Stories for May 2008

Friday, May 30

SAIC Deal Has $500M Potential

SAIC said May 29 that it received a prime contract from the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command that could bring it $500 million over five years if all contract options are exercised.

Barnhart Snags $13.5M Schools Contract

Barnhart Inc. of San Diego will lead the first phase of a renovation program at Sierra Sands Unified School District, in the desert east of the Sierra Nevada in Ridgecrest. The value of the contract is $13.5 million.

Kintera Competitor Is Now Its Buyer: Blackbaud Offers $46M

Shares of Kintera Inc., a San Diego maker of software that helps nonprofits manage fundraising, skyrocketed 65 percent to $1.09 in midday trading May 30 after Kintera agreed to be acquired by Blackbaud Inc. for $46 million, or $1.12 per share, May 29.

Favrille to Cut Nearly All Its Employees After Unsuccessful Trial

Favrille Inc. said May 29 that it is cutting 132 of 144 employees, including all but two of its eight executives, effective June 6.

Thursday, May 29

Weekend Was Gray, But May Hotel Occupancy Shines

Local residents hoping to have a little more space to spread out their towels at the beach this summer, on the theory that rising gasoline prices will keep tourists at bay, may want to rethink that notion. Or get smaller beach towels.

Gaslamp, La Mesa Hangouts Go on the Market

Two Joltin' Joe's that are operated as event centers and upscale billiard halls were put up for sale in late May.

Girard Securities Buys Midpoint Financial

Girard Securities, a San Diego-based independent brokerage, said May 28 it acquired Midpoint Financial, another local brokerage, for an undisclosed price.

Pasha Settles Claims in Price-Fixing Conspiracy

The Pasha Group agreed to pay the federal government $13 million to settle allegations that it participated in a bid-rigging conspiracy to fix prices charged to move goods belonging to U.S. military and related personnel stationed in Europe, according to

Falling Consumer Confidence Drags Down Economic Index

San Diego's economic slide continued apace in April, based on the latest index of several measurements released May 29.

Deere Water Technologies Soaks Up T-Systems

T-Systems International Inc., a San Diego maker of irrigation products, was acquired by John Deere Water Technologies, a unit of Deere & Co., the Moline, Ill.-based heavy equipment company said May 28.

L.A. Syndicate to Purchase Copley News Service

Los Angeles-based Creators Syndicate, which features such well-read columnists as John Grey of "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" fame, said May 28 that it has struck a deal to purchase Copley News Service effective July 1.

Scripps Awarded $20 Million in NIH Money to Advance Research into Patient Treatment

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.

Wednesday, May 28

Carlyle's Arrival to Have Minimal Impact on Booz Allen Office

The pending acquisition of the majority of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc.'s government contracting unit by the Carlyle Group, a private equity giant, won't change much for its San Diego office, says the unit's top local officer.

Wal-Mart to Sell Carlsbad Property

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said May 28 that it will not file an application with the city of Carlsbad to build a new store there.

Flower Power: Provide Commerce Buys Red Envelope

Provide Commerce Inc., the San Diego parent company of Proflowers and several other online retail sites, said May 27 that it acquired the assets of Red Envelope, a San Francisco online retailer, for an undisclosed price following a bankruptcy auction.

April Hotel Occupancy Rates Up Slightly

There's little doubt that chilly and drizzly weather during most of the Memorial Day weekend will result in a smaller visitor turnout than the same three-day holiday weekend last year. But April offered a ray of sunshine for local innkeepers.

Ruling Opens MLS to Online Real Estate Brokers

Online discount real estate brokers can now enjoy unfettered access to the nation's Multiple Listing Service thanks to an antitrust lawsuit by the Department of Justice.

Tuesday, May 27

North County Median Income Pegged at $81K

San Diego's North County has long had a reputation for being richer than the rest of the region, and a recent report by a local think tank underscores this.

Drug Maker Santarus in Line for $2.5M Payment

Santarus Inc. said May 27 that it achieved a regulatory milestone making it eligible for a $2.5 million payment from Schering-Plough Healthcare Products Inc.

Church of Scientology Buys 64,000 Square Feet in La Mesa for $9.3M

The San Diego chapter of the controversial Church of Scientology is moving its focus to La Mesa with the May 21 purchase of a Coleman College campus at 7380 Parkway Drive.

Review of Chula Vista Development Cost $600,000

That revised, updated environmental report for the Chula Vista bay front cost the Port of San Diego about $600,000, and took about 17 months to prepare, the port said on May 27.

Monday, May 26

Temecula Valley Bank Shares Fall Amid Construction Loan Woes

Shares of Temecula Valley Bancorp Inc. continued to fall last week, reaching a 52-week low of $6.50 on May 21 and continuing a gradual decline that began in March. The stock opened the year above $11, and a year ago was around $20.

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: Pacific Realty Advisors, a San Diego-based real estate investment and advisory company, has acquired 1100 N. Magnolia, a 40,919-square-foot, multi-tenant industrial building in El Cajon, for $5,830,000. Ken Ruppert and Kerry Schimpf of G

Sketchy Property Values Forcing All Sides to Think Twice

With commercial property sales down 50 percent volume-wise and down 65 percent dollar-wise in the first quarter 2008 in a year-over-year comparison, the investment property game today belongs to those with cash, or euros, on the barrel, said George Graham

Two Marriott Properties Sold to Virginia REIT

You know winter's over when you see the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition and Cond & #233; Nast Traveler's "Hot List" issue.

