Stories for April 2019

Tuesday, April 30

Westfield’s Promenade 2035 Project Faces Public Hearing

Westfield Senior Vice President of Development Larry Green went before a city of Los Angeles committee to sell representatives from various city departments on the developer’s idea of a $1.5-billion overhaul of the Promenade mall in Woodland Hills.

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Multi-Tenant Retail Pads in Lancaster Sell for $6 Million

A private investor has paid $6 million for two multi-tenant pad sites at the Walmart Supercenter in Lancaster.

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Glendale Hires Consultant to Improve Traffic Flow

The City of Glendale has signed a contract with Santa Ana-based Iteris to design and integrate changes to improve traffic flow, the company announced Tuesday.

ISSquared Expands by Acquisition

Information technology firm ISSquared Inc. has acquired a similar company to extend its reach in the western United States.

Monday, April 29

Santa Clarita Contractor to Build School in Santa Maria

AMG & Associates, a Santa Clarita-based firm, has been awarded a $41 million contract to construct a new elementary school in Santa Maria.

Behavioral Health Organization to Lay Off 74

Anka Behavioral Health has announced it is laying off employees in nine locations, including 74 individuals in Burbank and Glendale.

Disney's 'Endgame' Breaks Box Office Record

Walt Disney Co. broke box office records over the weekend with its latest Marvel film, “Avengers: Endgame.”

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Rexford Buys San Fernando Warehouse Complex for $118 Million

Rexford Industrial Realty Inc., has acquired the San Fernando Business Center for $118 million, the company announced Monday.

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Hunt for Industrial Moves North by Northwest

Real Estate Quarterly

Colliers International’s first-quarter data suggest the Tri-Cities office market is holding steady as tenants seeking industrial real estate move north and west where more product, land and labor is available.

Warner Bros. Seeks ‘Old Hollywood Splendor’

Real Estate Quarterly

Warner Bros. Entertainment will celebrate its major anniversary by reconfiguring the map of filmed entertainment capital Burbank.

Big Office Update

Real Estate Quarterly

The developer and brokers at Warner Landmark will reposition it as youth-skewing creative space.

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Private Banker Skips School for Dodgers Game

Private Banker Skips School for Dodgers Game


News and notes from the greater San Fernando Valley

News and notes from the greater San Fernando Valley

Housing Brokers See Buyer’s Market on Horizon

LIST: High-end properties wait for offers; lower-cost homes keep on selling.

Up-and-down market for residential brokers.

Medical Explorers Investigate Careers at Kaiser

EDUCATION: Field trips teach about job titles beyond nurse and doctor.

How Kaiser supports Medical Explorers.

Standup a Profitable Center at Comedy Dynamics

DISTRIBUTION: Firm handled all Grammy-nominated laugh tracks last year.

Comedy Dynamics believes in standup.

Santa Clarita Program Offers Teacher Discounts

MARKETING: National movie theater, restaurant chains access educators.

Merchants sign up for I Love Teachers.

E-Receipt Bill Vexes Vendors

RETAIL: Proposed state law poses security, logistical problems.

New law would eliminate paper receipts.

Digital Age Porn

The Valley still hosts adult entertainment, but productions are faster, simpler and designed for online distribution.

Adult content production remains in Valley.

Economy Pushes Up American Homes 4 Rent

HOUSING: Analyst predicts 5 percent increase in funds from operations this year.

Economics help American Homes 4 Rent.

Here’s How Privacy Law Will Hurt

VICA LOCAL UPDATE: The Business Perspective on Valley Issues

How privacy law will hurt businesses.

Scooters: Annoying or Reassuring?

Why e-scooters are good.

Sunday, April 28

StretchLab’s Clients Can Tame Tension

Assisted stretching appeals to multiple market segments.

StretchLab appeals to exercise crowd.

Vertical Pot Startup

MANAGEMENT: Investors pour $58 million into building out a cannabis conglomerate.

Comprehensive approach to pot production funding.

