Stories for August 2018

Friday, August 31

Hackers Gone Wild

The $60 million “mom-and-pop” shop in Lake Forest isn’t your dad’s mom-and-pop ... for one thing, these hackers wear white hats.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was down 0.2% in midday trading to 2,894.46.

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JWA’s July Up 8%

John Wayne Airport passenger traffic rose about 8% year-over-year in July to 991,000; the year-to-date total of 6.2 million passengers is 5.4% higher than a year ago.

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Concierge Key Names Afable New CEO

Newport Beach-based Concierge Key Health, which has created a mobile app for on-demand access to medical specialists, named Richard Afable as president and chief executive,

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John Wayne Ride-Share Growth Prompts Fee Revamp

TRANSPORTATION: Below- market rates go uptown Sept. 1

John Wayne Airport will raise fees paid by ride-share companies, limousines and shuttles starting Sept.1 to be comparable with other airports and profit from fast-growing firms, including Lyft Co. and Uber Technologies Inc.

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OC 500: Grant Van Cleve

Also CEO software maker Buy It Installed Inc. … TCA one of most active angel investor groups in US … has consulted for some 60 startups, worked directly with quarter of them … born in Calif. … education at Penn, Wharton … lived Europe 19 years … backs ‘startups with defined social impact, ’ including software maker Funraise … mobile ed firm … wife, three kids

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Thursday, August 30

Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 declined 0.1% in midday trading to 2,911.67.

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Coworking Explodes in OC

Base Tops 1.2M SF, 67 Locations

Entrepreneurs, small businesses and startups have a million reasons to smile about Orange County’s rapidly growing base of coworking locations and their wide array of customer amenities.

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OC 500: Tim Ryan

Also president, CEO of Anaheim Arena Management LLC, both owned by Henry and Susan Samueli … 40 years running arenas, creating event experiences … 25 years at Honda Center … dozen-plus seasons atop Ducks day-to-day … Honda Center, Ducks intro’d millions in upgrades, sponsorships for current season … CSUF bachelor’s … lives HB … wife, Michele … golf, fly-fishing, travel

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Wednesday, August 29

Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 rose 0.5% in midday trading to 2,911.29.

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UCI Gets $9 Million

A new institute will be established at the University of California-Irvine thanks to a $9 million donation by Japanese analytical and measurement system company Horiba Group to the university’s advanced power and energy program.

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Anaheim Ends Disney Deals

Anaheim City Council voted 7-0 Tuesday to end agreements with Disneyland Resort that would have given tax breaks in exchange for investment in the resort’s hotel and parks. Resort President Josh D’Amaro last week had asked the deals be terminated.

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KPC Exec Moves Point To Integration and Buys

HEALTHCARE: Baronoff aims for more efficiency

Integration is task No. 1 for KPC Healthcare Inc.’s new chief executive, Peter Baronoff.

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OC 500: John L. Ginger

OC-embedded owner of Riversidebased firm … runs one of largest masonry contractors in Western U.S. … structural masonry, site walls, stone and brick veneer … chairs Segerstrom Center for the Arts into next

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Tuesday, August 28

5.11 Tactical Names CEO

Francisco Morales has been named chief executive of 5.11 Tactical, the Irvine-based maker of apparel and gear for soldiers, firefighters and police officers.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 is flat in midday trading at 2,896.60.

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FivePoint Heads Up 57 Freeway for More Business

REAL ESTATE: Cal Poly Pomona picks developer for Lanterman

FivePoint Communities Inc. is in discussions to take over master development duties at a nearly 300-acre site on the eastern edge of Los Angeles County owned by California State Polytechnic University-Pomona.

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OC 500: William ‘Bill’ Shopoff

Develops sites with entitlement risk, long view … Uptown Newport phase one: 200 condos, 450 apartments with Picerne Group … near $105M TTM revenue … initially aimed for marine biology career—’thought I’d be the next Jacques Cousteau’ … one that got away: firm ‘part of winning team’ to buy OC Register site, ‘only to have DOJ snatch it out of our hands’

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Monday, August 27

El Pollo Loco Creates Chief HR Role

El Pollo Loco Holdings Inc. in Costa Mesa named Jennifer Jaffe chief people officer, a new position. She held the same role at Too Faced Cosmetics in Irvine and worked at Estée Lauder Cos., which bought Too Faced in Nov. 2016 for $1.5 billion.

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Anaheim Isn’t Happiest Place for Developers

HOTELS: $1.1 billion in new hotels at risk

A sizzling summer for Anaheim hotels is getting hotter in more ways than one.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.8% in midday trading to 2,897.25.

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OC 500: Bill Carpou

Came aboard as chief exec, 2015 … 400 firms have come through LaunchPad accelerator since LP’s 2009 launch; 88% got funding … $2.1B in funding and exits … corporate alum include software maker Mavenlink: $84M

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High School Students Reach For Stars Via Engineering

Irvine, Tustin Teams Build Satellites for Launch

Irvine High School’s fall semester is underway, but incoming senior Mehr Bawa had already been hard at work.

Shared-Space Survivor

TechSpace Managed 2 Downturns—Will Others?

TechSpace Inc. was WeWork Inc. before WeWork was WeWork. The Aliso Viejo-based shared-space provider, whose roots date to 1997, can take claim as being one, if not the first, national firm to offer cutting-edge, amenity-heavy flexible work space to smaller companies.

J.D. Power Deal Makes Auto Data Available for Ads

Working With Nielsen On Auto Cloud Platform

Costa Mesa-based J.D. Power wants to help improve auto advertising for agencies and media owners.

ChromaDex’s World Tour Hits New Zealand, Asia

Supplement Maker’s Next Stop Turkey

Irvine-based supplement maker ChromaDex Corp. (Nasdaq: CDXC) is ramping up international expansion efforts.

