Stories for July 2006

Monday, July 31

Touch & #233; President Bush, state to fund stem cell research

As if to publicly defy the president's veto on expanded stem cell research last week, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced that the state will loan up to $150 million to California's stem cell institute.

With success in the win column, Surf Dawgs expect to draw more fans

San Diego's minor league baseball team, the Surf Dawgs, lost the services of infamous former All-Star tell-all author Jose Canseco, but gained a much better player in a forced trade with the Long Beach Armada.

Ernst & Young appoints vice chair to take on leadership role

Q & A; with Peter Griffith.

Real estate remains solid despite soft residential market

San Diego's housing market might be softening, but other real estate sectors seem to be holding their own, and even thriving, according to all the second-quarter reports that have been filling our mailboxes this month.

Crusader wants to change 'America's Finest City' to 'City of Life'

George Mullen, a stockbroker by trade and a painter, doesn't like San Diego's slogan, "America's Finest City." He thinks it's audacious, and he's been shopping a proposal to have it changed to "City of Life."


Thanks for message

Small Business Spotlight , Bauman Photography

Jared Bauman, owner/photographer for Bauman Photography.

Isolate holdouts while attempting to settle workplace conflicts

Question: How do I negotiate a workplace conflict?

Gen-Probe sales up, earnings flat

Gen-Probe Inc. reported strong second-quarter financial results and increased its earnings forecast July 31. Shares jumped nearly 3 percent in after-hours trading.

The myths that became a lie: the California housing crisis

The myths that became a lie: the California housing crisis

San Diego People

Key Hires And Promotions; Executive Spotlight: Steven Wolkenstein

San Diego awarded $1.25 million

The California Housing Finance Agency has awarded $1.25 million to the city of San Diego Redevelopment Agency.

Business group wakes up a sleepy downtown Escondido

Debra Rosen used her skills of marketing and teamwork to rebuild Escondido's Downtown Business Association, making it a fundamental element of the area's financial success.

Trust expert: Transfer wealth to successors in small portions

There are a number of things that can be done to prevent a family-owned or family-controlled company from folding as a new generation takes hold of the reins.

Former Peregrine execs plead guilty, indicted

Peregrine Systems, the San Diego software firm that melted down after revelations of accounting fraud in 2002, is still making news but not the positive type.

Small Business How To

Question: How do I negotiate a workplace conflict?

Progress Report

Sales and Leases

Study: California waving goodbye to high-paying jobs

A recent study from a respected think tank has found that not only have the state's major industries all suffered some net job loss from business relocations, but that this effect is most pronounced among industries that tend to pay higher wages.

Regional economy prepared to weather residential sales slump, says BofA expert

While longer selling times for single-family homes are now clearly evident, the region is still far from the kind of recession that decimated the housing market in the early 1990s, says economist Lynn Reaser.

DefenseWeb opens Virginia office

San Diego-based DefenseWeb Technologies Inc. has announced the opening of a new office in Skyline Campus, Va.

Affluent to embrace condensed TV programs on mobile devices

The recipe for television on mobile devices is simple: condense a 30- or 60-minute program down to a few minutes, and voil & #341; , you've got a mobisode (a mobile episode).

'Babyproofing' the bottom line

Though slow to catch on, "babyproofing" the bottom line is finally becoming an increasingly talked about topic in the business world as maternity-driven turnover costs corporate America millions upon millions of dollars each year.

Looking for a business partner? Choose an opposite personality

While the personality of a CEO might define the corporate culture, it's not always a good idea to have mini-me's running about, said consultant John Buffini.

Navy, Manchester passionate, positive about direction of north waterfront project

Navy, Manchester passionate, positive about direction of north waterfront

Ikea furnishings turn up in unlikely places for 'fabulous' campaign

The Swedish-born retailer Ikea Group has released 760,000 copies of its 2006 catalog in San Diego County , the most ever distributed by the company locally.


Business Events: Aug. 1 - 7

Coach skilled in the subtle art of juror profiling

John Buffini, founder of Buffini Communication Systems in downtown San Diego, helps clients play the chess game that is the U.S. justice system.