Multiple Sclerosis Society Walk at Liberty Station Raises $902,000

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society in San Diego said $902,000 was raised at Walk MS 2008 held at Liberty Station.

Week In Review

Top Business News: May 16 - 22, 2008

Nonprofit Profile - Int'l. Institute for Human Factor Development Inc.

A talk with Senyo Adjibolosoo, president of International Institute for Human Factor Development Inc.

NCTD Director Who Led Sprinter Project Resigns

At its May 15 board meeting, the North County Transit District announced the resignation of Executive Director Karen King, effective June 20.

Executive Profile - Mark D. Erwin

Mark D. Erwin

Stefani as Generous as She Is Talented

John Rick, who worked as an engineer for his family's business, Rick Engineering, took a huge risk a decade ago by switching careers from engineer to math teacher.

RJC Architects Receives $14M Contract for New Lodging at Camp Pendleton

Progress Report: San Diego-based RJC Architects has been awarded a $14 million contract to design a new lodging facility at Camp Pendleton.

Riding the Rails

As pump prices test new highs for regular gas, San Diego train and trolley travel is becoming a preferred alternative for more commuters looking to shave some of the expenses, and even road rage, from their daily trips.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Fax Foods, a manufacturer of replica food items for the restaurant and food distribution industries, has a new owner/president in Judy Prestininzi.

San Diego People

Key hires and promotions. Executive Spotlight: Deborah Zaharychuk

Public Transportation Knocked About By State Cutbacks, Fuel Hikes

Mass transit in San Diego does not pay for itself , even in the best of economic times. Nationally speaking, the fare box recovery rate is about 50 percent for trains and light-rail transport, and 30 percent to 40 percent for buses, according to the San D

New Sailing Apparel Retailer to Drop Anchor at Liberty Station

Last fall, Tom and Katie Carruthers sold their 12-year-old sailing school, but didn't stray far from water for their next venture.

$500M Opportunity Knocks for Intracorp

The developer-owner of the downtown Park Terrace condominiums is changing stripes in the middle of the market downturn.

The Nurse Will See You Now In Albertsons Stores

Palomar Pomerado Health added its moniker to a mounting number of health care providers offering quick-service, no-appointment medical care inside major retailers this month with the debut of two North County clinics housed inside Albertsons stores.

Sempra Opens West Coast's First LNG Terminal in Baja

Sempra LNG said May 15 that its new liquefied natural gas terminal is now operational in Baja California, Mexico.

The News From China and Burma: Then and Now

The News From China and Burma: Then and Now

Sluggish Economy Seen as Boon for Financial Planners

It may be tough times for mortgage bankers and brokers, but if you're in the financial planning sector, this could be the best of times.

Some Seek Pay-as-You-Lose Legal System to Curb Frivolous Suits

Talk about timing.

JMAR Technologies Shifts Gears to Procure Commercial Customers

With 29 issued or pending patents and a 20-year history in San Diego, JMAR Technologies Inc. is reinventing itself.

Deadline Nears for Two Finalists Seeking to Build New Civic Center

Two finalists vying to build the new Civic Center have until July 18 to come up with their best solution for redeveloping the downtown site, using whatever creative financing it takes to make it cheaper than keeping the 45-year-old complex intact.

Rising Travel Costs Have Some Execs Scaling Back on Business Trips

With foreign currencies hitting record highs and fuel costs on the rise, heading to Europe becomes even more of a challenge for corporate travelers.

Soothing the Sting at the Pump

In the event that the high cost of filling up the gas tank might prompt would-be visitors to forgo summer vacation plans, local hotels are now offering guests a little assistance at the pump.

Nurturing Innovation: The Short and Long Term

Nurturing Innovation: The Short and Long Term

Patent Reform Now Unlikely in 2008

The most sweeping effort to reform the U.S. patent system in 50 years will have to wait a little longer.

Friday, May 23

Report Speaks Volumes About Bayside Development in Chula Vista

The Port of San Diego released an updated environmental report for the Chula Vista bay front May 23 that includes detailed plans by Gaylord Entertainment to construct a 2,000-room hotel and convention center at the site.

Four Foreclosure Consultants Arrested in Alleged Real Estate Scam

Four real estate consultants, including two San Diego residents, have been arrested in an alleged real estate scam, authorities said May 22.

Construction Firm Still Aims to Finish Hilton Bayfront in December

On May 22, three days after a massive explosion at the Hilton Bayfront hotel site injured 13 workers , three of them critically , an executive of Hensel Phelps Construction Co. released a statement saying it expected to complete the $350 million, 30-story

Mesa Distributing Sold; Businessman Reflects on Stadium Quest

Mesa Distributing, the largest beer distributorship in San Diego, has been officially acquired by Reyes Holdings LLC, a Chicago-area firm that is among the largest privately held companies in the nation.

April Home Sales Rise Statewide, Fall in the County

California existing-home sales , which include single-family, town homes, condominiums and co-ops , increased 2.5 percent on the year in April, while median prices fell 32 percent, the California Association of Realtors reported on May 23.

Thursday, May 22

State Fines Hospitals Over Safety Issues

Scripps Memorial and Scripps Green hospitals in La Jolla and UC San Diego medical centers were among 13 hospitals statewide cited by the California Department of Public Health for violations that caused, or were likely to cause, serious injury or death to

Janitors Demonstrate as Contract Talks Continue

Union representatives and a group of San Diego janitors working in the largest office buildings in the county staged a demonstration in downtown May 22 attempting to drum up support as they continue to negotiate a new contract.