Software Companies Again Boost Headcount Over 5%

Games, Security, Analytics Continue Growth Spurts

Orange County’s software sector, a key economic driver, boosted employment 5.4%, the third straight year of significant job growth.

Satellite Makers Hope to Lift Local Industry into Orbit

Rocket Lab Leads With First Commercial Launch

Huntington Beach-based Rocket Lab is carrying more than small satellites on its first commercial launch, which has been rescheduled for late this year.


Irvine-based Arcules, a 1-year-old firm that provides surveillance, security and other data services using video cloud Internet of Things technology, has launched a new service platform.



Newport Beach-based Toba Capital, OC’s largest venture capital firm, led a $6.4 million Series A round for San Francisco-based analytics services provider Skupos Inc.

Fastest-Growing Private Cos. Wanted for OC Business Journal’s Annual List

ECONOMY: Centerpiece of Sept. 17 Special Report

Is your company growing fast?

E-tailer Madaluxe Stores Fuels Sales

INNOVATION: CEO drives web traffic with new locales

Chief Executive Adam Freede describes MadaLuxe Group’s e-commerce platform for its direct-to-consumer division, MadaLuxe Vault, like “a startup division with a more established company.”

LBA Pays $104 Million for 2 Irvine Spectrum Offices

REAL ESTATE: Taco Bell headquarters part of buy

LBA Realty has added another big office property in the Irvine Spectrum to its portfolio, snapping up a two-building property that includes the headquarters of Taco Bell Corp.

Synoptek Employs ‘Up the Stack’ to Buy Indusa

TECHNOLOGY: Boosts AI, software, consulting

Synoptek LLC’s recent acquisition of Indusa places the information technology service provider at the doorstep of $100 million in annual revenue while boosting its Microsoft Corp. offerings and related consulting work.

‘Collisions Created’

This week our first special report on the booming coworking sector—yes booming here, not just elsewhere. WeWork has two OC locations, rumored to be looking for a third—Bascom Group-owned Premier Business Centers leads with over 20, list p. 13.

OCBJ Calendar

Aug. 27-Sept. 6, 2018; Sept. 12 & 20

This week's business and other event listings.

Real Estate Deals

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

Michigan City, Ind.-based Dwyer Instruments Inc. sold an industrial building to Freeway Industrial Park for $2.9 million, or $244 per square foot.

Lack of Homeowners Created Perfect Market For Discount Furniture Stores

With the recession well in the past, furniture retailers are again on the upswing, sales growing 4.4% in the U.S. over the previous year.

Post-Split Buying Spree Continues for Grosses

‘Bond King’ Adds Pad For $32M, Sue One for $12M

Billionaire Bill Gross made headlines when he put $35.8 million down on an oceanfront property in the guard-gated Irvine Cove community in June.

Ducommun Flies High on New Contract, Q2 Rev Beat

InfoSpan Loses Appeal; Lantronix on Micro Index

Santa Ana-based aerospace manufacturer Ducommun Inc. has landed a contract valued at more than $200 million from an unnamed customer to produce housing for engines, fuel and equipment.

Plans for Hotel-Office Hybrid in Irvine Move Forward

De Vries’ HJ Capital Group Heads Up Project

Expect to see the recently proposed Banc Hotel hospitality and office development in Irvine start to make its way through the city’s planning process next year, according to the ambitious project’s backers.

Friday, August 24

Space Invaders

It’s more than WeWork—a look at the fast-growing community of shared space in Orange County: nearly 70 locations and 25 separate operators.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.5% in midday trading to 2,872.27.

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Shea Kicks Off Rare Industrial Project Near Airport

9-Building Development Will Be Nearly 500K SF

Shea Properties has kicked off work on the largest ground-up industrial project in the area around John Wayne Airport in over a decade.

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OC 500: William A. Witte

Major OC affordable housing developer … lost out on ambitious 25-story, 100- unit luxe condo tower Museum House in Newport, current home of OC Museum of Art … cites it as ‘one that got away’ … family—wife, Keiko, son, Nick, daughters Olivia, Sophia—is passion … backs homeless shelters in Laguna Beach, DTLA … three keys: ‘patience, passion, people skills’

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Thursday, August 23

Diversity & Inclusion Summit 2018: ANITA WU

Custom Content by the Los Angeles Business Journal

Anita Wu joined Green Hasson Janks in 2000 and has more than 20 years of auditing experience within the entertainment industry.

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Diversity & Inclusion Summit 2018:JANET LAMKIN

Custom Content by the Los Angeles Business Journal

Janet Lamkin is United’s president for California, which is home to United’s San Francisco and Los Angeles hubs.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was down 0.1% in midday trading to 2,859.38.

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Irvine Co. Debuts Big Bet on Spectrum Center

RETAIL: Local, lifestyle are themes of $200M redo

More than a dozen new stores and eateries sprouted in the north section of the Irvine Shopping Center that not too long ago housed Macy’s department store. New tenants are national and local favorites—Sephora, 85°C Bakery Cafe, Stance, Afters Ice Cream—that complement the rest of the 150 shops at the outdoor center.

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OC 500: Elizabeth Segerstrom

Clinical psychologist … NYU doctorate … married Henry Segerstrom 2000 … has shared MP duties with his niece Sandy Segerstrom Daniels from his Feb. 2015 death … member, chairman’s committee, Carnegie Hall’s 125th Anniversary Gala … native Pole fluent in several languages … owned salons, Eastern Europe … coauthored self-help book 1990s

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Wednesday, August 22

Top Litigators in Los Angeles: CHRISTIAN SCALI

Custom Content by the Los Angeles Business Journal

Christian Scali has a diverse automotive industry practice that includes advertising,

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was flat in midday trading at 2,864.19.