Friday, April 26

HealthX Event Enjoys Its Fourth Year

The Valley Economic Alliance hosted its fourth annual HealthX conference Friday morning, with roughly 90 members of the L.A.-area health care community in attendance at Adventist Health Glendale.

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Amgen Settles Claim With Multi-Million Payment

Amgen Inc. will pay $24.75 million to settle claims linked to Sensipar, its hyperthyroidism drug, according to a Reuters article published Thursday.

Harbor Freight Closing Distribution Center

Harbor Freight Tools is shutting down its Camarillo distribution center, resulting in the loss of 51 jobs.

Preview: E-Receipt Bill Vexes Vendors

A bill circulating in the California State Assembly would prohibit businesses from providing paper receipts or proof of sale, limiting them exclusively to electronic documentation of transactions.

Preview: Anthem Building to Be Repositioned

Starting next year, the Warner Landmark, or the tower known simply as the Anthem building, will become available as the health insurer relocates to a new Warner Center address.

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Preview: Cannabis Company Plans Vertical Business Model

Vertical Cos., a medical and adult-use cannabis brand and distribution business, is living up to its name with a straight shot up in its funding trajectory.

Thursday, April 25

Housing Development to Go Up in Chatsworth

A Newport Beach firm has acquired its first Los Angeles County homesite with the goal of bringing 50 luxury homes online in Chatsworth by next year.

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Whole Foods to Relocate in Porter Ranch

Whole Foods Market announced it will open a 44,000 square foot supermarket in Porter Ranch on May 22.

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Woodbury to Host 55th Student Fashion Show

Woodbury University’s annual student fashion show will return to the Millennium Biltmore hotel in downtown Los Angeles May 4 for its 55th such event.

Disney to Buy More of Hulu?

Walt Disney Co. and Comcast Corp. are in discussions over the future of streaming site Hulu, according to media reports.

Wednesday, April 24

Ono Hawaiian BBQ Opens in Van Nuys

Ono Hawaiian BBQ is cutting the ribbon on its second Van Nuys location on Friday.

Party Ends for Santa Clarita Party City

A Party City location in Santa Clarita Valley’s Canyon Country will close this summer after a three-year run.

Avery Misses, Teledyne Beats Q1 Estimates

Avery Dennison Corp. reported mixed results for the first quarter, while Teledyne Technologies Inc. beat Wall Street estimates on earnings and revenue.

Simi Valley Warehouse Sells For $8.2 Million

An industrial building has traded hands in Simi Valley in an $8.2 million deal which closed on April 12, according to an announcement by PCI Commercial Reality Group.

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Tuesday, April 23

Fusion Generator Deal Sends US Nuclear Shares Higher

US Nuclear Corp. has acquired a stake in a company to manufacture its thermonuclear fusion power generator, a development that sent its shares higher.

L.A. City Council Recognizes New Horizons

The City of Los Angeles recognized New Horizons for 65 years of service to the community on April 17, according to a statement from the organization.

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Bakery Leases New Headquarters at Warner Center

An upscale baked goods producer and café has signed a 15,757-square-foot deal on a Warner Center facility that will become the company’s new manufacturing space.

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Santa Clarita Logs Biggest Rent Hikes in L.A. Metro Market

A new study found that Santa Clarita ranks No. 18 among medium-sized cities nationwide for year-over-year rent growth.

Monday, April 22

Aldi Opens Store in Valley as Part of Regional Expansion

German discount grocer Aldi opened a new supermarket at 14626 Roscoe Blvd. in Panorama City this month as part of an expansion campaign throughout Southern California.

San Fernando Retail Building Sells for $850,000

A corner retail property in San Fernando has changed hands for $850,000, or $158 a square foot.

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Henry Mayo Hospital Reaches Deal With Nurses Union

The California Nurses Association has reached a tentative agreement with Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital, according to a statement from the association on Friday.