SAIC Lands $243M Navy Contract

SAIC, the San Diego research and engineering firm, said May 22 it was awarded a two-year task order by the Naval Surface Warfare Center with a value of $243 million if all options are exercised.

Cheap-Chic Clothier H & M; Opens First County Store

Thursday at noon marks the highly anticipated opening of the county's first H & M; retail store at Chula Vista's Otay Ranch Town Center.

Equity Based Services Locks Up Acquisition

Equity Based Services, a $210 million San Diego private commercial real estate company, recently purchased the Desert Country Club Storage in Palm Desert for $6.8 million, the company said May 22.

Wednesday, May 21

KSWB-TV Continues Changes With News Director Hire

KSWB-TV, which becomes Fox 5 San Diego on Aug. 1, has named veteran newscaster Rich Goldner its news director.

Intuit Net Income Reaches $444M for Quarter

Intuit Inc., the parent of San Diego's TurboTax unit, reported May 20 third-quarter net income of $444 million, up from $367 million for the like quarter of 2007.

Qualcomm's Jacobs Takes Chairman's Role at National Academy

The National Academy of Engineering said May 15 that it has named Irwin M. Jacobs to a two-year term as chairman, effective July 1.

Property Tax Delinquencies on the Rise

In another sign the economy is getting battered, the number of property tax delinquencies in San Diego County increased by more than 8,000 over last year's delinquent total, according to a report released May 21 by county Treasurer and Tax Collector Dan M

Kintera Receives Nasdaq Warning Letter

Kintera Inc., a San Diego maker of software to help nonprofit groups better manage their fundraising, may need to begin fundraising for itself.

Valley View Shows Its Cards: Expansion in the Works

Valley View Casino said it wants to add 7,000 square feet to its casino to accommodate bingo machines and to offer gamblers who don't smoke more space to play.

Tuesday, May 20

SAIC to Work With Military's Legacy Systems in $20M Deal

SAIC won a $20 million contract from the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center in San Diego to provide specialized network infrastructure support for legacy systems.

Explosion Injures 13 at Hotel Construction Site

A massive explosion May 19 at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel, a 1,190-room property under construction on the downtown waterfront adjacent to the San Diego Convention Center, injured 13 people, three of them critically, San Diego Fire-Rescue Departme

Kratos Defense Deal Serves Domestic, Foreign Militaries

San Diego-based Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. said May 20 that it is one of two companies that will bid on task orders under a contract with the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Crane, Ind.

Executive Agrees to Pay $83K in Insider Trading Case

A former executive with San Diego-based Provide Commerce Inc., parent of, has agreed to pay more than $83,000 in fines and other penalties resulting from a company stock sale using insider information, the Securities and Exchange Commission

Monday, May 19

La Jolla Institute Gets $7M Grant to Fight Smallpox

The National Institutes of Health has granted a researcher at the La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology $7.1 million grant to fund further studies of a treatment aimed at fighting smallpox.

Nonprofit Profile , Angels Foster Family Agency

A talk with Cathy Richman, founder and chief executive officer of the Angels Foster Family Agency.

Westcore to Build Airports in Europe

Westcore Properties LLC has created a subsidiary to develop regional airports in Europe, the San Diego commercial real estate investment firm said May 12.

Holiday Weekend to Drive Up County's Tourism Numbers

San Diego is the top destination choice for Southern Californians during Memorial Day weekend, the Automobile Club of Southern California says.

Local TV Station Revenues Are in a Steep Decline, Report Says

San Diego's television stations saw a double-digit decline in revenue last year, a much steeper drop than the nation as a whole, according to a report by BIA Financial Network Inc.

Marketer Takes Ikea Outdoors for a Sensory Sales Experience

Furniture and housewares retailer Ikea believes strongly in experiential marketing.

Residential Market Close to Bottoming Out, Assessor Says

Seizing upon a sliver of positive news that April home sales outpaced the previous month, county Assessor Gregory Smith told a gathering of real estate professionals recently that he believed the housing slump was coming to an end.

Study: Additional Border Crossing Would Bring Billions in Benefits

A new Otay Mesa border crossing planned east of the existing entry could generate an estimated $14 billion in economic impact in the San Diego region for 10 years beginning in 2015, according to a study produced for the San Diego Regional Chamber of Comme

California Seen as 'Fuel Island' With Too Few Refineries

With gas prices continuing to rise, economic analysts are hard-pressed to point to any indications of relief.

Soaring Foreclosure Numbers Mean More Prey for Vulture Funds

As more homes fall into foreclosure, banks are packaging pools of foreclosed homes and wholesaling them to private equity "vulture funds" for pennies on the dollar.


Port Board Takes Stand Against Proposed Bay Front Ballot Measure

Execs See Ads Cycle Back to TV Promos, Yet Expand 'Net Presence

In recent years some marketing and advertising strategies have been boiled down into buzz.

Show, Don't Tell, Marketing Strategy Gains Momentum

The automobile test drive is nothing new. But now there's a new term for it, called "experiential marketing."

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Vista-based Directed Electronics Inc. said recently that Standard & Poor's and Moody's, two credit rating firms, removed the publicly traded company from their credit watch lists.

