Stories for September 2007

Friday, September 28

Sixty Candles on Vanorsdale's Birthday Cake

Vanorsdale Insurance Service marked its 60th year in business in San Diego County this month.

CNN Anchor to Be Co-Host on Local TV Teacher Salute

CNN anchor Kyra Phillips will join Channel 4 San Diego's Dennis Morgigno as co-hosts of the 17th annual "Cox Presents: A Salute to Teachers" at 7 p.m. Oct. 6.

Chamber Backs Schwarzenegger on Health Care Plan

The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce repeated its support for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's approach to health care reform.

Qualcomm Names Apple Exec as General Counsel

Qualcomm Inc., the San Diego chipmaker fighting legal battles on several fronts, said Sept. 28 that it had hired Donald J. Rosenberg as its new general counsel.

Barney & Barney Has New Principal

Paul Heidemann has joined Barney & Barney LLC as principal, the company announced Sept. 25. He will lead the company's construction practice group.

Thursday, September 27

Switchvox Snapped Up

Switchvox, a San Diego provider of Internet protocol phone systems, said it has been acquired by Digium Inc., a Huntsville, Ala. company, for an undisclosed price.

Medicare Computer Deal Could Bring Billions to SAIC

SAIC was one of eight large companies to be awarded a contract from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for business application development and maintenance support services.

USD Economic Index Suggests Weak Economy Into 2008

All six measurements of an economic index compiled by a University of San Diego economics professor fell in August, five by more than 1 percent, which could signal the region is headed into a recession.

Wednesday, September 26

Intelligent Automation Corp. Lands $3M Contract

Intelligent Automation Corp., an aviation diagnostics and maintenance technology provider, said Sept. 26 that it had been selected by Era Helicopters LLC to provide the IAC 1134 SuperHUMS Health and Usage Monitoring System and Flight Operations Quality As

San Diego Aircraft Maintenance Service Buys Van Nuys Firm

Crownair Aviation, an aircraft maintenance service based at San Diego's Montgomery Field, said it acquired IFR Avionics, a custom aircraft and engineering company based in Van Nuys, for an undisclosed price Sept. 25.

Ophthonix Moves to Larger Facilities in Vista

Ophthonix Inc., a maker of vision assessment and correction technologies, moved its corporate offices and manufacturing to Vista to accommodate a growing need for space, the company said Sept. 26.

Scripps Earns Healthy Rankings as Top Employer

Scripps Health has been named a top employer by both AARP The Magazine and Working Mother Magazine, the nonprofit announced Sept. 25.

Chefs to Stage Showdown to Raise Funds for Nonprofit

The Center for Community Solutions, an organization dedicated to providing assistance to individuals affected by sexual assault and domestic violence, said Sept. 26 that it is hosting Chef Showdown 2007 , Taking a Stand Against Domestic Violence. The even

Tuesday, September 25

Chamber Honors Top Lifetime San Diegans

The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce is honoring what it calls, "The Top 10 Lifetime San Diegans," with some names that are familiar to such notoriety and others, less so.

Working for a Living Pays Better Elsewhere

The San Diego area has long had a reputation of paying its workers less than other parts of the country, and a Sept. 24 report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics confirmed this.

Monday, September 24

Carlsbad Businesswoman Favors Curbs on Alcohol in Village Area

A Carlsbad tourism official is strongly in favor of a couple of proposed ordinances that would curb late-night boozing, carousing and vandalizing in the downtown Village area, which would allow tourists to feel safer and more relaxed.

Best Places to Live Poll: California 1st Among States, San Diego 2nd of Cities

According to a recent Harris Poll, Americans are California Dreamin'. The state ranked No. 1 for the fifth year in a row as the most desirable state to live in, and San Diego was in second place behind New York when people were asked to cite their top cho

Good & Roberts Selected for Tenant Improvement Project in Scripps Ranch

Construction is under way on two schools that will serve the newly developed Del Sur community, located in between the Interstate 5 and Interstate 15 just east of Rancho Santa Fe.

Business Brokers Pair Up

The Business Brokers Association of San Diego has merged with the California Association of Business Brokers, unifying both organizations under the first ever chapter of the CABB in San Diego.

Week in Review

Top Business News: Sept 14 - 20, 2007

Social Site Connects Immigrants in the U.S. to Mexico

We live in an era where online social networking is an increasingly effective way for people to communicate.

National Search Narrows to Find Executive Director for County Bar

The search to fill a key position to lead the 10,000-member San Diego County Bar Association is in full swing. The SDCBA, with the assistance of a national executive search firm, is narrowing down the list of candidates to schedule interviews for the posi

Film Fests Reel in Entries From the U.S. and Abroad

Sundance in San Diego? Cannes in our county? While these famous film festivals in Park City, Utah, and Cannes, France, respectively, have generated major markets on their own turfs, some of San Diego's smaller, quieter events might be on the brink of brea

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases

Verus Inks Deal With AstraZeneca Worth Potential $310M

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca acquired three pediatric asthma development programs from Verus Pharmaceuticals Inc., a privately held San Diego company focused on children's drugs, in a deal worth a potential $310 million.

