreed to acquire more than a dozen properties, mostly in California, representing about 6.5 million square feet of office space for $1.51 billion.

SDG & E; to Triple Peak Rates

At the urging of regulators who fear outages this summer, San Diego Gas & Electric Co. has come up with a plan that would charge about 1,000 of its largest customers with emergency rates roughly triple current electricity costs.

Beckman Profit Falls Short of Expectations

Fullerton-based Beckman Coulter Inc. reported fourth-quarter profit that fell short of Wall Street expectations Friday morning.

More Stock Bleeding for Gateway

The fallout from Irvine-based Gateway Inc.'s bleak outlook for the current quarter continued Friday with shares of the computer maker falling more than 10%.

Thursday, January 27

Corinthian Profit Down, Enrollment Up

Santa Ana-based Corinthian Colleges Inc. saw profits slip in the quarter ended Dec. 31 but said enrollment in its vocational schools is growing steadily.

McGregor Debuts With Profits

Scott McGregor debuted before Wall Street Thursday as Broadcom Corp. reported a surge in profits for the fourth quarter.

SBC to Buy Ma Bell?

SBC Communications Inc. is in talks to acquire AT & T; Corp. to bolster its business among large corporations, a source familiar with the talks said on Thursday.

Gateway Swings to Profit in Q4

Irvine-based personal computer maker Gateway Inc. on Thursday swung to a quarterly profit from a year-ago loss as revenue rose 18% on a strong retail performance and the company retired its preferred stock. But following the earnings release, the company

Chip Inventories Fall Sharply

Excess semiconductor inventories fell 38% in the fourth quarter, a surprisingly large drop that could ease fears of an ongoing oversupply, iSuppli Corp. said on Thursday. Surplus chips in the hands of manufacturers, electronics makers and others in the su

Durable Goods Orders Up

New orders for long-lasting U.S.-made goods rose 0.6% last month despite a sharp plunge in demand for new aircraft, according to a government report that reflected underlying economic strength.

Fluor Set to Restore Power Plant

Aliso Viejo's Fluor Corp. has been tapped to help restore a power plant in South Africa as part of a $530 million contract.

P & G; Near Deal to Buy Gillette

Consumer products giant Procter & Gamble Co. is near a deal to buy Gillette Co., the maker of shaving products and Duracell batteries, in a stock swap for $55 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported on its Web site late on Thursday.

Edwards Gets Trial OK

Edwards Lifesciences Corp. got some good news from the Food and Drug Administration on Thursday.

Philips 4Q Earnings Decline 17 Percent

Royal Philips Electronics NV, The Dutch technology conglomerate, reported net profit fell 17 percent in the fourth quarter on a mix of charges, writedowns and stock sales.

First American Posts Record Results

The refinancing boom may be fading, but Santa Ana title insurer First American Corp. reported record profits and revenue on strong sales of homes and commercial buildings.

Wednesday, January 26

First American Hit With Jury Damages

A jury hit Santa Ana-based First American Corp. with $43.2 million in damages Wednesday in a lawsuit with rival Fidelity National Financial Inc., which moved from Irvine to Florida in 2003.

Consolidated to Buy OC Printing

Orange County Printing in Irvine is set to be acquired by Houston's Consolidated Graphics Inc.

Ista Wraps Up $56M Stock Sale

Ista Pharmaceuticals Inc. wrapped up its $56 million stock offering Wednesday. The Irvine-based developer of eye drugs said underwriters agreed to buy an additional 825,000 shares.

Deutsch Drops Mitsubishi Ad Review

The Marina del Rey office of Deutsch, part of the Interpublic Group of Cos., said that it was resigning the account of Cypress-based Mitsubishi Motors North America, by withdrawing from a creative review that began last month.

Mindspeed Counting on VOIP

A refocused and repurposed Mindspeed Technologies Inc. is putting its chips on a hopeful-looking 2005 VOIP equipment market, and at least two analysts like the company's odds of finally landing on black.

SBC Profit Slips, Cutting 7,000 Jobs

SBC Communications Inc. said Wednesday that fourth-quarter net income fell slightly, but revenue rose for the third quarter in a row on the strength of data and high-speed Internet sales. In related news, the company said it expects to eliminate 7,000 job

Cooper Reshuffles Executive Ranks20

Lake Forest-based Cooper Cos. reshuffled its executive ranks Wednesday in the wake of its $1.2 billion buy of rival Ocular Sciences Inc.

Advanced Medical Surges

Shares of Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc. shot up more than 6% in midday trading Wednesday as investors looked past the company's projected loss for 2004.

Tuesday, January 25

U.S. 'Deeply Committed' to Deficit Cuts

The Bush administration is firmly committed to cutting huge U.S. budget and trade deficits, U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow said on Monday, and there should be no delay in overhauling Social Security.

FileNet Slumps on Downgrade

Shares of Costa Mesa-based FileNet Corp. plunged 11% in afternoon trading Tuesday, despite positing a better profit for the December quarter a day earlier. Files for $86M IPO

Scott Blum is looking to cash out again. His Aliso Viejo-based Inc. filed for an initial public offering Tuesday. The offering would be the second stock sale for the Internet retailer since its founding in 1997.

Higher Profits, Sales for Sybron

Orange-based Sybron Dental Specialties Inc., a maker of dental products, reported higher sales and profits for the three months ended Dec. 31, coming in above what analysts had expected in profits.

