Stories for April 2000

Monday, April 17

PINK DOT--Challenging Kozmo With Expanded Delivery

Camarillo-based Pink Dot is betting that there are a lot of lazy people beyond the borders of Southern California.

Air Quality Makes a Difference In Your New Office

Office air quality can be a major contributor in lost time and increased sick days. Indoor air affects the body in several ways: the nose detects odors; mucus membranes are affected by changes in humidity; airborne pollen can aggravate allergies. Air poll

Learning From Computer Associates' Pay Mistakes

Echoing John F. Kennedy's famous admonition, "Ask not what your country can do for you," Computer Associates International Inc.'s CEO, Charles B. Wang, is giving compensation to his company, to the tune of $144 million.

COINS--Spare Change


MALL--Mall Rats No More

It seems like trying to get teen-agers to hang out at malls is a little like trying to make weeds grow: It happens without any effort at all, so why bother?

The Planner

The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce hosts a World Trade Week reception recognizing five area companies that have seen continued growth in exports, including Van Nuys-based Hirsch Pipe & Supply. Reception runs from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the L.A. Area


the unassuming cafe bizou in sherman oaks has quickly climbed to the second most popular restaurant in l.a., according to zagat

TRAINING--Inner-City Success Story

Mario Matute had only been working at the Pacoima Workforce Development Initiative a short time when he realized the key stumbling block in the way of finding jobs for his clients: Most of the available jobs required computer skills, and most of the peopl

Big Deals Signed in Conejo Valley During Busy Quarter

With the development of new office space lagging well behind economic expansion, tenants were hard pressed to find suitable space in the San Fernando Valley during the first quarter of 2000.

The Digest

Thousand Oaks-based Amgen Inc. won an initial victory in its patent infringement case against a rival biotech company when a federal judge in Boston issued a summary judgment in its favor.

PROFILE---Robert E. Petersen


PROFILE--Apartment Czar

The northridge earthquake meant disaster for many apartment owners, but paul jennings saw the temblor as an opportunity to buy damaged buildings and transform them into luxuary units

ENERGY--DWP's Green Power Is More Popular Than Expected

Consumers may not want to shell out thousands of dollars to buy electric cars, but it seems they are willing to pay $10 or $20 a month more to buy cleaner power.

VALLEY VOTE--Demise of Office Project Reflects Changes in Lending

Low vacancy rates usually mean a green light for developers to begin building anew, but as the recent collapse of a major deal in Burbank illustrates, that's starting to change.

Understanding Commercial Real Estate Leases

For most businesses, large and small, a real estate lease represents a major commitment. It is a commitment that goes beyond the financial outlay: it circumscribes the location of the business, the expansion

Valley Talk

We've all heard the stories of love blooming on the Internet. But there's still a bit of romance in the air surrounding brick-and-mortar retailers too, it seems. Take the recent incidents at the Sherman Oaks Fashion Square.

BIOTECHNOLOGY--Baxter Pumps Millions Into Valley Facility Expansion

Long known as a hospital supply and pharmaceutical maker, Illinois-based Baxter International Inc. is now setting its sights on becoming L.A.'s next biotech giant.

From Retail to E-tail!

E-Commerce is slowly but surely picking-up momentum and despite initial skepticism about its ability to attract consumers, the numbers are strong and they are only getting better. Over 15 percent of all consumer retail purchases are expected to take plac

DAY CARE--Silverado Aims at Booming Niche in Senior Day Care

An increasing number of upscale baby boomers, charged with caring for their infirm parents, are unable to handle them during the day. And that's prompting a growth in senior day-care programs throughout the San Fernando Valley.

LEASES--Turmoil Results in More Subleasing

More than 150,000 square feet of space is about to land in the Valley sublease market, as businesses struggle to keep up with rapidly changing economic conditions.

PRODUCTION--Movie Ranches Feeling Effects of Decline in Filming

About a year ago, the new reality of the L.A. location shooting business slapped ranch owner Rene Veluzat in the wallet.

CYBERSENSE--Extra! Extra! Newspaper of Future Has No Paper, Ink

While news is the critical element of a newspaper, the paper itself is important, too.

Investors Savor Strength of Cheesecake Factory Stock

With the thrashing high-tech firms have taken in the stock market in recent days, companies like the Cheesecake Factory Inc., which got little respect on Wall Street, are starting to look better to investors.

CSUN--Consultancy at CSUN Eyeing Major Growth

The College of Business Administration and Economics at Cal State Northridge has launched a consulting practice to help bring real-world experience into its academic studies and generate income for the college.