Film Commission Rolls Out Red Carpet for Production Companies

You can manufacture widgets, you can grind out sausages, you can even run a corner lemonade stand to save up for that skateboard, and you are considered a business. But introduce an artsy element to the mix and many folks think stardust, not spreadsheets.

City, County Pension Funds Performing Well Above Targeted Goals

The pension funds of the city and county of San Diego both carry huge deficits, but when it comes to the recent performance of their investment portfolios, few have done better.

Pro Videographers Have Talent That Tech Tools Alone Can't Match

So, you've just bought yourself the latest video equipment, read the instruction booklet, and are now ready to shoot your own TV commercials or training films. Maybe even a full length feature. Who needs to hire the pros?

Wachovia Expands Aggressively By Luring Talent From Competitors

Wachovia Bank, the Charlotte, N.C.-based money center institution that acquired Oakland's Golden West Financial Corp. last year, is rolling out an aggressive expansion for California, and picking off experienced banking talent from its competitors in the

Public Housing Develops Program to Stabilize Budget

The head of the San Diego Housing Commission, which helps provide affordable housing to 80,000 residents, announced her retirement earlier this month.

Auctioneer to Sell Luxury Homes in Del Mar, La Jolla to Highest Bidders

Crest Estates LLC of Del Mar Heights has teamed up with the Miami-based Auction Company of America to sell luxury properties in San Diego County online Sept. 29

$2.25B Plan for Qualcomm Site Proposes Entertainment District

An ambitious plan to remake Qualcomm Stadium into a sports entertainment district could transform what is now a money-draining facility into a profit center, said an analyst whose ideas were delivered last week to elected officials and decision makers.

Second Annual Entrepreneurship Competition Set to Start

The second annual $50K Entrepreneurship Competition is set to start Oct. 4 at UC San Diego's Warren College.

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Tony DeSalvo

Entrepreneur Profile - James Watt

Between low-end fast-food and full-service restaurants, there were few places serving quick but high-quality food in a casual setting.

Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center Receives $52K Gift for Research Instrument

The Immunology Program at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center received a $52,500 gift from San Diego Professionals Against Cancer to purchase a Luminex 200 Analyser, a tool used to identify molecules critical to combating cancer cells.

Design of UCSD's Cardio Center Includes Full-Scale Models to Save Time, Money

Plans for the Sulpizio Family Cardiovascular Center at UC San Diego call for a 128,000-square-foot, $171 million "complement" to the existing Thornton Hospital.

Executive Profile - Sheri Sharman

Sheri Sharman believes in "time freedom," which is not to be confused with free time.


There has been much said about the battle between Gaylord, a first class entertainment developer, and union leadership, most of it false.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: The Gemological Institute of America plans to present its 17th annual Jewelry Career Fair & Open House on Oct. 19 at its headquarters.

Donovan's Pairs With Trophy's to Cook Up New Steakhouse Site

While the Gaslamp Quarter is unarguably the most highly trafficked attraction in the county, it has proven to be less than fertile territory for more than a few nightclubs and restaurants, most recently Trophy's and LG's Prime Steakhouse, two chains that

Engineering Academies to Launch at Three SDUSD High School Campuses

In the next seven years, the demand for engineers is estimated to grow by 14 percent and education administrators are concerned that American students' declining math and science skills will hold them back in the changing global market.

Three San Diegans Make Forbes 400 Wealthiest List

Only three San Diego residents made the 2007 Forbes 400 list of richest Americans, which was released last week.

Balboa Park on a Sunday Afternoon Has Sights to Behold

It's obvious that the park, and all of its museums, theaters indoors and out, and the famous zoo, not to mention a dozen other attractions, is a jewel in the crown, if not the jewel in the crown of the city of San Diego.

JPS Global Is Putting All Its Stock in Sustainable Investment Strategy

Sustainable investing, a strategy that combines financial return with social good, has entered a new era.

SignOnSanDiego Seeks to Amplify Revenue With Online Radio Station

Newspapers across the country are tapping into different mediums to produce revenue streams lost by declining advertising sales and circulation. One possibility for revenue recovery is Internet radio, which has gained popularity in the last couple of year

Lone Star, Accredited Drop Lawsuits, Agree on New Purchase Price

Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co., the San Diego subprime lender that's been haggling with its buyer in recent months, agreed to a 22 percent discount on the share price last week, apparently saving the deal.

Biotechs Taking Added Care in Filings Now That FDA, SEC Can Share Info

During the last several years, the Securities and Exchange Commission has been taking a closer look at filings and investor communications by public companies regulated by the FDA, particularly in relation to clinical trials.

Ortho-McNeil to Partner With Isis Pharmaceuticals for Diabetes Drugs

Johnson & Johnson company Ortho-McNeil Inc. will collaborate

UCSD Plans to Build $125M Proton Particle Therapy, Research Center

UC San Diego Announces Plans For Proton/Particle Center: UC San Diego said Sept. 12 that it is planning to build a center for proton and particle therapy and research.

