Stories for June 2008

Monday, June 30

Anacomp's Digital Storage Venture Looks Good on Paper

Anacomp Inc., which helps its clients automate and store their data online, is most definitely in the technology business.

All This News Is Making Me Hungry

Well, we did have a friend in the diamond business

Overland Buys Storage Appliance Business

Overland Storage Inc., a San Diego provider of data storage systems, said June 30 that it acquired the networked and desktop storage appliance business from Milpitas-based Adaptec Inc. for $3.6 million.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: While the ailing U.S. economy is leaving cities with lower tax revenues and imminent budget cuts, Lemon Grove recently approved a balanced budget that gives many employees a pay rai

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Karma Hartman Bass

Networking Group Goes Extra Mile to Attract Diverse Conventions

Although San Diego's tourism industry appears immune to higher gasoline prices, at least for now, officials fear that business travelers, including those coming for meetings and conventions, are more susceptible to the situation than leisure travelers, pa

Medical Imaging Center Built at Sharp Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa

Progress Report: Bilbro Construction Co. has completed construction of the Medical Imaging Center for Sharp Grossmont Hospital.

How to Control the Horizontality of Your People

It looks as if size, after all, does matter.

Major Events Draw Summer Visitors, But Will Travelers Arrive This Fall?

One local hotel executive has compared filling rooms in the summertime to selling Christmas trees in December.

Akonix Software Says IM Networks in Danger

A local security software maker has issued a warning about malicious code attacks over instant messaging networks.

How to Beat the High Cost of Gasoline? Move Closer to Work

High gas prices are affecting nearly every aspect of the U.S. economy , including real estate.

New Workforce Appointee Is the 'Right Man at the Right Time'

As unemployment rises, Mark Cafferty knows the public agency he heads up is getting more attention, but it's the kind of attention he relishes.

USD Economic Index Continues to Sputter

San Diego's stalling economy continued to sputter in May, based on a local economic index that showed an eighth straight monthly decline.

Scientists Get Nearly $5M for Stem Cell Research

A governing board with the state's stem cell agency awarded $24 million in grants June 27 to help fund collaborative research on specific diseases and injuries and to further advances in new lines of human embryonic stem cells.

Pfizer Invests $3M in Startup to Advance Stem Cell Therapy

In a rare move for Big Pharma, Pfizer Inc. said last week that it would invest an initial $3 million into an early stage stem cell company

Despite Great Beach Weather, City Forecasting Lower Revenues

Gauging by crowded beaches and freeways, San Diego is off to a typical summer, where a wave of visitors pour west from Arizona to escape the blistering desert heat or south from Los Angeles for a relaxing getaway.

LandAmerica Closing Local Offices

LandAmerica Financial Group Inc. is in the middle of a nationwide consolidation as it tries to reduce expenses to deal with the ongoing crisis in the housing industry.

Restaurants Offer 'Value Meals' to Make Dining Out More Affordable

San Diego's hospitality industry got off to a bang in June at the beginning of the peak travel season, thanks to some big events, including the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon, U.S. Open and BIO International Convention.

Ernst & Young Names Five Local Entrepreneurs of the Year

Five San Diego executives have been named Ernst & Young Entrepreneurs of the Year for San Diego County.

And the Energy Star Award Goes to

Southern California Gas Co. (The Gas Co.) has been awarded a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 2008 Energy Star award.

City Wins Latest Case Against de la Fuente

The city of San Diego prevailed in another court hearing June 27 in a case it has been litigating since 1993 against Roque de la Fuente, a local developer.

Executive Profile - Aaron Hall

Aaron Hall is CEO of Borrego Solar Systems Inc., which designs and installs solar electric systems for homes and businesses.

Investor Unease Sends Commercial Real Estate Market Down

A recent investor survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers finds that the commercial real estate market, once a bright spot in the economy, is dimming.

Isis and Genzyme Close Deal on High Cholesterol Drug

Genzyme Corp. of Cambridge, Mass. and Carlsbad-based Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. last week renegotiated terms of a deal to bring cholesterol-lowering drug mipomersen to the market.

Coalition Deems State's Planned Medicaid Cuts Extreme and Illegal

Planned cuts to state health care programs for the needy take effect July 1, unless a class-action lawsuit puts a temporary halt to the measure.

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: Sanison LLC has purchased two units totaling 4,630 square feet from Green Arrow LLC for $1,250,100.

Koni's Knack for Room Service: Dressing Up Hotels in Soft Goods

There are many success stories out there of businesses that started with an idea drafted on a napkin, or in the case of Koni Corp. in Otay Mesa, an idea built on a foundation of bedspreads and draperies.

More First-Time Vendors Selling Goods, Services at County Fair

Each summer, 96 percent of the vendors return to the San Diego County Fair.

Week In Review

Top Business News: June 20 - 26, 2008

Ban on Holding Phones While Driving Boon for Retailers

The training wheels come off July 1 for motorists still adjusting to their new Bluetooth headsets.

AT & T; Still Trying to Lure Customers From Local Cable TV Operators

One year after launching its U-verse television service in San Diego, AT & T; Inc. claims it's made strides in taking customers from the region's two major cable providers, but won't say how many.

Sandag's Strategy for the Region's Future

There are no national economies anymore , only a global economy with a constellation of regional economies with strong cities at their core.

Friday, June 27

Target Logistic Services to Take Mainfreight Name Locally

Target Logistic Services said June 27 that it will change its name to Mainfreight on July 1, reflecting the name of its new parent company.

Survey: 367 Technology Companies Created in 2007

San Diego's high-tech industry is proving to be fertile ground for new business creation.

SeQual Executive Segues to CEO's Job

SeQual Technologies Inc., a San Diego manufacturer of medical equipment, said June 26 that it has promoted Ron Richard to chief executive officer, effective July 1.