French Drug Maker Taking on Botox

Botox, the flagship drug of Irvine-based Allergan Inc., may face competition sooner than expected.

IBM Pays Premium for Software Maker

Shares of Corio soared Tuesday after the San Carlos, Calif., business software maker agreed to be acquired by IBM Corp. for $182 million.

Ceradyne Sees Signs of Diversification

Costa Mesa-based Ceradyne Inc.'s diversification strategy seems to be taking hold.

Consumer Confidence Gains in January

U.S. consumer confidence rose in January after improving in December, as consumers registered greater satisfaction with the short-term outlook for the economy than its longer-term prospects, a private business group said.

Oil Nears $50 After U.S. Refinery Snag

U.S. oil prices flirted with $50 on Tuesday, jumping to their highest level in eight weeks after a fire at a big Louisiana refinery slowed the plant's fuel production.

Maxtor Won't Make Portable PC Drive

Disk drive maker Maxtor Corp. said on Monday it has decided not to go ahead with previously announced plans to make a 2.5-inch disk drive and would take charges of $5.4 million to $7.0 million as a result.

Medsphere Raises $7.5M

Medsphere Systems Corp., an Aliso Viejo medical software company, has raised $7.5 million in a second round of venture funding.

Toshiba PC Production Moves to China

Toshiba Corp., which has U.S. operations in Irvine, has started moving all of its overseas notebook PC production lines to Hangzhou, capital city of East China's Zhejiang Province. The first batch of production gear in the Philippines was moved to Hangzho

Monday, January 24


Orange County Businesspeople in the news, on the move

Opus Looking to Build Anaheim Industrial Project

The Irvine office of Phoenix-based Opus West Corp. is considering building three large warehouses in a move that would mark the first development geared to big industrial tenants in Orange County since the start of the decade.

Oil Jumps to $49 on U.S Freeze

High-flying oil prices neared $50 a barrel on Monday as a blizzard enveloped the U.S. Northeast, draining U.S. heating oil stocks.

New Century Mounts Retail Push

New Century has launched a retail marketing push to compete with Ameriquest and Countrywide

Cooper: After Ocular Buy

Cooper has moved up the contact lens ladder with its Ocular Sciences buy

Kia Taps Al Punto for Hispanic Ads

Tustin-based al Punto has been tapped by Irvine-based Kia Motors America Inc. for its Hispanic advertising.

TEST CASE - Startup Ambry Is in Hot Segment; Ties to LabCorp

Ambry Genetics is in a hot market, page 6


Summaries of other business news and top stories by industry; Economic Indicators

Three Dots: Hoping to Turn Cachet Into Sales

Three Dots looks to get out of a sales stalemate

Law Firms Boost IP Lawyers as Companies Aggressively Guard Technology

Reports on the growth of intellectual property practices

Baugh Banged Up; Two More Teams On Anaheim Radar?

Baugh Banged Up; Two More Teams On Anaheim Radar?

Toy Story: Fashion Island to See Latest Toy Boat Store

Toy Boat is coming to Fashion Island, in the Marketplace column by Sherri Cruz

Black Eyed Peas, 2,000 Attendees Eye Roth Confab

Roth Capital gears up for its 17th annual growth stock conference

Echoes of El Toro: Seal Beach May Be Vulnerable to Closure

Seal Beach's military base could be vulnerable to closure

Entrepreneur Looks To Do Drug Development Testing

A University Research Park startup looks to tap drug companies' testing needs, in the Healthcare column by Vita Reed

GeoLogistics Offering Caps Long Turnaround

GeoLogistics' public offering plans mark a key point in its turnaround

Sheepskin Boot Makers Aim To Go From Fad to Fashion

Sheepskin boot makers say those comfy shoes aren't just a fad, in the Media & Marketing column by Jennifer Bellantonio

Valentine's Day Destinations to Impress Your Honey

Made your Valentine's Day reservation? It's creeping closer, in the Executive Dining column by Fifi Chao

Telmar Refinances, Pays Dividend to Majority Investor

A private equity investor will get a dividend from Telmar Network's refinancing, in the Technology column

Surging Chinese Trade Spurs Growth in Litigation

Litigation fallout from the boom in Chinese trade

717's End Could Yield 90 Acres for Long Beach

In a city that basically is built out, with little undeveloped land available for new commercial projects, news that nearly 90 acres may soon be free has planners salivating.

Firms Say Getting a First-Year Job Is Competitive; Salaries in Holding Pattern

Law school graduates are facing a pretty tight job market.

GIRL POWER - Focus on Females Brings Changes to ASR

Surfwear's focus on females brought changes to ASR

SEC Ends Corinthian Probe

The Securities and Exchange Commission ended its probe of Santa Ana-based Corinthian Colleges Inc. without recommeding any enforcement action against the operator of vocational colleges.

State of the State

Commentary by Howard Fine, Los Angeles Business Journal


Calendar of OC Business events and announcements

Modest Growth for Local Law Firm Rosters

Law firms posted a modest boost in lawyers in the past year

Sexual Harassment, Insurance Equality Top New Workplace Laws

New workplace laws in California


Letters to the Editors

Earnings: Software Outguns Chips for Local Pair

Software beat chips on the earnings front for a couple of Orange County-based technology companies.

