Stories for August 2007

Monday, August 27

Apcon Settles Infringement Claim Against Valley Firm

MRV Communications Inc. can continue to sell its cross-connect technology after a lawsuit claiming patent infringement was settled.

Friday, August 24

Vitesse Sells Part of Storage Business

Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. has sold off part of its storage products business in a move that will narrow the company focus on the networking and Ethernet markets.

Thursday, August 23

Liberman Broadcasting Lands Dodgers Deal

Liberman Broadcasting Inc. becomes the new home for Spanish-language Dodger radio broadcasts starting with the 2008 season.

Valley Presbyterian Hospital Receives "Green" Award

Valley Presbyterian Hospital placed No. 5 among the top 20 Los Angeles Department of Water & Power Energy Efficiency Program participants for 2006.

Union Alleges Unfair Practices at Glendale Mall

The Service Employees International Union has filed six unfair labor practice charges against the owner of the Glendale Galleria, General Growth Properties, and two of its sub-contracted companies.

Wednesday, August 22

Demonstrators Rally for Patient Care at Encino Hospital

Health care workers held a "Rally for Quality Patient Care" at Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center in Encino on Aug. 21.

Dumping Charges Dropped Against Valley Firm

ADJ Finishing has been cleared of 16 counts of illegally dumping pollutants into city sewers. All charges against the Panorama City plating company were dismissed last month.

State Funding Dollars Come to Valley Hospitals

Two San Fernando Valley hospitals received funding from the state for their family practice residency training programs.

Pratt & Whitney Wraps Up Job Fair

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne wrapped up a job fair Wednesday to fill 300 engineering and non-technical positions.

Tuesday, August 21

Loss Woes Continue for Optical Communication

Optical Communication Products, Inc. reported a net loss for a third straight quarter for the 2007 fiscal year.

Aspyra Reduces Net Loss

Aspyra Inc. narrowed its net loss for the second quarter compared with the same period from a year ago.

Commissioners Move Ahead to Ban Noisy Jets

The Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners adopted a resolution to Aug. 21 to phase out the use of certain jet aircraft at Van Nuys Airport over a 9-year period.

Legislature Passes State Budget

The California Legislature approved the 2007-2008 state budget Aug. 21.

Monday, August 20

New Accounting Mantra: Recruit, Recruit, Recruit

Finding enough quality accounting professionals to cope with a growing amount of work is a big problem for firms.

Amgen Commits $25 Million in Grants

Amgen Foundation has made grants totaling $12.5 million to 10 colleges and universities to fund the first four years of the Amgen Scholars program.

Simi Valley Exploring Luxury Accommodations

Simi Valley has a premier tourist attraction in the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library but few grand hotels to service it.

Effective Communication Called Key To Healthy Family Business Relationships

Family businesses face a unique set of challenges: issues of succession, organizational and leadership development issues and problems associated with generational differences are just a few items on the list.

Voit Complex to Help Meet Demand for Smaller Spaces

Voit Development to break ground on an industrial condominium complex.

Looking Toward the Future Difficult for Some Firms

Area accounting firms often have problems thinking about the future.

Two Thumbs Down for Van Nuys Aircraft Ban

The Van Nuys Airport Citizens Advisory Committee rejected this month two resolutions backing a ban on certain types of jet aircraft used at the airfield.

Ixia Repurchasing $50 Million in Stock

The Board of Directors for Ixia approved the company buying back $50 million in its common stock.

Providence Holy Cross Gets "Baby-Friendly" Designation

Providence Holy Cross Gets "Baby-Friendly" Designation

Accounting for The Best

The TOP Valley-area CPAs have established stellar reputations by carving out niches in their professions and offering consistently excellent service to their clients

Saving of Manufacturing Jobs Pushed

Saving of Manufacturing Jobs Pushed

Sunland-Tujunga Home Depot Stalled

Movement to require Home Depot take more extensive environmental measures.

Local Accounting Industry Thrives Despite Its Size

The greater Valley area is full of mostly small and mid-size accounting firms but they are busy with business.