Friday, September 21

Ohio Restaurant Chain Looks to Expand Locally

Max & Erma's Restaurants Inc. says it is planning to open five to 10 locations in the San Diego area starting in 2008.

Region's Unemployment Rate Holds Steady

San Diego's unemployment rate remained at the same 4.8 percent in August as it was in July, according to a report released Sept. 21 by the state's Employment Development Department.

AeA Announces San Diego Tech Awards Finalists

Forty-four San Diego technology companies are finalists in this year's AeA High Tech Awards, the local chapter said Sept. 20.

SkillStorm Opens Office in San Marcos

SkillStorm, a San Diego company specializing in information technology and engineering outsourcing, opened a new office in San Marcos this month, the company said Sept. 19.

FreedomVoice Makes Inc. 5,000 List

Encinitas-based FreedomVoice Systems, which develops and markets virtual office tools for business communications, announced Sept. 18 that it has been named one of the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies in America by Inc. magazine.

Thursday, September 20

Southwest to Streamline Decades-Old Boarding Procedure

Come November, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines is implementing a new passenger boarding pass system that will combine its signature open seating with a numbering system.

'King of Torts' William Lerach Cuts Plea Deal

William Lerach, the nation's best known class action shareholder litigator and prominent San Diego attorney, pleaded guilty to a single count of criminal conspiracy that will result in his serving one to the two years in prison, and paying other monetary

Lost? Ask, and You'll Receive Directions on Your Cell Phone or PDA

Dial Directions, an Alameda-based startup, unveiled a new cell service Sept. 18 in San Diego that allows users to get directions to and from any location via text messaging.

Wednesday, September 19

Kratos Awarded $5M Air Force Contract

San Diego-based Kratos Defense and Security Solutions Inc., a defense contractor, said Sept. 18 that it has been awarded a five-year, $5 million contract to support the Department of the Air Force's Space and Missile Command.

Accredited Shares Rise After Lawsuit Is Dropped

Shares of Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co. rose $1.81 to $11.49 in midday trading Sept. 19 on the Nasdaq exchange after the company said the previous day that it settled a lawsuit against its pending acquirer, Lone Star Funds of Dallas, and agreed to a

San Pasqual Band Announces Boutique Hotel at Valley View Casino

The operators of Valley View Casino plan to expand into the lodging business by building a boutique hotel next to their casino near Valley Center.

Tuesday, September 18

Nirvanix Gets $12M in Venture Capital

San Diego-based Nirvanix Inc. said Sept. 18 that it closed a $12 million equity financing round led by Mission Ventures of San Diego and Valhalla Partners of Vienna, Va.

Old Media Meets New: Hearst Buys RealAge

RealAge Inc., a San Diego-based health and wellness Web site, said Sept. 18 that it was acquired by Hearst Magazines, a unit of the Hearst Corp., for an undisclosed price.

Monday, September 17

Upper Deck Folds in High-Stakes Acquisition Game

In the world of corporate acquisitions, the high bid usually wins, but not always.

Nonprofit Profile , Pacific Safety Council

A talk with Darby Vorce, executive director of the Pacific Safety Council.

Entrepreneur Profile , William Ferris

Security was a top concern for the Natural History Museum when the Dead Sea Scrolls Exhibit arrived in San Diego. That's where Dotworkz Systems Inc. came in.

Executive Profile , Mike Ford

Somewhere between helping grow company revenues by more than 400 percent in four years and coaching his four children in sports, Mike Ford still finds time for fantasy football.

Sunny Day Sweepin' the Clouds Away at SeaWorld's Sesame Street Attraction

"S" is for SeaWorld and the number of the day is 2. That's how many "Sesame Street" branded attractions that Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc. will have under its umbrella at SeaWorld San Diego next spring.

Hospitals No Longer To Be Reimbursed For Preventable Medical Mistakes

In August, federal officials said that hospitals will no longer be reimbursed by Medicare for preventable medical mistakes beginning Oct. 1, 2008.

Dixieland Lumber Chairman to Be Honored By Parkinson's Disease Assoc.

William S. Cowling II, chairman of Dixieline Lumber Co., will be honored during the Parkinson's Disease Association of San Diego's annual Spirit of Life Award Dinner, slated for Oct. 7.

CardioDynamics to Cut Executive Pay, Expenses

Medical equipment maker CardioDynamics said Sept. 17 that it would reduce executive compensation and expenses as part of its efforts to return to profitability.

Information Systems Laboratories Gets Nuclear Engineering Job

San Diego-based Information Systems Laboratories Inc. said Sept. 17 that it won a five-year, $33.8 million contract with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

SAIC Reports Earnings, Names New Chief Operating Officer

SAIC Inc. reported another nice quarter earlier this month, beating analysts' expectations with net profit of $131 million, up from $103 million in the second quarter of 2006.

Grinch Is Singing New Tune This Holiday Season at the Old Globe

The 10th anniversary production of San Diego's premier holiday event, "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas!" will feature a number of major revisions, including three new songs.

