Peter J. Brennan

Executive Editor

Email: brennan@ocbj.com
Phone: 949-833-8373 Extension: 229

Recent Stories

Goldman Sachs Completes United Capital Buy

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) has completed its acquisition of Newport Beach-based United Capital Financial Partners Inc. for $750 million in cash.

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Stearns Bankruptcy Kicks Off Brawl

FINANCE: PIMCO, Blackstone at odds

Stearns Holdings LLC, a one-time Santa Ana-based mortgage powerhouse, declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy last week.

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LoanDepot Bullish On Economy

MORTGAGES: To hire 1,300 companywide

While some executives fear a slowdown or worse, a recession, loanDepot LLC is going full steam ahead.

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Blackstone’s Stearns Files BK

Santa Ana’s Stearns Holdings LLC, the country’s 20th-largest mortgage lender, filed for chapter 11 protection this morning in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 fell 0.2% in midday trading to 2,988.86.

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Iran’s Loss is Orange County’s Gain

COMMUNITY: Persian execs explain their successes

It was 40 years ago that the Shah of Iran fell, replaced by a theocracy that resulted in millions leaving the country.

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Astro Pak Outlasts Cold War, Flourishes

SERVICES: Finds niche cleaning precision components

Astro Pak Corp. is a byproduct of the 1950s Cold War between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.

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Restaurant365 Raises $88 Million

Irvine-based Restaurant365, a cloud-based restaurant accounting software, said it’s closed an $88 million minority investment led by ICONIQ Capital, a Silicon Valley-based growth equity firm.

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Midday Stock Roundup

The S&P 500 was up 0.2% in midday trading to 2,921.72.

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Mechanics Bank to Have 2 CEOs

Mechanics Bank (OTCBB: MCHB) announced it will have two chief executives after its acquisition of Rabobank, N.A., a subsidiary of Rabobank Group.

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Allied Universal Buys SF Security Firm

Santa Ana’s Allied Universal, the biggest private security firm in the U.S., today said it acquired a San Francisco-based firm with more than $40 million in annual sales and 1,300 employees.

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Management Consultants Employ 4,400 in OC

Deloitte, Blythe, Tevora Lead Local Expansions

Orange County management consulting firms increased local consultant count 7.2% to 1,849 and overall employment by nearly 9% to more than 4,400, the Business Journal’s annual list shows.

Hottest Companies’ Accountants

Who counts the money?

Accounting Firms Increase Local Headcount 6.9%

Big 4, Acquisition Spurs Jump; 54 Employ 5,400

Orange County’s largest accounting firms boosted their local headcount 6.9% in the year ended May 31, the eighth straight year of increases.

Q&A

State of the County: Accounting & Consulting

Taxes are always a high-stakes game; we’ve got the players.

Acorns Keeps On Growing

Fintech Nears Unicorn Status

Acorns Advisers LLC is growing much faster than a typical oak tree.

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RIAs Find Their Models Paying Off

Wealth Managers Report Boom; Duran Sells to Goldman Sachs

It turns out being a money manager can be a profitable investment itself.

Check’s Mates in Omaha

How Check Capital Checks on Berkshire Bet

Steven Check, founder of Check Capital Management Inc., a Costa Mesa registered investment adviser with $1.4 billion assets under management, for the 24th straight year attended Berkshire Hathaway’s famous annual meeting in Omaha, Neb., last month. Check and Jeremy Saltzberg, senior investment officer, spoke about Berkshire, their biggest holding. Their edited responses:

REVIEW: Acorns

A Nice Start; A Few Hiccups

My initial impression of Acorns was it made a lot of sense—no pun, intended—since in other places I’d personally experienced small investments turn into large portfolios.

OC’s Financial World

Global Reach, International Size

If the county were a country, OC’s annual GDP of nearly $250 billion would put it in the low 40s of rankings by the International Monetary Fund, World Bank and United Nations—nestled among the likes of Finland or Egypt, depending on who counts.

Veritone Adds a Director

Takata Has Other OC Board Ties

Veritone Inc., the Costa Mesa firm that’s trying to start a new way to measure advertisements through artificial intelligence, has appointed Rick Taketa, 47, to its board of directors.

UST CEO Pillai Retiring

CFO to Top Spot At Aliso Viejo IT Provider

Sajan Pillai, who built UST Global Inc. into a company with a $1 billion-plus valuation, said late last month he will retire.

CalAmp in Collaboration with Hot Cryoport

Container Sensors For Pharma Shipments

CalAmp Corp. is hoping to hitch a ride on the success of its Irvine neighbor Cryoport Inc.

Red Digital’s Far Out Photos

Astronaut Puts Cameras to Test

Irvine-based Red Digital Cinema Camera Co. is touting how its equipment can take “out-of-this-world” photos.

Bioniz Founder Wins Big Name Converts

Nazli Azimi knows one thing for sure—if she had stayed in her native Iran and not come to the U.S., she wouldn’t be developing drugs to battle cancer.