The Agenda: Legislators Line Up 2005 Business Goals

Legislative goals for local politicians

Gen. Lyon Ups Command of Company With Share Buy

Gen. Lyon took tighter control of William Lyon Homes, in the Real Estate column by Mathew Padilla


Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

HP Said to Mull Reorganization

Directors of Hewlett-Packard Co. are considering a management reorganization that would distribute some of Chairman and Chief Executive Carly Fiorina's day-to-day responsibilities among other executives, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

Real Estate Watch: Inland Empire

Inland Empire Posts Positive Office, Industrial Absorption in Q4; PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Friday, January 21

Virginia Eyes 2 Competing Toll Road Plans for I-95

Virginia on Thursday chose two competing plans for widening Interstate 95 from the Washington, D.C., area to the southern part of the state, a $407 million proposal by Clark Construction Group and a $1 billion proposal from Fluor Corp.

Anaheim Loses

Orange County Superior Court Judge Peter Polos denied the city of Anaheim's request Friday for a preliminary injunction against Angels owner Arte Moreno's decision to rename the American League baseball team the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

30-Year Mortgage Rates Fall for 3rd Week

Rates on 30-year mortgages fell for a third straight week as investors' concerns about inflation were eased by reports showing that prices fell in December.

Allergan Lawsuit Dismissed

A federal district court dismissed Irvine-based drug maker Allergan Inc.'s lawsuit today against the Food and Drug Administration over the reclassification of Restasis, its dry eye drug.

Survey: Consumer Confidence Slips in Jan.

Consumers' outlook on the economy was less rosy in the first half of the month, according to a leading survey released Friday that attempts to gauge the mood of the nation's shoppers.

Stocks Rise on Strong Earnings; GE Climbs

U.S. stocks rose on Friday as investors got a dose of strong quarterly earnings reports from companies, including Dow component General Electric Co., which posted better-than-expected profits.

It's Official: Garrett Heading Beckman

Beckman Coulter Inc. appointed Scott Garrett, its president and chief operating officer, as its new chief executive, effective Feb. 21. Garrett succeeds retiring Chief Executive John Wareham, who will continue as chairman until Beckman's April 7 sharehold

Valeant's Study of Viramidine Drug: Comparable Efficacy to Ribavirin

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International said a key drug undergoing testing has proven to be similiarly effective at treating hepatitis C as its fading flagship ribavirin,

Thursday, January 20

Dollar Hits 2-Month High

The dollar hit a two-month high against the euro on Thursday, buoyed by expectations for higher U.S. interest rates.

Struggling Mitsubishi Hires Turnaround Specialist

Slumping Mitsubishi Motors North America in Cypress hired Michigan-based turnaround specialist AlixPartners LLC to revive its North American automotive business. The automaker's sales have fallen by more than 50% in the past two years.

Earnings Season: Not Much to Excite Investors

U.S. corporate earnings offered very little to whet investor appetite on Wednesday with a number of major names showing they are still struggling to get a grip on costs under volatile economic conditions, analysts told Reuters.

Fed 'Beige Book' Report: Economy Healthy

The U.S. economy continued on a steady growth path in December and early January, the Federal Reserve said in its Beige Book report on the economy.

Standard Pacific Creates L.A. Division

Irvine-based Standard Pacific Corp. said Tuesday it was forming a Los Angeles division to boost its urban, high-density homebuilding operations.

Western Digital's Drive for Gadgets

Lake Forest-based Western Digital Corp. unveiled a line of 1-inch disk drives for digital music players and other hand-held consumer electronics.

SEC Enters 2005 Divided

After two years of cracking down hard on post-Enron corporate America, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is starting 2005 deeply divided over its aggressive policy and enforcement agendas.

Wednesday, January 19

Fed Beige Book: Economy Stronger

The pace of U.S. economic activity continued to pick up in most of the country in late November through early January, the Federal Reserve said on Wednesday.

Mitsubishi Begins Agency Visits

Chemistry checks begin today between Mitsubishi Motors North America and the agencies vying for creative chores on its $200 million ad account, according to sources.

Long-Term Rates in Check on Economic Data

Longer-dated Treasuries remained in demand on Wednesday as investors bet U.S. inflation would stay restrained, though strength in jobs and housing data took a toll on shorter-term debt.

Personal Computer Shipments Rise

Worldwide shipments of personal computers grew 13.7 percent in the fourth quarter on strong demand from small- and medium-sized businesses and holiday shoppers, IDC reported Tuesday.

QLogic Tops Estimates

Aliso Viejo-based QLogic Corp. posted a 24% gain in profits for the quarter ended Dec. 26, thanks to sales of its fiber channel products for data storage networks.

Collectors Universe Sets $60M Stock Sale

Santa Ana-based Collectors Universe Inc. said Wednesday that shareholders and the company plan to sell about $60 million worth of stock.

The Story Behind GeoLogistics' IPO

First the funding. Then the turnaround. Now the exit. Santa Ana-based logistics company GeoLogistics Corp. filed plans to go public on Tuesday, looking to raise $175 million.

Core Inflation Higher, Housing Starts Surge

A drop in energy costs pulled U.S. consumer prices down last month, but core inflation moved up modestly and housing starts surged, according to data on Wednesday.

Stock of the Week: Biolase Smiles Again

Joseph Parnes, editor of Shortex, recommends buying shares of Biolase Technology. The San Clemente, Calif.-based medical technology company designs, manufactures and markets surgical laser products used in dental procedures.

