Brad Graves

Reporter

Email: bradg@sdbj.com
Phone: 858-277-6359 Extension: 3102

Recent Stories

CalPrivate Bank Names Board Member

CalPrivate Bank and its holding company, Private Bancorp of America, announced on March 22 that it has named Brett Lawrence to its board of directors.

Military Construction May Wait for Border Wall

San Diego County has its share of military construction projects that might take a back seat to construction of a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Viasat Prices $600M Senior Secured Notes

FINANCE: Proceeds to Pay Off Credit Facility Debt, And for General Purposes

Viasat Inc. is selling $600 million in senior secured notes due 2027 to institutional buyers, after originally planning for a $500 million bond issue, the company said March 21.

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Engine Co. Acquisition Adds Key Component to Kratos UAV Program

AEROSPACE: Kratos Buying 80.1% of Co. With Option to Buy the Rest

Kratos Defense and Security Solutions Inc. continues to develop its unmanned aircraft business, as shown by its recent acquisition of a company that makes small jet engines in February, and the first flight of a drone in March.

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WD-40 Names Director

WD-40 Co. announced on March 19 that it named Anne G. Saunders to its board of directors, bringing the number of directors up to 10.

Cal State Trustees Name New President for CSU San Marcos

Trustees of the California State University system named Ellen Neufeldt the next president of Cal State University San Marcos. The university announced the appointment March 20.

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‘Navy Mayor’ Takes Command Friday

The U.S. Navy has named Rear Adm. Bette Bolivar as commander, Navy Region Southwest. In her role she will oversee shore bases in California and five Western states. Bolivar will relieve Rear Adm. Yancy Lindsey in ceremonies March 22 at Naval Base Coronado.

Global Hawk Makes Rare Landing Before Public

At 13 hours and 3,075 nautical miles, it was a relatively short flight for a U.S. Air Force Global Hawk unmanned aircraft.

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Some Military Construction May Wait for Border Wall

San Diego County has its share of military construction projects that might take a back seat to construction of a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Viasat Plans $500M Bond Issue

Viasat Inc. said March 19 that it plans to sell $500 million in senior secured notes due 2027 through a private placement.

Sempra LNG Names Officers

Sempra LNG, a subsidiary of San Diego-based Sempra Energy, announced on March 18 that it named Justin Bird president, and Lisa Glatch chief operating officer. The two will develop Sempra’s liquefied natural gas export business.

Defense Budget Likely to Deliver for San Diego

ECONOMY: Ships, UAVs and Electronics On Pentagon’s Wish List

A draft Pentagon spending plan issued March 12 offers much to San Diego defense contractors, including publicly traded giants that build military ships and aircraft.

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With Xcerra on Board, Cohu Reports Record Revenues

Cohu Inc., a maker of equipment for semiconductor factories, reported record annual net sales of $451.8 million in 2018 following the acquisition of a similar equipment maker. The Poway company’s net loss for the year was $32.1 million.

RF Industries Buying Vista Company

RF Industries Ltd. said March 11 that it agreed to acquire the business and assets of C Enterprises LP of Vista. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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GA Contract Aims to Get Carrier Launch System Up to Speed

The U.S. Navy recently issued two contracts to support General Atomics’ advanced aircraft carrier launch system, which is going on the new-style Gerald Ford-class carriers.

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Turtle Beach to Buy German Firm

Rancho Bernardo-based gaming peripheral maker Turtle Beach Corp. said March 14 that it agreed to acquire Roccat, a German maker of PC gaming accessories. Separately the business announced it almost doubled its revenue for the year.

Cubic Acquires Nuvotronics for $64M

Cubic Corp. said March 14 that it acquired electronics maker Nuvotronics of Durham, North Carolina for $64 million cash. Nuvotronics produces microfabricated radio frequency products, primarily for the military satellite and electronic warfare markets. There are commercial applications for the products as well.

North County Printers Merge

Zuza and Golden State Graphics, two commercial printers based in North County, announced in March that the two companies merged effective Jan. 1. The two owners of Zuza and the single owner of Golden State each have one-third interests in the new company, called Zuza LLC.

