Brad Graves

Reporter & Special Sections Editor

Phone: 619-366-6627

Recent Stories

New Chairman, CEO for Cubic

DEFENSE: Leadership Changes Follows Sale

Stevan Slijepcevic, a former Honeywell Aerospace executive, has taken the CEO’s chair at Cubic Corp. Cubic also named a new chairman, Mac Curtis.

$50.9M Target Drone Contract Goes to Kratos Defense

U.S. Navy, Japan and Saudi Arabia to Split Order for 65 Aircraft

The U.S. Navy awarded Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. a $50.9 million contract modification to procure 65 BQM-177A Subsonic Aerial Targets.

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RF Industries Has $57M Year, Agrees to Buy Microlab

MANUFACTURING: Electronic Component Maker Expects 2022 Sales to Exceed $63M

RF Industries Inc. (Nasdaq: RFIL), the electronic component maker based on Miramar Road, reported net income of $813,000 on net sales of $21.1 million during its fourth quarter, which ended Oct. 31.

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Qualcomm Expands in Auto Sector

TECH: Volvo, Honda Projects Made Public

Qualcomm Inc., the $33.6 billion chipmaker and pioneer of 5G wireless, has been putting its energies into automotive work, including projects supporting fully electric vehicles.

TuSimple Achieves Driverless Feat

TECHNOLOGY: Big Rig Negotiates 80 Miles With No Human Intervention

San Diego-based TuSimple (Nasdaq: TSP) displayed the capabilities of its autonomous big-rig truck with an 80-mile nighttime run between two Arizona cities — on public highways, alongside other vehicles, with no human in the cab.

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LevitZacks Names 4 New Shareholders

Certified Public Accounting firm LevitZacks has named four new shareholders. They are Anju Agrawal, Bryan Carpenter, Nick Palmer and Steve Root.

Austal to Spend $100M on National City Site

SHIP REPAIR: Company Moving In; Set to Hire More than 200 by 2023

Austal USA, which builds small surface ships for the U.S. Navy, has big growth plans for National City. The defense contractor expects to make approximately $100 million worth of improvements to a newly leased bayfront site south of the 32nd Street naval station.

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$1.79 Billion Sempra Deal

ENERGY: Abu Dhabi to Ink Infrastructure Pact

Sempra (NYSE: SRE) announced on Dec. 21 that it plans to sell a noncontrolling, 10% stake in its Sempra Infrastructure Partners business for $1.785 billion. The prospective buyer is the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

RF Industries Has $57M Year, Signs Deal to Buy Microlab

RF Industries Inc. (Nasdaq: RFIL), the electronic component maker based on Miramar Road, has agreed to buy Microlab LLC from New Jersey-based Wireless Telecom Group Inc. (NYSE: WTT) for $24.25 million cash.

Sempra to Sell 10% of Infrastructure Business for $1.79 Billion

Sempra (NYSE: SRE) has plans to sell a noncontrolling, 10% stake in its Sempra Infrastructure Partners business for $1.79 billion. The buyer is the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

Kratos Defense Building Affordable Jet Engines

Turbojet and Turbofan Models Under Development; C5ISR Program Has Promise

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. (Nasdaq: KTOS) announced on Nov. 26 that it received an initial production order for a new, affordable, high performance jet engine for an aerial vehicle application.

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Feeding San Diego Sets Turkey Distribution for Dec. 21

Feeding San Diego announced that it plans to distribute more than 500 turkeys to San Diegans in need during a drive-through distribution event on Tuesday, Dec. 21.

GA-ASI Unveils Special Operations Aircraft

DEFENSE: Poway Co. Sees Unmanned Craft in an Armed Overwatch Role

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. has developed a new version of its Predator unmanned aircraft — one that can operate in environments that don’t easily support other GA-ASI aircraft.

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Ship Repair Contracts Go to Six Companies

U.S. Navy Will Place Delivery Orders Up to $655 Million Through 2026

The U.S. Navy awarded contracts to six companies for complex repair, maintenance and modernization of non-nuclear Navy surface combatant class ships — specifically cruisers and destroyers — homeported in or visiting San Diego.

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Blue Sky Network Wins Export Pitch Contest

TECHNOLOGY: World Trade Center San Diego Gives Brazil Outreach a Boost

Blue Sky Network, a San Diego business offering advanced satellite communications, won $25,000 to further its international business as part of a recent pitch contest organized by the World Trade Center San Diego.

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Jack in the Box Posts Fourth Quarter Revenue of $279M

RESTAURANTS: Net Earnings Are $38.9M; Board Declares Dividend, OKs Stock Buyback

Jack in the Box Inc. (Nasdaq: JACK), the homegrown hamburger chain, generated revenue of $278.5 million in its fourth quarter, which wrapped up on Oct. 3.

