Stories for December 2019

Tuesday, December 31

AmaWaterways and Dapple Destinations Host Benefit Cruise

Simi Valley travel agency Dapple Destinations partnered with AmaWaterways in Calabasas to host a river cruise to raise money for Ventura County chapters of the Boys & Girls Club and Soroptimist International, a nonprofit that helps promote global women’s rights.

Research Station in Antarctica to Run on Capstone Turbine

Capstone Turbine Corp. received a follow-on order for one of its microturbines from the National Science Foundation for use at its McMurdo research station in Antarctica.

B. Riley, Kayne Anderson Finance Furniture Chain Acquisition

A subsidiary of B. Riley Financial Inc. in Woodland Hills and Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors in Los Angeles will provide a $700 million credit facility to finance the buyout of a furniture store chain.

Coldwell Banker Leases New Location in Valencia

Coldwell Banker Quality Properties has leased 3,250 square feet of second-floor office space in Valencia.

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Monday, December 30

LA Family Housing Gets Bank Grant

North Hollywood-based LA Family Housing on Monday received a $7,000 grant from Sterling Bancorp Inc., according to a statement from the Michigan holding company.

Berke Miller Law Group Changing its Name

Calabasas law firm Berke Miller Law Group on Monday announced it will change its name to Miller Haga Law Group on Jan. 1.

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Friday, December 27

Wescom Credit Union to Debut Rose Parade Float

Wescom Credit Union announced it will debut a float in next week’s Rose Parade.

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Grapevine Opens After 36-Hour Closure

The 5 freeway at the Grapevine re-opened Friday morning after about 36 hours of closure due to snow, according to the California Transportation Department.

Thursday, December 26

Valley Clinics Participate in Providence Training Program

The San Fernando Community Health Center is one of three organizations to partner with Providence Health and Services Southern California for its Community Health Worker Training Academy.

Salem Media Adds 'Dan Proft Show'

Conservative and Christian-slanting radio talk broadcaster Salem Media Group in Camarillo will syndicate a new program called the “Dan Proft Show” beginning next week.

Calabasas Firm Finances $69 Million Student Housing Project in Merced

A Calabasas firm has provided a Michigan-based real estate development company with $68.8 million in construction financing for an ambitious student residential development near the University of California – Merced.

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Tuesday, December 24

The Angel Veterans Housing Project Lands in North Hills

The nonprofit L.A. Family Housing has gained approval to build veterans affordable housing development in North Hills.

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Receiver Alleges Corruption in Sale of Universal City Nissan Dealership

The receiver for automotive dealership Sage Group has filed a lawsuit alleging that Japanese automaker Nissan concealed a corrupt relationship between it and an auto group that bought dealerships from Sage in Universal City and Glendale.

Liberman Broadcasting Appoints Senior Leaders

Spanish-language broadcaster LBI Media announced last week the appointments of Ivan Stoilkovich as executive vice president of television programming and Jason Hall as executive vice president of advertising sales.

Monday, December 23

Westlake Village’s One Capital Management Acquired by Canadian Company

Canadian wealth management company CI Financial Corp. announced Monday it has acquired a majority interest in One Capital Management, an investment advisory firm in Westlake Village. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Los Robles Hospital Workers Join Union

About 120 health care workers at Los Robles Regional Medical Center in Thousand Oaks have joined SEIU Local 121RN to push for increased staffing and better pay, according to a statement from the union.

Townhome Project Planned in Sherman Oaks

Architectural plans for a quartet of townhouse structures to be built on a small residential lot in Sherman Oaks have been submitted to the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council.

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The Lists 2020

Editor and Publisher Charles Crumpley talks about San Fernando Valley Business Journal's The Lists 2020

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Friday, December 20

Report: Thousand Oaks Must Build 2,500 Housing Units by 2029

According to preliminary data from the Southern California Association of Government, Thousand Oaks must erect 2,578 homes by 2029.

Cunard Partners to Publish Destination Guides

Valencia cruise company Cunard announced Thursday a partnership with Cool Cousin, a travel technology company that makes destination guides curated by locals.

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Santa Clarita Chamber Honors College of the Canyons Chancellor

The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce named Dianne Van Hook, chancellor of College of the Canyons as winner of its Lifetime Achievement award on Friday.

