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Wednesday, Feb 21, 2024


Global Glamour

Manna Kadar, founder and namesake of the fast-growing Irvine-based cosmetics firm she started in 2011, has made the front page of the Business Journal before; now she’s going global.

The month sees Kadar on the cover of the Vietnam edition of Harper’s Bazaar; the magazine cover, shot by LA celeb fashion photographer Jim Jordan, calls her a “beauty mogul.”

Kadar, who built a following via Amazon’s Influencer Program and other outlets, last week held a “pink carpet” event at Hotel Laguna to celebrate the magazine recognition. Alongside a bevy of stylish OC and LA-area celebs were the Business Journal’s Richard Reisman and Emily Santiago-Molina.

For more on Kadar’s growing cosmetics brand, keep an eye on the front page of our paper the next few weeks.


A generous reading of the 2021 lease struck by the County of Orange for a spot in Tustin—for a tech unit of the Sheriff’s Department—would suggest the county was either naive, or perhaps throwing a bone to the area’s collection of office landlords, by approving such a head-scratching deal during a time when similar flex-office space in OC was going for cheap due to the pandemic (see story, page 7).

The long-term lease starts at monthly rents not too far off what Alteryx is paying for its new home in Spectrum Terrace (see stories, pages 1 and 18), records indicate. Annual increases meant the county would be paying Newport Center-type rents at the conclusion of the lease. No one would mistake the flex office on Bell Avenue for either of those 2 locations.

Last month, the county approved a deal to buy the Bell Avenue building outright. The $91 million purchase—running $758 a square foot, well above the norm—is also a head-scratcher. Documents indicate the county OK’d the purchase because it thought it would ultimately be saving money over the coming decades, when compared to the long-term lease it previously struck.

The math on that purchase deal, buried in county documents, raises its own questions. The deal is being financed via a bond.

There are no records of any serious public deliberation by the county’s Board of Supervisors for either the initial 2021 lease or last month’s purchase.

The Business Journal offers its services the next time a large real estate deal impacting taxpayers makes its way to the board.


Christopher Trela catches up with several notable chefs in his restaurant and food column this week, starting on this page.

Another prominent chef was spotted by Emily Santiago-Molina at the recently concluded Vans US Open of Surfing (see related story, page 1).

Steve Van Doren, former Vans CEO and son of late company founder Paul Van Doren, took to the grill near the apparel brand’s hub at the event for a few hours every day to cook up hot dogs and sliders for the crowd.

Officials estimated the current VP of events and promotions at Vans, a noted barbecue chef, served some 3,000 free meals over the course of the event.

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Mark Mueller
Mark Mueller
Mark is the Editor-in-Chief of the Orange County Business Journal, one of the premier regional business newspapers in the country. He’s the fifth person to hold the editor’s position in the paper’s long history. He oversees a staff of about 15 people. The OCBJ is considered a must-read for area business executives. The print edition of the paper is the primary source of local news for most of the Business Journal’s subscribers, which includes most of OC’s major corporate and community players. Mark’s been with the paper since 2005, and long served as the real estate reporter for the paper, breaking hundreds of commercial and residential real estate stories. He took on the editor’s position in 2018.

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