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Disney Letter Hits Development Debate

A letter from Disneyland Resort President Josh D’Amaro to Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait and the city council asking to end an agreement that would provide bed tax rebates from a planned luxury hotel shifts a debate in the city for several developers.

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How Richard Sudek is Growing The Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

INNOVATION: Came to UCI in 2014 and ‘moved very quickly’

Firms with connections to the University of California-Irvine have raised more than $18.9 billion over the past 10 years, according to Richard Sudek, an angel investor and executive director of the school’s Applied Innovation center.

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OC 500: Moti Ferder

Also design director … started in family diamond business, Antwerp … first ‘grand salon,’ HQ 2005 NB … second, Montage Laguna … third, Aspen 2017 … NASDAQtraded Alcentra Capital backed it, $5.3M investment …

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Tuesday, August 21

Long Beach Airport Up 10%

Long Beach Airport traffic in July and year-to-date were each 10% higher year-over-year, with 358,000 passengers in the month and 1.2 million in the first seven months this year.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.5% in midday trading to 2,870.52, an all-time high.

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Accenture Plans Hiring; Expanding in OC

SERVICES: World’s No. 1 seeks office to tout latest technologies

Accenture PLC’s new Southern California boss, David Wolf, has big plans for Orange County.

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OC 500: Manouch Moshayedi

Made fortune as co-founder of storage device maker STEC, which sold 2013, for $340 million … buys commercial real estate … family is largest property owner along Mariner’s Mile in Newport Beach, $150M deals since 2009 … marriage, home, family his life turning points, activities, passion … secret to success: ‘sticking to it’

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Monday, August 20

Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 rose 0.3% in midday trading to 2,857.76.

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Edwards Grows HQ After $36M Land Buy Next Door

REAL ESTATE: 3 buildings, more parking planned for Royalty site

Edwards Lifesciences Corp. has proposed a major expansion of its Irvine headquarters, paving the way for Orange County’s largest public company to add hundreds of jobs to its local operations.

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OC 500: Paul Bay

Role, responsibilities have grown at large products distributor … previously over U.S. export functions, now oversees North, South America ops from Canada to Chile … 21 years with Ingram, plus four-year stint as chief executive, Punch Software in mid-2000s in K.C., Mo. … CSU-Northridge grad with bachelor’s in speech communication

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Alorica Inc. Embarks on C-Suite Hiring Spree

SERVICES: Irvine giant names CFO, COO, CIO

In 2015 and 2016 Irvine-based Alorica Inc. quadrupled annual revenue to $2.4 billion and employee count to 100,000.

500 Shows, One Bad

In 2008 Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was pouring $1.3 billion into “Jerry World,” his state-of-the-art stadium, right in the teeth of the Great Recession. Some called it the oilman giving the finger to the GR.

Some Hotel Owners Grounded by Shorter Land Leases

Contracts Affect Ops Of Area Investors

Selling one of Newport Beach’s largest resort properties wasn’t an easy choice for Sunstone Hotel Investors Inc. Chief Executive John Arabia.

Ex-Boeing Staffer Engineers Sweet Enterprise

Dirty Cookie Scales Milk Shots Famed Chef Created

Shahira Marei jumped from managing projects at Boeing to serving cookie-enveloped milk shots. The career switch was rather drastic, but it was her ties to the aerospace giant that made her Dirty Cookie business a possibility.

Former Proove CEO Meshkin Starts Venture Fund

HEALTHCARE: Plans lawsuits to fight ‘false allegations’

The most awful thing for Brian Meshkin was the Federal Bureau of Investigation raiding Proove Biosciences Inc.’s Irvine headquarters and making “political theater about it” with media on-site.

Real Estate Deals

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

Freeway Industrial Park sold an industrial building to Knoll Inc. for $12 million, or $178 per square foot.

Business Bites

Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 41, No. 34

Walt Disney Co. said it put its fourth hotel near Disneyland Resort in Anaheim on hold in a disagreement with the city over tax rebates.

OCBJ Calendar

Aug. 20-29, 2018

This week's business and other event listings.


Marwit Investment Management LLC has exited essentially all of its investments, giving Managing Partner Matthew Witte more time with family—including backing startups created by two of his kids.


Free Wheelchair Mission celebrated its 15th Annual Miracle of Mobility on July 26 at Segerstrom Center of the Arts, raising $1.63 million to provide more than 20,000 wheelchairs to impoverished people around the world.

Ducommun Continues Cuts With Phoenix Plant Close

Says OC Operations Not Affected by Other Cuts

Santa Ana-based aerospace manufacturer Ducommun Inc. initiated more restructuring charges in the second quarter and shuttered its 100,000-square-foot plant in Phoenix, it disclosed in its recent earnings report.

Architecture Firm LPA Grows Space at UCI Biz Park

Broadcom’s Old Space Getting Snapped Up

Irvine-based LPA Inc., Orange County’s second-largest architecture firm, plans to spiff up its new headquarters at UCI Research Park.

Mission Hospital Rolls Out Three Midwifery Suites

Second in California With Hospital Birthing Center

There are basically two options for expecting mothers: obstetrician-gynecologists or midwives.

Mazda Retools Racing Endeavors in End to Indy Road

Near-Decade Sponsorship Makes Way for Grassroots

Mazda North American Operations will end its longtime sponsorship of the Mazda Road to Indy driver-development program this year.

Communications is the Answer to 4% Job Gains

Telecoms, Wireless Cos. Extend Job-Growth Hat Trick

The largest telecommunications companies and related wireless equipment makers grew employment at a modest clip in the year ended July 31.