RF Industries to Buy Vista Company

RF Industries Ltd. said March 11 that it agreed to acquire the business and assets of C Enterprises LP of Vista. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of the week.

Florida Turbine Technologies Sellers Put Kratos Shares on Market

The majority of shares will come from the Shirley C. Brostmeyer Revocable Trust and Joseph D. Brostmeyer Revocable Trust. The Brostmeyers are engineers and cofounders of Florida Turbine Technologies, which Kratos bought for a combination of cash and stock.

Achates Power to Develop Range-Extender Engine for Hybrids

With a new, $2 million Department of Energy grant in hand, Achates Power plans to create a highly efficient opposed-piston engine for hybrid vehicles. The University of Michigan and Nissan are partners in the project to build a single-cylinder opposed-piston (OP) engine.

Unmanned Aircraft Ground Control Just Got Easier

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. publicly announced ;the next piece of technology that will command its advanced MQ-9B remotely piloted aircraft.

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Space Micro Technology Onboard For Israel’s Moon Mission

Israel’s attempt to put a lander on the moon has a local tie.

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All Agree on One Thing, Jack Needs to Make More Money

DINING: $1.5 Million in Average Sales Per Store Lags Top Competitors

On the hunt for a buyer in 2019, Jack in the Box Inc. is working to resolve the challenges and contradictions of the year gone past.

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New President of Solar Turbines Is a Familiar Face

Caterpillar Inc. has named Tom Pellette president of its Solar Turbines subsidiary, effective March 1. He replaces Pablo Koziner, who has a new assignment within the company.

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Kratos Buys Florida Turbine Technologies

Kratos Defense, which has a business building small military drones, may soon build its own jet engines for those aircraft. The San Diego company announced Feb. 28 that it acquired a majority stake in Florida Turbine Technologies Inc. for $60 million.

McCain Gets Municipal Sign Deal

Vista-based McCain Inc. said Feb. 27 that it received a contract from the city of San Jose to supply 13 variable message signs for the city’s downtown wayfinding system.

Sempra Grows 2018 Revenue By 4 Percent

Sempra Energy released its 2018 financial results on Feb. 26, reporting earnings of $924 million on revenue of $11.69 billion. One year ago, it reported earnings of $256 million on revenue of $11.21 billion. Sempra said it still expects to make $5.70 to $6.30 in adjusted earnings per share during 2019.

Tapestry Solutions Receives Weapons Planning Software Deal

Tapestry Solutions Inc., an independent subsidiary of Boeing Co. based in San Diego, received a 10-year contract from the U.S. Air Force for Weapon Planning Software, also known as WPS. The indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract is worth a maximum of $259 million.

Jack Evaluating Strategic Alternatives, Sale

DINING: Conflict With Franchisees Said to Rattle Possible Buyers

Jack in the Box Inc., the beleaguered burger chain, took the wraps off first quarter earnings Feb. 20, reaffirming its guidance of flat to 2 percent growth during the year ahead.

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Sempra Declares Dividends on 3 Classes of Stock

The board of Sempra Energy, meeting on Feb. 21, increased the dividend on the company’s common stock by 8.1 percent. The yearly dividend is now $3.87 per share. The company noted it is the ninth consecutive year it has increased its dividend.

PSemi Names New CEO

San Diego chipmaker PSemi Corp. and its parent company, Murata Manufacturing Co. Ltd., have named a new CEO for PSemi. Sumit Tomar will take the job on July 1.

Cubic Cash Dividend to Go Out March 12

Cubic Corp. announced on Feb. 18 that its board approved a semiannual dividend of 13½ cents per share. The dividend is payable on March 12 to shareholders of record on March 1.

Laptop Expands Unmanned Aircraft’s Portability

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. publicly announced the next piece of technology that will command its advanced MQ-9B remotely piloted aircraft.

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Defense & Technology: Northrop Grumman Gets Fire Scout Work

The U.S. Navy is buying five additional MQ-8C Fire Scout helicopters from Northrop Grumman Corp., as well as two lightweight fuel cells, under a $55.1 million contract modification awarded on Jan. 30.