Isis, Alnylam Pair To Seek Disease-Fighting Drugs

A promising new approach to targeting human diseases has generated interest from two rival companies accustomed to partnering for the good of science.

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: DJO's corporate headquarters at 1430 Decision St. in Vista was bought by Bixby Land Co. for $31 million.

Commercial Construction Projects Faced With Rising Cost of Materials

Though residential construction is slowing in San Diego County, the cost of nonresidential construction is increasing due to the rising cost of materials.

Nursing Students to Get More Practice, Thanks to $1M Gift From Sharp

With the help of seven fully automated patient simulators, students at San Diego State University's School of Nursing can practice how to treat 90 different simulated medical conditions from heart attack to drug overdose.

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Mike Meisenbach.

Nightclub Owner Plans Asian Infusion in Gaslamp Quarter

Some say that the bustling Gaslamp Quarter has become saturated with nightclubs. But as far as Mike Viscuso is concerned, adding one more is simply a matter of coming up with the right concept.

Sparling Opens Office as Part of Southern California Expansion

Sparling, a national electrical engineering and technology consulting firm with offices in Seattle and Portland, said it was opening a San Diego office Sept. 11.

Airport Authority Wants to Get Word Out About Changes at Lindbergh

Stung by criticism about its renovation plans, the agency that oversees Lindbergh Field is reaching out to the public and other government agencies to solicit ideas on the airport's long range future.

Drivers May Need Gloves to Operate Torrid Buick SUV

It appears that Buick finally has a hot vehicle.

Creativity, Ingenuity, Innovation: Needed for Global Economy

Creativity, Ingenuity, Innovation: Needed for Global Economy

Lindbergh Field Offering Free Wireless Access to Travelers

San Diego's Lindbergh Field joined the list of airports that provide free wireless Internet access last month.

Nanogen Seeks Profitability

Nanogen Inc. said Sept. 17 that it will evaluate selling, partnering or closing its microarray business as part of an aggressive plan to achieve profitability.


Insurance Company Middlemen Cut Out of the Picture in SB 840; Governor's Plan Has 'Fatal Flaw'

Mayor, Tourism Officials Showcase Area to Multicultural Network

Attracting diverse groups of tourists to the county would help the local economy and showcase it to a wider audience and is long overdue. That's according to Ruben Barrales, president and chief executive officer of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commer

Grubb & Ellis|BRE Commercial Brings on New Top Executive

One of San Diego's largest commercial brokerages welcomed a new leader last week. Grubb & Ellis|BRE Commercial announced Sept. 12 that Brent Rivard joined as chief financial and chief operating officer.

CB Richard Ellis Airs $2B Proposal for the Q

A proposal to create a combined Chargers stadium with a new sports arena and convention center was submitted Sept. 17 as an answer to San Diego's stadium dilemma.

Bill Aims to Remedy System for Disposal of Take-Back Drugs

Given consumers' approach to drug disposal and regulatory difficulties, state lawmakers are seeking a solution to an issue they said poses a threat to the environment and a hazard to unsupervised youth.

New Furnished Villas at Grand Del Mar Resort to Open in October

Progress Report: The Grand Del Mar Resort in Del Mar is planning on unveiling eight two-story, fully furnished villas within the grounds of the 249-room resort.

Simon Buys Shops at Las Americas, Adds to Local Portfolio of Centers

The Shops at Las Americas appears to be a property owner's dream.

Leap Wireless Rejects Takeover Offer

Leap Wireless International Inc., the San Diego parent company of Cricket flat-rate wireless service, rejected an offer made this month for the company from MetroPCS Communications Inc., a Dallas flat-rate wireless carrier.

Heavy Equipment Rental Business Roaring Out of San Diego County

Red Mountain Machinery Co., which rents heavy earth-moving equipment to the construction industry, is leaving San Diego County.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: State approval of $8 million in tax-exempt bonds will be used by a local company to underwrite construction costs for a bio-diesel production plant at the Port of Stockton.

Week in Review

Top Business News: Sept. 7 - 13, 2007

FDA Grants Orphan Status to Metabasis Therapeutics' & #8201;Liver Cancer Drug

The Food and Drug Administration granted Metabasis Therapeutics Inc. orphan drug status for MB07133, a drug candidate for the treatment of primary liver cancer, the company said Sept. 10.

Engineering Academies Envisioned at Three Area High Schools

Plans for 13 national engineering academies, including three at local high schools, were announced Sept. 17 by the National Academy Foundation.

Friday, September 14

Air Force Deal Could Land SAIC $49.5M

San Diego-based SAIC said Sept. 13 that it has been awarded a contract to provide systems support to Air Force Space Command.

Mitchell Announces Succession Plan

Mitchell International Inc., which provides specialized software and services to the automotive insurance claims industry, said Sept. 14 that it will promote Alex Sun to chief executive, effective Jan. 1.