Fastest-Growing Private Cos. Wanted for OC Business Journal’s Annual List

ECONOMY: Centerpiece of Sept. 17 Special Report

Is your company growing fast?

Kobe Bryant Fans Can Now Chant ‘M-V-C’

FINANCE: He scores ‘30-bagger’ investing in BodyArmor drink

It’s early, but Kobe Inc. could end up making folks forget about Kobe Hall of Fame.

Ear, Nose, Throat Pharma Seeks Cash

HEALTHCARE: Plans to spend $20M for two trials

Novus Therapeutics Inc. (Nasdaq: NVUS) has its eyes—and ears—open for more funding.

Office Market Growth Plateaus

Strong positive net absorption, led by technology and business services tenants, offset the market’s negative net absorption in the first quarter. Occupiers were drawn to amenity-rich buildings in central locations, and landlords latched onto the trend, focusing on renovations and increased asking rates.

Industrial Market Stays Tight

With a strong start to the year, increased activity by a diverse mix of tenants held market fundamentals steady. But the increase only marginally improved occupancy, many tenants opting to play musical chairs with neighboring tenants instead of expanding.

Friday, August 17

They Need Space

“We’re growing our business, Orange County is a tremendous opportunity,” David Wolf said. Accenture PLC’s West Coast boss is looking for new local digs to support his expansion plans.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was flat in midday trading at 2,841.41.

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OC Jobs Drop as State Rises

Orange County lost 10,100 jobs in July while California added 46,700, according to the state’s Employment Development Department.

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Thursday, August 16

New AutoGravity CEO Tries to Avoid Potholes

FINTECH: Vows smoother ride after leadership shakeup

AutoGravity Corp., the Irvine fintech recently embroiled in management turmoil, is for sure keeping one thing: a wooden slide employees use to spirit themselves from the second floor to the first.

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OC 500: Irving Chase

Among Santa Ana’s largest property owners … several city blocks, notably in DTSA … area family ties back to 1919 … son Ryan leads recent redevelopment of SA’s East End, including 4th Street Market … recent buy of

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Midday Stock Roundup

Indexes were up at midday on company earnings; shares of Walmart Inc. shot up almost 10% after the retailer released its second quarter report.

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Disney Suspends Hotel Project

Walt Disney Co. has stopped work on its fourth hotel near Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, the company said.

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LA Fitness Floats Newest Concept

RETAIL: Test float pods seek to compete for young members

For 33-year-old health club operator and LA Fitness parent Fitness International LLC, workout trends come and go, but that doesn’t mean it ignores the latest boutique fitness studios popping up around its 709 locations.

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OC 500: Madhu Vijay

Joined PacLife 1997 … senior financial analyst … treasurer at ACG unit 2000; current role 2012 … has done $16B in financing for group … 100 airline customers in 45 countries … global top-10 aircraft leasing firm … ACG work has supported S&P, Fitch upgrades … previously Freddie Mac … backs OC’s Council on Aging; board member Pacific Life Foundation … Business Journal CFO of the Year 2016

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Wednesday, August 15

Alorica Hires 4 C-Suite Execs

Alorica Inc., an Irvine-based outsourcing company with 100,000 employees, said it hired several high-level executives: Chief Financial Officer KJ Tjon, who replaces Cindy Fiorillo; Chief Operating Officer Greg Haller, and Chief Information Officer Steve Phillips.

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Rox Names CEO

San Clemente-based Rox Medical Inc. appointed Mike MacKinnon as chief executive. He came from Philips N.A. where he was head of sales for image guided technologies.

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Midday Stock Roundup

Major indexes were down at midday on trade tensions.

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20 Years of Job Changes Crunched

ECONOMY: More now in health, business services

Social workers and business consultants were the biggest job winners in the past two decades in Orange County.

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OC 500: Bob Alter

Founded hotel owner-operator 1985 … took public twice: 1995, 2004 … grew from $30M revenue 1995 to $1B 2007 …

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Tuesday, August 14

NAMM, NAPEW Re-Up in Anaheim

Visit Anaheim said OC's two largest tradeshows by attendance—National Association of Music Merchants and Natural Products Expo West—have booked their slots at Anaheim Convention Center through 2023 and 2022, respectively.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 rose 0.7% in midday trading to 2,840.14.

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Photo Prints E-commerce Co. Buys Again

Huntington Beach-based MailPix Inc. bought PrintShopLab, the printing unit of Denver-based Photobucket Corp., on undisclosed terms.

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Merger Makes Trace3 OC’s Newest $1B Tech Company

CEO: ‘I Think We’re a Juggernaut’

The merger of Irvine-based Trace3 and Data Strategy LLC in Grand Rapids, Mich. has created a formidable IT services provider with revenue surpassing $1.1 billion.

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OC 500: Raj Bhathal

Started swimwear maker with wife, Marta … 2017 first non-family president, Brenda West, fellow OC 500er … Raj, Marta back Segerstrom Center, Chapman—Raj trustee; student services building named for them … sports:

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Monday, August 13

Veritone Sales Sour Traders

Shares of Veritone Inc. (Nasdaq: VERI) plummeted after the company reported second quarter results that missed Wall Street expectations.

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Veritone Plans Two Acquisitions

Veritone Inc. shares jumped today after the Costa Mesa-based company announced two pending acquisitions, one for its emerging artificial intelligence business and the other for its media-buying arm.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 fell 0.4% in midday trading to 2,821.90.

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Older Hotels Join Resort-Area Refresh

Those Built in Disney’s Early Days Get 21st Century Updos

When Bill O’Connell entered the hotel business in Anaheim 50 years ago, “Disneyland was closed on Mondays and Tuesdays” for cleaning and repairs.