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Tix Board Member Resigns, Replaced by Vegas Developer

Tix Corp. announced Friday the resignation of David Saxe as a member of the board of directors, effective Dec. 16.

Thursday, December 19

Cinedigm Buys Stake in Chinese Entertainment Company

Cinedigm Corp. announced Thursday its intention to buy a 29 percent stake in a Chinese film and video production company.

New Details on Adler Realty’s $1 Billion Warner Center Development

New information has surfaced regarding Adler Realty Investments’ $1 billion mixed-use development in Warner Center.

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Valencia's URM Technologies Acquires Digital Image Systems

URM Technologies Inc., a Valencia document management systems company, has acquired Digital Image Systems in Commerce.

Cast & Crew Recruits First Chief Commercial Officer

Graham Younger has been named chief commercial officer at entertainment accounting firm Cast & Crew.

Wednesday, December 18

La Crescenta Apartment Complex Sells for $35 Million

A 92-unit apartment complex in La Crescenta-Montrose sold for $34.5 million, Institutional Property Advisors announced Tuesday.

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Exer Urgent Care Opens Camarillo Clinic

Exer Urgent Care opened its latest medical facility in Camarillo, complete with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday.

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Insurance Group Commits to Glendale Lease

California Insurance Guarantee Association signed a 10-year lease with an undisclosed landlord to occupy 29,000 square feet of office space at 330 N. Brand Blvd. in Glendale.

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Porto’s Bakery Founder Dies at 89

Rosa Porto, the Cuban immigrant and baker who founded Porto’s Bakery & Café, died Friday at 89.

Tuesday, December 17

Chinese Investment in Local Real Estate Plummets 50 Percent in 2019

A report by research firm Real Capital Analytics found that investment in Southern California, including the Greater San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys, has dropped by more than 50 percent.

Santa Clarita Aerospace Manufacturer Acquires NoHo Fastener Firm

Shimtech Industries, an aerospace components manufacturer in Santa Clarita, has acquired Fastener Technology Corp., a North Hollywood supplier of specialty high-strength fasteners.

Medtronic Buys Behavioral Software Company for Diabetes Research

Medtronic announced it has acquired Klue, a software company in San Jose focused on tracking real-time behavior, such as when a person is consuming food.

Monday, December 16

HemaCare Acquired for $380 Million

HemaCare Corp. on Monday announced it will be acquired by Charles River Laboratories for $380 million in cash.

Los Angeles World Airports to Name Interim CEO as Flint Plans Early Departure

Los Angeles World Airports is set to name its No. 2 executive as interim chief executive to replace current Chief Executive Deborah Flint, who moved up her previously announced departure date to the end of this month.

Jury Convicts Valley Residents in $126 Million Toner Scheme

A federal jury has found seven people – including three from the Valley region – guilty of conspiracy and mail fraud for participating in a decades-long, $126 million telemarketing scheme targeting thousands of small businesses, agencies and charities.

Kaiser Workers Strike in Panorama City

Mental health workers on Monday set up a picket line outside Kaiser Permanente’s Panorama City Medical Center.

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Friday, December 13

VICA Passes Gavel to Incoming Chairman Rosenheim

Longtime Valley Industry & Commerce Association member Brad Rosenheim, of Woodland Hills-based Rosenheim & Associates, became president of VICA’s board at the organization’s 70th Annual Meeting Friday at Airtel Hotel in Van Nuys.

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NBCUniversal Chief Executive Steve Burke to Step Down

NBCUniversal Chief Executive Steve Burke will step down from his position in 2020 and NBCU executive Jeff Shell is expected to replace him.

B. Riley SPAC to Merge with Alta Equipment

B. Riley Principal Merger Corp. announced Thursday it will combine with Alta Equipment Holdings Inc., a provider of industrial and construction equipment.

Endonovo's 1-for-1,000 Reverse Stock Split

Endonovo Therapeutics will execute a 1-for-1,000 reverse stock split of the company’s common shares.

Thursday, December 12

L.A. Sues FAA Over Hollywood Burbank Airport Noise

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer announced a lawsuit against the Federal Aviation Administration Thursday on behalf of residents and businesses in the southeast San Fernando Valley who have endured a significant increase in airplane noise and traffic due to changes in the flight paths of planes at Hollywood Burbank Airport.

