Stories for May 2007

Thursday, May 31

Wachovia To Buy A.G. Edwards for $6.8 Billion

Wachovia Corp. on Thursday said it will buy A.G. Edwards Inc. for $6.8 billion in cash and stock, creating the second-largest U.S. retail brokerage. Sells 9% Stake, Reports Results Inc. has sold a 9% stake in the Aliso Viejo-based online retailer to New York-based private equity firm Clearlake Capital Group LLC.

Home Price Rise Slowest in a Decade

Average U.S. home prices rose 0.5% in the first quarter from the prior quarter and 4.3% from a year earlier, but price appreciation was the slowest in a decade, a federal regulatory agency reported on Thursday.

Spine Device Maker Raises $24M

Interventional Spine Inc., an Irvine medical device maker previously known as Triage Medical Inc., said Thursday it raised a $24 million third round of financing.

Avanir Gets Nod for New Version of Schizophrenia Drug

Avanir Pharmaceuticals Inc., an Aliso Viejo drug maker, said Thursday that regulators gave marketing approval for a new formulation of its FazaClo schizophrenia drug.

First-Quarter Growth Weakest in Over 4 Years

U.S. economic growth in the opening quarter this year was the weakest in more than four years as businesses sold off inventories and Americans imported more foreign goods, the government reported on Thursday.

Wednesday, May 30

AMO Recall Could Benefit Local Rivals

Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc.'s recall of its Complete MoisturePlus contact lens solution stands to benefit a couple of rivals: Cooper Cos. of Lake Forest, and Alcon Inc., which employs some 600 people in Irvine, analysts said Wednesday.

Microsemi Keeping Irish Plant

Microsemi Corp., the Irvine-based maker of chips that power satellites, military aircraft, medical equipment and other things, has opted not to close an Ireland plant previously marked for job cuts.

ISS: Biomet Shareholders Should Reject Buyout

Influential shareholder advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services recommended in a report that Biomet Inc. shareholders vote against a $10.9 billion private-equity buyout of the orthopedic device maker, saying the price is not high enough.

IBM Cutting Another 1,500 Jobs

IBM Corp. laid off 1,570 people Wednesday, primarily from an ongoing overhaul of operations in its giant technology services unit.

ICE and CBOE Reach Deal on Exercise Rights

IntercontinentalExchange Inc. said on Wednesday that it had enhanced its bid for CBOT Holdings by reaching an agreement that might resolve that company's dispute with the Chicago Board Options Exchange.

InSight Health Files for Bankruptcy Reorganization

Lake Forest-based InSight Health Services Holdings Corp., a provider of medical scanning services that is seeking to trade most of company's shares for debt relief, now is taking its plan to bankruptcy court.

Tuesday, May 29

Advanced Medical Down on Recall; Says Product Safe

Advanced Medical Optics Inc.'s shares fell about 14% Tuesday on the market's first reaction to word late Friday that the company was recalling its Complete MoisturePlus contact lens solution.

Qualcomm Penalty Delayed in Broadcom Case

The International Trade Commission delayed issuing penalties late Friday to San Diego's Qualcomm Inc., which was found to have infringed on patented cell phone chips made by rival Broadcom Corp. of Irvine.

Ford Could Sell Volvo to BMW

Ford Motor Co. plans to sell Swedish car maker Volvo, which has its U.S. base in Irvine, with Germany's BMW AG as a possible buyer, according to a Swedish newspaper.

Americans Confident Despite Housing

Consumers and investors became more optimistic in May, while U.S. home prices declined in the first quarter for the first time in 16 years, according to reports published on Tuesday.

Appeals Court Reverses First American Damages

Santa Ana-based First American Corp. said a federal appeals court has reversed $32.4 million in punitive damages against one of the title company's subsidiaries.

Jury Finds in Favor of Broadcom in Qualcomm Suit

A Santa Ana jury decided Tuesday that Qualcomm Inc. infringed three cell phone chip patents owned by Irvine's Broadcom Corp.

Tishman Speyer, Lehman To Buy Archstone-Smith

Real estate investment trust Archstone-Smith has agreed to be acquired by Tishman Speyer and Lehman Brothers Holdings for $22.2 billion, including debt, the companies said on Tuesday.

Monday, May 28

Design Wins Boost Emulex's Market Share

Emulex has regained some ground in a running game of catch-up with rival QLogic

Partners Stage Rave Marketing for Scion, Harley, XM

Beyond Marketing Group knows how to party, in the Small Business column

Space Race

Irvine Electronics has moved beyond the defense industry to space stations and shuttles

Video Site Company Invests in Cell Phone Counterpart

VidShadow invests in a cell phone counterpart, in the Technology column


Bills that would change workers' compensation, housing development, freight movement and fuel prices are among nearly two dozen that made the Job Killer Bills list, in State of the State


A look at people, companies and institutions receiving awards, accolades, grants and other honors


Printers See Another Year of Sales Gains Amid Orange County's Strong Economy

Valeant Stops Hep B Trial, Analyst Keeps 'Hold' Rating

A Wall Street analyst is keeping a "hold" rating on Valeant Pharmaceuticals, in the Healthcare column

Ladera Ranch Lifestyle Magazine Readies for July Debut

Ladera Ranch Magazine is getting ready to publish this summer, in the Media & Marketing column