Paychex Buys Hawthorne Benefit Technologies

Paychex Inc., which did nearly $2 billion in sales in its last fiscal year, said it acquired San Diego-based Hawthorne Benefit Technologies Inc. and its online employee benefits management system, BeneTrac, for an undisclosed price, the company said Sept.

Tour Hopes to Spur More Diversity in Conventions

Old Town, the USS Midway and a cruise around San Diego Bay are on the Sept. 14 agenda for a unique group of meeting planners from around the country.

Eye/Comm on Track to Acquire Western Graphics

Eye/Comm Inc., a direct marketing company based in Santee, will acquire privately held Western Graphics of Lemon Grove.

Thursday, September 13

Enth Degree Acquires Con Surfboards

San Diego-based Enth Degree Inc. said Sept. 12 that it acquired Santa Monica-based Con Surfboards.

Ortho-McNeil to Partner With Isis for Diabetes Drugs

Johnson & Johnson company Ortho-McNeil Inc. will collaborate with Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. to develop two Isis antisense drugs to target type 2 diabetes, the companies announced Sept. 13.

Privatization Study Finds Potential for City Savings

San Diego taxpayers could be saving between $80 million and $200 million annually if government agencies turned over more of their work to the private sector, according to a study released Sept. 12 by two conservative think tanks.

Lone Star Extends Deadline for Accredited Again

Lone Star Funds, the Dallas private equity fund that agreed in June to buy Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co., a San Diego-based subprime mortgage lender, extended the deadline for the tender offer a third time to midnight of Sept. 14, the company said S

Study Sizes Up Chula Vista for Chargers Stadium

A study of four prospective sites in Chula Vista for a possible new football stadium for the San Diego Chargers released Sept. 13 gave the highest marks to one on the San Diego bay front now occupied by the South Bay Power Plant, and another in the easter

Wednesday, September 12

Vital Therapies Receives $28M in Financing

Vital Therapies Inc., a private, San Diego-based company developing a device to help people suffering from serious liver disease, said Sept. 12 that it has obtained $28.1 million in Series C financing.

Sharp Business Systems Acquires ImageCom

Sharp Business Systems of San Diego, a unit of Sharp Electronics Corp., acquired ImageCom, a local office equipment dealer that was in business nearly 30 years, the company said Sept. 5.

Anderson Forecast: 'Near-Recession Experience'

Economists putting together the UCLA Anderson Forecast said Sept. 12 that the U.S. economy is near recession.

Bridgepoint Education Acquires Colorado Professional School

San Diego-based Bridgepoint Education said Sept. 12 that it has acquired the Colorado School of Professional Psychology located in Colorado Springs, Colo. for an undisclosed amount.

Tapioca Mobile Receives Seed Funding

San Diego-based Tapioca Mobile, a privately held startup specializing in mobile multimedia messaging, said Sept. 12 that it closed an initial round of funding.

Sylvan Learning Details New Lesson Plan for San Diego

Baltimore-based Sylvan Learning said Sept. 11 that it was making nine stores in the San Diego area available for purchase by franchisees.

Tuesday, September 11

Local Hiring Outlook Holds Steady

San Diego employers are mostly holding steady on their hiring plans for the fourth quarter, according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey released Sept. 11.

Sempra to Pay Dividends

Sempra Energy, an energy services holding company, said Sept. 11 that it will pay a quarterly dividend of 31 cents per share of common stock. The dividend is payable Oct. 15 to shareholders of record on Sept. 27.

Monday, September 10

Mexican Guru Tells Entrepreneurs About Doing Business in Mexico

People in the United States, especially San Diegans, often have a stereotypical perception of a Mexican business culture. "If you don't understand who you are dealing with, you are going to make mistakes," said consultant Richard Villasana.

Artists Flourish in a Lesser-Known Market

San Diego's art galleries , along with others nationwide , have long struggled to survive in the shadow of the mighty New York market. But, in recent years, there have been some rays of hope breaking through.

Anadys Puts Its Future on Two Drug Candidates in Pipeline

Anadys Pharmaceuticals Inc. is looking to the guidance of a new chief executive officer following an uncertain time for the publicly traded biotech firm.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Goodrich Aerostructures Group, Chula Vista's largest employer with 2,000 workers, broke ground Aug. 23 on a manufacturing facility in Mexico.

Joanne and Frank Warren Donate $5M to Rady Children's Hospital

Rady Children's Hospital has received a $5 million gift from Joanne Warren and Frank Warren and family.

Asian-Americans Are Bridge to the Future of United States

Asian-Americans Are Bridge to the Future of United States

ResMed to Get New CEO on Jan. 1

ResMed Inc., a Poway-based maker of devices that help people who have sleep disorders, announced a succession plan Aug. 30 that would promote Kiernan Gallahue to chief executive officer following the departure of company founder Peter Farrell.

Road Construction Exploding in North County, Sets Foundation For Future Growth

One of the advantages of living in North County is that every day when you head to work something new has happened overnight. The construction crews along with California Department of Transportation teams have been wearing night-vision goggles for a long

Despite High Cost, Small Business Says It Supports Universal Health Care

In a recent poll, more than half of small-business owners in California said they are in favor of contributing to a statewide pool that would offer affordable health care insurance for their employees.