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Cosmetic Injectables Center Opens in Valley

Cosmetic Injectables Center, a medical spa business based in Los Angeles, has opened its first facility in the San Fernando Valley.

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Sienna Biopharmaceuticals to Cease Operations

Sienna Biopharmaceuticals Inc. will cease operations by the end of the week and lay off its remaining employees.

Camarillo Man Arrested for Role in $722 Million Bitcoin Scam

A Camarillo man was one of three people arrested Tuesday in connection with a cryptocurrency mining scheme that allegedly defrauded investors out of $722 million.

Wednesday, December 11

Gulfstream Opens Business Aviation Center at Van Nuys Airport

Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. announced Wednesday the official opening of a maintenance, repair and overhaul facility at Van Nuys Airport.

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State Approves Bank of Santa Clarita Stock Split

The Bank of Santa Clarita on Tuesday announced the California Department of Business Oversight has approved the bank’s proposal of a three-for-two stock split.

Medical Office Plaza Could Rise Across From Glendale City Hall

Glendale-based nonprofit health provider All For Health, Health For All is developing a medical office building at 517 E. Broadway.

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IHOP to Debut Fast Casual Concept in Early 2020

Glendale restaurant operator Dine Brands Global Inc. announced Wednesday plans to launch a new fast-casual concept called Flip’d by IHOP in spring of 2020.

Tuesday, December 10

Van Nuys Townhouses Sell for $5.6 Million

Erwin Apartments, a multifamily property at 14740 Erwin St. in Van Nuys, has sold for $5.59 million, or $310,556 a unit, according to Warren Berzack, principal of Lee & Associates-LA North/Ventura, who represented the seller with Lee Principal Slavic Zlatkin.

Santa Clarita Firm Gets FDA Nod

TriMed Inc., an orthopedic medical device developer based in Santa Clarita, on Tuesday announced it received what’s called a closeout letter from the Food and Drug Administration.

Dueñas Exiting Encino Chamber

Diana Dueñas, chief executive of the Encino Chamber of Commerce, on Tuesday announced that she will soon leave her post to pursue a position with the Gelb Group in Woodland Hills.

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Amazon 4-Star Makes SoCal Debut Inc. has opened the first Southern California location of its Amazon 4-Star retail concept in the Caruso-built Americana at Brand shopping center in Glendale.

Monday, December 9

Glendale Apartment Complex Changes Hands

The Griffith, a 220-unit apartment building in Glendale, has sold for $119 million, records show.

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Amgen to Open Large Space in Bay Area

Amgen Inc. on Monday signed a lease for a 240,000-square-foot facility in South San Francisco. The site, under construction, is set to open in early 2022.

Hotel With 25 Stories Proposed for Glendale

A 25-story hotel proposal by Arcadia-based real estate firm Kam Sang Co. is scheduled to go before Glendale City Council Tuesday.

Rexford Takes Conejo Spectrum

Completion of the Conejo Spectrum industrial park last year marked the first new state-of-the-art industrial project of significant size in Ventura County or the San Fernando Valley in 15 years.

CRC Faces a Fracking Fallout

ENERGY: Stock market doesn’t like new oil drilling rules.

Stock market doesn’t like new oil drilling rules for California Resources Corp.

$1 Billion for District NoHo

DEVELOPMENT: Transit figures in project’s marketing plan.

$1 billion investment for mixed-use buildings in NoHo Arts District.


CSUN President Retires

Cal State Northridge President Dianne Harrison to step down in June.

End of an Era for Michael’s Furniture

Panorama City retailer, known for TV ads, to close after 58 years.

Panorama City lost a retail institution earlier this month when Michael’s Furniture Warehouse closed its doors after 58 years.

Give the Gift of an Empty Leg Flight

Online list features discount private jet opportunities.

Looking for an original holiday gift?

Out of Innings

SPORTS: Major League Baseball plans to cut affiliation with 42 farm teams, including the Lancaster JetHawks.

Lancaster JetHawks among 42 minor league teams on chopping block.

Avery’s Play for RFID Tags Costs $249 Million

MANUFACTURING: Stock price falls following major acquisition’s disclosure.

Avery Dennison Corp. shows confidence in RFID technology with $249 million acquisition.

Destination: Valley

HOSPITALITY: Private visitors bureau promotes region’s tourism.