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Scale Up in a Hurry

With its technology in demand and VC firms eager to invest, ServiceTitan must manage growth on multiple fronts.

ServiceTitan leaders manage on the run.

Friday, April 19

L.A. County Unemployment Drops as Workforce Shrinks

L.A. County’s unemployment rate in March dipped slightly to 4.6 percent, the combined effect of a modest gain in jobs and several thousand workers leaving the labor force.

Public Storage Promotes Top Lawyer

Public Storage has promoted Nathaniel Vitan to chief legal officer and corporate secretary as of April 20, the company said in a statement.

Small Van Nuys Office Building Sells for $1.3 Million

A 4,500-square-foot office building in Van Nuys has sold in an all-cash deal for $1.3 million, or $288.89 per square foot, according to brokerage CREI.

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Lancaster Senior Housing Complex Trades for $8.7 Million

Aurora Village Apartments, a low-income senior housing project in Lancaster, has traded for $8.65 million, according to Lee & Associates-LA North/Ventura.

Thursday, April 18

Casamba Partners with Florida-Based Health Tech Firm

Casamba, an electronic medical record company in Agoura Hills, has partnered with Forcura, a document management and health care communications firm in Jacksonville, Fla.

Tenant Purchases Chatsworth Warehouse for $9.7 Million

A Chatsworth warehouse has sold for $9.65 million to its tenant Allsale Electric.

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Thor Trucks Changes Name to Xos

Thor Trucks Inc. has rebranded itself as Xos and will expand its product offering beyond just trucks, the company announced.

New Manager at Hilton Los Angeles/Universal City

San Fernando Valley’s largest hotel has a new managing director.

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Wednesday, April 17

Women’s Council Awards Honors Valley’s Best

The San Fernando Valley Business Journal’s Women’s Council Awards recognized prominent female business leaders Wednesday.

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LBI Media to Restructure in Bankruptcy

LBI Media Inc. received approval of its Third Amended Plan of Reorganization from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

Location Filming Declines During Quarter

On-location filming of feature movies, television series and commercials was down in the first quarter.

North Hills Apartment Building Sells for $4.9 Million

A North Hills multifamily property has sold for nearly $4.9 million, or $318 per square foot.

Tuesday, April 16

Cheesecake Factory Opens in Oxnard

Cheesecake Factory opened its newest restaurant location Tuesday in Oxnard.

Martin Cooper to Serve as UCLA Film Archive Chairman

San Fernando Valley resident and public relations veteran Marty Cooper is the new chairman of the board at the UCLA Film & Television Archive.

Sherman Oaks Office Building Trades for $11.6 Million

A 38,994-square-foot office building in Sherman Oaks has sold for $11.6 million, or $298 per square foot, according to an announcement by Lee & Associates-LA North/Ventura.

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New Amgen Osteoporosis Drug Priced at $1,825 a Month

Amgen Inc.’s osteoporosis drug Evenity has been priced at $1,825 a month, or $21,900 a year.

Monday, April 15

Screenwriters Fire Agents Over Code of Conduct Dispute

Members of the Writer’s Guild of America fired thousands of Hollywood talent agents Friday because the agencies did not agree to a code of conduct proposed by the screenwriter’s union.

Stratolaunch's Giant Aircraft Takes Flight in Mojave

Stratolaunch Systems Corp. flew for the first time on Saturday the world’s largest all-composite aircraft.

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Warner Bros. Expansion Includes Burbank Studios, Gehry Towers

Warner Bros. Entertainment announced Monday major expansion plans for its Burbank headquarters, which will include the acquisition of a nearby studio complex and the creation of two Frank Gehry-designed office towers.

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Suburban Jewel

Harbor Associates paid nearly $48 million for Encino Office Park, a rare corporate campus on the Valley’s southern edge.

New ownership for Encino Office Park.

Why Can’t I Just Be a Contractor?

Independent contractors should have flexibility.

Inland Empire Forming Up North

Tejon Ranch is a new Inland Empire.