Beckman CEO Sees Growth in Heart Tests, Sans Biosite

Beckman Coulter's chief exec says it doesn't need Biosite to grow

Inside Oakley

Oakley's got a unique corporate culture and its own microbrewery

Latham & Watkins Latest Law Firm With Lease Deal

The county's top legal firms keep striking office lease deals, in the Real Estate column

Fat Lady Not Singing in OC; Dunlop's Buddy

Fat Lady Not Singing in OC; Dunlop's Buddy

Dental Products Maker Sybron Signs Big Lease

Sybron Dental Specialties is expanding its operations in one of the county's larger leases


The Fullerton Chamber of Commerce supports the Amerige Court development. Plus: The housing debate between the Disney Resort and the city of Anaheim has focused attention on the affordable housing situation in OC, in Letters


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


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

UC Irvine To Offer First Business Bachelor's Degree in 2008

The University of California, Irvine's business school plans to start offering its first bachelor's degree next year

Real Estate Watch: Retail

OC's retail market saw a decline in vacancy in the first quarter. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Investor Ventana Readies $200M Fund; Consolidates in San Juan

Ventana Capital Management is readying a $200 million fund for investments

Insurance Commissioner's First 100 Days: Raids, State Fund Mess

State Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner on his first 100 days in office and his goals for the department

Law Firms Combine, Expanding Irvine's Jackson DeMarco

Jackson, DeMarco, Tidus & Peckenpaugh takes on 37 new employees from Castle, Petersen & Krause

Printers Expect More Business This Year; Rising Costs, Hiring Are Challenges They Face

A Q & A; with commercial printing executives about their outlook for the year amid the rising costs of doing business in California.

Former Lennar Exec's Venture Eyes Development

The former head of Lennar's OC operations has traded in his name tag there for a leading role at a land development company

Four Stores Open at South Coast Plaza, Two Exclusive

Four new stores have popped up at South Coast Plaza, in the Marketplace column

Grubb Proves Better Route Than NNN IPO

NNN Realty Advisors is making its way to Wall Street by snapping up one of the better known names in the sector

March & #233; Moderne Offers Slice of France at Bistro Prices

March yourself over to the new March & #233; Moderne, in the Executive Dining column


This past week's news from and other sources

Volvo's B & #233;lec, Other Businesswomen Honored

The Business Journal honors OC's Women in Business: highlights from this year's event

Friday, May 25

Coca-Cola Buying Glaceau for $4.1B

Coca-Cola Co. on Friday said it would acquire Glaceau for $4.1 billion in cash to gain a foothold in the fast-growing enhanced water market.

Tribune Holders Sell More Shares Than Expected

Tribune Co., publisher of the Los Angeles Times, said shareholders tendered almost twice as many shares than what the media company sought to repurchase as part of a $8.2 billion deal to go private.

Udvar-Hazy Gives Up Boom Boom Room Redevelopment

Billionaire Steven Udvar-Hazy has given up plans to build a resort in Laguna

Scaled Back Clean Energy IPO Debuts

Clean Energy Fuels Inc., the Seal Beach company backed by T. Boone Pickens, started trading Friday after cutting the number of shares offered and their price.

GE CEO Sees "Green" Unit Growth

General Electric Co. Chief Executive Jeffrey Immelt said his "green" ecomagination unit is on track to "blow away" its 2010 sales target of $20 billion as demand for environmental products and services surges.

Thursday, May 24

Cherokee Sees Gains in Delayed Q4 Results

Tustin's Cherokee International Corp. reported gains in revenue and profits with its delayed fourth-quarter report on Thursday.

New Homes Sales Rise 16.2% in April

Sales of new homes rose 16.2% in April, the sharpest climb in fourteen years, while prices fell a record 11%, according to a government report on Thursday that showed home builders taking extraordinary steps to move houses.

Toll Brothers Profit Falls on Housing Downturn

Luxury home builder Toll Brothers said quarterly profit fell 79%, hurt by the U.S. housing slump, but its shares rose on Thursday along with its sector after government data showed a better-than-expected rise in new home sales.

New Century: Likely Overstated 2005 Earnings

Irvine-based subprime lender New Century Financial Corp. on Thursday said its 2005 earnings were likely significantly inflated due to accounting errors.

GM Gets SEC Request, Details Delphi Exposure

General Motors Corp. said on Thursday U.S. securities regulators had requested documents relating to its accounting for financial hedges and said a parallel inquiry at its former finance arm could force the automaker to restate past results again.

AMO Eyes Bausch & Lomb, Could Offer More Than $3.67B

Santa Ana-based Advanced Medical Optics Inc. said Thursday it's interested in buying rival Bausch & Lomb Inc. and is willing to pay more than the $3.67 billion offer accepted from private equity firm Warburg Pincus.

Wednesday, May 23

Wet Seal Swings to Profit

Investors looked past a modest profit forecast for the current quarter by Foothill Ranch-based Wet Seal Inc. and drove up the company's shares Wednesday after the retailer beat estimates for the recently ended quarter.

Target Profit Beats Expectations

Target Corp. said on Wednesday quarterly profit rose almost 18%, boosted by its credit card business and strong sales at established stores.

Pimco's Simon: More Limited Subprime Pain to Come

There's more bad news to come from subprime mortgages but the sector's meltdown is unlikely to spread, said Scott Simon, a portfolio manager at Newport Beach's Pacific Investment Management Co. on Wednesday.