Irvine Company Drops Interest in CommonWealth Portfolio

The Irvine Company has dropped its interest in buying the portfolio of Los Angeles-based asset manager CommonWealth Partners LLC. "We think that it's a very attractive portfolio, but for reasons we decline to discuss, we've decided not to submit a bid," s

Tuesday, January 18

Chipmaker Opens Irvine Design Center

Sacramento-based KeyEye Communications Inc., a maker of chips for telecommunications gear, is opening a design center in Irvine headed by a former developer at Broadcom Corp.

Dollar Up on Investment Report

The dollar climbed on Tuesday after data showed investments coming into the United States were more than enough to cover the country's huge trade deficit on a monthly basis.

Downey Q4 Profit Surges

Newport Beach-based savings and loan operator Downey Financial Corp. saw a big surge in fourth-quarter profit, thanks to lower taxes and interest from loans.

Allergan Consolidating R

Irvine drug maker Allergan Inc. is consolidating research and development in Europe in a bid to cut costs.

Innovation Sports Bought for $38.4M

Ossur HF, an Icelandic medical device company with North American headquarters in Aliso Viejo, said Wednesday that it bought Foothill Ranch-based Innovation Sports Inc. for $38.4 million.

Fleetwood Expects Loss to Widen

Riverside's Fleetwood Enterprises Inc., a leading maker of recreational vehicles started by Orange County's John Crean, said Tuesday it expects its third-quarter net loss to be "significantly" wider than last year's loss, citing slower RV sales and a $5.2

Wet Seal Closes $56 Million Financing

Wet Seal sold $56 million of convertible bonds that mature in 2012 and have a conversion price of $1.50. Shares of Wet Seal were trading at $1.75 midday Tuesday.

Monday, January 17


Calendar of OC Business events and announcements - FREE Download

Home Prices Rise, Sales Lag

Orange County's median hit $551,000 in December, up 18% from a year ago and slightly higher than the previous record of $543,000 reached in May and repeated in August, according to La Jolla-based market-tracker DataQuick Information Systems. Sales continu

This 'Fire Ant'a Whole New Breed of Pest

The Insider heard a good one recently, about a scare that went through the Orange County Fire Authority last year...

Mercedes Planning Service Center for Classics in Irvine

Mercedes-Benz is building a repair center for its "classics


Angels; the Bankruptcy; Beauties

Trade Show Exhibitors, Planners Anticipate Gains in 2005

To see how growth is playing out in Orange County, the Business Journal's Sandi Cain asked executives from local exhibit companies and meeting planners to talk about their outlook for 2005

Move Leaves Big Hole to Fill Up in Spectrum

The Irvine Co. has a big hole to plug at the Spectrum with Broadcom leaving


Orange County Businesspeople in the news, on the move

Bard Buys Genyx Medical for $60M

Genyx Medical was bought by C.R. Bard for $60 million


Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance


Summaries of other business news and top stories by industry; Economic Indicators

Ex-Koll Exec Tapped by Pritzkers for Operation Here

For Nader Shah, 2005 feels a lot like 1999, in the Real Estate column by Mathew Padilla

Round 2 for Healthcare Deals

2005 could be another strong year for merger and acquisition deals here

Real Estate Deals

This week's postings of Real Estate sales and leases

Pavilion a Perfect Match for Four Seasons in Newport

Pavilion is a perfect match for the Four Seasons, in the Executive Dining column by Fifi Chao

Sshh! Quiet! Baby's Sleeping: Bellantonio Back at Keyboard

Bellantonio's back,with kid in tow, in the Media & Marketing column

Sacramento Readies for Budget Reform War

The mother of all state government battles is about to begin

Lack of New Hotels Limits Meeting Space Growth

Few new hotels meant there was little meeting space added in the past year

Broadcom: Hope for Unrealized Ambitions

Broadcom's move could help the University Research Park reach its goal of linking UCI to technology companies

Anaheim Considers Special District to Fund Convention Center Growth

Anaheim may establish a Business Improvement District to help fund expansion at the convention center

From Philips to Broadcom: McGregor Didn't Miss a Beat

McGregor's getting up to speed over at Broadcom

Pioneers of Hope

by Eldon Griffiths, a resident of Laguna Niguel, is an author, journalist, former member of the House of Commons and undersecretary of state in the U.K. government.

Real Estate Watch: Mid-Counties

Office vacancy in the Mid-Counties is down 24%

Irvine Co. Growth Bid Includes Step Into Rival's Home

The Irvine Co. is vying for CommonWealth Partners' huge portfolio of office buildings

Golden State's Worm

You may not know it yet, but you've likely been hit with spyware. So was Michael Borque, technical services manager for Irvine-based food products supplier Golden State Foods.

CryoFluor Raises Trial Money From Endocare, Temple

CryoFluor Therapeutics nabbed some funding from embattled Endocare

Shur-Lok Heirs Score Favorable Tax Ruling

The heirs to the Shur-Lok estate won a favorable tax ruling

Yen Hits Five-Year High Vs. U.S. Dollar

The yen rose to a five-year high against the U.S. dollar on Monday as investors bet next month's meeting of Group of Seven nations would put more pressure on Asian countries to let their currencies rise.

Tough to Figure Who's in Bigger Doghouse: Angels or Dodgers

It's hard to tell which team has irked the most people: Angels or Dodgers,

Sunday, January 16

Alcoa's Q4 Profit Falls

Alcoa Inc., the world's biggest aluminum producer, said on Monday that fourth-quarter net income fell as a result of lower production due to hurricanes, strikes and restructuring costs.

Consumer Borrowing Falls

Consumer borrowing fell in November for a second straight month, the first time that has occurred in more than 13 years.