GA-ASI Wins $103 Million U.S. Army Aircraft Contract

General Atomics Affiliate to Support Belgium’s Program in $32 Million Deal

The U.S. Army awarded General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. a $103.2 million contract for the production of Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft systems, satellite airborne data terminals and government furnished equipment maintenance.

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SD 500 Icons List Never Stays Static

LEADERSHIP: Some Reflect on Legacy, Others Make Changes in 2021

Every member of the San Diego 500 makes a contribution to the region’s economic life. Many work to build or improve the community at large. Then there are those whose work is so influential, and whose contribution so great, that the San Diego Business Journal recognizes them as icons.

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Denver Company to Acquire Majority Stake in Space Micro

TECHNOLOGY: North County Firm Has Contracts With NASA, Military Services

North County-based Space Micro announced on Nov. 22 that Denver-based Voyager Space Inc. has agreed to buy a majority stake in the company.

Ship Repair Support Contract Goes to QED

U.S. Navy Awards $49.3 Million Deal to Virginia Firm With Local Presence

The U.S. Navy awarded QED Systems Inc. of Virginia Beach, Virginia a $49.3 million modification to a previously awarded contract. Under the deal, QED will support availabilities — that is, periods of time set aside in a ship’s schedule for maintenance, repairs and modernization.

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Sempra Contemplates New LNG Export Site in Mexico

ENERGY: Shipments to Asia Could Pass Through Topolobampo, on the Gulf of California

Sempra (NYSE: SRE) has expanded its plans to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the west coast of Mexico.

Viasat to Buy Competitor

AEROSPACE: Inmarsat Deal Worth $7.3 Billion

Carlsbad-based Viasat (Nasdaq: VSAT) said on Nov. 8 that it has agreed to buy British competitor Inmarsat for $7.3 billion.

Kratos’ Third-Quarter Revenue Reaches $201 Million

Defense Contractor’s CEO Upbeat About Unmanned Aircraft and Other Programs

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. (Nasdaq: KTOS), the defense contractor based in Scripps Ranch, essentially broke even in its third quarter, reporting a net loss of 2 cents per share, or $2.4 million, on total revenue of $200.6 million.

Cox Communications’ Sam Attisha Promoted to National Post

Sam Attisha has been named senior vice president of field operations for Cox Communications nationwide.

Drata Achieves Unicorn Status

SOFTWARE: Receives $100M in Series B Funds

The number of unicorns in San Diego grew by one this fall, as security software specialist Drata brought in its Series B round of venture capital. Drata announced the achievement Nov. 8.

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GA-ASI Has New Air Force Project

Receives Contract Similar to Deal Awarded to Kratos Defense

The U.S. Air Force has selected two San Diego companies to design and develop an aircraft it calls Off-Board Sensing Station, or OBSS.

Contracts to Keep Global Hawk Flying

Northrop Grumman Deals Worth Hundreds of Millions of Dollars

The U.S. Air Force awarded Northrop Grumman Corp. (NYSE: NOC) a $298.2 million indefinite-delivery modification to a previously awarded contract supporting the RQ-4B Global Hawk unmanned aircraft. The Global Hawk program is based in Rancho Bernardo.

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Veterans Draw Business Lessons From Service

SPECIAL REPORT: Military Careers Shape Knowledge, Attitudes, Soft Skills

Military experience offers a valuable skill set for people in business. Veterans working in the business world continually draw on their personal experience in the service to manage the workings of private companies or run businesses of their own.

Alliance to Support Aircraft Depot Work

Joint Venture to Deliver Services in Coronado, Miramar, Camp Pendleton

The U.S. Navy awarded Aircraft Readiness Alliance LLC, a small business from Anchorage, Alaska, a $57.5 million modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract.

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Groove Finds a Fit With San Diego’s Workforce

TECHNOLOGY: Bay Area Software Maker’s Product Aligns With Salesforce

Chris Rothstein is sold on San Diego. The co-founder and CEO of San Francisco-based Groove counts it as a fast-growing second home for his enterprise software company.

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Mission Fed Opens 33rd Branch

Mission Fed Credit Union announced on Oct. 27 that it has opened its 33rd branch site, in Oceanside.

Pentagon Spending In Holding Pattern

Congress Has Yet to Decide on 2022 Defense Department Budget

With a new federal fiscal year kicked off Oct. 1, but no Pentagon budget for 2022, the U.S. Department of Defense is operating under stopgap legislation that ends Dec. 3.

Asterra Uses Satellite Data to Solve Engineering Problems

TECHNOLOGY: Detecting Water Underground Helps Authorities Manage Infrastructure

Conserve water. That is the call Californians have heard for years. An Israeli company with its North American office in Rancho Bernardo is taking a technological approach to helping authorities detect and fix pipeline leaks to save resources.