U.S. HealthWorks Acquiring CentrePointe Medical Group

U.S. HealthWorks Medical Group, California's largest provider of outpatient occupational health care services, has acquired CentrePointe Medical Group in Gardena.

NEWSMAKERS

New Principal Aboard at Grant Thornton. Valley Businesspeople in the news, on the move...

CSUN Launches Taxation Masters Degree Program

California State University, Northridge, is launching a new master of science in taxation degree program in October.

Valley Film Fest Showcases Local Talent

Valley Film Fest Showcases Local Talent. A look at the people, places and things that make our valleys tick.

Health Net Helps Clinics in Budget Impasse

Health Net of California is providing a no-interest loan to Tulare County health clinics Tipton Medical and Pixley Medical, both of which shut down because the state's budget delay interrupted Medi-Cal funding.

The Top 25: CPAs Go Beyond Balancing Books

CPAs Go Beyond Balancing Books.

The Process of Picking Valley's Top CPAs

Column by Jason Schaff, Editor of the San Fernando Valley Business Journal

Indie Animation Studio Moves To New Space in Woodland Hills

Independent animation studio Mike Young Productions officially opened its new facility in Woodland Hills.

Firms Follow Filming

Burbank-based film equipment rental houses Coffey Sound and Wexler Video have branched out to open locations in North and South Carolina.

Job Problems for Vets Get Higher Profile

Companies become more aware of the problems of veterans in the workplace.

New Hotel Owner Faces Union Challenges, Plans Room Upgrades

The Hilton Glendale, which has been under fire from local labor organizers, is under new ownership.

VALLEY, L.A. COUNTY ECONOWATCH

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

Accountants Divided Over Expanding Scope of Services

Are some firms getting too far into non-core areas of accounting?

Cooking Up Teamwork

CEO Chef uses food for team building.

Staff Layoffs at Countrywide: News Reports

Countrywide Financial Corp. has started laying off employees from one of its lending unites, news reports said Monday.

Final California Sexual Harassment Training Regs

Final California sexual harassment training regulations issued.

Passion for the Grape: A Wine Lover's Odyssey

The debut of a column for wine enthusiasts by Peter Goossens, the founder of the Loose Goose Wine Festival.

Health Net Calif. President Leads Company's Growth

Health Net Calif. President Leads Company's Growth. New Initiatives, Local Focus Boost Enrollment and Earnings in 2007

Should We Consider Nebraska?

LEGISLATURE Marty Cooper considers moving to Nebraska

Thursday, August 16

Council Orders Additional Measures for Home Depot Store

The Los Angeles City Council voted 12-1 Aug. 15 to require Home Depot to take additional measures to ensure that the environmental impact of its proposed store on Foothill Boulevard in Sunland-Tujunga will be insignificant.

Small Tremblor Hits Valley

A 3.5 magnitude earthquake shook the San Fernando Valley on Thursday afternoon.

Stockholders to Vote on 21st Century Insurance Merger

Stockholders of 21st Century Insurance Group will meet next month to vote on a merger agreement with American International Group Inc.

Interlink Sells Two Business Segments

Interlink Electronics Inc. sold its remote and branded products business segments to the U.S. division of a Tokyo-based company for $11 million.

Countrywide Draws on $11.5 Billion Credit Line

Countrywide Financial Corp. drew on $11.5 billion in credit as a supplement to its funding liquidity position, the company announced.

Wednesday, August 15

Panavision Makes Camera Acquisition

Panavision Inc. has acquired the film cameras and lenses of Joe Dunton & Co., the company has announced.

Net Loss for Interlink in Q2

Interlink Electronics Inc. narrowed its net loss for the second quarter when compared with the same reporting period from a year ago.

Amgen Restructures, Reduces Staff by 12-14 Percent

Biotech giant Amgen will lay off at least 2,200 employees and cut expenditures by about $1.9 billion due to an expected decrease in sales of two of its most used drugs.

Tuesday, August 14

United Online Subsidiary Files for IPO

United Online Inc. subsidiary Classmates Media Corp. filed for an initial public offering to raise $125 million.

Laser Maker Narrows Loss in Q2

QPC Lasers Inc. narrowed its net loss for the second quarter when compared with the same period a year ago.