Chargers official nixes possible new stadium site south of 52

As the Chargers look around the county for stadium sites, the best place may be right up the block from Qualcomm Stadium, their current field in Mission Valley.

Foster home services expand with $500K donation

The San Diego Social Venture Partners has given the Angels Foster Family Agency and La Cuna more than $500,000 in grants and in-kind business consulting services.

Southwest's San Diego assigned-seating experiment could end a cultural nightmare, the dreaded C line

Southwest's San Diego assigned-seating experiment could end a cultural nightmare, the dreaded C line.

Solamar attracts Hollywood elite with no autographs policy

You won't find any of their autographed glossies on Hotel Solamar's walls, nor in its restaurant, the J-Six, or even in a manager's office.

Caietti, Parsky appointed to bench

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on July 31 announced the appointments of Carolyn M. Caietti and Laura H. Parsky to judgeships in the San Diego Superior Court.

Executive Profile , Janice P. Brown

When San Diego attorney Janice P. Brown decided to go solo in 2003, she discovered that she was a much better businesswoman than she thought she could be. But she couldn't anticipate everything.

Iranian architect draws up new career in the Gaslamp

Determination and immigrant zeal has paid off for restaurateur Behrooz Farahani. So has an architectural background.

Week in Review

Top business news: July 21-27, 2006

Construction Journal

Contract Awards and Construction Milestones.

Friday, July 28

Sullivan gets EPA work

A joint venture of San Diego-based Sullivan International Group has been awarded a 10-year contract from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Mervyn's case redefines some lawsuits

In a case with repercussions for businesses up and down the state, the California Supreme Court ruled for a stricter interpretation of the state's amended Unfair Competition Law.

Slow decline on gas prices

The price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in San Diego slipped 1.5 cents to $3.304, the Automobile Club of Southern California reported.

MicroIslet plans stock sale

MicroIslet Inc., a San Diego-based biotech, plans to issue approximately $3.9 million in new common stock, the company announced July 27.

Cymer sees chance to buy back shares

Cymer Inc., a San Diego-based maker of laser equipment used in the manufacturing of semiconductors, authorized July 28 the repurchase of up to $150 million in the company's common stock using a well-fortified surplus of cash.

Thursday, July 27

Airport serves 1.5M passengers in June

The number of passengers who flew in and out of Lindbergh Field declined slightly in June, compared with the same year-ago month, but the year-to-date count was up somewhat.

St. Bernard completes merger

St. Bernard Software, which provides Internet security software, completed its merger with Sand Hill IT Security Acquisition Corp. and began trading over the counter with the ticker SHQC.OB.

Miramar idea gets chamber nod

The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce nodded approval of a Nov. 7 ballot measure that will ask voters whether the agency running San Diego International Airport should push to try to move it to a portion of Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.

City sues its Texas law firm

The San Diego city attorney's office July 27 filed a lawsuit in San Diego Superior Court against the Houston-based law firm of Vinson & Elkins.

Sales decline, net loss up at Iomega

Iomega Corp., the maker of Zip drives and other data storage devices, reported a net loss of $10.4 million on revenue of $40.7 million for its second quarter that ended July 2.

Wednesday, July 26

Callaway swings, misses

Investors walked away from Callaway Golf following the company's July 26 earnings announcement. Following the close of the market, the Carlsbad golf gear maker reported net income of $22.5 million on revenue of $341.8 million during the second quarter.

Mr. Big drives a minivan? Maybe

Chief executives are more likely to be driving a modest passenger sedan or sport utility vehicle than a luxury vehicle, according to a recent survey.

Bioscience, labor groups back power line

Amid growing energy supply concerns, three San Diego organizations joined to support San Diego Gas & Electric Co.'s planned Sunrise Powerlink, a 120-mile electric transmission line stretching from the Imperial Valley to San Diego.

Two make best lawyers book

Two San Diego-based lawyers at Foley & Lardner LLP have been selected for inclusion in the Best Lawyers in America 2007.

Aldila results slide

Poway-based golf shaft manufacturer Aldila Inc. announced July 26 that its second-quarter financial results had declined from last year. Aldila had net sales of $17.4 million, with net income of $2.7 million.