Fresh & Easy Makes Move Toward Point Loma, Mira Mesa

Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market said June 26 that it plans to hire 750 employees in the next three months.

Thursday, June 26

Marlins, Braves and $5.50 Beer: Padres Trim Snack Bar Prices in July

Responding to dwindling attendance at Petco Park, the Padres announced June 26 a discount promotion for all the team's home games in July.

Summer Swap: SDG & E; Collects Incandescent Bulbs

San Diego Gas & Electric plans to hold five events letting customers trade in old incandescent light bulbs for new, compact fluorescent bulbs at no cost to the customer, the Sempra Energy utility said June 25.

SYS Shareholders Approve Sale to Kratos

SYS Technologies Inc., a San Diego provider of information technology services to federal agencies, said June 26 its shareholders approved a previously announced sale of the company to Kratos Defense and Security Solutions Inc.

Lindbergh Passenger Count Up 5 Percent Over May 2007

Lindbergh Field saw a 5.1 percent increase in the number of passengers flying in and out during May , a statistic that would have been higher if not for the double-digit decline in those taking international flights.

Consumer Confidence Leads Economic Index Downward

An index measuring the economic heft of San Diego County fell yet again in May.

Wednesday, June 25

Palomar Pomerado Health to Cut 86 Employees

Palomar Pomerado Health, which manages a hospital district covering 800 square miles, said June 24 that it is cutting 86 employees to help offset upcoming patient care costs.

S.D.'s April Home Prices Fall to 2003 Level

April home prices in San Diego erased nearly five years of appreciation, according to the S & P;/Case-Shiller Home Prices Indices released June 24.

Locally and Worldwide, the Rich Get Richer

When it comes to rich folk, San Diego has more than its fair share, and the group gets bigger every year, according to the World Wealth Report from Merrill Lynch and Capgemini released June 24.

Podcast: This Week's Front Page, at a Glance

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the June 23, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

Tuesday, June 24

GreatCall Picks Up $38M in Series C Funds

Del Mar-based GreatCall Inc. said June 24 that it received $38 million in Series C venture funding.

Monday, June 23

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: Cardinal Investments recently acquired the site located at 12625 High Bluff Drive in Carmel Valley.

Focus Pedigree Law Only on Counterfeit Medicine

In 2004, California passed legislation to mandate use of a pedigree system to electronically track drugs from the manufacturer to the patient as a means of stopping the sale of counterfeit drugs through the gray, or secondary, market.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Construction has begun on Windy Point Corporate Center, a $3.4 million project that will house the University of St. Augustine sports medicine school in Twin Oaks Valley.

Conrad Prebys Awards Additional $3 Million to UCSD Music Dept.

The UC San Diego Department of Music received a $3 million gift from Conrad Prebys to establish the Conrad Prebys Music Endowment.

Accredited Hires Former Bear Stearns Exec to Its Top Post

We don't know what happened to 7,600 Bear Stearns employees on the chopping block following its acquisition by JP Morgan Chase & Co., but one landed a job in San Diego.

World of Humility Is What's Needed Today

The practice of sincere humility, especially by the high-flying, is not particularly in fashion these days.

Battery Backups Mean Hybrid Wait List 100 Deep at Some Dealerships

Flat sales of hybrid vehicles are a poor indication of current demand for the fuel-efficient autos, local dealers say.

Websense Gets High Marks for Data Protection

San Diego-based Websense Inc. was deemed a front-runner in the data leak prevention market by top-tier industry research firm Forrester Research.

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Chris Lewis

BIO Goes Global

Nowhere is the global reach of the biotechnology industry more apparent than during its annual meeting, where the sound of foreign tongues fills hallways and flags of every nation splash color on a convention center.

Gaming Outlet and PC Shop on Upward Track

The constant drone of audio explosions spewing out of computer speakers at The Office Games store in Mission Valley makes it clear a visitor is in another world, where virtual combatants are shot down by the dozens as new enemies lurk behind barricades up

Pala Band Shares $26M Cost of SR-76 Upgrades With Granite Co.

Progress Report: Granite Construction Co. and the Pala Band of Mission Indians are jointly financing $26 million in improvements to state Route 76 in collaboration with the county of San Diego and the state Department of Transportation.

Opportunities Abound for Local Home Builders

The falloff in housing prices and lack of land to build homes is signaling the end of an era for public builders and creating new opportunities for San Diego builders to reassert themselves, analysts and companies say.

Fleet Tracking Becomes More Viable Option for Land Vehicles

Carlton van Putten says this is the year for business to accelerate growth on fleet tracking services, an annual $2.5 billion industry in the United States, according to C.J. Driscoll & Associates' market research.

Sweet Addition Arrives at Otay Ranch Town Center

Chula Vista's Otay Ranch Town Center opened a See's Candies store June 20.

ESET's New Antivirus Software Targets Smart Phones

ESET LLC introduced Mobile Antivirus, an antivirus software for smart phones.

Sequenom to Offer 5.5M Shares

Sequenom Inc. said June 23 that it plans to make a public offering of 5.5 million shares of common stock.

Century 21 CEO: 'Window Right' For Buying Residential Real Estate

Falling home prices is unleashing pent-up demand. But too many buyers remain on the sidelines, according to the chief executive officer of Century 21.

Nonprofit Profile - Mental Health Systems Inc. or MHS

A talk with Kimberly Bond, president of Mental Health Systems Inc.

Week In Review

Top Business News: June 13 - 19, 2008

Could Perks of Clean-Diesel Engines Offset Higher Fuel Costs?

A new kind of diesel vehicle , one that runs cleaner, quieter and quicker , will make its San Diego debut this fall, but how big of a splash it makes depends on fickle consumer reaction.