Cinema’s Staying Power

Valley entertainment firms enjoy good year at film convention.

Local companies attend CinemaCon.

Transit Master

Macy Neshati, a former executive at electric bus maker BYD Motors, now heads green-oriented Antelope Valley Transit Authority.

Transit advocate

ServiceTitan Grabs Five Floors in Glendale

OFFICE: Technology startup expects to reach 2,000 workers next year.

Glendale-based ServiceTitan has leased five of 12 vacant floors at 800 N. Brand Blvd., space formerly occupied by Nestlé USA.

Public Relations Agencies Explore Digital Market

LIST: Video content becomes driver for events, luxury brands.

Public relations firms learn to use social media.

Chopper on Mars

AeroVironment hopes work on a NASA helicopter bound for the red planet will impress potential customers and employees.

AeroVironment makes parts headed for Mars.

Zeiss Opens Film Demo Center in Sherman Oaks

ENTERTAINMENT: Camera, lens testing available for cinematographers.

German optics company Zeiss opened a cinema lens demonstration center and showroom this month in Sherman Oaks.

Kaiser to Resume Talks With Union Coalition

LABOR: Previous contract with 2,500 caregivers in Valley expired last year.

More than 85,000 unionized health care workers are mobilizing as contract negotiations between the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions and the health care giant start again.

3D Printer Makes Complex Parts in Valencia

AEROSPACE: Stratasys plans to push the boundaries of metal printing technology.

Stratasys Direct Manufacturing has expanded its additive metals offering with the purchase of a Velo3D Inc. Sapphire 3D printing system.

Valley’s Streets Host Scooters

TRANSPORTATION: Last-mile option works with public transit.

Scooters make first appearance in the Valley.

Spotify Buy of Parcast Consolidates Podcasting

MEDIA: Valley acquisition adds to streamer’s audio library.

Podcaster Parcast acquired by Spotify.


With the surge in immunotherapy research, HemaCare is ‘uniquely positioned’ to provide critical blood and tissue samples.

Blood is a high growth market for HemaCare.

Take-Out Orders Turn Up Sales at Cheesecake

RESTAURANTS: CEO credits menu, marketing for 14 percent annual gain.

Delivery sales take off for Cheesecake Factory.

Equity Experiment

FINANCE: Burbank’s Ikioo converts $41 million of seed funding into digital securities.

Health care firm converts to digital securities.

Art, Comedy Combine for Valley Diners

Comedian teaches art class.

Valley Bar’s trombone playing president elect.

Attorney Blows Off Steam Playing Trombone

Valley Bar’s trombone playing president elect.

Friday, April 12

Preview: Equity Experiment

Burbank's Ikioo Technologies Inc., a digital health care company, has converted its $41.2 million of seed funding into "digital equity securities."

Preview: Spotify Buy of Parcast Consolidates Podcasting

Valley acquisition adds to streamer's audio library.

Former Woodbridge Executives Charged With Fraud in Ponzi Scheme

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced Friday fraud charges in the investigation of a Ponzi scheme run by the now-defunct real estate investment firm Woodbridge Group of Cos. in Sherman Oaks.

Van Nuys Movie Studio Sells for $1.6 Million

A Van Nuys-based movie production studio has changed hands for the first time since its 1957 founding for $1.6 million, or $181 per square foot, according to brokers involved in the deal.

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Disney Shares Surge on Streaming Announcement

Shares in Walt Disney Co. surged Friday a day after the company announced the start date of its new streaming service and its future streaming plans.

Mover of the Stars

Marshall Lambert, fourth generation president of Rene’s Van & Storage, serves an exclusive clientele

Mover to the stars Marshall Lambert.

Content Candy

Valley movie studios bring out the stars and executives to tout future releases to exhibitors.

Valley studios bring star power to CinemaCon.

Thursday, April 11

French Aerospace Firm Buys Semtech Sensor Technology

Semtech Corp. is supplying its long-range, low-power technology to sensors for a French aerospace company to track its parts.