Report: Alcan in Talks With BHP

Canada's Alcan Inc is in talks with global mining giant BHP Billiton as it looks to fend off a takeover attempt by U.S. rival Alcoa Inc , Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper reported on Wednesday.

Pacific Sunwear Names CEO

Anaheim-based retailer Pacific Sunwear of California Inc. named its interim boss for the past eight months as its permanent chief executive on Wednesday.

SenoRx Soars on FDA Approval of Breast Cancer Treatment

Shares of Aliso Viejo-based SenorRx Inc. shot up more than 13% on Wednesday after the Food and Drug Administration approved its breast cancer treatment, the company said.

Lenovo Back in the Black

Lenovo Group Ltd., which has slipped a notch to fourth among global PC makers, returned to the black in its fiscal fourth quarter after turning round its U.S. arm, but faces a competitive year.

Tuesday, May 22

Broadcom: No Qualcomm Settlement

Broadcom Corp. shot down rumors Tuesday of a settlement to months of legal squabbling over cell phone chip patents between the Irvine chipmaker and rival Qualcomm Inc..

Fremont Sells Loan Unit for $1.9 Billion

Fremont General Corp., said on Tuesday it had agreed to sell its commercial real estate lending business to iStar Financial Inc. for about $1.9 billion, sending its shares soaring more than 50% in premarket trading.

Staples Profit Jumps 12.4%

Staples Inc., the world's largest office supplies retailer, said on Tuesday its quarterly profit rose 12.4%, driven by higher sales of laptop computers and continued growth in its copy and print service businesses.

Maguire: Tenants Wanted for Former ACC Space

Close to 600,000 square feet of Central County office space leased by ACC Capital Holdings Corp., the parent of subprime lender Ameriquest Mortgage Co., has been put back on the market, according to real estate sources.

Cisco to Buy BroadWare Technologies

Cisco Systems Inc. said it would buy privately held BroadWare Technologies to expand its video surveillance equipment business.

NNN Combining With Grubb & Ellis

Santa Ana-based NNN Realty Advisors Inc.,parent company of real estate investor Triple Net Properties LLC,is combining with Chicago-based brokerage Grubb & Ellis Co., the companies said Tuesday.

Monday, May 21


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

Bistango Clan's Kimera Serves Up Polished, Stylish Fare

Kimera in Irvine is a new take on decor and food, in the Executive Dining column

TPG, Goldman Buying Alltel for $25B

Wireless company Alltel Corp. said on Sunday it had agreed to be bought by TPG Capital and the buyout arm of Goldman Sachs for about $25 billion, making it the latest U.S. corporate giant to fall into private equity hands.

Fake Designer Jeans Seized in Coto Raids

Fake Designer Jeans Seized in Coto Raids

Donnie Crevier Opens Car Guy Palace in Costa Mesa

Crevier Classic Car Co. in Costa Mesa is a manly place, in the Marketplace column

Ethnic Owned

Immigrants Look to Niche Businesses as Way to Assimilate to American Culture

Maguire Selling Three OC Offices for $310M

Landlord Maguire Properties Inc. on Monday said it was selling off three Orange County offices formerly owned by Equity Office Properties Trust.

Ingram Micro Could See SEC Hearing

The Securities and Exchange Commission plans to recommend an administrative proceeding into Santa Ana's Ingram Micro Inc.'s dealings with security software maker McAfee Inc. from 1998 to 2000, the company said Monday.


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

King of Korean Barbecue

Korean barbecue is one OC restaurateur's claim to "flame,"

Impac Acquires Company to Generate Own Mortgages

Irvine's Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc., which buys mortgages as investments, is looking to start making loans itself with the acquisition of Florida's Pinnacle Financial Corp.

Costly Pollution Rule Looms for Construction Companies

A costly pollution rule looms for construction companies, in Regulation Watch

Inamed's Medical Cosmetics Gain Sales Under Allergan

Allergan thrives with its new medical cosmetics products, in the Healthcare column

New Tenants, Expansions Boost Malls; Still See Sales Temper

OC's Shopping Centers saw a year of moderate growth


Beckman Coulter came its senses over Biosite. Inverness, not so much, an Editorial by Michael Lyster

Countrywide Chief Decries Subprime Regulation

Countrywide Financial Corp. Chief Executive Angelo Mozilo said on Monday that proposed regulation in the subprime mortgage industry would help crooks while hurting legitimate lenders and the housing market.


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Investor Looks to Consolidate Family Fun Parks Across Country

Trancas Capital is in the fun business


Use the market, not taxes, to reduce greenhouse gases, in Viewpoint


The Veggie Grill in Irvine fires up vegan fare fit for everyone, a Review

Maguire Seeks Tenants for Former ACC Space

Close to 600,000 square feet of Central County office space leased by the parent of Ameriquest Mortgage has been put back on the market

Beckman Gives Up Biosite to the Relief of Wall Street

Beckman Coulter has folded in a six-week bidding war for coveted acquisition Biosite

Bixby Land Signs On for Space at Airport-Area Tower

Hines Interests and partner Crescent Real Estate Equities have landed a third major tenant for their office building opening in Irvine, in the Real Estate column

One More Reason For Subprime Mess; Pimco's Odd Couple

One More Reason For Subprime Mess; Pimco's Odd Couple

Real Estate Watch: Low-Rise Office Market

The Orange County low-rise office market continues to surge. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Funky Vibes

Small Business Owners See Benefits With Redevelopment; Higher Rents?