Qualcomm Forging Mobile Banking and Commerce Partnerships

Since its $210 million acquisition of Firethorn Holdings LLC in November 2007, Qualcomm Inc. has wasted no time in forging relationships with big banks and wireless phone carriers to support mobile banking, which is growing in popularity.

County Homebuyers Say 'Out With the New, in With the Old'

The full picture of home sales emerged June 16 with the May numbers reported by DataQuick Information Systems, which not only looks at the Multiple Listing Service, but also property records from the San Diego County Recorder's office.

Multinational Software Project Steers Land and Air Drones

When a big British defense contractor formed a multinational team to write drone-control software, it chose eight people from Rancho Bernardo.

Blast From the Past: eVisibility Offers Employees $2.25 Gasoline

Carlsbad-based eVisibility Inc. said June 23 it plans to subsidize gasoline costs for its 35 local employees, capping the price at $2.25 per gallon.

Executive Profile - Joseph Troya

Joseph Troya is vice president of Consolidated Contracting Services Inc., a commercial general contracting company.

Quarry Falls Plan Has Developers Divided

The developer of the proposed Quarry Falls project, which would transform the working quarry between Mission Valley and Serra Mesa into a mixed-use commercial and residential village, has run headlong into an unusual NIMBY: fellow developer H.G. Fenton De

He Who Waits, Wins in the World of Unmanned Aircraft

The unmanned aerial vehicle lives a life of patient waiting.

Insurer to Pay $5.5M in Fines, Penalties

Unum, a Tennessee-based provider of group life insurance, agreed June 23 to pay $5.5 million in fines and penalties to the federal government after failing to disclose special fees it was paying to an unnamed San Diego-based insurance broker, in a signed

Showtime! Althea CEO Dons Grass Skirt

Golden Boys With The Golden Touch: I've got a must read for you, "Double or Nothing: How Two Friends Risked It All to Buy One of Las Vegas' Legendary Casinos," by University of San Diego grad Tom Breitling.

Friday, June 20

Scent of a Deal: Aromatica Acquires Pinch Plus

San Marcos-based Aromatica Organics, an organic specialty food and spice company, said June 17 that it had reached an agreement to acquire Pinch Plus LLC for an undisclosed amount.

Transit District Cuts Bus Routes, Raises Fares

The North County Transit District board voted unanimously June 19 to cut bus routes, raise fares and eliminate some services to balance its $91.8 million budget.

Construction Sites Go Quiet, Jobless Rate Reaches 5.5 Percent

San Diego's unemployment rate jumped to 5.5 percent in May, up from 5.1 percent in April and well above the year-ago jobless rate of 4.1 percent, according to the state Employment Development Department's June 20 report.

Six Locals Charged in Alleged Mortgage Fraud Scheme

Six San Diegans working at a downtown mortgage brokerage were charged June 19 with wire fraud as part of a nationwide prosecution of 406 individuals alleged to have participated in widespread mortgage fraud schemes, according to the U.S. Department of Jus

Thursday, June 19

Goodrich Aerostructures Gets $600M Nacelle Deal

Goodrich Corp. announced April 17 it received production contracts from national defense contractors Lockheed Martin and General Electric Aircraft Engines to upgrade 49 aircraft for the U.S. Air Force.

Redevelopment of Bay View Plaza Under Way

Demolition will soon begin to redevelop the 1950s-era Bay View Plaza at Clairemont Drive adjacent to the Best Western Mission Bay Hotel.

Sales at Bayside Tower Buck Housing Trend

Offering more evidence that the housing crisis doesn't apply to the rich, a new luxury tower going up near Little Italy and two blocks from San Diego Bay is 80 percent sold, its developer said June 18.

Signature Count on Port Measure Under Way

A referendum to amend the Port of San Diego's master plan to allow for commercial development at the port's two maritime docks appears to have sufficient signatures to qualify for the Nov. 4 ballot, Registrar of Voters Deborah Seiler said.

Biocom and Regional Biotech Groups Form Alliance

An alliance formed June 19 between three of the state's life sciences trade organizations is aimed toward combining resources to help California retain its edge as a leading biotech innovator.

Leap Wireless Plans Debt Offerings

Leap Wireless International Inc., the parent to flat rate cell phone carrier Cricket Communications, said June 19 the wireless subsidiary plans to conduct two separate debt offerings to raise working capital, including the financing of its network expansi

Wednesday, June 18

California Stem-Cell Effort Receives Help From Australia, Canada

Australia and Canada pledged their support to California's stem-cell initiative June 18 with partnerships intended to spur innovative stem-cell research.

BioMed Realty and Realty Income Declare Dividends

BioMed Realty Trust, a real estate investment trust that owns and manages properties for biotechnology tenants, declared a second-quarter dividend June 17 of 33.5 cents per share of common stock.

Turning the Page: Library System Hires New Director

San Diego's Public Library system gets a new director, Deborah Barrow, starting July 21, following the retirement of longtime director Anna Tatar, the city said June 17.

Tuesday, June 17

Dragon Eyewear Splits From Oakley/Luxottica

Carlsbad-based Dragon Alliance, an eyewear and accessory company, split from the Italian brand Oakley/Luxottica on June 13 and made the news public three days later.

Acadia Stock Falls on Midstage Trial News

A failed midstage trial sent shares of San Diego-based Acadia Pharmaceuticals down 40 percent June 16 to close at $4.83. Shares fell to $4.50 by midday June 17.

Callaway Shares Spotlight in U.S. Open Playoff

Carlsbad's Callaway Golf Co. got plenty of positive publicity this past weekend and at the U.S. Open Championship's June 16 playoff nearly won by one of its sponsored professionals, Rocco Mediate.

Wells Fargo Finances Downtown Affordable Housing Complex

Wells Fargo said June 17 that it will provide $17.1 million for the tax-exempt bond financing for a 77-unit affordable housing complex near Petco Park.