Maxwell Technologies Reports Quarterly Revenue Is on the Rise

Maxwell Technologies Inc. recently reported a 38 percent rise in first-quarter revenue to $17.3 million, but sustained a net loss of $5.6 million during the period.

Waytronx Acquires Company for $37.5M

Waytronx Inc. of Vista said May 19 that it acquired CUI Inc., a provider of electronic components based in Tualatin, Ore., for $37.5 million.

Thomas Jefferson Law School Sells Old Town Building

The Thomas Jefferson School of Law says it has sold its building in Old Town, where the school has been located since 1983, to PacVentures Inc. of San Diego.

$115 Million Collaborative Research Center Planned Near the Salk Institute

Progress Report: The San Diego Consortium for Regenerative Medicine has selected Lankford & Associates Inc. to build the organization's $115 million research facility.

Podcast: Preview This Week's San Diego Business Journal

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the May 19, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

San Diego People

Key hires and promotions. Executive Spotlight: Richard Miller.

Local Commercial, Industrial Property Sales Decline in Q1

Sales of commercial property in San Diego County fell in the first three months of 2008, a decline that local brokers attribute more to the credit crunch than local market forces.

Week in Review

Top Business News: May 9 - 15, 2008

ConVis Now Predicting Smaller Hike in '08 Hotel Room Rates

The San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau, which painted a rosy picture for the lodging industry in its original forecast for 2008, is now painting one that's a little less rosy.

Negotiations to Buy La Valencia, Sister Resort Go Into Overtime

One deadline has passed, but American Property Management Corp.'s bid to buy the La Valencia Hotel and its sister resort is still alive.

Share Price of Leap Wireless Improves, Churn Rate Increases

Leap Wireless International Inc., a flat-rate cell phone carrier, turned in better than anticipated first-quarter results, boosting its share price back above $54 on May 9.

How Candid Quarreling Brought China, U.S. Closer

How Candid Quarreling Brought China, U.S. Closer

Navy Research Submarine to Dock at Museum

Stationed here for all of its life, it's only fitting that the USS Dolphin will have a permanent home at the Maritime Museum of San Diego.


For May 5, 2008.

Downtown Makeovers Now Name of Game for North County Cities

In spite of the lackluster economy, most of the cities in North County are in the process of approving major improvements to their downtown cores.

Training Support Deal Might Be Worth $166M to Cubic

San Diego-based Cubic Applications Inc., a subsidiary of Cubic Corp., recently received a U.S. Marine Corps contract with a potential value of $166 million.

Sales and Leases

Silverado Canyon Partners based in Laguna Hills has purchased Sommerset La Costa Apartments from a private investor for $11.4 million. And other sales and leases.

Equity Based Services Embraces Change for Boosting Self-Storage

Capitalizing on economic uncertainty, Equity Based Services Inc. is bullish on self-storage. The San Diego-based company said May 7 that it made its fifth self-storage acquisition in three months.

Balancing State Budget Avoiding the Obvious Problem

Balancing State Budget Avoiding the Obvious Problem

Verve Develops a Talent for Putting The News on Cell Phones

The Associated Press, which has reporters from Iraq to Iowa, also has a behind-the-scenes ally in Encinitas, a little company that makes the news suitable for the iPhone.

Builders Construct More Web, E-Mail Messages to Stimulate Home Buying

When the real estate market has hit the skids, like it has these days, selling homes becomes a challenge. Despite that, the efficiency of online pitches to potential homebuyers has proved an effective tool for real estate marketers.

CIT Group Shutters Student Loan Xpress, Lays Off 124 Staff

Student Loan Xpress, a college student lender in Carmel Valley, said it is shutting down operations and laying off 124 employees.

First Tenant Set to Sign at Sunroad

We locals overlook the fact that the presumptive heir to the Republican presidential nomination John McCain and his wife, Cindy, own beachfront property locally.

RJC to Build $14M Oceanfront Lodge at Camp Pendleton

San Diego-based RJC Architects Inc. won a $14 million design-build competition for a new lodging facility at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, the firm said May 19.

Executive Profile , Michael I. Neil

Michael I. Neil.

Micro Focus Expands Local Reach With Office in Sorrento Valley

Micro Focus, a software developer and services provider with North American headquarters in Rockville, Md., opened an office in Sorrento Valley last month to accommodate growth in the San Diego area and beyond.

Tenant at Marine Terminal Objects To Ballot Measure

The latest attempt to change maritime-related uses at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal isn't a big surprise to Ed Plant.

Escondido Chamber to Honor Local Businesses at June 6 Awards Dinner

At its annual dinner on June 6, the Escondido Chamber of Commerce will honor Escondido Disposal Inc. with the Large Business of the Year Award.

Marketing to Nation's 44M Hispanic Population Coming of Age

Pundits might argue that ignoring the estimated trillion dollars annually pumped into the U.S. economy by Hispanics would be the kiss of death for any rational thinking business.

Friday, May 16

Blog Represents New Departure for Lindbergh Field Staff

Some of the folks who work at Lindbergh Field are offering a glimpse into the airport's daily operations through an interactive online blog called Goodwill Ambassablog.

Realty Income Gets More Credit for Acquisitions

Realty Income Corp. has expanded its credit facility for acquisitions under a new banking partnership, effective May 15.

SAIC to Support Army With $47M Subcontract

SAIC, the San Diego research and engineering firm, said May 15 it was awarded a subcontract for about $47 million by Sensor Technologies Inc.