San Diego council OKs housing accord

The San Diego City Council on July 25 unanimously approved a compromise with builders over the city's inclusionary housing ordinance.

Navy Broadway complex decision delayed till September

The Centre City Development Corp. has delayed a decision on the controversial redevelopment of the Navy Broadway Complex, continuing the matter from July 26 to September at the earliest.

Who's who of Orlando beckons Burnham

The Burnham Institute for Medical Research has applied to a Florida economic development organization for what could be more than $100 million in incentives to set up a satellite lab in the state, according to the

Novatel's second-quarter net income falls

Novatel Wireless, a maker of modem cards for laptop computers and related products, ended the second quarter with net income of $95,000 on revenue of $45.7 million.

Cubic rolls out system in South Korea

The defense segment of San Diego-based Cubic Corp. announced July 26 that it has delivered its self-contained training system to the 8th U.S. Army at Camp Casey, South Korea.

Neurocrine lays off sales force

Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. said July 26 it has laid off the 165-member sales force it hired last year to peddle its drug for insomnia, which was essentially rejected by federal authorities.

K2 squeezes more from slow quarter

K2 Inc. , the holding company behind Rawlings baseball gloves, K2 skis and a variety of other sporting goods and apparel , reported net income of $2.1 million on $301.1 million in net sales during the second quarter.

Tuesday, July 25

Cymer earnings improve, but stock falls

Shares in Cymer Inc. fell more than $8, or 20 percent, in after-hours trading July 25 after the company released second-quarter earnings.

Websense net income falls 6 percent

Websense Inc., an Internet management and Web security software company, announced a 23 percent increase in second-quarter revenue compared with the same period in 2005.

Chamber names Vortmann interim chief

Richard H. Vortmann has been appointed the interim president and chief executive officer of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce.

McCarthy builds at Rady Children's

The San Diego division of McCarthy Building Cos. Inc. has received a contract from Rady Children's Hospital and Health Center to provide construction management for a new $25.7 million, 332,279-square-foot parking structure.

Move in progress at Schubach

Schubach Aviation has begun moving its fleet of 14 private charter jets to its new, 30,000-square-foot hangar at McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad.

Monday, July 24

Restaurant rows a magnet for economic activity

Old California Restaurant Row in San Marcos has a powerful draw, in more ways than one.

Rising gas prices, airfares can't stop arrival of tourists

As hot as it was when Sandra Bernard came to town for her birthday, it was hotter where she lives, in Rancho Cucamonga. "It's 105 now, so it's got to be cooler in Coronado," she said.

Keeping California's edge , the growing demand for highly educated workers

Keeping California's edge , the growing demand for highly educated workers

Progress Report

Sales and leases

BMW Roadster 'brakes' away from the pack

BMW Roadster 'brakes' away from the pack

Local firm hopes sleeping-pill meeting isn't a snoozer

Neurocrine Biosciences Inc. has a meeting with the Food and Drug Administration regarding why the agency rejected its sleeping pill, which had been predicted to be a billion-dollar blockbuster drug.

Epsilon busy with sub training, security

The Naval Facilities Engineering Command has awarded Epsilon Systems Solutions a $2 million contract for work on a new submarine escape training facility at Naval Submarine Base New London, in Connecticut.

Small Business Spotlight , Skyline San Diego

John Lethert, president of Skyline San Diego.

Construction oversight board forming

The Grossmont Healthcare District is looking for nine East County residents to sit on a committee that will review expenditures of bond funds on Sharp Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa projects.

Finding the balance between patriotism and proper journalism is not always easy

Finding the balance between patriotism and proper journalism is not always easy

Trading longer terms for balanced districts not the greatest idea

Trading longer terms for balanced districts not the greatest idea

San Diego People

Key Hires And Promotions; Executive Spotlight: Amy Butterfield

Hybrid bus drive systems push Poway's ISE into driver's seat

David Mazaika once designed Tomahawk missiles and Atlas rockets for General Dynamics. Today he heads up ISE Corp., a Poway company that makes hybrid electric drive systems for public transit buses.

City events pay off for area businesses

Local business associations throw themselves into seasonal community events from fireworks to street fairs. Tourists and shoppers follow.