Dow Jones Closes Above 11,000

The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 11,000 Monday for the first time since before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, lifted by a five-day rally that has sent stocks soaring so far in 2006.

Friday, January 14

Oakley, Motorola in Development Deal

Foothill Ranch-based Oakley Inc. and Motorola Inc. said Friday they're working on combining wireless technology and sunglasses.

Producer Prices Fall on Energy Decline

A sharp fall in energy prices pulled U.S. producer prices down 0.7% in December, a sharper-than-expected drop and the biggest in more than 1-1/2 years, a government report showed on Friday.

TriZetto Sees 2005 Profit Gain

TriZetto Group Inc., a Newport Beach-based provider of billing software for healthcare companies, is predicting a rise in 2005 earnings, thanks to what company officials call "operational improvements in sales processes."

Edwards Settles Patent Suit With Rival

Irvine-based heart valve maker Edwards Lifesciences Inc. reached a pact with rival St. Jude Medical Inc. on Friday to settle a lawsuit.

OC Jobs Up, But Increase Lags

Orange County's unemployment rate fell to 2.7% in December, down from 3.2% a year earlier, the state Economic Development Department said Friday. November's unemployment rate was 3%.

Thursday, January 13

Fluor Venture Wins $690 Million Deal

Aliso Viejo's Fluor Corp. has won a $690 million engineering deal to be split with its Mexican partner, the company said Thursday.

Broadcom Broadens Storage Line

Irvine-based chipmaker Broadcom Corp. has taken another step into storage. The latest: A chip that helps transfer data inside storage units at one gigabyte per second, which Broadcom says is the first of its kind.

Golf Club Maker Raises $10M

Garden Grove-based GolfGear International Inc., maker of the Tsunami driver club, has raised $10 million in funding.

Shipping Co. Takes 549,000 SF in Chino

P & O; Nedlloyd, one of the world's largest logistics companies, has signed a $23-million lease for a 549,195-sf building in the Carson Cos.' Chino South Business Park, increasing Nedlloyd's total space in the 105-acre park to more than 1.5 million sf. The 1

Gateway Debuts Low-End Computer Line

Gateway debuted four budget personal computers under its eMachines brand on Thursday, including one with a DVD burner and a price tag of $499 after a $50 rebate.

Retail Sales Rise, Jobless Claims Up

U.S. retail sales jumped a more-than-expected 1.2% in December, but first-time jobless claims posted a surprise climb and import prices dipped more than anticipated, government reports showed on Thursday.

Wednesday, January 12

Future of Farmers Bros. in Doubt

A personal tragedy at Farmer Brothers Co. could put the coffee company in play. Chairman and Chief Executive Roy E. Farmer, a resident of Huntington Beach, died Jan. 7 of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Now the company could be put up for sale, according

Intel Shares Rise on Earnings

Shares of Intel Corp. rose 2.4 percent on Wednesday after the leading chipmaker reported better-than-expected quarterly results and raised its manufacturing spending plans.

C.R. Bard Buys Aliso Viejo Company

Aliso Viejo-based medical device maker Genyx Medical Inc. is being bought for $60 million by C.R. Bard Inc. of Murray Hill, N.J.

Sparta Buys McAfee Research Unit

Deal includes Sparta to acquire contracts awarded to McAfee Research.

Street Prevails in Pension Fight

In a victory for Orange County "vulture capitalist" Chriss Street, a federal judge in Delaware has invalidated nearly $5 million in pension benefits granted to Fruehauf Trailer Corp. workers less than a month before the truck-trailer maker filed for bankr

Beckman Hits High After Upgrade

Shares of Beckman Coulter Inc., which makes genetics analysis kits, rose to a record high on Wednesday after an upgrade by Banc of America Securities.

Trade Gap Swells Unexpectedly to Record

The U.S. trade deficit widened unexpectedly in November to a record $60.3 billion, propelled by the highest-ever oil import bill and a drop in exports, a government report showed on Wednesday.

Tuesday, January 11

Asian Caucus Weighs Bid by OC Assemblyman, Other Republicans

The Legislature's Democratic Asian Pacific Islander Caucus is scheduled to meet today to discuss an issue that has sparked a spirited debate within the group: Should the five-member caucus grant a request by the Legislature's three Republican Asian Americ

Mitsubishi to Keep U.S. Plant Open

The new head of Cypress-based Mitsubishi Motors North America said the automaker, which has struggled with declining sales and shrinking U.S. market share, is committed to keeping its only U.S. plant open.

QLogic Raises Earnings Outlook

Aliso Viejo-based QLogic Corp. raised its earnings expectations on Tuesday for the quarter ending Dec. 26. The company cited strong demand for the company's switches and hard disk controller products. QLogic's devices are used to link storage networks.

Office Vacancy Dips Below 10% Mark

Past several years show OC's average vacancy has been decreasing.

PeopleSoft Layoffs Expected This Week

Oracle Corp. is set to announce layoffs on Friday as a result of its recent acquisition of PeopleSoft, the company told Reuters on Tuesday.

PacifiCare Reaffirms Guidance

PacifiCare Health Systems Inc. of Cypress reaffirmed Wall Street's outlook for the health plan provider in 2005.

China Trade Surplus Surges

China posted its biggest trade surplus in nine years in December, data showed on Tuesday, as the country's booming exports showed little sign of trailing off.