TATTOOS--Erasing Past Mistakes

At 29, Ryan Adams enjoys a good deal of prestige as coordinator of post production for Hearst Entertainment Productions, a creator of made-for-TV movies and miniseries based in West Los Angeles. Other than his youth, there's just one thing that makes Adam

SECESSION--Richard Katz: Former Foe Embraces Valley VOTE Cause

Five years ago, Richard Katz was one of a few dozen Democratic Assembly members working fervently and successfully to block a bill that would have given the San Fernando Valley a vote on whether to secede, and simultaneously strip the city of L.A. of any

OFFICES--Developer Eyes Burbank as Site For Hotel, Offices

A Santa Monica-based developer has quietly approached Burbank with plans to build a multi-story office complex and a four-star hotel in the city's Media District.

PAYOFFS--Rising Costs Will Haunt Businesses

It seems that wherever local employers turn these days, someone is trying to get more money out of them.


Given Southern California's notoriety for vanity, it's probably no surprise that tanning salons do such good business here, even during the sunniest time of year. For these outlets, the spring and summer months are boom time as clients, mostly women, rush

VALENCIA--Once-Hot Valencia Now Looks Overbuilt

A spurt of development in the past two years has sent office vacancy rates soaring in the Santa Clarita Valley and dampened once-bullish expectations for the region.

Party Is Ending for Hollywood Internet Companies

At one time, Web sites could flash a little shiny animation on the screen and attract thousands of visitors a day. But online visitors are becoming more sophisticated.

Valley Forum

Remember that first job, delivering newspapers, washing dishes or working at the Hot-Dog-On-A-Stick stand at the mall? Most folks have had menial jobs, even corporate and government types. So the San Fernando Valley Business Journal asks: What was your mo

The pacesetter

The largest minority-owned business in the San Fernando Valley, RAM Enterprises posted 1999 revenues of $16.7 million, up 6 percent from 1998. The Valencia-based distributor of electronic connectors and accessories to military and aerospace contractors ha

Finding a Company Home

You need to find some commercial real estate, and need it soon. You've outgrown your current space and it's starting to hurt your productivity. What should you be looking for? What are the pitfalls?

ABC--Disney Pays Heavily for ABC Move

On paper, the Walt Disney Co.'s decision to move some 200 ABC staffers from New York to its Burbank headquarters looks efficient and synergistic, putting the network and studio on the same campus.

Personal Finance--Don't Go Deeper in Debt If Your Income Can't Bear It

Question: My wife and I are baby boomers. We both want to retire at an early age (63) and be debt-free, but we are burdened with high credit card debt. We currently owe $25,000. I know that seems outrageous, but it has been as high as $33,000.

Real Estate Acquisition A Smart Investment When Done Wisely

Why Buy Real Estate? Because real estate, when properly acquired and managed, provides capital appreciation, equity build up, cash flows, tax benefits and a hedge against inflation. Real estate, both land and improved, has a broad-based marketplace with

Monday, April 3

MOVE--Health Care Endowment Plans Move to Larger Downtown Site

The California Endowment, a nonprofit agency that provides grants to organizations helping to bring health care services to disadvantaged groups, is planning to move its operation from Woodland Hills to downtown Los Angeles.

BIOTECH--Campus at Old Power Plant Could Spur Biotech Corridor

The Pasadena biotech corridor, approved amid much fanfare more than a year ago, appears to be finally materializing.

Brokered CDs Are Insured, Taking Away Credit Risks

Sometimes I forget that we now live in a world of tooth fairy credit. Only hours after my March 9 column appeared, which advised an aspirant first-time homebuyer, my e-mailbox was filled with contrary messages from lenders.


A small business did gangbuster business through the late 1980s and then, boom, the recession hit. Business plummeted and it nearly went bust.

INTERNET--Local Dot-Com Dukes It Out With Microsoft has faced down an ever-increasing array of competitors, but the online real estate company could be facing its toughest challenger yet: none other than the 800-pound gorilla of the tech business, Microsoft Corp.

FORECAST--Income Gap Widens Between L.A. and the Bay Area

Sure, Angelenos are getting richer. But they're not getting rich as quickly as people in the Bay Area.


Damian Chapa opened his specialty boutique, Candlemania, on Ventura Boulevard in Studio City two years ago, just as a craze for scented and other designer candles was in full swing. Chapa spoke to reporter Jennifer Netherby recently about staying afloat a

DEVELOPMENT--Grapevine Project Faces Uphill Climb

The Tejon Ranch Co., a 156-year-old cattle and farming concern, recently announced it is moving full-steam ahead with a new 4,000-acre town planned for grazing land atop the Grapevine in North L.A. County.