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LevitZacks Ranks as Top CPA Firm

LevitZacks, the Certified Public Accounting firm based downtown, has been named the Best Accounting Firm to Work For in the United States for the third straight year.

Ransomware, Data Breaches Put Cos. to the Test

CYBERSECURITY: Events Offer Numerous Lessons About Security, Incident Response

If a baseball team has a losing season, a typical response is to fire the manager. If a company or an enterprise experiences a ransomware attack or a data breach, does the organization do the same for the person overseeing security? Perhaps but not always.

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Pentagon Spending Amounts to $35.3 Billion

DEFENSE: DoD Funds Helped Region Weather COVID-19, Study Says

Pentagon spending in San Diego County grew more formidable during fiscal 2021, increasing 5.3% to $35.3 billion.

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ASML to Boost Staff, Fine-Tune Tech

CHIPS: Dutch Co. With Local Campus Forecasts Decade of Growth

Seeing fast and steady growth for its technology, ASML plans to grow its staff. With a San Diego workforce of approximately 1,500, the Dutch company that produces equipment for microchip foundries plans to grow its staff 10-15% in the coming year, adding approximately 140 employees in 2022.

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More Carrier Work for General Atomics

GA Making Parts for Aircraft Handling Gear in a $9.6 Million Deal

The U.S. Navy awarded General Atomics of San Diego a $9.6 million firm-fixed-price modification to a previously awarded contract. The deal covers components for the aircraft launch and recovery equipment being built into USS Gerald R. Ford class aircraft carriers.

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Plenty of Options to Study Cybersecurity

San Diego Programs Range From Master’s Degrees to Certificates

There is work aplenty in the cybersecurity space, with more jobs than people to fill them. Many people pick up experience in the military or on the job. Would-be workers also expand their knowledge through college.

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Sempra Gets Good Marks for Transparency

San Diego-based Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE) has been lauded for its transparency, being named most improved overall in the 2021 U.S. Transparency Awards sponsored by Labrador.

Cybersecurity Field Has a Prime Opportunity to Diversify

TECHNOLOGY: In California, Tens of Thousands of Jobs Go Unfilled

Bad actors continue their assaults on the computer networks of corporations, governments and other enterprises, and the IT world is calling for reinforcements.

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Cybersecurity Forms Part of Region’s Defense Economy

U.S. Navy’s Information Technology Command Is a Major Force

There is a significant overlap between San Diego’s cybersecurity sector and its defense contracting sector.

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Vendors Help Workforce Stand Up to Phishing Attacks

CYBERSECURITY: Certain Education Efforts See Who Takes the Bait

Phishing never goes out of season. For hackers, it’s a year-round effort.

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Viasat Explores Use of 5G in Battle

Effort Funded by Information Warfare Research Project

Carlsbad-based Viasat Inc. (Nasdaq: VSAT) announced on Sept. 20 that it received two Pentagon contracts to conduct research that will examine the use and implementation of fifth-generation (5G) wireless networks in the battlespace.

Passwords Still Have a Place in a Connected World

CYBERSECURITY: Convenient and Maddening Method of Authentication Will Endure

The humble password is a central part of cybersecurity and is likely to remain so.

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Cubic Receives U.S. Air Force Work

Nuvotronics’ MARIA Electronics to Be Tested as Part of F-16 Upgrade

Cubic Corp. announced on Sept. 23 that its wholly owned subsidiary, Nuvotronics, has been awarded a contract with Georgia Tech Research Institute to deliver test-asset electronics for the U.S. Air Force F-16 platform’s ALR-69A upgrade.

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Cybersecurity Details Matter

TECH: Providers Help Firms Shore Up Defenses

Being secure online frequently comes down to some very basic habits and practices. Strong passwords and multi-factor authentication go a long way toward helping people stay secure.

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Cummins and Achates Power Continue Engine Work

U.S. Army Awards $87M for Advanced Combat Engine Project

Cummins Inc. (NYSE: CMI) announced on July 31 that it received an $87 million contract from the U.S. Army to complete the development of the Advanced Combat Engine.

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Northrop Grumman Secures $39.8M Deal

Contract Funds Global Hawk Programs for Japan and South Korea

The U.S. Air Force awarded Northrop Grumman Corp. a $39.8 million modification to a previous contract for both the Japan and Republic of Korea Global Hawk Program.

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Viasat Concerned Over Space Debris

Says ‘Mega-Constellations’ Need Additional Regulatory Oversight

Viasat Inc. (Nasdaq: VSAT) is sounding the alarm about debris orbiting the Earth.