SBA Lending

Loan Volume Rises as More Ethnic Banks Have Opened, Catering to Small-Business Owners

Assessing Gateway

Gateway's chief has laid out his vision to turn around the drifting computer maker

Irvine Co. Plans Low-Rise Newport Center Offices

The Irvine Company is readying to start a low-rise office building near its headquarters

Sage Taking Time to Digest Deals

Sage Software, after buying eight companies since the start of 2006, is taking a breather

Wet Seal CEO to Step Down in Early 2008

Joel Waller, the executive who turned around Foothill Ranch-based retailer Wet Seal Inc., is set to step down in February when his contract is up.

Developer of Web 'Collector' Software Gets $1.3 Million

Tech Coast Angels has made a big investment in software developer Clupedia, in the Technology column

Nursing Homes, Once Left for Dead, Enjoy Day in Sun

The county's nursing home operators are hardly geriatric these days

Burton Taps Hollywood Consultant, Gets Playboy Gig

Expect more Hollywood types to be dropping by the Irvine office of Burton Snowboards, in the Media & Marketing column


Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around OC


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Tissue Implant Maker Pegasus Raises $20M

Irvine's Pegasus Biologics has raised $20 million in a third round of venture capital funding


This past week's news from and other sources

CB Richard Ellis Jobs Moving Out of State After Trammell Deal

CB Richard Ellis Group is moving about a third of its local workers out of state

Former OCBJ Sales Manager Chubb DeCero Passes

A beloved member of the Business Journal family passes away

Blackstone Sets IPO, China to Take Stake

Blackstone Group LP on Monday said it planned to raise as much as $7.75 billion from selling stakes to the public and to China, in perhaps the year's most eagerly awaited initial public offering.

Friday, May 18

White House to Quickly Replace Wolfowitz

The White House said Friday it will move quickly to find a successor , preferably an American , for departing World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz as the administration sought to rebuild relationships strained by the controversy.

County Added April Jobs, But Unemployment Inched Up

Orange County's unemployment rate rose slightly to 3.5% in April, the state Employment Development Department said Friday.

Quest Gets Another Nasdaq Warning

Nasdaq officials continue to badger Aliso Viejo-based Quest Software Inc. for a running lapse in financial results amid a probe into stock option grants.

Clear Channel Approves Raised Bid, Moves Vote Date

Clear Channel Communications Inc. said on Friday its board approved an increased buyout proposal of $39.20 a share, or $19.6 billion, which includes an option that allows current shareholders to take about a 30% stake in the restructured company.

Big China Deal for Little I/O Magic

Irvine's I/OMagic Corp., which designs and sells DVD drives and other computer products, is selling 70% of the company to China's Jiangxi Greatsource Display Tech Co. for $95 million.

Microsoft to Buy Web Ad Firm aQuantive for $6B

Microsoft Corp. said on Friday it would buy aQuantive Inc. for $6 billion, paying an 85% premium to snap up one of the last large independent companies in a consolidating Web advertising market.

Avanir's Shares Soar on Drug Trial Results

Avanir Pharmaceuticals Inc., an Aliso Viejo-based drug maker that's struggled as of late, said Wednesday that a clinical trial showed that its Zenvia drug candidate significantly lessened nerve pain in diabetics.

Thursday, May 17

New Century Gets $188M for Loan Servicing Unit

Irvine's New Century Financial Corp. has auctioned off its loan servicing business for $188 million, the bankrupt subprime lender said.

Jobless Claims Drop by 5,000

A surprise drop in new claims for jobless benefits hinted at a healthier labor market, but a fall in a gauge of future economic activity pointed to slower economic growth this summer, data released on Thursday showed.

Blackstone To Buy Alliance Data for $7.8B

Private equity investor Blackstone Group LP said on Thursday it would buy Alliance Data Systems Corp., a provider of transaction, credit and marketing services, for $7.8 billion including debt.

Sony at Five-Year High

Shares of Sony Corp. hit a five-year high on Thursday after it forecast a six-fold surge in group profit this year and said losses in its game unit would shrink by 80% as it boosts sales of PlayStation 3.

Report: Boston Scientific in Guidant Settlement Talks

Boston Scientific Corp. is in talks to settle 1,350 product liability suits it inherited when it bought Guidant Corp last year, the Wall Street Journal said on its Web site on Thursday, citing unnamed sources.

T. Boone Pickens' Clean Energy Set to Debut

Clean Energy Fuels Inc., the Seal Beach company backed by legendary oilman T. Boone Pickens, could see its stock market debut next week.

Bernanke: No Spillover From Mortgage Woes

A rash of U.S. mortgage delinquencies is not expected to hurt the broader economy, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Thursday.

Wednesday, May 16

Option One Cutting Jobs, Offices

Option One Mortgage Corp., the Irvine subprime mortgage lender that's being sold by H & R; Block Inc., is cutting 600 jobs and combining offices, according to trade publication National Mortgage News.

Pimco Hires Greenspan as Consultant

Former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan has been hired as a bond trading strategy consultant to Newport Beach-based Pacific Investment Management Co.

QLogic Names Eventual Desai Successor

QLogic Corp. Chief Executive H.K. Desai has handpicked his successor, an IBM Corp. veteran who's set to learn the ins and outs of the company's data networking business.

Warburg Pincus to Buy Bausch & Lomb for $3.67B

Eye-care company Bausch & Lomb Inc., still dealing with widespread product recalls that have hurt its sales and delayed financial reports, said on Wednesday it agreed to be acquired by private equity firm Warburg Pincus for about $3.67 billion.