7 housing developers funding Otay Mesa's general plan update

The debate over employment lands versus housing needs in San Diego County is especially heated in Otay Mesa, developed as an industrial area in 1985 when the Otay Mesa Port of Entry was created.

Cities struggling to balance industrial, residential land uses

Homes versus jobs. While it's hard to have one without the other, San Diego County continues to grapple with this dilemma.

Shark lecture to bring reality to their health and habitats

Movie director Steven Spielberg catapulted to fame and fortune on the backs of sharks with the 1975 screamathon, "Jaws." But it's been downhill for the sharks ever since.

Fourth-quarter forecast causes Qualcomm stock to drop

Despite significant increases in third-quarter profit and revenues, Qualcomm Inc.'s stock price took a hit last week. The reason for the investors' reaction? A disappointing earnings forecast.

Private equity group buys power plants

San Diego- and New Jersey-based Energy Capital Partners announced on July 24 that it has purchased Northeast Utilities' competitive generation assets in Connecticut and Massachusetts for $1.34 billion.

CSI Financial earning healthy profits on loans to hospital patients

CSI Financial Services makes its business extending credit to hospital patients, one of the highest risk sectors of lending.

Construction Journal

Contract awards and construction milestones

Area's low jobless rate, higher incomes attractive to franchisees

Nationally high gasoline prices, even lease rates and stifling state regulations, do not make the most ideal small-business climate. And yet, more and more franchisers are choosing to launch in San Diego.

Energy drain calls for emergency action

The California Independent System Operator, which oversees the statewide power grid, declared a stage-two emergency at 1 p.m. July 24, predicting operating reserves would drop below 5 percent during today's peak.

Seeking lower housing prices? Don't head for North County

The median price for all houses in North County , single-family detached and single-family attached , rose from $565,000 in May to $570,000 in June.

To whom shall I not sell my company? That is the critical question

Question: To whom can I not afford to sell my business to?


For July 10, 2006 and July 17, 2006.

Week in Review

Top business news: July 14 - 20, 2006

Big hotel under construction to lure more business to San Diego

Building cranes and hard-hat crews are fast at work completing construction on a slew of hotels in Southern California, and San Diego County is apparently seeing the greatest amount of activity.

Financial exec earns credit for growing network

Financial exec earns credit for growing network

Outside auditor receives first copies of pension scandal report

Kroll Inc. has delivered the first copies of its report about the causes for the city of San Diego's $1.4 billion deficit in its employee pension fund to outside accountant KPMG, as well as federal authorities, but ironically not to City Hall.

Showdown looms between Wal-Mart, City Hall

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has less than two months left to convince City Hall not to block the controversial mega retailer from bringing its supersized store format to San Diego.

Young bank in the black

California Community Bank, based in Escondido and with two branches, reported net income of $207,000 for the second quarter, compared with a net loss of $151,000 for the like period of 2005.

Executive Profile , Gary Lewis Evans

While Gary Lewis Evans realized what a huge opportunity the Internet afforded, it wasn't until 2000 that he was able to actually open a bank that was exclusively delivering its services over the Internet.

Friday, July 21

Earnings inch higher at Escondido bank

Community Bancorp, the Escondido-based parent firm of Community National Bank, reported net income for the second quarter of $2.9 million, up 1 percent from the like period of 2005.

Earnings rise at 1st Pacific

University City-based 1st Pacific Bank of California reported net earnings of $822,000 for the second quarter, up 65 percent from the like period of 2005.

A model effort on a molecular scale

San Diego researchers have formed the Joint Center for Molecular Modeling through a $2.1 million federal grant announced July 21.

InfoSonics adds 'N' for Nasdaq listing

San Diego-based InfoSonics Corp. announced on July 20 that the Nasdaq stock exchange approved its listing under the ticker symbol IFON.

Unemployment rate rises

San Diego's unemployment rate for June climbed to 4.2 percent, up from 3.7 percent in May, but still below the rate of June 2005, at 4.5 percent.

Rampage slipping into retailer's history

Retailer Charlotte Russe Holding Inc., which is abandoning its Rampage format stores, announced its third-quarter financial results July 20, reporting a 32 percent increase in sales from continuing operations over the same period last year.