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Montage Top-20 Global Brand

Irvine-based Montage International’s luxe resort unit, Montage Hotels & Resorts, is the 14th-best resort brand in the world, according to readers of Travel & Leisure magazine.

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OC 500: Russ Bendel

Longtime restaurateur—Cheesecake Factory, Mimi’s—heads burger chain … current role 10 years; IPO 2014 at top of fast-casual craze … $300M market cap … $153M revenue, up from $89M 2015 … $5M net, up from 2015 loss

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Price Competition Results in Mixed Edwards Q2

HEALTHCARE: Says new valves should drive up Q4 sales

Recent stock reactions to Orange County’s largest publicly traded company speak to Edwards Lifesciences Corp.’s (NYSE: EW) second-quarter earnings.

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Dual Hotel-Office Project Proposed in Airport Area

REAL ESTATE: Backer of 9-story project has colorful history

A nine-story development featuring a boutique hotel and nearly 167,000 square feet of office space has been proposed for a vacant site on Jamboree Road in the John Wayne Airport area of Irvine, one of the largest commercial projects put forth there in recent years.

Family Man

Bill O’Connell married a hometown girl from the Midwest but had to take a job near Disneyland to do it.

Space Race

Al Stovall visited Disneyland in 1959.

Monarch Beach Resort Loan Pegs Value at $466M

REAL ESTATE: $1.2 million per-room appraisal at high mark

The up-and-down valuation of the swanky Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point over its 17-year history has apparently hit a new high, based on documents related to a new loan for the 400-room resort.

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Food Bites; Bruce’s Battles

While the region’s food scene has never been more vibrant, it’s been a tough year for lovers of great food writing in the Southland.

HCP REIT En Route To All-Private-Pay Portfolio

HEALTHCARE: Construction totals about $800 million

A third of the former “Big Three” senior housing real estate investment trusts is wearing a different color: HCP Inc. (NYSE: HCP) plans to slice its portfolio into three equal segments over the next few years.

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Fastest-Growing Private Cos. Wanted for OC Business Journal’s Annual List

ECONOMY: Centerpiece of Sept. 17 Special Report

Is your company growing fast?

PR Agencies’ Staffing Up 8% as They Help With Tech

Clients Tap Them For Targeted Ad Campaigns

Orange County’s biggest public relations firms added more desks in the 12 months ended July 31.

Hyundai Jumps on Amazon Wagon, an Industry First

Deepens Relationship With Vehicle Sales Page

Fountain Valley-based automaker Hyundai Motors North America launched a digital showroom last month in partnership with e-commerce giant Inc., making it the first manufacturer to have a dedicated web page under Amazon Vehicles.

Mynd Analytics Matches Seniors With Telehealth

Subsidiary Launches Behavioral Health Program

With the number of Americans 65 and older projected to outnumber children for the first time in U.S. history by 2030—census estimates show all baby boomers will be older than 65 then, expanding the size of the older population to 78 million—healthy aging is ever more important.

Shea Homes Buys Seal Beach Luxe Home Site

$36.6M for 30-Unit Waterfront Project

An 11-acre waterfront site in Seal Beach whose fate has been in limbo for well over a decade has new ownership that plans a high-end housing project on part of the property.

Acacia Housecleaning Ends With C Suite, Board Exits

President, GC, CFO Fall In Post-Proxy Fight Redo

In less than two months, activist investors Sidus Investment Management LLC and BLR Partners LP have completely overhauled the board at Newport Beach-based patent licensing and technology investment firm Acacia Research Corp. and pushed out its management team.


• Irvine-based Eyes4Lives Inc. recently named Parham Javaherian chief executive.

Product Launches

• Cloud-based platform ZOTT joined with AT&T to give hospital patients access to DirecTV for Business through ZOTT’s content platform.

Business Execs Lay Down, Pull Up Residential Roots

Eisner Son Now OCer; OC500 Couple Moves

A moving van was already headed to pick up Western National Group Chief Executive Michael Hayde and his wife and Western National Property Management President Laura Khouri before they sold their former home a few doors down.

Real Estate Deals

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

Brea Metro LLC sold an office building to Miller Brothers Eureka Road One LLC for $8.7 million, or $202 per square foot.

OCBJ Calendar

Aug. 13-22, 2018

This week's business and other event listings.

Business Bites

Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 41, No. 33

Costa Mesa-based Orange Coast Auto Group acquired South Coast Acura in Costa Mesa for an undisclosed sum.


We launched a Draft Nitro program in late 2017 that features full draft beer and nitro coffee programs for groups.

Good Sportsmanship: Irvine Ups Old-School ‘Gaming’

DMO Hiring; Great Park Supports Athletic Events

Destination Irvine and area hotels are courting more sports-related meetings and events as facilities at the city’s Great Park continue to open.

Tourism Expert Extolls the Personal Touch

Organizes Unique Trips With Bragging Rights

Jim Jalet III knows unusual tourism like few others in the industry in Orange County.

Buck-It List

OC Hotels Counter Trend

Orange County hospitality companies and properties, pressured by high third-party costs, including from online travel sites, deviated this year from a 30% hotel industry cut in commissions paid to meeting planners by increasing what they pay.

Friday, August 10

“We are a Growth Machine”

Hayes Drumwright started the Irvine-IT firm Trace3 with $100 back in 2002. It’s grown a little. Find out how Trace3 just became the newest member of OC’s $1B Club.

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Nicholas Hires Top Defense Firm

Broadcom cofounder and billionaire philanthropist Henry Nicholas III has hired one of the most prolific, and high-profile defense attorneys in Nevada after his arrest late Wednesday night on suspicion of trafficking heroin, methamphetamine, ecstasy and cocaine.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was down 0.8% in midday trading to 2,831.49.