Federated Profit Misses Wall Street View as Sales Dip

Federated Department Stores Inc. reported lower-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, citing disappointing sales at new Macy's stores, and cut its outlook for the current period on concern about the economy.

Housing Slump Continues in April

Construction of new homes posted a small gain in April but applications for building permits plunged by the largest amount in 17 years, a dramatic sign that the nation's housing industry is still in a steep slump.

Tuesday, May 15

OC Home Prices Hold Steady

The median price of an Orange County home remained at $629,000 for a second straight month, but dropped marginally from a year ago.

Advanced Medical Gets Activist Investor

San Francisco-based hedge fund investor ValueAct Capital Partners LP has taken a 7.3% stake in Santa Ana's Advanced Medical Optics Inc.

Memory Company STEC Slumps After Warning

Shares of Santa Ana-based STEC Inc., a maker of memory products for industrial uses, plunged 25% Tuesday after the company warned a day earlier that profits would be lower than Wall Street's expectations for the current quarter.

Reuters Agrees to $17.2B Thomson Buyout

Reuters agreed on Tuesday to a $17.2 billion takeover by Thomson that would vault the combined entity ahead of Bloomberg to become the world's largest financial data and news provider.

Beckman Drops Out of Biosite Bidding

Enough is enough, Fullerton-based Beckman Coulter Inc. said Tuesday morning. The maker of medical testing and research products won't up its offer for San Diego's Biosite Inc., the target of a bidding war between Beckman and Inverness Medical Innovations

Home Sales Rate Down 6.6% in Q1

Sales of existing homes in the U.S. are on track to hit 6.4 million this year, down 6.6% from the pace of a year ago, the National Association of Realtors said Tuesday in the latest indication of the housing market's slowdown.

Judge Keeps New Century Execs in Place

A judge overseeing the bankruptcy of Irvine's New Century Financial Corp. has rejected a government bid to replace the subprime mortgage lender's management with a trustee, according to Reuters.

Nursing Home Operator Sees IPO Shares Rise

Shares of Skilled Healthcare Group Inc. priced at the high end of their range and rose 2.5% during trading Tuesday in their public offering debut that raised $258 million.

Consumer Inflation Moderates Slightly

Consumer inflation eased a bit in April even though gasoline prices surged for a second straight month.

Monday, May 14


Letters to the Editor. IBC Housing; Subprime Lending


Santa Ana's Ajax Boiler is into hot water


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Triple Net Healthcare REIT Picks Up Two More Offices

Santa Ana-based Triple Net Properties LLC, a real estate investor known for buying office buildings, has picked up more medical buildings and land.

Falling Chip Prices Play Out Among Memory Board Makers

A steep drop in prices for memory chips shows no sign of changing course this year

Fotis & Son: My Big Fat Greek Family Food Company

Family run Fotis & Son Imports is a well-oiled machine, in the Small Business column

Q1 Lives Up to Slumping Forecast for 2007 Auto Sales

OC auto sales dropped 7% in the first quarter, in the Marketplace column

Cardinal Health to Buy Viasys for $1.42B

Cardinal Health Inc. said on Monday that it would acquire Viasys Healthcare Inc., which makes medical products for respiratory care and other uses, for about $1.42 billion.


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

Allergan Eye Drugs Grow as Botox, Implants Grab Glory

Allergan's deep-rooted eye drugs see gains in sales


US office market report summary.

Maguire, Opus Pen Deals for Office Tower Projects

A pair of office tower developers has signed leases with two professional services firms for space at buildings going up near John Wayne Airport

Real Estate Watch: High-Rise Office Market

A discussion of OC's first-quarter high-rise office vacancy level, in Commercial Real Estate Watch. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Nursing Home IPO

Skilled Healthcare Group is moving ahead with plans to go public

Medical Device Makers Test Mixed Stock Offering Market

A mixed market for medical device stock offerings isn't scaring off Masimo and Devax from testing the waters

E & Y;'s Anderson to Retire; Samueli on Chips, Ducks, NBA

E & Y;'s Anderson to Retire; Samueli on Chips, Ducks, NBA

Wanted: Fast-Growing Private Companies for Inaugural List

Submit your fast-growing private company for our new list

Lennar's Local Boss Leaves Homebuilder

Rich Knowland, the Lennar regional vice president who oversaw the homebuilder's massive OC operations, has left the company

QLogic Names No. 2, Eventual Desai Successor

QLogic Chief Executive H.K. Desai has handpicked his successor

Whittier Law School Sues Bar Association Over Probation Status

Whittier Law School's fight to lift a two-year probation on its accreditation has resulted in a lawsuit


A Q & A; with Angels president Dennis Kuhl on the business side of the team

Another Nursing Home Operator Files to Go Public

Ensign Group, a Mission Viejo-based nursing home and rehabilitative care company, has filed plans to go public, looking to raise up to $95 million.

Cerberus to Buy Majority of Chrysler for $7.4B

Private equity firm Cerberus will buy a majority of DaimlerChrysler's struggling Chrysler Group for $7.4 billion, a fraction of the $36 billion deal that created the transatlantic car union nine years ago.