May Numbers Show 55 Percent Drop in Sales of Just-Built Homes

La Jolla-based DataQuick says that home sales in May were down 12 percent on the year. Of those, new homes fell the most precipitously , by more than 55 percent on the year from 698 sold in May 2007 to 313 last month.

Price Tag for Actimis Pharmaceuticals Might Reach $515M

Boehringer Ingelheim of Germany said June 17 that it would acquire privately held San Diego biotech company Actimis Pharmaceuticals Inc. in a deal valued up to $515 million.

Monday, June 16

Homegrown Bike Warriors Stay the Course on Local Operations

When it comes to the business of making bicycles and accessories, San Diego is definitely a big player.

Corky McMillin Cos., McCarthy Building Cos. Launch New Construction Projects

Progress Report: The Corky McMillin Cos. broke ground on a 104,397-square-foot office building on Historic Decatur Road at Liberty Station in Point Loma.

The U.S. Nuclear Arsenal Is No Longer a Deterrent

Defense Secretary Robert Gates has announced the firing of two top Air Force officials for failure to adequately secure the nation's nuclear weapons, citing a report that found a "problem.

New Roller Coaster Ride at SeaWorld?

Is SeaWorld San Diego planning to open a new roller coaster ride in 2010?

Following Dropped Lawsuit, Jack Clowns It Up at the Effies

It appears that Jack, the fictitious clown-faced CEO of Jack in the Box got the first and the last laugh with his "Sirloin vs. Angus" TV commercials that had a 12-week run last summer.

Investor Feeding Frenzy

The downturn in the residential real estate market has prompted bidding wars for lower-end properties as lenders dump portfolios.

Non-Lethal Weapons Competitors Announce Merger

San Diego-based Pepperball Technologies Inc., a maker of non-lethal and less lethal launchers and projectiles, said it is merging with Louisville, Co.-based Security With Advanced Technologies Inc.

Executive Profile - Christine Forester

Christine Forester runs Christine Forester Catalyst, her own marketing consulting firm that caters to startups seeking venture capital, as well as established businesses.

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Against LG in Patent Dispute

A highly anticipated ruling on patent rights came down from the U.S. Supreme Court last week, providing clarity about whether patent holders can collect royalties and sue subsequent purchasers of their goods.

Bicyclist Spins Frame Business Close to Home

Tony Ellsworth sometimes elicits stunned looks when he tells people that he makes his product in this country.

Event Organizer Takes Race Planning in Stride With Online Reservations

Rick Kozlowski, whose Koz Enterprises organizes running and triathlon races, recalls his reaction when the co-founder of, a former Web portal for endurance sports enthusiasts, made a business proposition to have event participants register on

TV Magic's DVR Hits New Heights

Systems integrator TV Magic Inc. entered into a strange new world this year when it sent one of its digital video recording systems into Earth's orbit.

More Households Find Median-Priced Home of $435,000 Within Grasp

If there is a silver lining to the precipitous fall of home prices, it's that properties are more affordable to San Diego residents who didn't lose their shirts in the housing boom.

Submarina Franchise Hits Shore in New Escondido Location

San Marcos-based sub shop operator Submarina Inc. opened its 57th Southern California location May 31 in Escondido.

Convicted Charlatan Puts Herbalife in His Cross Hairs

Five years ago, former ZZZZ Best carpet cleaning charlatan Barry Minkow was released from prison after serving a sentence for fraud, racketeering and tax evasion.

Week In Review

Top Business News: June 6 - 12, 2008

Online Auction Designed to Lower Hospitals' Energy Costs

Hospitals are notorious energy users, running lights all day and night, using high-powered equipment, and keeping operating rooms cool.

Boorish Hometown Fans Mar International Soccer Match

It's called "the beautiful game," but what transpired June 4 at Qualcomm Stadium was anything but.

Podcast: Preview the San Diego Business Journal

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the June 16, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

Retired Ambassador Puts San Diego on 'The Winemaking Map'

After spending 39 years as a professional diplomat, including serving as Argentina's ambassador to Japan and the United States, Alejandro Orfila moved to Rancho Santa Fe to retire and raise horses.

UCSD to Study Impact of Video Games on Teenage Health

Video game researchers eager to discover what holds the interest of gamers young and old have donned their (virtual) thinking caps and equipped themselves with all the equipment of an avid gamer as part of a nationwide study involving 11 universities and

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Scott Maloni

Entrepreneur Profile - Ty Hauter

Ty Hauter is owner of WaveHouse, a Mission Beach-based restaurant, bar and athletic club that features a man-made wave machine that allows participants to surf.

Largest Biotech Convention of The Year Comes to San Diego

The world's biggest biotech gathering convenes in San Diego this week, bringing with it an influx of scientists, investors and government officials. And a whole lot of spending money.

Microsoft Accuses Computer Retailer of Software Piracy

Microsoft is not a company you want to cross. The software giant, which reported $14.4 billion in revenues for the quarter ending March 31, filed lawsuits on June 9 against 21 companies nationwide, including one in San Diego.

Scientologists Planning Move to Larger Quarters

The local chapter of the Church of Scientology is selling its downtown headquarters at 1330 Fourth Ave. and moving operations to La Mesa.

Qualcomm Prizes China's Decision to Open Up 3G 'Ecosystem'

Qualcomm Inc. officials are hailing China's May 25 announcement that it plans to consolidate six state-owned phone providers into three , a strategy designed to foster more competition in the global 3G wireless space.

Demand for Music Player Accessories Buoys H2O Audio's Sales

Dude! Ride those waves!

Real Estate Firm Makes Offer to Same-Sex Couples

A San Diego real estate company is putting out the welcome mat for same-sex couples married in California.

It's High Tide for Surfboard Makers Rushing to Fill Clark Foam's Void

Depending on who you talk to, the surfboard making industry is either drowning, holding on or ready to catch another big wave.