Net Profit Down 25 Percent at San Diego National Bank

San Diego National Bank reported a net profit of $5.79 million in its first quarter, down 25 percent from the like quarter of 2007.

Unemployment Rate Improves

Led by a surge of 2,100 new jobs in the leisure and hospitality industry, San Diego's unemployment rate declined to 5 percent in April, from the March rate of 5.3 percent.

Thursday, May 15

Negotiations to Buy La Valencia, Sister Resort Go Into Overtime

One deadline has passed, but American Property Management Corp.'s bid to buy the La Valencia Hotel and its sister resort is still alive.

San Diego Takes Back Seat to Charlotte, N.C. in Livability Survey

The best place to live in the nation is Charlotte, N.C., according to an analysis released May 15 by RelocateAmerica, a national relocation assistance company that does the ranking each year.

BrightQube Imaging Firm Lands Angel Funding

San Diego Tech Coast Angels, a group of wealthy investors that provide capital to technology startups, said May 13 it completed funding of a convertible note for $650,000 for a local tech firm called BrightQube.

Sempra LNG Terminal Open for Business

Sempra Energy said May 15 that its liquefied natural gas terminal north of Ensenada, Mexico is ready for prime time.

Standard & Poor's Resumes Rating City Bonds

The city of San Diego took a major step in returning to the municipal bond market May 15 when Standard & Poor's resumed rating the city's outstanding debt.

Janitors Picket Gen-Probe Amid Union Dispute

A group of San Diego janitors represented by the Service Employees International Union Local 1877 picketed outside the corporate offices of Gen-Probe Inc., which was holding its annual shareholders meeting May 15.

Wednesday, May 14

ViaSat Profits Orbit Higher

ViaSat Inc., a Carlsbad maker of satellite and communications equipment, reported May 13 net income of $10.5 million for the firm's fourth quarter ended March 28, up 23 percent from the like quarter in 2007.

One in Five Households Could Afford Median-Priced House in April

With home prices off by 25 percent over the year in San Diego County, a greater percentage of people can afford new homes, according to an "affordability index" called HomeDex prepared by Robert Brown, a professor at Cal State San Marcos.

Tuesday, May 13

Del Sur Takes National Honors for Green Construction

Del Sur was named Mixed Use Development of the Year by the National Association of Home Builders during its annual Green Building Awards ceremony May 11 in New Orleans.

Clock Stops as Rincon Case Appealed

After setting a 60-day schedule for the state to negotiate a new gaming deal with the Rincon Band of Luise & #324;o Indians, a federal judge has stopped the clock at the state's request.

Junior Version of Gulls Hockey to Skate in Escondido

Local hockey fans who have been iced out of their sport since the San Diego Gulls ceased playing in 2006 have something to cheer about with the announcement May 13 that the Gulls are returning to the area.

Monday, May 12

Regional Development Agencies in Recruiting Mode as BIO Nears

Besides scientists ready to debut their latest advances and venture capitalists keen on learning about investment opportunities, next month's Biotechnology Industry Organization gathering is bringing a swell of recruiters eager to attract businesses ripe

Stem Cell Agency Awards $43M for Research Site at UCSD

The San Diego Consortium for Regenerative Medicine moved closer to building a shared stem cell research facility May 7 with a pledge by the state stem cell agency to fund the project with $43 million.

The Asian Grand Master Appears in My Dreams Yet Again

The Asian Grand Master Appears in My Dreams Yet Again

Podcast: Preview This Week's San Diego Business Journal

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the May 12, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

Leap Expanding Service to Las Vegas

Leap Wireless International Inc., the San Diego parent of flat-rate cell phone carrier Cricket Communications Inc., said May 12 that it will begin offering its service in Las Vegas and surrounding communities beginning May 13.

Sharp Selling Mission Park Medical Group to Scripps Health

Sharp HealthCare said April 30 that it is selling assets associated with Sharp Mission Park Medical Group to Scripps Health, and physicians employed by the group will join Scripps Mercy Medical Group.

Getting Loan Extensions Not as Easy as AD & C;, Home Builders Find

It's not just homeowners singing the credit blues. Home builders themselves are being squeezed by lenders that are shoring up their exposure in the troubled residential housing sector by recalling loans, according to the National Association of Home Build

Let the Seller Beware as County's Housing Market Keeps Declining

A just-released report by MarketPointe Realty Advisors, which tracks new-home sales, shows a continuing trend of falling home sales in the first quarter of the year, along with lower prices.

South County Health Care Provider Looking to Expand Downtown

San Ysidro Health Center, a low-cost health care provider that operates four medical clinics and two dental clinics in South County, is considering a move that would give it control of three downtown community clinics.

Proposed Chula Vista Electric Power Plant Clears Key Hurdle

A proposed Chula Vista electric power plant replacement that's been jammed in a slow and costly approval process since 2006 is one step closer to construction.

Entrepreneur Profile - John E. Flannery

John E. Flannery, president of Flannery Sales Systems LLC.


Leases: Harvey King Inc. has renewed its lease on 3,000 square feet of office space at 9520 Padgett Road in Mira Mesa.

KMA Architecture & Engineering Finishes Its Work on Residential Project

Progress Report: KMA Architecture & Engineering has completed the design for a mixed-use residential project to be located at Sixth Avenue and Palm Street in San Diego.