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases: The Poinsettia Ridge luxury apartment complex in Encinitas was sold for $35.2 million.

Green Credentials Issued to NTDStichler's Design Team Members

Five members of San Diego-based NTDStichler Architecture's design team earned green design accreditation from the U.S. Green Building Council.

SWAT Sniper Takes a Shot at Running PODillow Business

Anthony Calvert, a San Diego County Sheriff's Department SWAT sniper with an entrepreneurial spirit and a little time on his hands, has found a way to make relaxing around the pool or beach a lot more comfortable.

Surfing Apparel, Equipment Industry Reporting Huge Swells in Sales

A research study commissioned by the Aliso Viejo-based Surf Industry Manufacturers Association this summer reported that industry sales have increased nearly 15 percent in two years, and they'll likely continue to grow in the future.

Metabasis Granted Orphan Drug Status

The Food and Drug Administration granted Metabasis Therapeutics Inc. orphan drug status for MB07133, a drug candidate for the treatment of primary liver cancer, the La Jolla-based company said Sept. 10.

RF Industries Buys RadioMobile

RF Industries, a San Diego-based company that provides cable assemblies and connectors to the telecommunication and medical fields, has acquired RadioMobile Inc., a custom wireless solution manufacturer, for $700,000.

Chargers Continue Their Five-Year Quest For New Stadium in North, South County

While visions of glory dance in Charger fans' heads, prospects for finding a new football-only stadium aren't as bright.

Internet Advertising Sales About to Overtake Radio for First Time

Internet advertising, which has already whizzed by outdoor advertising in terms of revenue, is poised to surpass radio for the first time, according to eMarketer, which tracks spending trends across various media.

California Still Golden in Would-Be Residents' Eyes

Rochester, N.Y.-based Harris Interactive reported Sept. 10 that California is the No. 1 state to live in, for the fifth consecutive year, followed by Florida and Hawaii, which flipped spots for the third year in a row.

Shares of Local Cell Carrier Take Big Leap on News of Buyout Offer

Shares of Leap Wireless International took a nice jump Sept. 4 when similar, but larger, flat-rate cell phone carrier MetroPCS Communications of Dallas offered to buy the San Diego-based company for an aggregate $5.5 billion.

The Walls Come Down On Sunroad's Centrum

Alterations to Kearny Mesa's skyline will barely be noticeable when a controversial high-rise near Montgomery Field is lowered 20 feet.

Red Bull Air Race Expected to Give San Diego a Global Boost

The Red Bull Air Race World Series, which flies into San Diego on Sept. 21-22 at Embarcadero Park, is expected to bring tremendous exposure to San Diego, plus attract thousands of people and dollars to the region.

For Better or Worse, Internet Takes Mystique Out of Art Dealing

The once top-secret pricing structure enjoyed by art galleries , for better or worse , has been steadily eroding, courtesy of the Internet.

Nonprofit Profile , Helen Woodward Animal Center

A talk with Michael M. Arms, president and CEO of the Helen Woodward Animal Center.

Alvarado Hospital Files Countersuit Against Blue Shield in Contract Dispute

Alvarado Hospital filed a countersuit Aug. 31 in San Diego Superior Court against Blue Shield of California regarding overpayments for its members.

Mayor Sanders' Evolution to Culminate in His Re-Election

Mayor Sanders' Evolution to Culminate in His Re-Election

Carrier Johnson-Designed Carlsbad School Offers Students, Staff Welcome Mat

Progress Report: A nonprofit independent secondary school in Carlsbad celebrated its grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony Aug. 30.

Week in Review

Top Business News: Aug. 31 - Sept. 6, 2007

Study: SDSU to Have $4.5B Impact on Region

Officials at San Diego State University announced results of a study examining the economic impact of the school on the region.

Net Income Grows in SAIC's 2nd Quarter

SAIC Inc., the San Diego engineering and research firm, reported net income of $131 million on revenue of $2.2 billion for the second quarter that ended July 31.

Pure Cleaning Taps Into Market for Natural Products

One small company that is banking on the increasing awareness to be green is San Diego-based Pure Cleaning Services, a one-woman operation that offers all-natural cleaning products and services to businesses, private homes and even houseboats.


Business Events , Sept. 11 - 13

Criminals Using Stolen Lockbox Combinations to Run Scams on Renters

Pacific Beach apparently has more issues than City Attorney Michael Aguirre and City Councilman Kevin Faulconer seeking to ban alcohol on its beaches. A new scam has hit the streets of this youth-oriented rental community.

Rising Price of Harbor Drive Pedestrian Bridge Has City Officials All Crossed

Call it a bridge too high, at least in terms of its cost.

Executive Profile , Jim Kirkpatrick

A design engineer by trade, Jim Kirkpatrick is an electrical engineer by educational background.

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: James Jackson.