Westfield Valencia Adds $100 Million Patios Development

The former Sears location at Westfield Valencia Town Center will become the site of a project dubbed the Patios Connection, building on the success of the retail center’s existing element, The Patios.

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Cinedigm Signs Development Deal for Digital Network

Sherman Oaks-based Cinedigm Corp. has signed a development deal with Outlook Co., a Baltimore multimedia organization run by former NFL star Trevor Pryce.

PCF Insurance Makes Two Acquisitions

PCF Insurance Services has acquired two insurance agencies – one in Chicago and another in New York.

Wednesday, April 10

Encino Office Park Changes Hands

Harbor Associates of Long Beach has acquired Encino Office Park, a four-building, 213,459-square-foot, transit-oriented office campus, for $47.9 million, according to a company statement.

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Rex Home Brokerage Relocates Headquarters to Texas

Digital real estate brokerage Rex has moved its headquarters out of the Warner Center in Woodland Hills to new offices in Austin, Texas, that opened Wednesday.

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FDA Approves Amgen Osteoporosis Drug

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Amgen Inc.’s Evenity, an osteoporosis drug, according to a statement from the Thousand Oaks company on Tuesday.

Woodland Hills Advisory Firm Looks East

CNM, a tech advisory firm in Woodland Hills, has expanded to the East Coast with an office in New York City. The company announced the move on Tuesday.

Tuesday, April 9

BioSolar Battery in Prototypes for Electric Cars, Power Tools

BioSolar Inc. has announced that its tech partners have begun production and testing of lithium-ion cells for power tool applications, as well as consumer electronics and electric vehicles.

NoHo Apartment Complex Sells After Nearly Three Decades for $5.2 Million

A 22-unit multifamily property in North Hollywood has sold for the first time in nearly 30 years for nearly $5.2 million.

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Saalex to Hire 50 for Navy Contracts

Saalex Corp. announced that it is hiring more than 50 new employees in engineering and analyst positions.

Employee Benefits Firm RGEB Buys Valencia Consultancy

Really Great Employee Benefits has acquired the assets, employees and clients of JorgensenHR.

Monday, April 8

Semtech, PS Business Parks Join S&P Index

Semtech Corp. and PS Business Parks have been added to the S&P MidCap 400 index.

Thursday, April 4

Vroozi Names Tech Veteran as Chief Executive

Software-as-a-service firm Vroozi Inc. has named tech industry veteran Joseph Fox as its new chief executive.

Douglas Emmett to Construct Office Building in Woodland Hills

Douglas Emmett will build a three-story office complex within its Trillium office campus in Woodland Hills, according to a Real Deal report.

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VEDC Names Guerrero as President

Alex Guerrero has been named the new president of small business lender Valley Economic Development Center.

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Wednesday, April 3

B. Riley Promotes Merriman to Chief Business Officer

B. Riley Financial Inc. has named Jon Merriman senior managing director and chief business officer.

American Airlines Restarts Daily Flights to Dallas from Hollywood Burbank Airport

American Airlines has renewed daily service between Hollywood Burbank Airport and Dallas Fort Worth International Airport starting this week.

Two Conejo Spectrum Leases Total Nearly 100,000 Square Feet

Real estate brokerage CBRE Group has closed two leases at Conejo Corporate Campus in Thousand Oaks totaling nearly 100,000 square feet.

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Aligned Telehealth Expands Marketing Team

Aligned Telehealth, a behavioral health care provider, has named Miles Kramer as its new chief development officer.

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Tuesday, April 2

Agoura Hills Cannabis Firm Raises $58 Million

Vertical Cos., a medical and adult-use cannabis brand and distribution business based in Agoura Hills, closed its Series A financing round with $58 million on Tuesday.

Two Valley Apartment Portfolios Sell for Nearly $12 Million

Real estate brokerage Marcus & Millichap Inc. in Calabasas has sold two separate multifamily portfolios in the San Fernando Valley totaling 61 units between four buildings.