MyValleyPass promotes the region to tourists and locals alike.

Deadline Nears for Diversity on Public Boards

GOVERNANCE: Most companies in Valley have a woman at the table.

Valley doing OK as deadline nears for diversity on public boards.

Leadership Switch at Conejo Valley Chamber

NONPROFIT: Jill Lederer retires, Danielle Borja named chief executive.

For the first time in her life, Jill Lederer has put business on the back burner.

Calabasas: NIMBYs Versus Affordable Housing

REGULATION: Calabasas City Council puts Avalon Bay question on ballot.

Head-to-head confrontation between Calabasas’ NIMBY contingent and a developer seeking to help the city meet its minimum affordable housing requirement came to a tense pause last month.

FirstLight Home Care In the Valley

Non-medical service company helps seniors and veterans.

FirstLight Home Care, an in-home health care business, opened its first center in the Valley area on Dec. 9.

MPTF: Harry’s Haven for Memory Care

Facility designed to encourage patient interaction.

The Motion Picture & Television Fund campus in Woodland Hills has moved its memory care facility

Dignity, UniHealth Investment

Organizations, school districts focus on youth mental health.

Dignity Health, UniHealth Foundation and Southern California school districts are partnering, with the help of $4 million in grant funding, to train school staff and parents about mental health for at-risk youth.

CSUN Hosts Philanthropy Day Awards

NBC4, Queenscare, others honored for charitable efforts.

To celebrate National Philanthropy Day, the Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater San Fernando Valley Chapter hosted an awards luncheon Nov. 12

Mending Kids Takes Muse on Mission

High schoolers shadow ENT volunteers in Guatemala.

Glendale medical nonprofit Mending Kids took a team of surgical volunteers to Guatemala last month to provide free ear, nose and throat procedures to more than 100 local children.

Nonprofit’s $10,000 Grant From L’Oreal

Jonathan Foundation helps students with attention deficit.

Granada Hills resident Raja Marhaba, founder of the nonprofit Jonathan Foundation for Children with Learning Disabilities, has been chosen as one of 10 winners of L’Oreal Paris’ 2019 Women of Worth Awards

Warner Bros. Unveils a New Logo

Rebranding campaign includes mission statement.

More than 500 employees of Warner Bros. Studios gathered last month to see the unveiling of the new logo on the water tower at the studio lot.

Succession Comes Fast For Matthews Studio

Founder passes away, leaving son to run the business.

Family-owned companies often consider succession planning critical to the success of the business.

‘The Orville’ Takes Home Hardware

Burbank associ ation honors post-production firm FuseFX.

FuseFX came away a winner at the Hollywood Professional Association’s annual awards show last month.

Valley Home Prices Hit Record High

Average single-family house sold for $755,000 in October.

Home sales are rising even as home prices hit record highs amid a 31-percent drop in inventory.

Developer Sells Project Still in Construction

Virtu Investments buys Warner Center project with 174 units for $70.5 million.

Los Angeles real estate company Cityview announced the sale on Dec. 2 of Mira, a 174-unit multifamily development currently under construction in Woodland Hills.

River Cruise Company’s Big Move

AmaWaterways celebrates lease with open house party.

Calabasas-based AmaWaterways will head upstream to The Park Calabasas by summer.

Shifts in Strategy

As industries change and merge, so does the motivation for deal-making.

For the San Fernando Valley, 2019 was a year of smaller deals – but lots of them.

Amgen Pays $13.4 Billion for Otezla

Amgen Inc. paid a whopping $13.4 billion in cash for Celgene Corp.’s Otezla, its star psoriasis drug.

Tarzana Hospital a Joint Venture

Providence St. Joseph Health System Southern California and Cedars-Sinai became the latest power couple in the Valley health care industry

Cheesecake Buys Fresh Chains

In October, the Valley’s biggest restaurant company got even bigger.

ASGN Buyouts a Path to Future

Asgn Inc. made two major acquisitions this year that expanded the company’s capabilities to serve federal government agencies and in digital innovation to enterprise clients.

VCs Bet $95 Million on Arcutis

Arcutis Biotherapeutics arrived on the drug development scene late in October

Upscale Investment in Calabasas

In early 2019, the three-building Calabasas Park Centre office campus sold for $78 million.