Invitrogen Strives for Gold Medal Performance at Beijing Olympics

Behind the history-making wins and heartbreaking losses at the Olympic Games are the everyday measures designed to prevent catastrophes and keep athletes and visitors safe.

Visual Arts Fair 'Beyond the Border' to Debut Downtown in '08

San Diego art aficionado Ann Berchtold wants the world to know about the San Diego region's vibrant visual arts community. Her medium for the message: The Beyond the Border Contemporary Art Fair.

Newspapers' Web Sites Tooling Up to Attract Visitors

Ever heard of RSS? The acronym stands for Really Simple Syndication, a tool for aggregating Web news sites and updates by reader preference, and it's quickly growing in popularity on sites offered by the nation's top newspapers.

Latest Vistage CEO Poll Finds Confidence in Economy on the Decline

Turmoil in the financial markets has some local chief executive officers fretting over their purchases, according to the latest Vistage International CEO Confidence Index.

Local Biotech Execs Fly to New York City to Make Some News

A slew of local biotechnology executives left the shores of San Diego for New York City last week to attend the 14th anniversary of NewsMakers in the Biotech Industry.

Art Walks Draw Crowds Looking for Culture and Entertainment

Jae Kim opened CJ Art Gallery more than three years ago in the Gaslamp Quarter to take advantage of what was then the beginnings of a revitalized downtown.

Entrepreneur Profile , Debi and Zvika Akin

Debi and Zvika Akin originally planned to open a small takeout, kosher deli but by the time they sat down to make up the plans, Debi had written out an eight-page menu.

Ex-Globe Reporter Tells Behind-the-Scenes Story of Tabloid Journalism

Although Marlise Kast's first book, "Tabloid Prodigy," is due to come out in paperback soon, she doesn't know how many copies have been sold and prefers to think it's not doing well.

Friday, September 7

Isis, Alnylam Get Together to Form Carlsbad Start-up

Carlsbad-based Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Sept. 7 it will partner with Cambridge, Mass.-based Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc. to develop a startup company focused on commercializing drugs made with microRNA.

Shareholders Suing DJO

DJO Inc. shareholders filed a class action lawsuit alleging the Vista orthopedic products manufacturer failed to disclose important information in its proxy materials during the company's pending sale to an affiliate of the Blackstone Group.

Border Agency Has New Director

Gurdit Dhillon, a 35-year veteran of the U.S. Border Patrol, is the new field operations director for the San Diego regional Customs and Border Protection agency.

Collaborative Receives $450,000 for Workforce Training

A new national workforce initiative has chosen a local group to receive a $450,000 grant.

Mad Catz Acquires Joytech

Mad Catz Interactive Inc., a San Diego maker of video game accessories, said Sept. 7 that it acquired industry peer Joytech from New York-based Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. for $3.7 million.

Thursday, September 6

Net Income Grows in SAIC's Second Quarter

SAIC Inc., the San Diego engineering and research firm, reported net income of $131 million on revenue of $2.2 billion for the second quarter that ended July 31. The company released its earnings Sept. 6.

SAIC Fills Long-Vacant Executive's Spot

Science Applications International Corp. said Sept. 6 that it has named Lawrence Prior as the company's new chief operating officer. Prior takes his new job Oct. 1.

Pilot Port Security Project Coming to San Diego

San Diego Bay was selected along with Washington's Puget Sound to participate in a pilot port security program managed by the Department of Homeland Security.

Wednesday, September 5

LSI to Buy Tarari for $85M

Tarari Inc., a San Diego semiconductor company, said Sept. 5 that it has agreed to be acquired by LSI Corp., a Milpitas semiconductor firm, for $85 million in cash.

Workforce Partnership Chief Says Time Is Right to Leave

Larry Fitch, chief executive for the San Diego Workforce Partnership, the region's job training agency, has said he'll likely step down from the job at the end of this year.

Pharmacy With 'Integrative' Approach Opening in La Jolla

Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy is set to celebrate its grand opening Sept. 6 at 7650 Girard Ave. in La Jolla.

Tuesday, September 4



Leap Wireless Has $5.5B Suitor in MetroPCS

Shares of Leap Wireless International took a nice jump Sept. 4 when similar, but larger, flat-rate cell phone carrier MetroPCS Communications of Dallas offered to buy the company for an aggregate $5.5 billion.

A Note to Readers

The Business Journal's Web site was hacked over the long weekend. We are working to get the rest of the site back up and running as usual.

Mark Ross Insurance Company Sets Up Shop Downtown

The Mark Ross Group of Companies Ltd., a New York-based insurance company, said Aug. 31 that it has opened a San Diego office.

Monday, September 3

Viejas Decides to Pursue $800M Expansion of Its Gaming Operations

The Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians has set a 2012 date to open a casino-hotel complex valued at up to $800 million on its reservation east of Alpine.

U.S. Designed Oceanfront Properties Exploding South of the Border

The coastal drive from south Tijuana to Rosarito is dotted with steel frames and construction crews feverishly building developments aimed at U.S. buyers. Developers are reaching north of the border with lavish marketing.