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'Taj Mahal' of Car Washes Coming to Camarillo

Construction has begun on what the owner is calling the “Taj Mahal” of car washes on Daily Drive in Camarillo.

Disney Supports Snap the Gap Program for STEM Education

Walt Disney Co. will help fund a program to close the gender gap in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM.

Monday, April 1

Xebec to Renovate Chatsworth Warehouse for E-commerce

Xebec Realty has announced the purchase of an industrial facility in Chatsworth, which the Dallas-based real estate investment company plans to renovate for e-commerce deliveries.

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Colliers Appoints Executive to Oversee Valley Offices

To further expand its business in the five-county Los Angeles commercial real estate market, Colliers International has appointed a new executive to oversee seven offices, including three in the greater Valley region.

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US Nuclear’s Drone-Mounted Chemical Detectors Send Shares Up

US Nuclear Corp. is now offering chemical detectors and bacterial or viral collection filters on flying drones, news which the company’s stock up more than 38 percent Monday.

MannKind Receives $12.5 Million Milestone Payment

MannKind Corp. announced the first of several development milestones under a licensing and collaboration agreement with United Therapeutics as of April 1.

YA Romance Novels Jump From Page to Screen

FILM: NoHo production company plans summer shoot for ‘Happy’ script.

North Hollywood producers option YA novels.

Newsstand Rebrands as a Convenience Store

MERCHANDISING: With fresh investment, owner adds food to selection.

Sherman Oaks newsstand adds food items.

Providence, Cedars Team on Tarzana Hospital

JOINT VENTURE: Facility’s $542 million construction project will move ahead.

Providence, Cedars partner on Tarzana hospital.

Modeling Biology

Special Report: Biotech

John DiBella sells software that conducts computer simulations of a drug’s reactions inside the body.

T-Cell Therapies

Special Report: Biotech

Amgen’s Blincyto opens a new front in the battle against cancer. While the drug isn’t one of the company’s bestsellers, the technology holds potential for future breakthroughs.

Newhall Ranch Project May Change Name

EVENT: FivePoint chairman speaks at Santa Clarita Valley Economic Outlook.

Developer, executives paint positive future for Santa Clarita.

A Window on Modern Medical Offices

CONSTRUCTION: Tarzana’s first doctors’ office building in decades reflects design creativity.

Office architects

Around The Valleys

News and notes from the greater San Fernando Valley

News and notes from the greater San Fernando Valley

Really, It’s All About the Kids

School district tax plan won’t help students.

School district tax plan won’t help students.

Now This Is Just Too Frightful

Boy, I have been wrong about you millennials. All this time, I thought you must be the happiest, most carefree generation in our history.

Indy 500 Puts Face on Afrezza

Indy 500 driver with diabetes is spokesman for MannKind Corp.’s Afrezza.

Toughen Up at Streaming Site

FITNESS: Openfit hosts videos to prepare for obstacle races.

Openfit distributes videos to prepare athletes for Tough Mudder.

Roller Rink’s Summer Fun For Skaters

Pop-up facility based on popularity of temp ice-skating operation.

Couple opens pop-up skating rinks.


Why the C-Suite Meets in the Museum

C-Suite executives gather at Valley museum.

Moms Call Mahmee

TECHNOLOGY: Maternity app finds venture capitalist investors.

Maternity app helps new mothers.

Salem’s Radio Station Sell-Off Reduces Debt

MEDIA: Broadcaster willing to shed non-core assets for the right price.

Salem Media sells assets to reduce debt.

Streaming Strategy

Disney’s purchase of Fox’s movie and television assets supports the Burbank company’s goal of competing online.

Disney grows bigger with close of Fox deal.

Vintage Punker

David Gibbs toured the world with punk band Gigolo Aunts before co-founding three wine-centric restaurants in the Valley.

Musician-turned-restaurant owner David Gibbs.