Hotel Gives 14,580 Percent Gain

The Tri-Cities saw some major hotel sales in July when Pebblebrook Hotel Trust sold the Hotel Amarano Burbank for $72.9 million

Wrecking Ball for Simi Offices

A Simi Valley landmark has traded hands – and may be headed for the rubble pile.

Deals That Didn’t Work

Despite the best intentions, sometimes negotiators can never get to a satisfactory resolution.

Deals that didn’t work out this year, including Panavision acquisition.

Economy Fills the Sails for Private Companies

LIST: Revenue growth comes from geographic expansion, new products.

The San Fernando Valley has a diverse group of large private companies, ranging from a tool retailer to a trade journal publisher, from car dealerships to transportation logistics.



Past Job ‘Errors’ May Be OK Now

Switching jobs frequently not seen as bad thing anymore.

A Resolution That Will Help Valley


The Business Perspective on Valley Issues

Friday, December 6

Moving Company Signs Chatsworth Warehouse Lease

Air 1 Moving & Storage has signed a lease for a freestanding industrial facility in Chatsworth.

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Capstone Names CFO

Capstone Turbine Corp. announced Friday that Frederick Hencken III has been appointed as chief financial officer.

Amgen's Arthritis Drug Avsola Gets FDA Approval

Amgen Inc. on Friday announced its biosimilar treatment for rheumatoid arthritis was approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Preview: Major League Baseball to Jettison the Jethawks?

Pushback on plan to cancel farm teams.

Preview: End-of-Decade Deals

Business Journal's special report on the biggest deals of 2019.

Thursday, December 5

Simulations Plus to Collaborate with Bayer on Predictive Software

Simulations Plus Inc. on Thursday announced it has entered into a collaborative agreement with Bayer AG to advance its ADMET Predictor.

Van Nuys-Based Helicopter Possibly Struck by Drone

A helicopter operated for KABC-TV Channel 7 in Glendale was possibly hit by a drone Wednesday night and made a precautionary landing.

Accounting Firm CNM Opens Office in San Diego

Woodland Hills financial advisory firm CNM LLP announced Thursday the opening of a new office in San Diego.

Wednesday, December 4

Kaiser Workers Reschedule Strike for mid-December

Mental health employees belonging to the National Union of Healthcare Workers on Wednesday announced they have rescheduled their strike against Kaiser Permanente.

Borderline Bar Announces Second Location

The owners of Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks announced some good news recently: they plan to open a sister location in Agoura Hills called BL Dancehall & Saloon.

Sportsmen’s Lodge Hotel Set for Makeover

New York real estate company Midwood Investment & Development has announced plans to invest $2.25 million in renovations to the Sportsmen’s Lodge Hotel in Studio City over the next two years.

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Glendale’s PSI Buys Sales Talent Testing Firm

Professional testing firm PSI Services, headquartered in Glendale, on Tuesday announced it has acquired Caliper, a sales talent assessment company.

Business Bank Opens Location in Woodland Hills

American Business Bank on Wednesday announced the opening of a San Fernando Valley loan production office.

Tuesday, December 3

Calabasas Marijuana Company Buys Brand

Calabasas-based Textmunication Holdings Inc., a cannabis and hemp holding company, on Tuesday announced an investment in Joiant, a CBD brand formerly known as Prism Blends.

Developer Proposes 127 Apartments Near Van Nuys Airport

An entity affiliated with Malibu-based Weintraub Real Estate Group has filed plans with the city of Los Angeles to construct mixed-income housing west of the Van Nuys Airport.

ServiceTitan Acquires Water Treatment Software Firm

ServiceTitan has acquired WaterSoftWare, a business management services firm for the water treatment industry.

Valley’s Nury Martinez Becomes President of L.A. City Council

Los Angeles City Councilmember Nury Martinez was elected Tuesday as the new president of the City Council.

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Monday, December 2

Skidata Acquires Sentry Control Systems in Van Nuys

Sentry Control Systems has been acquired by Skidata, creating the largest provider of parking access and revenue control equipment in the United States.

Tri-Cities Thrive Despite Departures

The Tri-Cities office market has seen substantial changes in the past few years.

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Sinise Foundation Finds Financial Partner for GivingTuesday

The Gary Sinise Foundation, based in Woodland Hills, has teamed up with the CMG Foundation in Virginia for GivingTuesday.