Success in This Economy Comes to Those Who Think Outside the Box

Supervisor Bill Horn is my weekly hero for starting to think outside the box about how to raise money creatively. When money is tight, the need for creative thinking surfaces.

Don't Over-Regulate Ailing Mortgage Loan Industry

During the last 10 years, mortgage bankers have been innovative, creative and competitive in the development of new products, many of which allowed thousands of families to become homeowners where they otherwise would have never qualified for traditional

Volunteering: an Unexpected Tool for Training, Development

It's no surprise that chief executive officers often say acquiring and developing the right talent is their No. 1 challenge.

Green, Blue Make Gold for Firm Selling Lumber Coating Product

Going green never looked so blue.

Former Broadcom Exec Indicted for String of High Times

The stock options fraud involving San Diego-based Wireless Facilities and its rogue options administrator may have been scandalous, but it was kindergarten stuff compared to another stock options case prosecutors are now focusing on.

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: The 8,400-square-foot industrial building at 5150 Naranja St. in San Diego has sold for $2.6 million.

Great Music, Fast Cars, and 'Married Lovers'

Let's take a moment to look far down the fairway, so to speak

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: New Jersey-based Honeywell International Inc. said June 3 that it has signed a definitive agreement to purchase Intelligent Automation Corp. for an undisclosed price.

Mental Health Association Honors Barney & Barney CEO Paul Hering

The Mental Health Association honored Paul Hering, managing principal and chief executive officer at Barney & Barney LLC, at the Healthy Minds Luncheon presented by Pharmaceuticals Research and Manufacturers of America and San Diego's business communities

Unfriendly Skies?

That some major airlines serving Lindbergh Field have announced they're cutting the number of flights they operate this fall isn't the worst news to hit the local tourism industry.

Slowing Economy Prompting Many Local Banks to Weigh Mergers

As times get tougher for banks both large and small, more are considering joining forces.

Sunday, June 15

Workforce Partnership Gets New Leader

Mark Cafferty, a tenured director at the San Diego Workforce Partnership, the area's job training agency, was named chief executive officer, the agency said June 13.

Friday, June 13

KSWB-TV Getting Tuned in for Fox Switch

KSWB-TV, which will switch its affiliation to the Fox Television Network, has announced the hiring of Arthel Neville as the anchor for "Fox 5 Morning News." The show is set to debut Aug. 1, the day of the change.

A May Flowering: 38 Properties Close Escrow in Fallbrook, Bonsall

The spring rebound in Fallbrook and Bonsall real estate activity continued in May, according to Jerry Kalman, a Fallbrook-based real estate agent who analyzed data from Sandicor's Multiple Listing Service.

Housing Commission Names New Rental Assistance Chief

The San Diego Housing Commission has promoted one of its housing supervisors to direct the agency's rental assistance department, which manages the "Section 8" Housing Choice Voucher Program.

Net Income Triples for RF Industries

RF Industries Ltd., a San Diego distributor of cable assemblies and connectors, reported June 13 its net income of $542,000 for the second quarter ended April 30 was triple the net profit it had for the like quarter of 2007.

Barnhart Turns Attention to $8.3M Barracks Renovation

Barnhart Inc., a San Diego-based general contractor and construction manager, said June 13 it was awarded an $8.3 million contract to repair barracks at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.

$26M Road Project to Link Quarry, I-15

Granite Construction and the Pala Band of Mission Indians plan to break ground June 20 on $26 million worth of improvements to state Route 76.

Epsilon Casts Eye on Nuclear Safety Training With $3.9M Deal

San Diego-based Epsilon Systems Solutions Inc., a government contractor, said June 9 that it received a $3.9 million subcontract to provide support to the U.S. Department of Energy National Training Center in Albuquerque, N.M.

Local Mutual Fund Ranks No. 1 out of 527

A publicly traded mutual fund managed by San Diego-based American Money Management LLC was ranked the best among 527 funds competing in the same category, fund managers said June 12.

Thursday, June 12

Skanska Contracted for $66M Santee Highway Extension

A Swedish construction company said June 12 it entered into a $66 million contract to extend state highways in the San Diego region.

Downtown Redevelopment Produces New Park

The Children's Museum Park at the corner of Front Street and Island Avenue is being dedicated June 12.

Invitrogen to Buy Applied Biosystems for $6.4B

Shares of Carlsbad-based Invitrogen Corp. were trading down June 12, a day after the company said it would buy competing life sciences tool maker Applied Biosystems Group for $38 a share.

Qualcomm Earnings Fare Better Than Expected

Qualcomm Inc. said June 12 that third-quarter revenue and earnings will likely beat its previous forecast.

Former Mexican President Will Help Think Tank Mark its Anniversary

Ernesto Zedillo, the president of Mexico from 1994 to 2000, is the keynote speaker at a Nov. 15 dinner celebrating the 25th anniversary of La Jolla's Institute of the Americas, the independent think tank announced June 11.

Wednesday, June 11

Schwarzenegger Allocates $9 Million for New San Diego Buses

Making an appearance June 10 in Mission Valley, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said the state has set aside $9 million to replace old buses in San Diego.

Trio of Apartment Complexes Changes Hands

Klingbeil Capital Management purchased three San Diego multifamily properties from local contractor Mabie & Mintz Inc. for $31.4 million, according to a CB Richard Ellis announcement June 11.

May Home Sales Volume Beats Year-Ago Figure

Home sales broke out of their slumber in May as single-family detached homes and condos sold in San Diego County rose across the board for the second consecutive month, and marked the first year-over-year increase in 30 months.

Nassco to Buy Engines for 12th Navy Cargo Ship

The U.S. Navy awarded General Dynamics Nassco a $100 million contract to purchase materials for the construction of another cargo/ammunition ship, the 12th in a series, the company said June 11.