Affordable housing pact progressing

The San Diego City Council is expected to consider a proposed compromise July 25 designed to balance the interests of builders and the city over affordable housing.

Governor boosts stem cell research

As if to publicly defy the President's veto on expanded stem cell research this week, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced the state will loan up to $150 million to California's stem cell institute.

Thursday, July 20

Office demand cools; retail 'on fire'

San Diego County's industrial market ended the second quarter relatively strong, tenant demand for office space slowed, while the retail market was still "on fire."

Former Peregrine executive indicted

A federal grand jury in San Diego delivered an indictment of Richard T. Nelson, 46, the former chief executive and general counsel of Peregrine Systems Inc., alleging that he was involved in the extensive accounting fraud that ultimately resulted in the l

City figures price of keeping blooms

Preserving more than 300 acres of strawberry and flower fields in Carlsbad will cost the city more than $28.5 million, according to a city-funded economic study.

Banker, developer Tom Carter dies

Tom Carter, founder of the San Diego-based Carter Reese & Associates real estate firm, died July 18 at his Mission Hills home. He was 66.

Carlsbad airport may get new terminal

Officials at McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad have designs on scrapping some portable buildings and replacing them with a new terminal that could cost as much as $16 million.

Punctuality ranks on employers' wish list

Employers in the South Bay list punctuality and teamwork as the highest priorities they expect from their employees, according to a survey done for the South County Economic Development Council.

Marriott to stub out smoking

Marriott International plans to ban smoking in all of its hotels in the United States and Canada, starting in September.

Wednesday, July 19

TIG jumps to Germany

Technology Integration Group has established its first international office, in Heidelberg, Germany.

Picketless protest at Children's Hospital

Employees at Rady Children's Hospital and Health Center held a demonstration July 19 because they are unhappy with stalled union-hospital negotiations.

SEC halts trade in Petco call options

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a temporary restraining order July 19, freezing the assets of certain unknown purchasers of Petco stock options.

Indus work may be worth $10M to WFI

San Diego-based Wireless Facilities Inc. has received a subcontract from San Diego-based Indus Technology Inc. that could be worth as much as $10 million.

Qualcomm earns $643 million

San Diego-based Qualcomm Inc. reported third quarter net income of $643 million on revenue of $1.95 billion.

Plaza Bonita getting $100M revamp

Westfield Plaza Bonita in National City has broken ground on a $100 million redevelopment and expansion project.

ACI ranks eighth among peers

ACI, a San Diego company that provides employee assistance programs to other firms, ranked No. 8 in the nation for employee assistance programs during 2005, according to

Power pair adds radio to repertoire

entrepreneurs Neil Senturia and his wife, Barbara Bry, launched a new radio show this month on CASH-AM 1700 that sounds like a winner.

Tuesday, July 18

San Diego tops in help-wanted ads

San Diego leads the nation in unduplicated online job ads, according to the Conference Board Help-Wanted Online Data Series.

Cadence plans IPO

Cadence Pharmaceuticals plans to raise as much as $86.3 million in an initial public offering.

Office vacancy ticks up

San Diego experienced an increase of 0.3 percent in office space vacancies in the second quarter , the first time vacancy has increased since 2002 , according to a Grubb & Ellis/BRE Commercial report.

Monday, July 17

Lawsuits, Added Regulation Forcing Businesses to Outsource HR

An ever-growing spate of state and federal regulations , combined with an increasing litigious landscape , is driving more small businesses to seek outside experts to deal with their human resources headaches.

Ivy Hotel to Open in Fall

San Diego-based investment firm Kelly Capital has announced a fall grand opening for the Ivy Hotel in downtown San Diego.

Week in Review

Top Business News: July 7 - 13, 2006

'Smart Growth' Calls for 'Street Smarts'

Smart + growth. What's not to like, right? As opposed to, say, stupidity and stagnation? But it gets a little more complicated when you're dealing with smart growth, the Holy Grail of today's developers.

Please Don't Send Releases to My Predecessor Five Times Removed

Make It Sing, When Writing PR Pitches to the Editor of The Business Journal

High Housing Costs Create Plenty of Local Apartment Seekers

San Diego's apartment market is going strong this year, aided by a healthy economy and high housing prices. That's the word from Marcus & Millichap's quarterly update.