Private Investor Buys Encino Courtyard

A private investor has purchased an Encino shopping center for $41.1 million.

Novus to Build Palmdale Fire Stations

Novus Construction will build two fire stations in Palmdale for a combined cost of $19.2 million. The City of Palmdale donated the land and will share half the construction costs.

Net Loss Widens for Image Entertainment

Costs related to a pending merger, the closure of a Las Vegas distribution facility and a dip in sales hurt the first quarter bottom line of Image Entertainment Inc.

Monday, August 13

Axcess Real Estate Services Updates Website

Axcess Real Estate Services updated its Web site to allow for a wider range of search capabilities.

Name Change for Optical Components Makers

Luminent Inc. and Fiberxon Inc. will now be known by the name Source Photonics, the companies have announced.

CenterStaging Enters VOD Deal with Comcast

A deal between CenterStaging Corp. and Comcast will make available performance rehearsals by major entertainers through a video-on-demand service.

Electro Rent Profits up in Q4

Electro Rent Corp. posted a nearly 9 percent increase in net income for the fourth quarter when compared with the same period a year ago.

Friday, August 10

New Vehicle Registration Declines 7.7 Percent

The California Motor Car Dealers Association cites high fuel prices, the softening housing market and debt-conscious consumers for the drop in new vehicle registration.

ECHO Suffers Net Loss for Q3

Electronic Clearing House Inc. reported a net loss of $682,000 for the third quarter when compared with the same period a year ago.

Thursday, August 9

Superior Rolls to Increased Profits

Superior Industries International Inc. reported a 36 percent increase in net income for the second quarter when compared with the previous year.

Back Surgery Delays IRIS Financial Filing

IRIS International Inc. requested an extension to file its second quarter financial results due to emergency surgery for its interim chief financial officer.

Bank Provides Funding for Golf Course Purchase

California United Bank announced that it has completed a $20 million secured credit commitment to help Sherwood Country Club purchase the club from its original developer, Sherwood Development Company L.P.

DTS Posts Loss for Q2

DTS Inc. reported a $658,000 net loss for the second quarter when compared with the same period from a year ago.

Shoe Pavilion Reports $1.1 Million Net Loss

The cost of opening new stores and a reduction in selling margins affected the second quarter financial performance of Show Pavilion.

Wednesday, August 8

Net Loss Continues for Crown Media

Crown Media Holdings Inc. narrowed its net loss in the second quarter while at the same time boosting subscribers.

Net Loss Mounts for Odor Sensor Firm

Electronic Sensor Technology posted a net loss for the second quarter.

Voit Breaks Ground on Sylmar Project

Voit Development Company broke ground on its North Valley Commerce Center, an industrial park in Sylmar totaling approximately 200,000 sq. feet.

CHAD Therapeutics Receives Funding

CHAD Therapeutics Inc. has received $3.5 million in financing from a private investor, the company announced.

Tuesday, August 7

Rental House Expands on East Coast

A Burbank video equipment rental firm has opened offices in the Carolinas to capitalize on increased film and television production taking place there.

Salem Profits Slide in Q2

Net income dropped by 75 percent in the second quarter for Salem Communications Corp. when compared with the same period a year ago.

Income Loss for Youbet.com

Youbet.com Inc. reported an income loss of $357,000 for the second quarter when compared with the previous year.

Income Grows for United Online

Internet service provider United Online Inc. posted a 40 percent increase in profits for the second quarter when compared to last year.

Guitar Center Income Drops 29 Percent

Net income dropped in the second quarter for Guitar Center Inc. due to costs related to a proposed merger with a private investment firm.

Monday, August 6

When Does a Firm Need To Register a Trademark?

When Does a Firm Need To Register a Trademark? Column by Ira Rosenblatt, a business and corporate lawyer and a co-founder and director of Stone, Rosenblatt & Cha

Small Business Center Head Says Goals Surpassed

Small Business Development Center Director Paul De La Cerda discusses the accomplishments of the organization in the past year.

NEWSMAKERS

Disney Veteran Takes Legal Post at New Wave. Valley Businesspeople in the news, on the move...