Nonprofit Profile - Mama's Kitchen

A talk with Alberto Cort & #233;s, executive director of Mama's Kitchen

Conference to Weigh Pros and Cons of Running Maquiladoras

Current tax and legal regulations, as well as opportunities in the maquiladora or twin plant industry in Mexico, are among the subjects to be covered at a May 20 conference at National University's Spectrum Business Park campus in San Diego.

In Europe, Westcore Gets Lay of the Land

Westcore Properties has created a subsidiary to develop regional airports in Europe, the San Diego commercial real estate investment firm said May 12.

Loews Surfing Event Is Top Dog

Loews Coronado Bay Resort's annual Surf Dog Competition was named Event of the Year by the California Hotel & Lodging Association at its recent statewide confab. The contest.

More San Diego Companies Are Competing on Global Stage

Despite competing with the world's largest medical device makers, Carlsbad-based Timely Medical Innovations is becoming so successful that it's selling products to those same manufacturers.

La Jolla Spa Celebrates Three Years in Very Competitive Market

As a relatively new business in the competitive La Jolla spa industry, Tina Marie Wright knows the importance of lasting relationships and putting clients at ease.

Report: Apartment Sales Slow, But Business Good for Landlords

Sales of apartment complexes were off in the first quarter of 2008, but rents are up, reflecting rising demand among renters who have left or opted not to enter the homeownership market, according to a recent study by the real estate services firm Cushman

Conference Examines the Case for Technological Innovation

In this economic era of operating lean and mean, risk aversion can overshadow the mandate to re-examine how technology can keep innovation alive and well. The San Diego Software Industry Council addresses the issue with its "Managing Innovation" symposium

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Newly released city data shows that Escondido received nearly $2 million less in sales taxes for 2007 than it did in 2006.

Federal Judge Rules in Favor of Downtown Waterfront Project

A ruling in favor of developer Douglas Manchester's effort to build a mixed-use waterfront park on downtown Navy land has dealt a blow to the California Coastal Commission's authority to regulate this project and other private developments built on federa

Tourism Week Underscores Importance of Visitors

Tourism Week Underscores Importance of Visitors

Union-Tribune Dismisses 3 Web Site Executives

The San Diego Union-Tribune axed at least one of its Web site executives and has frozen top management's salaries, according to an internal memo dated May 7 that was sent to staff members from Gene Bell, the publication's president and chief executive off

Week In Review

Top Business News: May 2 - May 8, 2008

Federal Judge Rules in Favor of Rincon Band in North County

The state of California asked for too much in exchange for allowing an American Indian tribe expand its slot machine count at its North San Diego County casino, a federal judge ruled in late April.

BlokHaus Shows Its Creativity in East Village Commercial Projects

Renovations are nearly complete on the old Wonder Bread factory in East Village, one of the projects helping to transform the neighborhood into hip, creative space.

San Diego People

Key hires and promotions. Executive Spotlight: Gladys DeClouet

Six Month After Fires, It's Time to Better Prepare

Six Month After Fires, It's Time to Better Prepare

Startup Ventana Bank to Target Market for Small, Medium Businesses

Don't tell Bob Adkins this isn't the best time to start up a bank in San Diego.

Thomas Jefferson Law Professor Testifies About Post-9/11 Prisoners

During testimony in Washington, D.C., last week before a subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee, Thomas Jefferson School of Law professor Marjorie Cohn raised legal issues associated with the interrogations of Guantanamo Bay prison detainees.

Friday, May 9

Government Contracting Seminar Features Mayor

San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders gives a luncheon speech on "Making the Connection With the San Diego Small Business Community" as part of Operation Opportunity 2008. The event is May 13.

Lankford & Associates to Build $115M Stem Cell Facility

Lankford & Associates Inc. has been selected by the San Diego Consortium for Regenerative Medicine to build a $115 million stem cell research facility in La Jolla, the company said May 9.

Hillcrest Apartment Complex Sold for $17.5M

Hillcrest Montecito of San Diego on April 30 sold a 72-unit complex, Montecito Point in Hillcrest, for $17.5 million, or $243,000 per unit, according to the broker.

Kratos Pares Its Net Loss

Kratos Defense and Security Solutions Inc., a San Diego defense technology services contractor, reported a net loss of $1.9 million on revenue of $68.2 million for the first quarter, on May 8.

Bowling for Dollars: Games Make $41.5M Impact

San Diego's two postseason college football games generated $41.5 million in direct and indirect spending in the region last year, according to a report released May 9 from the San Diego Bowl Game Association.

More Homes Change Hands in April

Sales of houses and condos increased significantly in April , especially among homes priced under $417,000 , according to a report released May 8 by the San Diego Association of Realtors.

Nuvasive to Acquire Osiris Unit

Nuvasive Inc. said May 9 that it signed a definitive agreement to acquire the osteocel biologics business from Osiris Therapeutics Inc. for $35 million in cash, plus certain milestone-based payments not to exceed $50 million.

Thursday, May 8

Essential Sign of a Recession Missing, Study Asserts

Take heart, San Diego, it ain't as bad as it seems. That's what economic experts from UCLA Anderson Forecast are saying about the regional economy in a report released May 8.

AMN Staffing Firm Sees Healthy Increase in Profits

AMN Healthcare Services Inc., a San Diego health care staffing firm, reported first-quarter net income of $9.5 million on May 7, up 16 percent from the like quarter in 2007.