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Biolase Gets New CEO

Irvine-based Biolase Inc. (Nasdaq: BIOL) on Aug. 8 named Todd Norbe president and chief executive.

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Thursday, August 9

Cannabis Company Grows Revenue, Margins

Terra Tech Corp. (OTC: TRTC) said quarterly revenue increased 11% to $8.7 million, year-over-year, but net loss also increased, to $11.4 million from $500,000.

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Molecular Diagnostics Co. Agendia Raises $35M

HEALTHCARE: Commercial Expansion and Big Data Programs

The future of healthcare is moving towards precision, a.k.a., personalized medicine—and molecular diagnostics play an increasingly important role in one of the main components of precision medicine, gene-specific therapeutics.

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OC 500: Matthew Witte

Co-founded two predecessor funds, mid- 1990s … has initiated, closed, managed investments in 35+ companies … resume includes roles at software companies, others, sold to big players … Grosvenor International, London-based developer … brother OC 500’s Bill Witte … partners in Related Cos. 1989 … current, former boards: Marina Medical Inc., Promax Nutrition Corp., Fire Grill LLC, STEC … B.S. Cornell

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Hotel Sales Down 50% YTD

Eight hotels with 955 rooms sold in Orange County through the first six months of the year, compared to 16 hotels with 1,803 rooms, year-over-year, according to Atlas Hospitality Group in Irvine.

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Windes Acquires Irvine Accounting Firm

Windes Inc., a Long Beach-based accounting firm, has acquired Irvine’s Allen, Haight & Monaghan LLP. Terms weren’t disclosed; the firms will practice under the moniker of Windes.

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Carrick Capital Adds Stake in Health Services Firm

Newport Beach’s Carrick Capital Partners LLC bought a majority stake in Discovery Health Partners, a payments company in the health industry. Terms weren’t disclosed.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.1% in midday trading to 2,860.94.

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Orange Coast Auto Group Buys South Coast Acura

Costa Mesa-based Orange Coast Auto Group acquired South Coast Acura in Costa Mesa for an undisclosed sum on Thursday.

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Show Goes On: HB Event Flies Under New Banner

MARKETING: Code Four answers Code Red for money-losing event

Visitors will get the thrill of seeing fighter jets dart across the sky at the third annual Huntington Beach Airshow in October, but spectators will also get a chance to enjoy some special perks—for an extra cost.

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OC 500: Debra Gunn Downing

Role took on increased intensity 2016— planning 2017 … 50th anniversary, Segerstrom Family’s luxe retail layout … mall’s annual sales near $2B … cast party, American Ballet’s ‘Whipped Cream’ after global debut,

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Wednesday, August 8

Lazy Dog Adds Georgia

Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar will open a location in Georgia next spring, a new market for the Huntington Beach-based casual dining chain.

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Acacia Management Ousted, Board Resigns

Senior management of Acacia Research Corp. will leave the company by Friday and all board members who were in place before a recent proxy fight at the company have resigned.

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Alteryx Up

Shares in analytics software maker Alteryx Inc. rose on its quarterly report, which included higher sales that beat expectations.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was flat in midday trading at 2,858.33.

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Disney Parks Tops in Growth

Year-over-year Walt Disney Co. parks and resorts’ operating income rose 15% to $1.34 billion in the most recent quarter on a 6% revenue bump to $5.2 billion. The income growth was the highest of the entertainment company’s four divisions, and the revenue increase was second-highest.

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Alteryx Boss, Wife Launch i-Rise to Lift More Boats

Alteryx Boss, Wife Launch i-Rise to Lift More Boats

Alteryx Inc. Chief Executive Dean Stoecker and his wife, Angie, want to improve educational opportunities for disenfranchised high schoolers while curbing the national student debt crises.

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OC 500: H. Lawrence 'Larry' Webb

Top Irvine Ranch homebuilder via New Home’s high-end offerings … fee projects for in-house Irvine Co. builder Irvine Pacific … first career teaching … 2017: sold out Crystal Cove development, homes averaged $5M … staking out affordable projects in Corona, Rancho Mission Viejo … former also development deal; latter to have homes at 700 SF, $350K … firm market cap $225M

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Tuesday, August 7

July Auto Sales Down

OC-based automakers faced some headwinds this month, all reporting sales declines except for Cypress-based automaker Mitsubishi Motors North American Inc.

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Xponential Buys Yoga Six

Irvine-based boutique fitness brand operator Xponential Fitness has expanded its portfolio.

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5 Restaurant Chains in Top 50

Five quick service restaurant chains based in Orange County—or soon to be—made trade magazine QSR’s list of the 50 largest such companies in the U.S., ranked by 2017 systemwide sales.

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El Pollo Loco $8.8M Judgment Confirmed

Costa Mesa-based El Pollo Loco Holdings Inc. must pay $8.8 million to franchisees who sued the fast food chicken chain when it opened corporate stores near their location, a Los Angeles Superior Court judge said.

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Poké Chain Gets Japan-Based Investment

Pokéworks in Irvine said it received an investment from Toridoll Holdings Corp. in Japan.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.4% in midday trading to 2,861.01.

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Monday, August 6

Jazz’s Newport Noise Isn’t Music to Developer’s Ears

Noise-Related Litigation Puts Big Lease in Question

Jazz Semiconductor Inc.’s operations in its longtime industrial facility in Newport Beach already have an agreed-upon expiration date of March 2027.

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AVD Up But Misses on Revenue

Newport Beach-based chemicals maker American Vanguard Corp. earned $5.6 million in quarterly net income, up from $4.3 million year-over-year, on revenue of $107 million, up from $78 million.