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Defense & Technology: Viasat Grows Revenue, Takes $10.4M Loss, Places Order for Third ViaSat-3 Satellite

Grow, grow, grow. Satellite communications specialist Viasat Inc. set revenue records for all three of its business segments during the quarter ended Dec. 31.

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Lithium-Battery Maker Flux Power Grows Revenue

Flux Power Holdings Inc. reported a net loss of $2.92 million on revenues of $2.7 million for the second quarter of its fiscal year. Revenue grew 126 percent from the same quarter last year, when Flux had $1.2 million in sales.

Navy Renames Point Loma Labs

SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific, the U.S. Navy’s electronics lab complex on Point Loma, has changed its name to Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific.

Sempra to Sell Wind Assets for $551M

Sempra Energy said on Feb. 12 that it has agreed to sell its wind generation assets to American Electric Power for $551 million in cash. It's part of a wider effort to divest of its generation and natural gas storage assets.

Sempra LNG Plant Close to Opening

Sempra Energy is poised to start production on the first unit of its Cameron liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant in southern Louisiana. Separately, Sempra announced on Feb. 7 that it completed the sale of its non-utility natural gas storage assets to ArcLight Capital Partners for $328 million in cash.

Lessons of Great Recession Still Fresh in Nonprofits’ Memories

GIVING: They Prepare By Improving Connections With Donors, Cutting Debt

The bitter experience of the Great Recession sticks in the minds of the people running San Diego’s nonprofit organizations.

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The Culture Club

Philanthropists, Donors Deliver Needed Dollars for Cultural Institutions

Like other cultural spots in San Diego, Balboa Park is built atop civic support, exists on revenue from admissions and programs — but only flourishes with the help of charitable giving.

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Viasat Grows Revenue, Orders Third ViaSat-3 Satellite

Satellite communications specialist Viasat Inc. reported a net loss of $10.4 million, or 17 cents per share, on total revenues of $554.7 million during its third quarter, which ended on Dec. 31. The Carlsbad-based corporation reported “exceptional performance” that set revenue records for its three business segments.

Various Contractors Have Part in Work on Zumwalt-Class Destroyers

The U.S. Navy commissioned its futuristic Zumwalt-class destroyer, the USS Michael Monsoor, with traditional ceremonies that included a 19-gun salute in late January.

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Cubic Reports $305M in First Quarter Sales

Cubic Corp. reported a net loss of $6.6 million or 23 cents per share on net sales of $305.3 million during the quarter ended Dec. 31. The Kearny Mesa-based corporation — which specializes in transportation and defense technology — reported its financial results on Feb. 6.

Italian Air Carrier to Offer Viasat Wi-Fi

Viasat said it has reached an agreement with the Italian airline Neos S.p.A. to provide in-flight Wi-Fi connectivity to Neos’ fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. Financial terms of the deal, announced Feb. 5, were not disclosed.

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PriceSmart Declares 70 Cent Dividend

Similarly, the board declared a 35 cent dividend payable Aug. 30 to stockholders of record as of the close of business on Aug. 15.

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Tesla Agrees to Buy Maxwell Technologies for $218M

Tesla Inc. has agreed to buy Maxwell Technologies, a San Diego company specializing in industrial-grade and vehicle-grade capacitors. Tesla has agreed to pay $4.75 per share of Maxwell (Nasdaq: MXWL) stock in an all-stock deal. The price is a 55 percent premium over Maxwell’s $3.07 closing share price on the previous trading day, Feb. 1.

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Cubic Chooses CIO From Within

Cubic Corp. announced on Feb. 4 that it promoted Dan Hedstrom to chief information officer. He replaces Jan Marshall in the job. Hedstrom will manage the information technology team for Cubic (NYSE: CUB), which has more than 5,600 employees at 75 locations worldwide.

Environmental Review for Sempra’s Texas LNG Plant Concludes

Sempra Energy has passed another milestone on the road to building its liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility in Port Arthur, Texas. The corporation said the project received its final environmental impact statement from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), which has yet to approve the project.

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