Illumina to Participate in $60M DNA Sequencing Project

Illumina Inc. said June 11 that it will participate in a pilot phase of the 1,000 Genomes Project, an international effort to provide a more detailed look at the genetic variation of individuals for medical research purposes.

Tuesday, June 10

E & Y; Designates Regional Entrepreneur of the Year Awardees

Ernst & Young LLC announced the winners of its San Diego County 2008 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award June 9 at the La Jolla Hyatt.

Metabolife Founder Gets 6-Month Prison Sentence

Michael Ellis, the former National City police officer who founded Metabolife International, the San Diego maker of a hugely popular weight loss supplement, was sentenced to six months in federal prison June 9.

Survey Finds Fewer Companies Plan to Hire in Third Quarter

San Diego County employers aren't planning to hire during the upcoming third quarter as much as they have in the current quarter, according to a survey of local companies done for Manpower Staffing Services released June 10.

Monday, June 9

Nonprofit Profile - Sharp HealthCare Foundation

A talk with Bill Littlejohn, CEO and senior vice president of Sharp HealthCare Foundation

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: A developer plans to break ground this summer on a hotel that would fill a void for business travelers, educators and construction workers coming to the area

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: Carlsbad Village Self Storage, located at 3235 Tyler St. in Carlsbad, has been sold.

Scripps Hospital Encinitas Given Home Valued at $3.8 Million

Scripps Memorial Hospital Encinitas has been given a home in Fairbanks Ranch valued at $3.8 million.

Proposed Change to Patients' Records Act Creates Controversy

Adheris Inc. quietly changed its name from Elensys Care Services following consumer outcry regarding alleged medical privacy violations.

Cruising Along: 9 Lines Bringing More Travelers to City This Year

More ships will bring more tourists to San Diego's shore this year.

Foreign Travelers to San Diego Drop 1 Percent

California has resurfaced as one of the nation's top international destinations, thanks to a huge bump in marketing funds, but San Diego isn't exactly sharing in the bounty.

Jack in the Box Accused of Monkey Business

Don't be a chump about those chimps, says an animal rights group.

Massive Business Development Project Takes Off at Brown Field

After decades of benign neglect and failed attempts to revitalize Brown Field Municipal Airport, the city of San Diego is in exclusive negotiations with Brown Field International Business Park LLC of Carlsbad to redevelop the historic Otay Mesa airfield.

Buying in Baja

Paul O'Sullivan has spent years working on U.S.-Mexico relations. The co-founder of the San Diego-Tijuana Sister Cities Society and ex-senior policy adviser and multinational envoy for former San Diego Councilman Byron Wear and state Assemblyman Juan Varg

Site Work Under Way for New Point Loma Fire Station No. 22

Progress Report: Ninyo & Moore Geotechnical and Environmental Sciences Consultants was retained by Nadel Architects to perform a geotechnical evaluation for the replacement of Fire Station No. 22, located at 1055 Catalina Blvd. in Point Loma.

GenVault Secures $13M in Financing

Carlsbad-based GenVault Corp. said June 9 that it received $13 million in venture financing led by Montagu Newhall Associates.

L'Auberge Reopens With Confidence Despite Iffy Economic Climate

L'Auberge Del Mar, a luxury seaside resort, has come out of hibernation after a seven-month, $26 million renovation.

Landlords Working Harder to Keep Retail Tenants Amid Sales Slump

What a difference a year makes.

Familiar WD-40 Containers Found Everywhere, Including Online

What's under the sink, in the garage, in the toolbox and now easier to find online?

Atlanta's Heery International Acquires Barnhart Construction

Barnhart Construction, the builder of Lindbergh Field's Terminal 2 expansion and one of the builders of Petco Park, has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by Heery International, based in Atlanta, the two companies said June 5.

Sprinter Station, Green Features Drawing Tenants to Oceanside Hub

Loma Alta Village, located directly across the street from the new Sprinter station in Oceanside, has attracted its first large tenant, largely due to its proximity to the public transportation hub.

Executive Profile - Vincent Heald

Vincent Heald is Principal of Beck Ellman Heald Public Relations, a public and media relations and communications firm founded in 1986 that has clients in the automotive, health care, real estate and hospitality industries.

Otay's Wealth of Industrial Vacancies Luring Buyers, Tenants

The Otay Mesa industrial market, which accounts for about one-tenth of the industrial building inventory in San Diego County, has plenty to offer right now.

Commercial Real Estate Investors Shop for 'Off-Market' Bargains

Brokers and agents say they're getting lots of "tire kickers" from investors looking for space, but it's taking longer to close deals.

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Sue Rearic

Marines Building $54.5M Center at Camp Pendleton

The Marines are building a $54.5 million Special Operations Command Headquarters at Camp Pendleton to provide mission support and training for 890 special operations Marines.

Hollywood Too Eager to Cast the First Stone at China

So now it's Sharon Stone.

Qualcomm Screens Pack Visual Punch With Scant Power

Qualcomm Inc. is reinventing the postage stamp-sized video display on cell phones and other consumer electronics.

Ailing Savings & Loan Industry Posts $617 Million in Q1 Losses

Understandably, given the lousy housing market, the nation's savings and loan lenders, which specialize in mortgages, aren't thriving.

Robots, Drones and Unmanned Systems Take Center Stage

The world's largest collection of robots, drones and other unmanned systems is coming to San Diego.

Week In Review

Top Business News: May 29 - June 5, 2008

As Pump Prices Soar, Passengers Rush to Amtrak's Surfliner

With U.S. public transit ridership at a 50-year high, the state Transportation Commission met May 29 to discuss ways to relieve train congestion, but don't expect changes to come quickly.