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

Inland Empire Posts Rebound in Industrial Market Leasing Activity

Inland Empire Posts Rebound in Industrial Market Leasing Activity

Ista's Setback Puts More Pressure on Flagship Xibrom

Ista Pharmaceuticals hits a setback as the FDA fails to approve its steroid eye drug, in the Healthcare column

Chipmaker Jazz: Bigger Loss, Slumping Sales

Newport Beach-based Jazz Technologies Inc., the holding company that bought Jazz Semiconductor Inc. earlier this year, reported a wider first-quarter loss and lower sales amid the chip sector's ongoing slump.

City of Angels

L.A.'s Office Market Sees Slowing in Leasing Activity, Rising Rents

Inland Empire Office Market Continues to See Strong Demand

Inland Empire Office Market Continues to See Strong Demand


Chuck Jones "Read to Succeed" art exhibit at Orange Public Library & History Center

Bigger Office for Event, Street Team Organizer IPW

IPW Experience doubled its space in a move to new offices, in the Media & Marketing column


A listing of events happening all around Orange County


A look at people, companies and institutions receiving awards, accolades, grants and other honors

Investor Makes Ethnic Market Push

Pacific Castle plans to invest in shopping centers that target Asian, Hispanic and other ethnic shoppers

Fluor Expanding With Irvine Lease

Fluor Corp. has signed a lease with The Irvine Company to consolidate and expand its Southern California operations.


Expect heightened investor interest and more speculative office development going forward, as the already hot market continues its upward path.


Absorption Gains, Vacancy Increases, Lease Rates Rise

Ford Family: Not Discussing Sale of Holdings

Ford Motor Co.'s founding family said on Monday that members were not discussing sale of their holdings in the No. 2 U.S. automaker.


Lease Rates Climb, Vacancy Declines, Absorption Rises


Office Market report for the Western United States


Absorption Drops, Vacancy Increases, Lease Rates Rise

New Foodie To-Do List; Festival Time at Balboa Bay Club

A plethora of new dining tempts your palate, in the Executive Dining column

Sperry Van Ness Investment Arm Sells Business Park

A Sperry Van Ness investment arm sold a Garden Grove business complex, in the Real Estate column

Office Space

Subprime Woes Weighing In on Market; Lack of Major Tenants


This past week's news from and other sources

Friday, May 11

CME Sweetens Bid for CBOT

Chicago Mercantile Exchange Holdings on Friday raised its takeover offer for the company that controls the Chicago Board of Trade by 16%, increasing pressure on rival bidder IntercontinentalExchange Inc.

LendingTree Lays Off Irvine Workers

Charlotte, N.C.-based LendingTree became the latest mortgage company to lay off Orange County workers on Friday.

Impac Slumps After Loss, Layoffs

Shares of Irvine-based Impac Mortgage Holdings Inc. dropped about 5% Friday after the mortgage investor reported a first-quarter net loss of $121.7 million a day earlier.

Litigation Settlement Spurs Autobytel Profit

Irvine auto marketer Autobytel Inc. said it swung to a first-quarter profit, thanks to settlement of a patent dispute.

Producer Prices Rose 0.7% in April

Elevated energy costs pushed producer prices up a slightly more-than-expected 0.7% in April, but excluding volatile food and energy costs, prices paid at the factory gate were unchanged, a Labor Department report released on Friday showed.

Retail Sales Drop as Inflation Muted

Retail sales unexpectedly tumbled in April but fresh signs that inflation remained in check reassured financial markets that the economy was slowing in an orderly fashion.

Thursday, May 10

JetBlue Removes Neeleman as CEO

JetBlue Airways Corp. removed David Neeleman as chief executive on Thursday, three months after a major service meltdown, putting the 47-year-old founder of the company into the role of non-executive chairman.

Pacific Sunwear Sales Slump, Prompting Loss Warning

Anaheim-based mall retailer Pacific Sunwear of California Inc.'s big jump in March same-store sales didn't carry over to April, prompting a warning about a loss for the recently ended quarter.

Weak Sales Trigger Retailer Warnings

Retailers reported weaker-than-forecast April sales on Thursday after cold, stormy weather and an earlier Easter holiday sapped demand for spring items, prompting some to cut their first-quarter forecasts.

Edwards Sues Local Rival Over New Type of Heart Valve

The county's heart valve Goliath is taking a local David to court. Irvine-based Edwards Lifesciences Corp. said Thursday its subsidiary working on a new type of heart valve filed suit against rival CoreValve Inc. of Irvine for alleged patent infringement.

Pegasus Biologics Raises Additional $20M

Pegasus Biologics Inc., an Irvine medical device company, said Thursday that it raised $20 million in a third round of venture funding, bringing its total to just under $32 million.

Trade Deficit Swells 10.4% in March

The U.S. trade deficit widened more than expected in March to $63.9 billion, as higher oil prices helped push total imports to the second highest on record, a U.S. government report showed on Thursday.

New Ante in Beckman Bidding War for Biosite

The bidding war continues. A week after Fullerton's Beckman Coulter Inc. raised its takeover bid for San Diego's Biosite Inc., rival suitor Inverness Medical Innovations Inc. of Massachusetts upped the ante again Thursday.

Wednesday, May 9

Cisco Shares Fall Despite Big Q3 Profit

Cisco Systems Inc.'s fiscal third-quarter profit surged 34%, but investors punished the stock on signs of weakness for the second straight quarter in a core area of the company's business.

Disney Earnings Rise 27%

Walt Disney Co. exceeded second-quarter profit expectations, but its performance for the rest of the year is largely up to a pirate captain named Jack Sparrow and a gourmet animated rat named Remy.