Din of Bouncing Basketballs Anticipates December Classic

The 21st annual Jack in the Box Three-on-Three Basketball Tournament happens May 17 and 18 at Crown Point Shores.

Barney & Barney Transaction Complete

Barney & Barney, the San Diego insurance brokerage that was founded in 1909, completed its merger with Saylor & Hill, an Oakland-based brokerage, the firms said May 7.

Port Board Opposes Marine Terminal Conversion

The seven-member board of the San Diego Unified Port District voted unanimously May 6 to oppose a change in the port's master plan to permit converting the 10th Avenue Marine Terminal to a complex of hotels, restaurants, shops and a possible football stad

Wednesday, May 7

Branchless and Growing: Bank of Internet Reports Profit

B of I Holding Inc., parent of Bank of Internet USA, which conducts all its business online, reported May 6 that it received net income of $1 million for its third quarter ended March 31, up 57 percent from the like quarter of 2007.

Under Gray Skies, Conference-Goers Talk Solar Energy

Solar 2008, the American Solar Energy Society's annual conference, is under way and set to continue through May 8 at Mission Valley's Town & Country Resort and Convention Center.

Stem Cell Consortium Gets $43M for Research Facility

The first step in building a shared stem cell research facility in San Diego was taken May 7 with an announcement that the state stem cell agency will offer up $43 million to the San Diego Consortium for Regenerative Medicine.

Tuesday, May 6

Podcast: Preview This Week's San Diego Business Journal

Web Editor Brad Graves provides highlights from the May 5, 2008 issue of the San Diego Business Journal.

First PacTrust Bancorp's Earnings Exceed the Million Mark

First PacTrust Bancorp Inc., parent firm of Pacific Trust Bank in Chula Vista, reported May 6 net income of $1.16 million, up by $128,000 from the like quarter in 2007.

Auspex Pharmaceuticals Has Fresh Cash, New Leadership

Auspex Pharmaceuticals of Vista said May 6 that it received $13.88 million in Series B funding. The company also named a new chief executive.

Series A Funds Help Apoptos Pursue Its Programs

Apoptos Inc., a company working on cancer-killing drugs, said May 6 that it received $28 million in Series A financing.

Apartment Sales Slow, But Business Good for Landlords

According to a new study by the real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield, apartment sales were slow in the first quarter of 2008 but rents on existing units rose compared with the first three months of 2007.

Monday, May 5

Qualcomm Opens Dubai Office, Posts Increased Earnings

Qualcomm opens Dubai office, sees profits increase.

Community Banks Thriving With Big Banks in Turmoil

Real estate sectors across the board struggle.

School Programs Grab Carlsbad Chamber's Attention

The Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce honored teachers and their innovative work during the Outstanding Educational Program awards dinner May 2 at the La Costa Resort and Spa.

Scripps Encinitas Nurses Walk Away From Union

Nurses at Scripps Encinitas reject union.

Let's Go Green and Get America Growing Again

Sometime this month, your friends in Washington are going to mail you a check for $600 while raising the federal deficit by a similar amount. To some, this may seem like a good idea, but there's a better, more productive way to get America growing again.

Cricket Expands Its Texas Footprint

Cricket Communications, the primary subsidiary of Leap Wireless International Inc., a San Diego flat-rate cell phone carrier, said May 5 that it is expanding its market in Texas.

Metabasis Therapeutics Seeking Partner for Diabetes Treatment

Metabasis Therapeutics Inc. says it will look to find a partner to advance its experimental diabetes drug following studies that showed the therapy safe and effective in a midstage human trial.

Cyberspace Holds a World of Productivity Freebies for Businesses

Online resources offer small business owners access to "the free stuff," according to Debra Simpson, and everybody likes free stuff, she says.

2 Northrop Contracts May Yield Thousands of Jobs for the Region

Two Northrop contracts could yield thousands of jobs.

Concessionaires Flip Their Business to Mexican-Style 'Taqueria'

Martin Rascon and John Vallas met early last year while operating food concessions at the San Diego Auto Swap Meet at Qualcomm Stadium. It didn't take them long to team up to develop Martin's idea for a restaurant.

Visual Ventures' Site Looks to Connect Employers, Job Hunters

San Diego-based Visual Ventures LLC planned to launch an interactive online employment community May 1.

Real Estate Sectors Are Struggling

Real Estate sectors across the board struggle.

Lindbergh Likely to Avoid Turbulence Caused By Airlines' & #8201;Many Problems

A study showing that the airlines' woes were worse last year than the year before is almost an understatement considering the more recent groundings of Southwest and American.

May Is That Time of Year for Shareholder Meetings

If it's May, it's shareholder meeting season, with many public companies hosting mandatory gatherings to elect directors, affirm auditors, and change how they pay top officials.

InfoSonics Increases Credit Line

InfoSonics Corp., a San Diego company that distributes wireless handsets in Latin America, said May 5 that it secured a $45 million, two-year line of credit with Wells Fargo Century Inc.

Executives Stung By & #8201;'Subpoena' & #8201; E-mail Scam

Executives strung by 'subpoena' e-mail scam.


IoSelect Inc. has leased 6,004 square feet of office/warehouse space from Harsch Investment Properties for $316,716. The property, located at 9835 Carroll Centre Road in Mira Mesa, is leased for four years. Dean Asaro of CB Richard Ellis represented the l

Grocery Prices Climb, No Shortages Yet

Grocery prices continue to climb.