Intel: Record Sales, But Earnings Fall

Intel Corp. on Tuesday reported its highest-ever quarterly revenue, but profit fell as the world's largest microchip maker saw its brand premium erode in the face of growing competition.

Monday, January 10

Conexant Buys Operator of India Chip Design Centers

Conexant bought an operator of chip design centers in India, in the Technology column

Street Looking to Succeed Moorlach; Tunnel Gets Boost

OC Insider by Rick Reiff

Move Over, Boys

Women are making their own "old-boys" networks, a Viewpoint by Judy Rosener, a professor in the Graduate School of Management at UC Irvine and a noted author and speaker.

Armed with More Credit, Donahue Eyes Retail Push

Donahue Schriber's beefier credit line could yield more shopping center development or buys

Corinthian to Open Illinois Campus

College plans on occupying 38,000 square feet of a 77,000-square-foot building.

New OCBJ Web Site: News, E-mail Updates

The Orange County Business Journal has redesigned its Web site,, with breaking news and access to our weekly paper for subscribers.

State of the State

Gov. Schwarzenegger's State of the State speech was light on business issues, in State of the State by Howard Fine, Los Angeles Business Journal

Lawsuit OK'd Against PacifiCare, Others

The U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the class-action status for a lawsuit filed by more than 600,000 doctors charging Cypress-based PacifiCare Health Systems Inc. and five other health insurers violated federal racketeering law by regularly underpay

BMW Could Edge Out Mercedes in 2004 Local Sales

A veteran clothing designer is launching a new line for those who might have outgrown tradition surfwear, in the Media & Marketing column

Fifi's '05 Resolution: Rally All to Newport's First Cabin

Balboa Bay Club's First Cabin is a must for OC food-lovers, in the Executive Dining column by Fifi Chao

Real Estate Deals

This week's postings of Real Estate sales and leases

CALENDAR Jan. 11-17

Calendar of OC Business events and announcements

Apparel Party: ASR on Tap

The who's who of the apparel world is set to mosh with what's next at the Action Sports Retailers show this weekend at the San Diego Convention Center.

IPO Pipeline: Jazz Semiconductor Remains On Tap for 2005

Jazz Semiconductor's IPO is the lone OC issue on tap so far for 2005

Argus Realty Pays $37M for Colorado Tech Center

Argus Realty Investors LP of San Juan Capistrano paid $37 million for a 470,755-square-foot Colorado technology center.

Dispatch From CES, Vegas: Gadgets, Parties, McGregor

A dispatch from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas

IPO Activity Posting Rebound

ABOUT THE LIST - IPOs rebounded in OC and across the U.S. last year

Economy, Tourism Seen Boosting Airport Traffic

John Wayne Airport officials expect another solid year of passenger growth

Real Estate Watch: West Orange County

West County Office Market Turns the Corner

Fed Warns 'Measured' Action Not a Pledge

The Federal Reserve has never pledged to hike interest rates only at a measured pace and is closely watching inflation, a top policy-maker said on Monday in a possible sign of faster rate moves than expected.


Summaries of other business news and top stories by industry; Economic Indicators


Orange County Businesspeople in the news, on the move

OpVista Strikes Deal with Cox

Under the deal, Cox plans to use devices by OpVista to deliver more Internet access, video on demand and networking services for businesses.

Market Watch

Week's Best, Worst Performers; Roth OC50, Billion Dollar Club, OC Tech; Index Watch, 52-week Performance

New Century Lending Up 43% in December

Irvine-based New Century Financial Corp. said it made $4.3 billion in mortgage loans in December, up 43% versus a year earlier.

PacifiCare Health's Portland Operations Bounce Back

PacifiCare's Portland operations have bounced back, in the Healthcare column

Incoming PacSun Chief Faces Slower Growth

Pacific Sunwear's incoming chief executive joins the company at a time of slowing growth

More Problems Hit Mitsubishi's Review

Last week started badly enough for Cypress-based Mitsubishi Motors North America, with key dealer-council members threatening to revolt over the decision to put the besieged car maker's $200 million creative account into review.

BMC Software to Buy Calendra

Houston-based BMC Software Inc., which has operations in Costa Mesa, on Monday said it agreed to buy privately held Calendra, a French company that makes Internet-based identity management products for business customers, for $33 million in cash.

Harrah Builds Tower With No Opposition,in Hawaii

Developer Michael Harrah has no opposition to his tower plans,in Hawaii, in the Real Estate column

Clothes Vet Targets Maturing Surfwear Fans in Debut

BMW and Mercedes will battle it out for luxury bragging rights in 2005, in the Marketplace column

Angels Angles

by Rick Reiff and Sandi Cain

Opus Looking to Build Anaheim Industrial Project

The Irvine office of Phoenix-based Opus West Corp. is considering building three large warehouses in a move that would mark the first development geared to big industrial tenants in Orange County since the start of the decade.

Allergan's Lab Guy: Eyeing New Botox Uses, Drugs

Allergan's lab guy eyes new uses for Botox and the drug maker's pipeline

Opus Workers Cut in Acquisition Aftermath

ArthroCare is cutting workers at a San Juan Capistrano device maker it recently bought

Friday, January 7

Oracle to Close PeopleSoft Buy

Oracle Corp. said it expects to close its purchase of rival software maker PeopleSoft Inc. on Friday.

Update: Judge Denies Angels Injunction

A judge denied Anaheim's bid for a temporary restraining order to keep Arte Moreno from changing the Angels baseball team's name to include Los Angeles.