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Couple’s TruthMD Outs Bad Doctors

When the Food and Drug Administration approved an artificial spine disk in 2004, it didn’t make sense to Chuck Rosen.

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Duran’s United Capital Finds $750M Buyer

Joe Duran earlier this year mused that it would be great if someone paid a lot of money for United Capital Financial Partners Inc. and let him continue managing it.

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OC Unemployment Drops to 2.6%

Orange County’s unadjusted unemployment rate fell to 2.6% in April from a revised 3.2% in March and below the year-ago estimate of 2.7%, according to the state Employment Development Department.

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Ensign to Spin Off Senior Housing, Hospice Unit

HEALTHCARE: Existing co. focus on skilled nursing

Mission Viejo’s the Ensign Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ENSG) is at the spinoff game again.

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Goldman Sachs Buys United Capital for $750M

Newport Beach’s United Capital Financial Partners said it will be acquired by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) for $750 million in cash.

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PIMCO Postpones REIT IPO

Newport Beach’s Pacific Investment Management Co., which manages $1.8 trillion in assets, yesterday postponed the initial public offering of its PIMCO Mortgage Income Trust, citing unfavorable market conditions.

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A Business Going Up

Mitsubishi Electric Sees US Expansion

It’s easy to confuse Mitsubishi Electric US Inc. with Mitsubishi Motors North America Inc.

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Propaganda Founders Rebrand Vaping Products

MANUFACTURING: New look for e-liquid lines

Irvine-based vaping company Propaganda Premium E-Liquid is growing up. A little.

Allied Universal Buys Dallas Firm

Santa Ana’s Allied Universal, the largest U.S. security firm, acquired Point 2 Point Global Security Inc. which has $50 million in annual sales.

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PIMCO REIT Aims to Raise $1.15B

Newport Beach’s Pacific Investment Management Co. wants to raise up to $1.15 billion for its first ever real estate investment trust, or REIT.

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Opus Bank Selects M&A Expert as New CEO

FINANCE: Taylor aims to restore ‘momentum’

Opus Bank has found a veteran leader with plenty of experience in mergers and acquisitions.

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Opus Names New CEO

Irvine’s Opus Bank (Nasdaq: OPB), the third largest bank based in Orange County, named Paul W. Taylor as chief executive officer and president, effective today.

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PIMCO Files IPO for Publicly Traded REIT

FINANCE: Sees opening left by banks

Pacific Investment Management Co. has long dabbled in mortgages even while it’s best known as a bond shop.

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SBA Lending Dollars Grow 34%; Rankings Expand

Average Loan Lower; 29 Lenders Join Listings

The Business Journal’s lists of Small Business Administration lenders are in upheaval this year. Not one of the 38 on our dollar value list retained its spot from a year ago. Fourteen reported growth topping 100% and 22 new lenders joined the list (see page 25).

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City View Anaheim

Anaheim Pans for Riches In the Platinum Triangle

All eyes next month are on Disneyland’s $1 billion opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

Smoking SMALL Business

Vaping Manufacturers Learn on Job

Nick DeNuccio was 18 when he co-founded vaping business Propaganda E-Liquid.

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KPC Health to Buy Four Verity Hospitals for $610M

HEALTHCARE: LA’s St. Francis Among Buys

KPC Healthcare Inc. was the stalking horse that won the race.

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‘Ultimate Bankruptcy Fintech’ Expands in Irvine

Stretto sees a booming business in the next few years.

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Boeing Sells More HB Land to Sares-Regis

Defense and aerospace giant Boeing Co. has quietly sold a nearly 56-acre property it owns and occupies in Huntington Beach, with the land expected to make way for a new multi-building industrial development, the Business Journal has learned.

OC Unemployment Rate Rises to 3.2%

Orange County’s unadjusted unemployment rate climbed to 3.2% in March from a revised 3.0% in February, and above the year-ago estimate of 3.0%, according to the state Employment Development Department.

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KushCo 2Q Sales Up 240%

KushCo Holdings Inc. (OTC: KSHB), the largest cannabis related company based in Orange County, reported second quarter revenue jumped 240% to $35.2 million.

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CareTrust to Raise $135M

San Clemente’s CareTrust REIT Inc. (Nasdaq: CTRE) increased the size of a public offering that’s now expected to raise $135 million, to help pay debt.

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Quiet Men: Ensign Group Father, Son, Power Growth

It’s not often a father and son can together build a company to a $2.6 billion valuation.

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Allied Universal Buys Systems Integrator

Santa Ana’s Allied Universal, the nation’s largest private security force, said it will acquire Securadyne Systems, a Dallas based provider of security systems.

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Brea HVAC Co. Coolsys Aims for $2B Valuation

Adam Coffey in February published “The Private Equity Playbook,” which advises senior executives how to succeed when leading companies owned by outside investors.

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