Investor Turns to OC for Fund's First Investment

Los Angeles-based private equity investor Riordan, Lewis & Haden has tapped Orange County for its first investment with a new $265 million fund it closed late last month.

Source: Providence, Blackstone Chasing Alltel

Private equity firms Providence Equity Partners and Blackstone Group LP are teamed up in a bid for U.S. rural wireless telecoms service provider Alltel Corp., a source familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

New Century Contests Government Bid for Trustee

Irvine's New Century Financial Corp. is fighting a government bid to replace its executives with a bankruptcy trustee.

Fed Holds Rates Steady

The U.S. Federal Reserve on Wednesday held benchmark interest rates steady at 5.25% for a seventh straight meeting and again said its main worry is that inflation will fail to moderate.

Drug Maker IDM Plunges on Regulatory Setback

Irvine drug maker IDM Pharma Inc., which saw a big runup in its stock last month, gave back a big part of the gain Wednesday after regulators recommended against approving its bone cancer drug.

Tuesday, May 8

Real Estate Investor NNN Files for $423M IPO

Santa Ana-based NNN Realty Advisors Inc.,parent company of real estate investor Triple Net Properties LLC,plans to raise up to $423 million in an initial public offering.

Thomson in Talks to Buy Reuters

Canadian publisher Thomson Corp. is in talks to buy Reuters Group PLC for about $17.6 billion to create the world's biggest financial news and data company, the two firms said on Tuesday.

Hewlett-Packard Raises Outlook

Hewlett-Packard Co. on Tuesday raised its forecast for second-quarter revenue and earnings, citing strong results from its personal computer and servers businesses.

Tyco Quarterly Profit Down on Charges

Tyco International Ltd., which plans to split into three companies in coming weeks, reported lower quarterly earnings on Tuesday as restructuring costs reduced earnings, but results beat Wall Street expectations thanks to a low tax rate.

Gateway Narrows Loss

Irvine PC maker Gateway Inc. on Tuesday reported a smaller first-quarter loss than a year earlier amid a fall in sales.

BioLase Shares Drop on Revenue Decline

Irvine-based BioLase Technology Inc. said Tuesday that it narrowed its first-quarter loss, but shares fell about 7% on the device maker's revenue decline.

M-Flex Slumps on Lower Sales to Motorola

Anaheim's Multi-Fineline Electronix Inc. said profits dropped 75% for the recently ended quarter on falling prices and weak sales to its biggest customer, Motorola Inc.

Monday, May 7

Broadcom's Murky Q2 Outlook Sends Shares Down 6%

Broadcom shares took a beating after it gave a murky outlook for the current quarter, in the Technology column

Custom Golf Clothing Maker Relocates HQ to Irvine Spectrum

A golf clothing maker is moving its headquarters to a bigger building in the Irvine Spectrum

Freedom Expands Direct Mail Work With Machine Buy

Freedom Communications is handling its own direct mail production now, in the Media & Marketing column

Powerwave Blames Big Loss on Industry Woes

Shares of Santa Ana-based Powerwave Technologies Inc. fell about 5% in afterhours trading after the company said it widened its loss for the first quarter on restructuring and other charges.


Project developments and other activity in cities across OC

Beckman's $1.67B Bid Finds Favor With Biosite

After Biosite accepted Beckman Coulter's revised bid last week, the ball's in Inverness' court

Interim CEO Fetter Stabilizing St. John

It's been only six months, but Bruce Fetter's already putting his touch on St. John Knits

Tishman Looking to Unload Newly-Bought Del Taco HQ

The office complex that houses Del Taco's headquarters is up for sale again, in the Real Estate column

Tourism Convention Sparks Hope for Visitor Increase

Tourism Convention Sparks Hope for Visitor Increase

News Corp. Sells Stake in Rival Fairfax

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. has sold its entire 7.5% stake in rival Australian company Fairfax Media for about $312 million, both companies said Monday.

Maguire Planning More OC Office Sales

This much is known: Maguire Properties Inc. is officially now the county's second largest office landlord, behind The Irvine Company.

Pimco's Gross, Thompson Renew Contracts

Pacific Investment Management Co.'s two key executives re-upped their contracts for another two years

ABN Rejects $24.5B RBS LaSalle Offer

ABN AMRO rejected a $24.5 billion offer for its U.S. bank LaSalle from a consortium led by Royal Bank of Scotland, but said it would let shareholders express their views on the bank's next steps.

Downey Short Sellers Pitted Against Hopefuls

Downey Financial's short sellers are up against buyout hopefuls


This past week's news from and other sources


A listing of events happening all around Orange County

Maguire Plans More Local Office Sales; Buyers To Be Seen

Maguire Properties is looking to sell off more offices,buyers remain to be seen

Unique Sapphire Laguna Fits Perfectly With Artsy City

You won't feel blue at Sapphire Laguna, in the Executive Dining column

Microsemi's PowerDsine Acquisition Brings Cisco

Microsemi is starting to see the payoff of its latest buy

Alcoa Launches $27B Hostile Bid for Alcan

Alcoa, the world's largest aluminum company, said on Monday it would make a hostile bid for Canada's Alcan Inc., estimated at $27 billion, after talks between the rivals failed to lead to a deal.