Progress Report


Feds honor SAIC

San Diego-based Fortune 500 company Science Applications International Corp. announced July 14 that it was recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice for outstanding small-business performance in the area of small-business subcontracting accomplishments

Chic Fashions Hit the Target on Once-Forbidden Racks

Target and other mass-market brands are making inroads into exclusive racks at boutiques and tony department stores where they once were barred.

SBA Loan Program Rockin' for Area's Small Businesses

The folks at KRC Rock Inc. in San Marcos, which sells natural stone and boulders, got help financing the construction of their company's new headquarters. The money came from a federal loan program targeting small businesses just like KRC.

Sempra Finds Its Knight to Lead Global PR Efforts

The man credited as the savior of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, Jessie J. Knight Jr., leaves July 31 to become executive vice president of external affairs for Sempra Energy. Like the old job, the new job promises challenges.

Expansion to Double SDSC's Supercomputing Capacity

The San Diego Supercomputer Center, located on the UC San Diego campus, is doubling its size , expanding by 80,000 square feet.

San Diego People

Key Hires And Promotions; Executive Spotlight: John Phillips

AMCC shareholder files lawsuit

A derivative lawsuit was filed July 13 by an Applied Micro Circuits Corp. shareholder, alleging improper dating of stock options.

Inventor Creates In-Store Call Box To Alert, Summon Missing Sales Clerks

Steve Deal created a business around the lack of customer service at larger stores, devising a call box for customers to summon sales clerks.

Genway Overcomes Obstacles, Earns Profit, Bragging Rights

Wei-Wei Zhang, the chief executive officer of Genway Biotech Inc., calls the corporate culture at his firm "American." The company he founded in 1998 has just 22 employees, but its work force represents more than six countries.

East Coast Tribe to Gamble on Casino Pauma's Future

The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation brings some impressive credentials to its deal to remake Casino Pauma.

Sparse Plots of Open Land Have Developers Building Up

Living high above ground level in a high-rise building in a dense urban environment can be exciting. Creating that urban experience, however, can't be taken for granted. The process has to be admired for its attention to detail.

UCSD, Scripps La Jolla Hospitals Gain Top Rankings

UCSD Medical Center and Scripps La Jolla Memorial have been ranked among the country's best hospitals by

Business groups form alliance

Entrepreneurs in San Diego can now get two for the price of one when it comes to seeking out expert advice and other business help thanks to a formal alliance announced July 17.

Rady Family Gives $60M to Children's Hospital

Rady Family Gives $60M to Children's Hospital

Visionary Leaders Pick Up Slack on City of Villages

Stalled for lack of funding, San Diego's City of Villages concept now is starting to gather some steam.

Small Business Spotlight , Shutters N 7

Tom and Carol Beard run Shutters N 7.

Failed Mayoral Candidate Steve Francis Nets $15M in Option Sales

Steve Francis, the chairman and co-founder of AMN Healthcare Inc., exercised more than 1 million in stock options in May and June, or a third of his holdings. The sales generated a net gain of more than $15 million.

Isis, TargeGen Set Sights on Eye Treatments

Federal approval of a competitor's drug to treat a leading cause of blindness has not blurred the path toward a multi-billion-dollar market for local innovators.

Execs: U.S. Should Follow Europe's Approach OK'ing New Biologics

A recent survey shows that 44 percent of biotech executives believe the United States should follow the European approach for approving generic biologics.

Proposed Miramar Airport Site Generates Controversy

Local leaders offer their thoughts on a proposed Miramar airport, and the airport measure on November's ballot.

Aussie Uses Computer Skills to Optimize Steel Framing Jobs

Is a major commercial construction site in San Diego the next stop for Poway's man of steel? That's one of the goals of Phil Ellis, president and chief executive officer of Poway-based Framemax Inc.

E-Mail Marketing Might Multiply Companies' Sales

Question: What is the best way to start building my small business's e-mail marketing list?