Schwarzenegger, Dems Brace for Fight

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers prepared for battle on over his ambitions to restrain state spending and avoid tax increases in a budget proposal due next week.

December Job Gain Falls Bit Short

U.S. employers added 157,000 new jobs in December, slightly fewer than expected, the Labor Department said Friday. But 2004 was the strongest since 1999, and the numbers for October and November were revised higher.

Wet Seal in Talks to Extend Credit Line

Foothill Ranch-based Wet Seal Inc. said Friday that it's in talks with S.A.C. Capital Associates LLC and other investors to extend a $10 million bridge loan.

Thursday, January 6

Used Body Armor Is Sought for U.S. Vehicles in Iraq

New Jersey is collecting used bulletproof vests for U.S. troops in Iraq to use as armor for their vehicles, following complaints that soldiers were underprotected.

Governor Proposes Sweeping Reforms

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger used his annual State of the State speech on Wednesday as a platform to propose sweeping budgetary and political reforms,including capping state spending, privatizing the state's pension system and taking redistricting out of th

ViewSonic at CES: More Than Monitors

ViewSonic Corp., the computer monitor maker based just over the Los Angeles County line in Walnut, doesn't want you to think it's just into monitors.

Olympiad Plaza in Mission Viejo Sold

An investment group has sold Olympiad Plaza in Mission Viejo to an unnamed investor for $18 million.

Mexican Consumer Confidence Up

Mexican consumer confidence rose 7.8% in December compared with November, the government said on Thursday, as an export-led economic expansion cheered buyers in the run-up to Christmas.

CES Insider: Ice Bars and OC in Vegas

The key to the International Consumer Electronics Show,the annual confab in Las Vegas that draws high-tech gadgetry enthusiasts from around the world,is not actually going on the show floor.

Anaheim Taps Rutan for Angels Case

When Anaheim goes before a judge on Friday to argue against Arte Moreno's controversial name change for the Angels baseball team, it'll rely on a familiar face. (See update under Latest Local News.)

U.S. Jobless Claims Surge

Initial U.S. jobless claims surged unexpectedly last week, taking claims to their highest level since late September, but analysts shrugged off the large jump as a holiday-related blip.

Emulex Raises Sales, Earnings Guidance

Costa Mesa-based Emulex Corp. said sales and earnings would be higher than expected for the quarter ending Dec. 31.

U.S. Retailers Post Mixed Holiday Sales

U.S. retailers on Thursday delivered mixed sales results for December, the year's key shopping month, with upscale stores faring well but many others slashing prices, squeezing profits.

Retail Sales Wrap

Orange County's top homegrown retailers,PacSun and Wet Seal,continue to go in different directions.

Cooper Closes Ocular Buy

Lake Forest-based Cooper Cos. finalized its buy of Concord-based rival Ocular Sciences Inc. for $1.2 billion.

Lenovo to expand beyond China

The sale of IBM's PC unit to Lenovo will allow the Chinese giant to accomplish a goal that has bedeviled it for years: sell its homegrown products overseas.

Standard Pacific: Record Q4 Orders

Irvine-based homebuilder Standard Pacific Corp. saw record orders for its newly built homes in the fourth quarter, no thanks to Orange County and the rest of Southern California.

Barrett: Tech, Consumer Electronics Gap Bridged

Talking less about products than about purpose, Intel CEO Craig Barrett told attendees at the 2005 International Consumer Electronics Show that PC-based technologies have bridged the gap with consumer electronics and will change lifestyles more with each

Wednesday, January 5

Samsung, the company to watch at CES

The Consumer Electronics Show is being held this week in Las Vegas. It's the largest show of its kind in the world. I would not be surprised if attendance reached 400,000. Since the cancellation of the COMDEX show last November many of the exhibitors and

Wet Seal Discloses Liquidation Share

Wet Seal said it would receive about 23% of the sales proceeds from the closure of some 150 stores.

CAFTA Toughest Issue on Congress Trade Calendar

Congress will wrestle with a number of trade issues in 2005, but a free trade pact with Central American countries is likely to be the most contentious, congressional aides and other experts said on Wednesday.

Valeant Eyes FDA Approval on Key Drug

Costa Mesa-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals International said Tuesday that it's completed two safety studies for a key drug in its pipeline.

CES Dispatch: Bigger Than Ever

It's like the old days at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which got under way Wednesday.

Hitachi Plans 500-Gigabyte Hard Disk, Largest Ever

Hitachi Ltd. said it is seeking to push the limits of data storage with smaller stamp-sized disks for handheld gadgets and vastly higher-capacity drives that can store up to 100 films.

Will Gov. Back Overtime Repeal?

A bitter battle from the 1990s may get a replay in Sacramento, as business groups, fresh off election victories that restricted lawsuits and overturned a healthcare mandate, try to repeal the state's daily overtime law.

El Toro Bidding Begins

Irvine's El Toro land auction got under way Wednesday morning. Developers were invited last fall to take part in an online auction for some of the 3,700 acres up for bid at the former El Toro Marine base.

U.S. Services Sector Index Grows

The Institute for Supply Management's non-manufacturing index rose to 63.1 in December from 61.3 in November, above Wall Street's median estimate of 61.

Oil Prices Decline on Supply Gains

Heating-oil futures fell as much as 5% Wednesday, leading a broad decline in the energy market.