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Pacific Hospitality Group named Melanie Bucci chief financial officer;. She was most recently vice president of finance at Montage International for about eight years; both are hotel management companies based in Irvine.

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OC 500: Janet Evans

Laguna Beach resident, five-time Olympic medalist in swimming—four gold, one silver … now five-figure corporate speaker on leadership, team-building, peak performance … El Dorado HS, Fullerton … USC grad … co-

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Skyworks to Buy Avnera for $405M

Skyworks Solutions Inc. has agreed to buy analog chip systems maker Avnera Corp. for $405 million in cash.

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Real Mex Files BK; To Sell

Holding companies that own chains run under Real Mex Restaurants Inc. have filed for bankruptcy and will sell to an affiliate of New York-based private equity firm Z Capital Group LLC, which along with Santa Monica-based Tennebaum Capital Partners will provide $5.5 million in debtor-in-possession financing during the Chapter 11 process.

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3 OC Hospitals in DOJ Settlement

Ontario-based Prime Healthcare Services Inc. and its chief executive have agreed to pay $65 million to settle federal allegations of Medicare overbilling at 14 California Hospitals, including four in Orange County, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Aug. 3.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 rose 0.4% in midday trading to 2,852.15.

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Din Tai Fung Expands

Popular Taiwanese restaurant chain Din Tai Fung is expanding its only Orange County location, at South Coast Plaza shopping center in Costa Mesa.

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Buchan Exits PAAMCO with Smile

Finance Whiz to Focus on Quant Fund

How does Jane Buchan feel about departing the chief executive role she had for 16 years while building Pacific Alternative Asset Management Co. into one of the world’s largest fund of funds?

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OC 500: Louis Welch

Co-founded LA Fitness chain 1984 with Chinyol Yi … first opened LA; chain’s growth nearing 700 locations North America … declines media exposure … bought bicoastal, 8-figure digs … golfer … in youth acted in films—‘Wedding on Walton’s Mountain’ and ‘The Ratings Game’—and TV: ‘Facts of Life,’ ‘Scarecrow and Mrs. King’

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Show me an Athlete ...

In this issue Peter J. Brennan’s visit with PAAMCO’s Jane Buchan—going back to her roots not only in investing, but also track and field.

Medical Pot Market Loosens

Operators Still Hope for More Open Fed

Policy changes and medical marijuana go hand in hand, and for Danielle Piomelli, professor of anatomy and neurobiology at University of California- Irvine, true progress is only possible if the federal status of the drug is changed.

Delta Dental Sees Steep Decline in OC Membership

Low-Cost Plan Not A Hit with Dentists

Net dental enrollment in dental HMO and PPO plans decreased more than 25% to about 2 million members in year through July.

HMO Members Up 4% in OC; PPO Numbers Flat

Providers Turn to Tech to Control Costs

To HMO or PPO, that’s the question. Orange County’s top health maintenance organizations experienced growth in the former and decline in the latter during the 12 months through July.

Patients Drive Adoption of ‘Alternative’ Medicine

Americans Forking Out Billions Out-of-Pocket

Healthcare is changing rapidly, pushed by the rise of a new breed of informed patient who is seeking alternatives to conventional treatments.

FDA Approval No Longer Device Makers’ Last Step

Design to ‘Real-World’ Trials; It’s a Value Play

Value-based care—the healthcare model designed to incentivize providers to improve patient recovery and reduce cost—is not news in California, an early adopter of the Affordable Care Act. The shift is also changing the approach to new-product adoption.

Startups Leverage Devices to Prevent Illnesses

‘Really’ Wearables; Computer Best Practices

There’s no denying the healthcare of tomorrow won’t be limited to the four walls of a hospital and that technology will play a crucial role in enhancing the patient-centered model.

Business Bites

Other items of interest Orange County Business Journal Vol. 41, No. 6

Irvine-based marketing firm Advantage Solutions Inc. bought Mill Valley, Calif. agency Beekeeper Marketing on undisclosed terms.

OCBJ Calendar

Aug. 6-15, 2018

This week's business and other event listings.

Product Launches

ClientWhys Inc. in Newport Beach has launched CountingWorks, a match-making marketplace that allows tax professionals around the country to connect with small businesses.

Software Personalizes K-1 Education

Irvine-based technology firm Learning Ovations will be launching its research-based software, A2i Professional Support System, in kindergarten to first grade classes this fall, as part of a $14.65 million U.S Department of Education grant awarded last year.

Something in the Water

Beverage Maker Cannaki Adds CBD

County beaches get all the credit but you should try the water.

New Cylance Software Goes for Consumer Market

Says Antivirus Product Cuts Threats Off at Pass

Irvine-based Cylance Inc., one of the highest valued and closely watched private companies in Orange County, has released its first software product targeting consumers.

Bascom, Realm Pay $24.3 Million for LA Tower Site

33-story Project Would Be 1st in Fashion District

Two Orange County firms are part of the development team working on plans for a high-rise residential tower in the Fashion District of Los Angeles.

Karma Gets Creative With Ritzy NY Sponsorships

Luxury Brand to Show Off at Fundraisers, Others

Three’s a charm for Irvine-based carmaker Karma Automotive in New York’s tony playground of the Hamptons.

Oramed Shoots for Holy Grail of Diabetic Care

OC Trial Site Largest Of Nationwide Study

An oral form of insulin doesn’t exist yet, but Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: ORMP) has announced it’s taking a major step toward attaining the Holy Grail of diabetes care.

Chefs Do Summer Restaurant Hopscotch

Plus, Food, Wine Events, Fifi-Brainchild Camp

The Montage Laguna Beach has earned a reputation as a fine-dining destination, and with good reason: Chef Craig Strong, who quickly gained acclaim after becoming the chef at Studio at the Montage in 2009.