IDM Rises on FDA Talks for Bone Cancer Drug Junovan

Officials from IDM Pharma are scheduled to meet this week with an FDA panel, in the Healthcare column


"Silverfish Trivia" CD by Robert Pollard

Makeover Madness

A rundown of recent hotel renovations and a list of OC's biggest hotels


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

They Say

The issue of healthcare has re-emerged with an even bigger "help wanted" sign in the windows of small-business owners across California

Real Estate Watch: Los Angeles County

Los Angeles office vacancy declines while industrial space rises. PLUS: CHART - Net Absorption; Vacancy Rates; Average Asking Lease Rates

Dealers Third Largest Employer Here; 13,000 Workers

OC auto dealers are the third largest employer in the county, in the Marketplace column

Investor Goes Local for Fund's First Investment

Los Angeles-based Riordan, Lewis & Haden is making a significant investment in Irvine employment agency CyberCoders as its first investment with a new fund


Outlaw Subprime Lending? No Way. Commentary by WILLIAM J. BATTISON, president of Angeles Capital Group LLC


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


Hirings, promotions and other moves at local businesses

Westrust Wraps Up $80M Shopping Center After Years of Negotiations

A Lake Forest shopping center is finally opening its last phase after a slew of hurdles

Oakley Expands Ontario Warehouse

Foothill Ranch-based Oakley Inc. is leasing an extra 290,000 square feet of warehouse space in Ontario at a complex being built by ProLogis.

Sunny Outlook

New Theme Park Attractions, Anniversaries Fuel Interest; Prices Not A Worry

Friday, May 4

Devax Plans $85M IPO

Devax Inc., a Lake Forest-based medical device maker, said Friday it plans to raise up to $85 million in an initial public offering.

Equity One Set to Pay $14M for People's Choice Assets

It looks like Irvine-based People's Choice Home Loan Inc. has found a buyer for its assets.

Reuters: Possible Takeover Bid

Reuters Group PLC said Friday that it had received a preliminary takeover approach, sending shares of the British news and financial information company soaring 25%.

Shares of Ista Plunge 30% on FDA Denial

Shares of Irvine-based Ista Pharmaceuticals Inc. fell sharply Friday after the company said its T-Pred topical steroid eye treatment received a "not approvable" letter from the Food and Drug Administration.

Report Signals Softening Job Market

The U.S. economy added a modest 88,000 jobs in April, the slimmest gain in more than two years, and unemployment edged up, a government report showed on Friday, signaling a softening job market in a sluggish economy.

Microsoft Looking to Buy Yahoo

Microsoft Corp. has stepped up its pursuit of a deal to buy Yahoo Inc., two newspapers reported on Friday, as the two companies re-enter talks to strike a deal amid huge growth from rival Google Inc.

Thursday, May 3

Broadcom Buying Chipmaker for $31M

Irvine-based chipmaker Broadcom Corp. said Thursday it's buying a privately-held maker of chips for digital home entertainment devices.

Jobless Caims Fell 21,000 Last Week

The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless benefits fell unexpectedly by 21,000 to the lowest level of claims since January, a Labor Department report showed on Thursday.

New Century to Lay Off 2,000 Workers

Irvine-based New Century Financial Corp. said on Thursday it is laying off close to 2,000 workers, after the bankrupt subprime lender reportedly failed to receive any bids for its mortgage loan lending unit.

Dutch Court: ABN Must Freeze LaSalle Sale

A Dutch court ruled on Thursday that ABN AMRO must freeze its $21 billion sale of U.S. unit LaSalle to Bank of America, opening up the possibility of a rival bid for the Netherlands' biggest bank.

First American Q1 Profit Up

Santa Ana-based data services provider First American Corp. on Thursday posted better than expected revenue and improved earnings from a year ago, although the company's core title business again saw a decline in profitability.

BMW's Q1 Profit Drops 38%

Luxury car maker BMW AG said Thursday its first-quarter profit dropped 38% as it spent more money on launching new models and because last year's figure included a one-time gain.

QLogic's Shares Fall on Profit Decline

Aliso Viejo-based QLogic Corp., a maker of data storage and networking products, saw profit fall by about 42% for the quarter ended April 1.

Wednesday, May 2

Allergan Swings to Q1 Profit

Irvine-based Allergan Inc. said Wednesday that it swung to a first-quarter profit after recording a big loss a year earlier following its buy of Inamed Corp.

Clear Channel Sells Assets as Part of Buyout Plan

U.S. broadcaster Clear Channel Communications Inc. said on Wednesday it agreed to sell 362 radio stations for $820 million as it divests assets in accordance with its embattled $19.5 billion plan to go private.

Beckman Matches Inverness Offer for Biosite

Fullerton-based Beckman Coulter Inc., a medical testing company, said Wednesday that it upped its offer for Biosite Inc. to about $1.67 billion, or $90 a share, matching a rival bid from Massachusetts-based Inverness Medical Innovations Inc.

Dow Jones: Taking No Action on News Corp. Bid

Dow Jones & Co. said on Wednesday its board decided to take no action on a $5 billion proposal by News Corp. to take the company private.

GMAC Posts Loss, Hurt by Mortgage Unit

General Motors Corp.'s former finance arm, GMAC, posted a first-quarter loss on Wednesday as pressure on the U.S. mortgage market forced the company to take charges at its housing finance unit.

TTM Beats Wall Street Views, Shares Soar on Earnings

Shares of Santa Ana circuit board maker TTM Technologies Inc. soared some 30% in trading Wednesday after its earnings beat estimates.