AROUND THE VALLEYS

Testing of New Orange Line Ridership Urged. A look at the people, places and things that make our valleys tick.

Crisis in the ER: Where Did All Our Tax Money Go?

Crisis in the ER: Where Did All Our Tax Money Go? Column by Rickey M. Gelb, managing partner of the Gelb Group A Family of Companies.

Community Groups Blast Approval of Holy Cross Plan

Community groups are upset that Providence Holy Cross hospital's expansion plans received the go-ahead without an environmental impact report.

A Commuter's Story: Greening of the Orange and Red

Staff Reporter Mark Madler discusses some issues concerning public transportation.

Guiding Glendale's Insurance Behemoth

Scott Firestone is the lead person in the regional office of the world's fourth largest insurance broker.

Why Most Training Doesn't Work for Entrepreneurs

Why Most Training Doesn't Work for Entrepreneurs

Walt Disney Acquires Club Penguin

The Walt Disney Company has acquired Club Penguin, an online virtual world for kids ages 6-14.

Allen Selling Shares in DreamWorks Animation

Investor Paul Allen will sell 10 million shares of DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. stock in a public offering.

Learning AllianceWill Help Train Employees at Businesses

The Economic Alliance of the San Fernando Valley and the eight adult centers of the Los Angeles Unified School District are launching a job training program called the Learning Alliance.

Businesses Fighting Crime

Some businesses are helping to fight the growth of gangs in the Valley.

Four Years and Much the Same

Greg Lippe writes his 50th column and finds that not a lot has changed in the last four years.

Online Storytellers

Wicked Smart Marketing is making a name for itself in the online interactive marketing arena.

Purchase Boosts Product Line for Anthony International

Sylmar-based commercial refrigeration firm Anthony International buys a Georgia company and expands its product line.

New Loan Program a Boost for Veterans

The SBA has launched the Patriot Express Loan program, which streamlines the process for veterans to get money to grow an existing business or start a new one.

VALLEY, L.A. COUNTY ECONOWATCH

Charts of Economic Indicators, Real Estate, Tourism...

Happy Doing Business in the Valley

Despite many firms leaving the greater Valley area saying it is too expensive to do business here, some companies are quite content.

What a Difference 9 Years Makes in Valley Real Estate

Senior Reporter Shelly Garcia writes her final column as she leaves the Business Journal.

Health Study Finds Surprising Results About Poverty

A triennial study on health care in the San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys indicates that while the number of uninsured is dropping, the number of households in poverty is rising putting severe strains on an already overburdened health care industry.

Inphi Expands to Silicon Valley

Integrated circuit developer Inphi will open a new design center in the Silicon Valley as part of its expansion campaign, the company announced.

L.A. Planning Process Misused Against Home Depot

Guest Column by Brendan Huffman, President & CEO of the Valley Industry & Commerce Assn. (VICA).

Santa Clarita Film Office Sets Filming Record

Location filming in Santa Clarita was at an all-time high in the 2006-2007 fiscal year. This resulted in an estimated direct economic benefit of more than $21 million to city businesses.

New Program to Help Entrepreneurs in Solving Problems

New Program to Help Entrepreneurs in Solving Problems.

Management Buyout Puts Power Behind Local Firm

A new power supply company, Red Rocket Inc., has been formed in Camarillo.

Suit Without Merit, Zenith Officials Say

Suit Without Merit, Zenith Officials Say

Motivated Workforce Is The Key

Owners and advocates of smaller companies discuss the top management challenges facing them.

UCC Mid-Year Update: Issues on the Front Burner

UCC Mid-Year Update: Issues on the Front Burner. Guest Column by Debi Schultze, president & CEO of United Chambers of Commerce of the San Fernando Valley & Region.

Friday, August 3

Amgen's Executive VP of Operations Retires

Dennis Fenton is one of the Thousand Oaks biotech firm's longest-tenured staff members.

Thursday, August 2

Realtor.com Users Can Now Search from Cell Phones

Application could change how consumers and real estate agents interact.

Wednesday, August 1

21st Century's Results Down

Woodland Hills-based insurance company reports costs associated with unsolicited merger proposal.