by Rick Reiff
The Insider has gotten word of a blockbuster deal on the verge of being announced: Laguna Beach vacationer Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway has acquired one of Southern California’s, and the nation’s, biggest residential real estate brokerages
KOCE starts the public leg of its $8.5 million drive to “go digital” with $3.5 million in commitments and a ratings boost. In fact, prez Mel Rogers says member pledges from a wider viewership has totally offset an economy-induced drop in corporate sponsorships and major gifts. AC Nielsen counted a record 4 million primetime viewers in last November’s sweeps, more than double a year earlier. Rogers credits a strong lead-in from the daily telecasts of the British version of “Antiques Road Show,” better programs and savvy scheduling, like airing National Geographic’s special on mummies the same week Hollywood released “The Mummy Returns.” EE RR notes Rogers neglected to mention the magnetism of the “Real Orange” personalities
Jack Lindquist is ready to start driving himself around town for the first time since he suffered a stroke 13 months ago. “Tell everybody to stay off the road, I got my license back,” joked the retired Mr. Disneyland
Timing-is-everything department: While other politicians are being connected to Enron and Global Crossing, former Gov. Pete Wilson has barely been grazed. Enron gave thousands to Wilson when his PUC was fashioning the notorious energy “deregulation” rules, but the contributions don’t look much different,and are farther in the past,than what Enron gave Gray Davis. It was noted here a year ago that Wilson was a managing director with Global Crossing affiliate Pacific Capital Group, the Beverly Hills merchant bank. But Wilson quietly left the firm last May,not because of any gathering storm clouds, sources assure, but so he could pursue another venture that didn’t pan out
Coming to OC: Former U.S. Sen. Alan Simpson, on April 30 to address UCI’s Center for the Study of Democracy
Who’s got license plate BRD BLDR? Corporate board builder Ed Merino
EE RR refuses to suffer alone: Please send in names of anyone you know who turns 50 this year.