Throw Away the Clipboard, Personal Medical Histories Are Going Digital

Martin Pellinat is the first to admit that five years ago an online patient-centered health record management system would not have been very successful.

City Employees' Retirement System Workers Certain to Enjoy New Offices

Progress Report: Tenant improvements for the new San Diego City Employees' Retirement System's 24,000-square-foot office have been completed.

FDA Accepts Neurocrine's Resubmitted Application for Insomnia Drug

A resubmitted new drug application for an insomnia treatment developed by Neurocrine Biosciences Inc. has been accepted for review by the Food and Drug Administration.

Restaurant Owner Hopes Multimillion-Dollar Project Has Universal Appeal

James Brennan, who has built a reputation for transforming a series of old, run-down buildings into dining and clubbing hot spots, is forging ahead with his plan to transform a row of vacant storefronts in Hillcrest into a chic restaurant and lounge calle

Well-Made Lincoln SUV Wouldn't Thrill Edsel Ford

Well-Made Lincoln SUV Wouldn't Thrill Edsel Ford

Entrepreneur Profile , Sherryl Ford

By year-end, Sherryl Ford expects to have opened 45 spas, with each employing 10 staff members.

Regional Roundup

Leading off this week's compilation of news from around San Diego County: Blue Sky Network announced Aug. 21 the addition of the D3000 Iridium/GSM transceiver.

Rotary Club Honors Local Architect Hal Sadler as Mr. San Diego 2007

The Rotary Club of San Diego named Hal Sadler Mr. San Diego 2007 at an Aug. 23 meeting held at the Westin Hotel.

Area Building Owners Finding Ways to Lower Monthly Electric Bills

A growing number of commercial utility customers have lowered utility bills by incorporating green energy-saving features into their operations, including the addition of solar panels and highly automated mechanical control systems.

Leadership North County Application Deadline Set for Sept. 7

A short tutorial on Leadership North County.

Ricardo Soto's Career Spans Education, Law, Politics and Social Services

When Ricardo Soto graduated from law school at the University of Wisconsin, he began a law career that has carried a strong theme throughout: helping people in need.

Physician Shortages Real Barrier to Universal Health Care

Physician Shortages Real Barrier to Universal Health Care

Pete Wilson's Legacy Surrounds Us Everywhere We Go

Pete Wilson's Legacy Surrounds Us Everywhere We Go

Leadership Courses Focus on North County Issues

Gary Knight, chief executive officer of the San Diego North Economic Development Council, had plenty of "ah-hah!" moments back in 2005 while he was participating in Leadership North County.

Week in Review

Top Business News: Aug. 24 - 30, 2007

Biotech Firms Wary of Changes to Patent Application Regulations

Upcoming changes to U.S. Patent and Trademark Office rules are creating a stir in the biotech world, where intellectual property portfolios are the heartbeat of scientific advances.

$1.5B Bond Goes a Long Way in Building, Upgrading Area Schools

Phenomenal population growth in California during the past decade has put a squeeze on many schools, colleges and universities. Here's how they have responded.

Two Regional Developers Specializing in Retail Projects Announce Merger

Retail Holdings LLC of San Diego and Orange County-based Heslin Holdings Inc. merged to form Heslin Becker Properties LLC.


Business Events , Sept. 6 - 10.


For Aug. 27, 2007

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions. Executive Spotlight: Barbara Hosaka.

SuperShuttle Picks Up Cloud 9 Service

The acquisition of Cloud 9 Shuttle Inc. by SuperShuttle International Inc. takes the San Diego-based firm almost full circle. John Hawkins, 56, president of Cloud 9, declined to cite how much Scottsdale, Ariz.-based SuperShuttle, which is expanding its ho

Potential Seen for New Approach to Stem Cell Research

International Stem Cell Corp. in Oceanside said it has a kind of scientific solution to the ongoing ethical and legal challenges facing stem cell research. A technology that derives stem cells from unfertilized human eggs, unlike human embryonic stem cell

Lindbergh Field To Lufthansa: 'Come Fly With Us'

If the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority's efforts to lure Lufthansa are successful, the German airline could be the first European carrier to land at Lindbergh Field since British Airways packed its bags and left for the last time in October 20

Sales and Leases

Sales and Leases. SVN Equities LLC purchased a 40,445-square-foot office building located within the Carlsbad Airport Centre for $7.3 million.

Cal State San Marcos Kicks Off Fall 2007 & #8201;'In the Executive's Chair' & #8201;Series

Cal State San Marcos will be offering the College of Business Administration's "In the Executive's Chair" course for its sixth year starting Sept. 5.

Executive Profile , Joyce Carboni

Joyce Carboni may love to be pampered, but she knows certain rewards only follow hard work.

Buyers Pay $7.25M for One Bedroom With a View

San Diego's ultimate bachelor pad sold for a cool $7.25 million last week.

National Health Organization Honors Local Group for Business Assistance

A Washington, D.C.-based organization has recognized the San Diego Business Healthcare Connection for its work providing no-cost assistance to businesses in San Diego County trying to obtain health care for its employees.