Banks Can't Keep Up With Buyer Demand for Foreclosed Properties

With foreclosures hitting a 16-year high, demand for bank-owned homes has outstripped lenders' ability to dispose of them.

Small Businesses Don't Have to Miss Out on Valuable Resources

Women-Owned Businesses

How to Look Good Politically While Improving World Health

How to Look Good Politically While Improving World Health

RJC Architects Lands $7.5M Navy Contract for Enlisted Quarters, Facilities

RJC Architects, a local architecture and construction management company, has been awarded a $7.5 million contract by the U.S. Navy. The contract is for design and consulting work at various Navy and Marine Corps facilities located primarily in California

Ex-Naval Pilot Steers His Career to Liberty Station Karate Studio

After retiring from the Navy, Sal Convento says he's still serving his country and the community as chief instructor at the United States Karate Academy at Liberty Station.

San Diego People


SoftWhere Event Seeks to Forge a Path for Digital Arts

SoftWhere event seeks new path for digital arts.

Qualcomm Stadium Expects Sellout When 'Futbol' Fever Spikes

For local soccer fans, the place to be June 4 is Qualcomm Stadium, when it hosts an exhibition match between Mexico and Argentina.

'What Got Us Here Won't Get Us There'

As Shakespeare wrote, "Parting is such sweet sorrow." Two important job switches are under way among San Diego's high-profile business leadership.

California's Gray Whale Needs Protection

The state Fish and Game Commission has erroneously listed the gray whale population as "recovered." But that same whale, while traveling off the coast of Washington, is listed as "sensitive." When it reaches Oregon, it's considered "endangered." That make

Small Businesses Take Lessons in Securing Contracts for Highway Projects

With state and federal funds earmarked for reconstructing the state's crumbling highway system, the California Department of Transportation is poised to receive more than $6.5 billion between October 2007 and September 2008.

Skyriver Expands Local Network With NetHere Acquisition

Skyriver Communications Inc. said April 21 that it completed the acquisition of NetHere Inc., a local Internet service provider, for an undisclosed sum. Through the acquisition, Skyriver added a large number of business customers and expanded its network

Executive Profile: Jeff Hankin

Jeff Hankin

Kudos: Molina Healthcare Receives Award for Medi-Cal Service Deliveries

Molina Healthcare Receives Award for Medi-Cal Service Deliveries

Regional Roundup

American Wave Machines Inc. said April 28 that a Caribbean resort will incorporate its SurfStream standing wave machine into the resort's water park expansion.

Moving Past the Color Line in America, Racial Oppression

Barak Obama's speech on race, some analysts predicted, would effectively end his candidacy for president.


Toll Road Agency Seeks Correction to Letter From Army Engineers

Week In Review

Top Business News

Golden Equity Showing More Seniors Benefits of Reverse Mortgages

Seniors looking to take cash from the value of their home without actually selling it or moving out are turning to reverse mortgages in growing numbers.

Peter Piper Picking Five Local Sites for New Pizzerias

What's the difference between Peter Piper Pizza and Chuck E. Cheese?

NTN Looks to Create Buzz With Two New Games

SoftWhere event seeks new path for digital arts.

Friday, May 2

Sempra Reports $242M Quarterly Profit

Sempra Energy, a San Diego-based energy and utility holding company, reported net income of $242 million, or 92 cents per diluted share, on revenue of $3.27 billion in the first quarter.

Restaurant Vacancies Nibble Away at Realty Income's Profits

Realty Income Corp. shares fell nearly 3 percent May 1 after the Escondido-based real estate investment trust reported lower quarterly earnings the previous afternoon and indicated business would continue to soften in 2008.

SEC Sanctions Former Invitrogen Scientist

Harry Yim, a scientist who formerly worked for Invitrogen Corp., consented to a final judgment with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on May 2 regarding charges of insider stock trading filed in October, the SEC said.

Board Clears Lindbergh Field Plans for Takeoff

The public board that manages Lindbergh Field certified an environmental impact report May 1 that was done in advance of a planned, $700 million improvement project.

Salk Basks in $20M Waitt Foundation Grant

La Jolla's Salk Institute said May 1 that it received a $20 million grant from the Waitt Family Foundation, an entity started by Gateway Inc. co-founder Ted Waitt.

Callaway Golf Sees Profit Grow

Callaway Golf Co., a Carlsbad-based maker of golf equipment, reported first-quarter net income of $39.6 million, or 61 cents per diluted share, on net sales of $366.5 million, on May 1.

Thursday, May 1

'Challenging' Economy Saps Profit at Imperial Capital Bancorp

Imperial Capital Bancorp Inc., parent company of San Diego-based Imperial Capital Bank, reported net income of nearly $700,000 for the first quarter, compared to $6.7 million in net income for the like quarter of 2007.

Anonymizer Sold for an Undisclosed Price

Anonymizer Inc., a San Diego-based provider of security software founded in 1995, said May 1 it was acquired by Abraxas Corp. for an undisclosed price.

Sharp Sells North County Medical Offices to Scripps

A deal announced April 30 will transfer a group of North County medical offices owned by Sharp HealthCare to Scripps Health, and physicians employed by the group will join Scripps Mercy Medical Group.

Wind Zero Group Proposes $100M Training Area in Imperial County

Wind Zero Group Inc. of San Diego submitted initial plans to the Imperial County government May 1 for a $100 million facility to be used for motor sports, law enforcement training and military training.