Tuesday, January 4

O'Neill Closes Mitsubishi Chapter

Finbarr O'Neill quit as chief executive of Mitsubishi Motors North America Inc. in Cypress. O'Neill, who took over at Mitsubishi in 2003 after a successful stint at Hyundai Motor America Inc. in Fountain Valley, was named chief executive of The Reynolds a

GM, Ford Sales Fall, Nissan Up

General Motors Corp. and Ford Motor Co. on Tuesday capped 2004 with another month of weaker sales, despite a crop of new vehicles and hefty incentives, while Chrysler and Japan's Toyota and Nissan again posted gains.

U.S. Factory Orders Beat Expectations

U.S. factory orders rose at the fastest rate in four months during November as strong demand for new commercial aircraft pushed business up by 1.2% to a seasonally adjusted $377.42 billion, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday.

William Lyon Sees Q4 Orders Fall

Newport Beach-based homebuilder William Lyon Homes saw orders for new homes fall 35% in the fourth quarter.

Beech Street Corp. Acquires BestCare Inc.

Bestcare's regional network inlcudes more than 7,000 doctors, 130 hospitals and 300 other healthcare providers throughout Louisiana and Missippi.

Gadget Heaven in Las Vegas

The Consumer Electronics Show takes place this week in Las Vegas and will cover the length of three football fields.

Automakers Post Lower Dec. Sales

Automakers posted lower December sales on Wednesday, capping a tumultuous year in which Detroit's Big Three struggled to come to terms with changing consumer tastes and high gas prices.

Mazda's U.S. Sales Drop 13% in December

Discontinued Protege model and falling sales of the Mazda6 didn't help.

Broadcom Moving to Research Park

Irvine chipmaker Broadcom has struck a deal to move its headquarters to the city's University Research Park, taking 700,000 square feet in eight buildings.

Dollar Rally Accelerates After Fed Notes

The dollar rallied across the board on Tuesday, extending gains after minutes of a December Federal Reserve policy-setting meeting signaled the U.S. central bank remains on track to continue raising interest rates, analysts said.

Monday, January 3

New Arts Center Chairman?

Financier Michael Gordon could be tapped as the center's next chairman, according to sources.


Canadian Nat Bosa had the biggest impact on real estate here in years

Executives Still Upbeat Entering New Quarter, Eye National Economy

Executives weigh in on the outlook for the first quarter


Orange County Businesspeople in the news, on the move

Real Estate Deals

This week's postings of Real Estate sales and leases

Irvine Sensors Makes $24M Buy

Costa Mesa-based Irvine Sensors Corp. has bought Richardson, Texas-based Optex Systems Inc. in a deal that could be worth more than $24 million, the company said Tuesday.


Arte Moreno ended 2004 with a team name controversy, but there's no denying his achievements with the Anaheim Angels

Positive Outlook for Quality Systems, Health IT Sector

Healthcare by Vita Reed

Irvine Maps Out Airport-Area Development

Irvine has come up with a plan for development along Jamboree Road

Sherwood's All Smiles After Surviving Gateway Purge

Technology by Andrew Simons

2005 Predictions

Comment by Rick Reiff

Feterik Exiting CFL; Small Startup Oryxe Catches Red Herring

OC INSIDER by Rick Reiff

Fifi's Favs: The Newest, Sexiest, Tastiest OC Eateries

Executive Dining Column by Fifi Chao

Real Estate Watch: Research & Development

R & D; Absorption Healthy; Pipeline Empty

Retailers Cheer Wal-Mart Sales Outlook

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said December sales would be at the top end of its prior estimate on better-than-expected post-Christmas spending.

Churm's Golf Magazines Go Regional Via Southland Pub

Media & Marketing Column by Sandy Cain


The Business Journal's businessperson of the year: Wayne Inouye came out on top at Gateway

Glidewell, IRS in Dispute Over Pay

Dental products maker James Glidewell is fighting an IRS demand for more in back taxes

Saunders Ups Size of Real Estate Deals With $42M Buy

Real Estate Column by Mathew Padilla


Ceradyne's Joel Moskowitz had a pivotal year in 2004, both personally and professionally

Happy New Year: Scant New Laws for Business

For the first time in years, employers have few new regulations from Sacramento to contend with in 2005

Stocks Off to Mixed Start

U.S. stocks traded mixed at midday Monday as investors moved to consolidate gains made in the past year.


Summaries of other business news and top stories by industry; Economic Indicators

Fletcher Jones Touts Lead as Lexus, BMW Nip at Heels

Marketplace by Sherri Cruz

Events Will Set Tone for Governor

As Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger outlines how he intends to deal with an estimated $8 billion budget deficit, the big question is whether he will try to deal with Democrat lawmakers or go directly to the people,again.

Quiksilver Eyes French Company

Huntington Beach-based Quiksilver Inc. is looking at acquiring France's Skis Rossignol SA.

Irvine Co. Gets Break on Fox Plaza

The Irvine Company won a reduced tax assessment on its Fox Plaza tower in Century City

Wedding Bills

VIEWPOINT by Michael Arnold Glueck

Weak Start for Stocks in 2005

Stocks fell on Monday after disappointing U.S. employment and construction spending data triggered concern about economic growth and lower crude oil prices pulled down energy shares.


Concert DVDs by David Bowie, "David Bowie,a Reality Tour," and Calexico, "World Drifts In (Live At The Barbican London)"

Manufacturing Picked Up in December

U.S. factories picked up their pace in December, capping off a year of expansion in the manufacturing industry despite some recent signs of a downturn in employment.