Malls Investing for Long Haul With Multimillion-Dollar Makeovers

While consumers cut back on their spending and fret about rising food and gas prices, mall owners in San Diego County are talking expansion.

Interim Chief Takes the Wheel at Transit District

Ray Patchett joined the North County Transit District on June 6 to serve temporarily as executive director of the struggling bus and rail agency.

U.S. Open Driving More Business Activity for Hometown Vendors

Barely catching its breath after hosting the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon on June 1, the tourism industry is now preparing to drive more spending at the U.S. Open Championship.

Employers Beware: New Cell Phone Law Creates Liabilities

Beginning July 1, tens of thousands of drivers in California may be surprised by a $20 ticket for talking on their mobile phone.

U.S. Open to Generate Plenty of Green for Region

The U.S. Open Championship isn't the Super Bowl , not by a long shot. But it's one of the biggest sporting events the city has ever hosted ...

Podcast: Preview the San Diego Business Journal

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the June 9, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

New Franchise Helps Caterers Stage Corporate Picnics

Picnic People is no ordinary franchise.

Colliers' '2020 Vision' Gives Investors 3 Areas to Put Their Money

Hoping to carve out a niche as a broker of choice in San Diego's future development hot spots, a Colliers International report identifies three redevelopment areas that offer big investment opportunities by 2020.

Friday, June 6

Honeywell Gets More Defensive, Buys IAC

Honeywell International Inc. said June 3 that it has signed a definitive agreement to purchase Intelligent Automation Corp. for an undisclosed price.

New Leader at Accredited Home Lenders

Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co. named Jeff Walton chief executive, the mortgage company said June 6. He replaces Jim Moran, who had been interim chief executive since February.

Port Helps Truckers Give Soot the Boot

Truck haulers who do business with the San Diego Unified Port District are being asked to participate in a voluntary clean truck program that could pay for most of the costs for improving their vehicle's exhaust system, or help replace older trucks.

Parking Fees at Lindbergh Field to Take Off

Parking rates at Lindbergh Field were raised June 5 with the short-term rate of up to 30 minutes doubling from 50 cents to $1 following action by the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority, the public board that manages the airport.

Thursday, June 5

Atlanta Firm Acquires Barnhart Construction

Barnhart Construction, the builder of Lindbergh Field's Terminal 2 expansion and one of the builders of Petco Park, has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by Heery International, based in Atlanta, the two companies said June 5.

Luxury Estate Seller Will Throw in a $400K Townhouse

Developer Michael Crews is trying to drum up interest in real estate again by giving away a $400,000 row house with the purchase of a luxury estate home in San Pasqual Valley.

Toyota's Tijuana Plant Takes Honors

Toyota Motor Sales said June 4 that its plant in Tijuana was awarded a gold medal, ranking it the No. 1 car plant in North America by J.D. Power and Associates, reflecting the lowest number of defects per 100 vehicles made among plants in North America an

SAIC's Army Technology Deal Potentially Worth $454M

SAIC, the San Diego-based research and engineering firm, said June 4 it was awarded a task order by the U.S. General Services Administration which will be worth $454 million if all options are exercised.

$28M Marketplace at Santee to Rise by November

Construction has begun for the Marketplace at Santee, a 71,530-square-foot neighborhood shopping center at the intersection of Mission Gorge Road and Carlton Hills Boulevard in Santee, a San Diego developer said June 4.

Wednesday, June 4

Bankruptcy Doesn't Touch Rancho Bernardo Restaurant

The bankruptcy filing of San Diego-based Steakhouse Partners Inc. last month does not affect a Carvers Restaurant in Rancho Bernardo in any way.

Gen-Probe Makes Bid for Belgian Counterpart

Diagnostic disease kits maker Gen-Probe Inc. launched a conditional tender offer to acquire Innogenetics, a Belgian molecular diagnostics company, for approximately $334 million in cash June 3.

First Otay-Tijuana Airport Shuttle Open for Business

A park-and-ride service offering a shuttle from an Otay Mesa parking lot to Tijuana International Airport opened June 2.

Unofficial Results Show Sanders Taking Mayor's Race

San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders took 53.9 percent of the vote in his bid for re-election June 3, coming in first in a field of five candidates, according to unofficial results released by the county registrar of voters at 2 a.m. June 4.

Tuesday, June 3

S & P; Assigns Top Rating to County Financing Notes

The county of San Diego said June 3 that it received the highest rating possible from Standard & Poor's, for short-term financing notes the county will issue this month.

$10M Gift Preserves Memory of SDSU Dean

For the first time, San Diego State University plans to affix a name to one of its schools, following a $10 million gift from Gertrude Lamden.

SAIC Profits Grow 25 Percent, Core Business Increases

SAIC, a San Diego-based engineering and research firm, reported June 3 net income of $100 million for its first quarter that ended April 30, an increase of 25 percent from net profits of $80 million in the like quarter of its prior fiscal year.

Monday, June 2

Housing Group Affirms Commitment to Build Affordable Homes

Affirmed Housing Group recently purchased a downtown property to build what it calls the largest affordable housing project in the state , a 23-floor high-rise at 1050 B St.

Qualcomm Hopes BREW Is on Tap for Mobile Applications

What can BREW do for you?

NTN Creates Buzz With Management Changes

Carlsbad-based NTN Buzztime Inc. said May 30 that Michael Fleming has been named interim chief executive officer as well as chairman of the board.

Podcast: Preview the San Diego Business Journal

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the June 2, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

Online Marketer Makes Web Sites 'Readable' for Visually Impaired

Garry Grant, president and chief executive officer of Carlsbad-based Search Engine Optimization Inc., is doing more than improving his clients' visibility online.

Maker of Predator Moving to Poway From Rancho Bernardo

Citing increased demand for its product, a Rancho Bernardo manufacturer will pull up stakes this year and move to Poway, where there's more room to grow.