Sterling BMW, the Argyros Family Foundation, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Northern Trust Bank of California, Refrigeration Equipment Specialist Co. and Western Mutual Insurance were among the underwriters of the 2018 Hoag Summer Fest, formerly known as the Hoag Summer Classic.

Fastest-Growing Private Cos. Wanted for OCBJ’s Annual List

ECONOMY: Centerpiece of Sept. 17 Special Report

Is your company growing fast?

They Caught a Fish…or They Didn’t: It Was That Good

OC Execs Share Their Fish Stories and Passion

Most anglers consider fishing an escape, an antidote to our plugged-in lifestyles. For several Orange County executives, it’s also a great way to entertain clients—the sport provides ample opportunity for uninterrupted conversation and reeling in the catch can be a team effort.

Builder Circles Back Home With Tustin Development

REAL ESTATE: Lennar’s Levity follows CalAtlantic land buy

Scott Stowell, the former executive chairman of Irvine-based CalAtlantic Group Inc. and chief executive of its predecessor company, Standard Pacific Corp., had a firsthand view of two of the homebuilding industry’s largest mergers and acquisitions in recent memory.

Quest Vet Dickson Unretires For New Enterprise

SOFTWARE: Running fast grower in OC’s cybersecurity hub

Former Quest Software Inc. and Dell insider Steve Dickson came out of retirement to take the top post at one of Orange County’s fastest-growing software companies.

Earnings Cause Crack in Shares of First Foundation

FINANCE: Irvine Firm Facing Rate Challenges

If you want to know what a “challenging interest rate environment” looks like, just ask First Foundation Inc. (Nasdaq: FFWM).

Real Estate Deals

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

Sarofim Realty Advisors sold a shopping center to JH Real Estate Partners Inc. for $46.5 million, or $281 per square foot.

Friday, August 3

All That Jazz

Jazz Semiconductor’s operations in Newport Beach aren’t music to the ears of its landlord—we’ll tell you why. ...

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.3% in midday trading to 2,834.55.

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Masimo Strong Q2, Raises Guidance

Masimo Corp. (Nasdaq: MASI) reported revenue of $211.6 million, including royalty, with product revenue for the second quarter totaling $202 million, up 12.4% compared to the same quarter a year ago.

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Taco Bell Quarter Mixed

Taco Bell Corp. in Irvine reported lower quarterly operating profit on higher systemwide sales, with same-store sales up, but below expectations and less than the same period a year ago.

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Next Stop on Taco Bell’s World Tour: Bangkok

FRANCHISING: Master plan’s eyes on India, Aussie

Taco Bell Corp. is on track to top $10 billion in systemwide sales this year, and unlike Bogie and Bacall, it doesn’t even have Paris—yet.

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OC 500: Richard Reisman

Nearing 30 years at helm of pre-eminent OC business news source … paper also produces events, special reports—OC 50, OC’s Wealthiest—and this book … driven, OC-focused pace of see-and-be-seen lunch appointments, get-the-news soirées … attorney, special counsel, congressional committee … encyclopedia of OC 5,000 … bachelor’s, Binghamton; MBA UCLA; J.D. GWU

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Thursday, August 2

Loco Revenue Flat, Income Down

El Pollo Loco Holdings Inc. said quarterly revenue increased less than 1% to $106 million and net income fell by a third, to $5.1 million, compared with the same period last year.

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Quality Systems Revenue Up

Irvine-based Quality Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: QSII) reported $133.2 million in revenue for its latest quarterly results, a 1.7% year-over-year increase.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.4% in midday trading to 2,825.31.

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Advantage Acquires Marketer

Irvine-based marketing firm Advantage Solutions Inc. bought Mill Valley, Calif. agency Beekeeper Marketing on Thursday for an undisclosed sum.

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Vizio Launches Streaming Service

Irvine-based Vizio Inc. has launched a free streaming service in an effort to corral cord cutters who have ditched traditional cable services.

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LoanDepot CEO Jumps Onto the Wealthiest List

Hsieh finds wealth, luck in mortgages

Hey, did you hear the rumor about Inc. buying loanDepot of Foothill Ranch?

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OC 500: Hans Keirstead

Stem cell entrepreneur … heads co. with cancer treatment in clinical trials … studies financed by Series A VC firm, private investors … sold AiVita predecessor 2014 for $124M … bought assets back 2016 … Democrat congressional hopeful, Dana Rohrabacher district … ex-UCI prof … anatomy, neurobiology, neurological surgery … raised in Canada … met wife, Niki, at UCI; son, Connor … lives Laguna Beach

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Wednesday, August 1

Habit Revenue, Net Income, Comps Up

Habit Restaurants Inc. in Irvine reported quarterly income of more than $2 million on revenue topping $103 million, up 90% and 23% respectively. Comparable same-store sales at the casual burger chain grew 1.2%.

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Potbelly’s 4 in OC, Finally

Potbelly Corp. looks to finally open in OC with four franchised locations, starting with one in Irvine, early next year.

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OC Hotels’ YTD Strong

The local hotel market continued strong in the first six months of the year, compared with the same period last year, with average daily rates of $194; revenue per available room about $156, and occupancy of more than 80%.

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KPC Health System named Scott Rifkin as chief operating officer of KPC Healthcare.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was down 0.1% in midday trading to 2,812.69.

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OC 500: Daniel J. Callahan

40 years as trial lawyer … top-ranked US, state, regional, county law, groups … $934M 2003 jury verdict remains largest ever OC … bachelor’s Western Illinois U.; J.D. UC Davis, edited law review … grew up

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