OFFICE--Chatsworth Park Buyer Planning Big Renovation

After acquiring the 227,000-square-foot Chatsworth Business Park for $10.25 million from the government of Singapore, Newport Beach-based development and investment firm CT Realty Corp. plans to redevelop the 7.9-acre business campus.

CYBERSENSE--Hey Buddy, Can You Spare a Little Market Research?

Wherever you go, your clicks are collected, categorized and filed away in hopes of using what you read and watch to guess at what you'd want to buy.

AVAILABLE LIGHT--Tight Visual Effects Market Forces Creative Alliances

When Burbank-based Available Light replaced its outdated visual effects equipment earlier this year, the small boutique found itself with empty space. At the same time, another special effects company called Area 51 was looking to relocate from Marina del

The Planner

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter hosts a seminar on "Investing for the New Millennium" at 15490 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks. Information: (818) 907-2464.

SUNKIST--Local Growers Benefit From China Trade

A year after the U.S. inked a deal with China that opened agricultural trade, Sunkist Growers has moved over its first shipment.

Owners Pull High-Profile Burbank Tower Off Market

With no takers for the price it was asking, Tochikogyo USA Inc. has pulled The Tower, a prestigious high-rise building in Burbank, off the sales block.

CORPORATE FOCUS--THQ Reeling, but Outlook Good for Later Part of Year

With its "Rugrats" and World Wrestling Federation (WWF) wrestling games flying off the shelves last holiday season, it appeared that the sky was the limit for Calabasas video game maker THQ Inc.

PRODUCE--Rising Banana Prices Produce Strong Quarter for Dole

After a tumultuous two years that pummeled the nation's largest producer of fresh fruit, Westlake Village-based Dole Food Co. Inc. has announced that revenues will exceed analysts' expectations for the first quarter of 2000.

REAL ESTATE--Project Emphasizes Activities Over Retail

How do you build a commercial project in a community that disdains commercialism in its backyard? Just ask Rick Caruso.

SPACE--Small Tenants Take Up Lots Of Space in New Projects

For more than a year, as the economy improved and the real estate market tightened, brokers bemoaned the lack of large, contiguous blocks of space to show potential office tenants.

Valley Talk

It may not have a permanent home yet, but the annual Valley Fair now has its own mascot. While Burbank is still the undisputed home of Mickey Mouse and the Looney Tunes gang, the Valley Fair has inducted Manfred Moose into its ranks.

P.R.--Valley's Biggest P.R. Firm Acquired by Paris Company

Paris-based holding company Publicis S.A. last week acquired a majority interest in Winner & Associates, a stealthy but powerful Encino-based crisis management and public affairs firm.


She's a legal secretary from Long Beach. He's a kindergarten teacher in Hawthorne. They married in a drive-through Vegas chapel after meeting on the Internet. And for one day, Gayle and Kevin Paul will try their luck and test their shopping skills as game

Exec. Search Firms

Exec. Search Firms

The Pacemaker

Cornerstone International Group over the past decade, Cornerstone International Group has grown into one of the largest executive search firms in the nation. It has rapidly expanded by acquiring stakes in other recruiting firms around the world, creating

MATERNITY--Hospital Program Frees Beds and Helps New Moms

It's a typical day at the Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center. In the maternity ward of the hospital's Women's Pavilion, about 35 patients have just delivered babies. Another 14 women are in labor, about to give birth.

Santa Clarita Wants Sphere of Influence at Borders

It's been 12 years since Santa Clarita's four communities joined to form a city government that would allow more control over growth, development and tax revenue. And yet, the formal ability to influence development adjacent to its borders is one of the b

Valley Forum

Ever since the ABC show "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" hit it big, and "Is that your final answer?" became a national catch phrase, the number of game shows on primetime television has exploded. But four months into the craze, one show "Winning Lines"


Lisa Haller was appointed senior vice president of sales at Universal Studios Hollywood in Universal City. She will be responsible for integrating sales strategies for travel, special events, and corporate and special markets while being involved with pro

Lillian Seitsive, still a practicing doctor at 93, went to medical school at a time when women just didn't do that sort of thing

Watching Lillian Paula Seitsive, white hair arranged to perfection, nails immaculately manicured and lips painted a bright crimson, it is difficult to imagine that only a week ago she was laid up in the hospital, ribs and clavicle broken from a bad fall.

The Digest

Illinois-based Baxter Healthcare Corp. announced it will add 200 jobs to its Los Angeles and Thousand Oaks facilities over the next two years.