Powerlink Proponents Singing From SDG & E;'s Songbook

Entrepreneur Profile - Sean Hamm

Sean Hamm is president of Five Alarm Security, a Carlsbad-based company that provides commercial and residential security systems, fire detection and medical alerts.

Week In Review

Top Business News: May 23 - 29, 2008

Online Venture Aims to Nurture Healthier Work Force

Seeing workplace wellness as an area with big demand, Bryan Van Noy and Danna Korn last year pooled $75,000 of their savings and went to work.

Callaway Driving Golf Ball Manufacturing Work to China

Callaway Golf Co., which makes golf equipment and outerwear, said May 29 that it plans to shut down a golf ball manufacturing plant in Gloversville, N.Y., at the end of July and move the work to China.

Tioga's Treatment for Digestive Disorders Shows Promise in Tests

Midstage data on an investigational drug being developed by Tioga Pharmaceuticals Inc. showed promising results for treating irritable bowel syndrome, a common and chronic gastrointestinal disorder thought to afflict as many as one in five adults in the U

Scripps Receives $20 Million to Speed the Pace of Research

A highly competitive National Institutes of Health grant designed to accelerate the pace of moving basic science from the laboratory to the patient will give the Scripps Translational Science Institute access to $20 million over five years.

Sempra Board Rejects Bid to OK Executive Pay Packages

Given the excessive compensation executives of many public firms receive, you'd think a shareholder proposal to ratify such pay packages would receive near unanimous support.

Natural Gas Bringing Royale Rewards to Energy Powerhouse

Taking a gamble on natural gas has paid off for a local energy company, although predictions of how long the ride will last remain inconclusive.

Law Prohibits Insurers From Using Genetic Data to Deny Coverage

A simple cheek swab and a few hundred dollars can reveal a person's predisposition to everything from breast cancer to hair loss.

U.S. Open Buzz Driving Big Business for Local Retailers

As San Diego golf fans anticipate the first U.S. Open Championship to tee off in their own backyard, golf manufacturers and retailers say its impact will vary for individual companies.

Oceanside Mom Sets Up Shops Online

Four years ago when Oceanside resident Staci Brillhart became a mom, she was not ready to give up a career.

Fashion Valley Gets True Religion: The Apparel Company

True Religion Apparel Inc., an American premium clothing brand, announced May 22 the opening of a new retail store at San Diego's Fashion Valley mall.

Security Conference Pairs Technology, Defense Sectors

Up to 60 defense technology firms, including many based here in the San Diego region, will showcase products for government and commercial use at the fifth annual Security Summit scheduled for June 4 and 5 at Liberty Station.

JA's BizTown Buzzing With High School Entrepreneurial Awards

Junior Achievement of San Diego and Imperial Counties and Point Loma Nazarene University recently held a student entrepreneurial competition at JA's BizTown.

Driving Traffic to Online Storefronts Half the Battle of Ringing Up Sales

E-commerce is booming.

Globalization, Trade Is Good for Keeping Peace

What do international trade and marriage have in common?

Bosa Develops Artistic Space Downtown for San Diego State University

Progress Report: Bosa Development, developers of the Electra residential tower in downtown San Diego, says interior space improvements are under way in San Diego State University's 2,800-square-foot art gallery.

San Diego People

Key hires and promotions. Executive Spotlight: Scott Dickey

CCDC Gets Advice from Grand Jury and a New Address

The Centre City Development Corporation should be more careful about taking credit for its projects and identify the true source of funding, which is the city, not CCDC, according to a county grand jury report released June 2.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Fat Quarters Quilt Shop has a new owner following last month's sale of the business to Michelle Joyner by Roma Olberding, who owned and managed the store for about three years.

Demand for Biotech Labs Driving Down Commercial Vacancies

Demand for lab space among midsize biotech companies is steadily pushing vacancies downward, perhaps below 6 percent this year, and prompting more subdivision-conversions of large space, according to Cushman & Wakefield Inc. real estate brokers.

Nonprofit Profile - Vista Community Clinic

A talk with Barbara Mannino, CEO of Vista Community Clinic

Shipyard BLUES

Tourism Uses Incompatible With Working Waterfront, Association Says

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: Nine units totaling 46,162 square feet in the Ocean Terrace Professional Center, located at 3601-3637 Vista Way in Oceanside, have sold for $16,259,000.

Burnham Trustee Launches Fund to Help Guide Research

A newly established venture philanthropy fund set up by longtime charitable donor and Burnham Institute for Medical Research trustee Arthur Brody is allowing Burnham a chance to invest in the science and technologies it had a hand in discovering.

San Diego Magazine Debuts Online Version for $12

When San Diego Magazine's June issue hits subscribers' mailboxes, it will also hit the Web, offering consumers a choice for the first time.

Education in California and U.S. Still at Risk

Last April marked 25 years since the publication of the seminal report, "A Nation At Risk" , which became a milestone in the history of U.S. education.

Kermit, Carlsbad Chamber Now Green

OK, OK, OK ... so the insider got beat on the scoop about failed Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney house shopping in La Jolla. But did you know ....

Community Learns What a Difference $47M, Spirit Can Make

With help from a local nonprofit, a San Diego neighborhood once blighted and unsafe is building a reputation as a model of how to turn things around.

Geary Exec Helps Companies Tap the Potential of the Internet

Last week Andreas Roell, CEO and president of Geary Interactive, sat down with the Business Journal contributor Mark Larson to answer key questions about his growing industry and its future.

Take Advantage of Lean Times, Get Tough to Increase Business

I have always been a glass is half full guy versus a half-empty glass guy. Along that line, I want to put some thoughts on the table about taking advantage of lean economic times to increase your business.

Steakhouse Partners Files for Chapter 11

Steakhouse Partners, a San Diego-based operator of 21 restaurants in seven states, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.