Westcore announces partnership

San Diego-based Westcore Properties LLC, on July 17, announced that it has formed a joint venture with a new capital partner, Denver-based Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust.

Surf's Up, and So Are Surfing Lessons

As one veteran board shaper can attest, there's "definitely a lot of money to be made" in the surfing industry. But the rewards can be more than monetary. Just ask the Willis Brothers.

Reply to NIMBY: Plan Intelligently for Inevitable Growth

While smart growth is designed to promote sound development, the public isn't always welcoming. "There still is a lot of resistance of many in the public to smart growth," said San Diego-based MW Steele's Mark Steele.

Small Businesses in Western U.S. Take the Lead in New Hires

A new report finds the West is the only U.S. region seeing an increase in small-business hires , despite one surprising fact.

Construction Journal

Contract awards and construction milestones.

Parking Structures Becoming Costly Headache For Developers, Contractors

Finding the space , and the money , for parking structures at new office and condominium towers has become one of the biggest deciding factors on whether many of these projects can move ahead.

Executive Profile , Elliot Parks

As managing director of a major venture capital firm, Elliot Parks can be considered a gatekeeper of Southern California's biotechnology industry.

Robbing Peter to Pay Paul and the General Fund

Robbing Peter to Pay Paul and the General Fund

Leidenfrost/Horowitz & Associates Inc. to Merge With Gkkworks

Leidenfrost/Horowitz & Associates Inc. to merge with gkkworks; company plans San Diego expansion.

Area Locales Take Lion's Share of Top 50 Places to Visit

San Diego County appears over and over on's Top 50 list of favored summertime destinations.

Friday, July 14

Where innovation leads, awards follow

Are you a technology entrepreneur? Did your company recently develop and market a new technology or life sciences product? If so, you might be eligible to compete in Connect's 19th annual Most Innovative New Product awards.

Petco going private

Petco Animal Supplies Inc. announced it has agreed to be acquired by two private equity investment firms for $1.8 billion.

South Dakota calls Knight & Carver

Knight & Carver YachtCenter, a National City boat builder that has put its knowledge to use making blades for electricity-generating windmills, plans to lease a specially built wind blade factory in rural South Dakota.

Gas price rises by a nickel

Gasoline prices in San Diego rose 5.3 cents during the week to an average of $3.31 per gallon, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California.

South County group names board

The South County Economic Development Council has announced new officers for the 2006-2007 term.

Mitek acquires Parascript

Mitek Systems Inc., a San Diego maker of image analytic software used mainly by the financial industry and the U.S. Postal Service, said it is acquiring Parascript LLC, a private software firm based in Boulder, Colo.

Thursday, July 13

Ivy Hotel to open in fall

San Diego-based investment firm Kelly Capital has announced a fall grand opening for the Ivy Hotel. The 160-room resort stands on the corner of Sixth Avenue and F Street.

National City tax hike under fire

A group of tax activists, led by former San Diego mayoral candidate Richard Rider, is challenging last month's voter approved sales tax hike in National City.

Cubic reports $98 million in orders

Cubic Corp.'s defense segment announced July 13 that it has received a series of orders totaling $98 million from the U.S. military for its next-generation air combat training system.

Cricket Service Hits Kentucky

Leap Wireless International Inc. has begun offering Cricket-brand cell phone service through a joint venture in Louisville and Lexington, Ky.

Sanders taps two for downtown board

Mayor Jerry Sanders has nominated Janice Brown and Teddy Cruz for appointment to the Centre City Development Corp. board of directors.

Wednesday, July 12

Ex-Remec President Donald Wilkins Dies

The former president of Remec Inc., a Del Mar-based defense contractor that liquidated itself last year, died July 8 after a lengthy fight against lung cancer, the company said.

Shareholders OK Bank Sale

Shareholders of San Diego Community Bank, based in Chula Vista with about $92 million in assets, approved the sale of the bank July 11 to St. Louis-based First Banks in a deal that was announced in May.

DoD Applauds BAE

BAE Systems received four awards from the Defense Supply Center during the June 6 Aviation Supply Chain conference in Richmond, Va.

Tuesday, July 11

Advanced Equities Buys Greenbook

Advanced Equities Financial Corp., a Chicago-based securities and investment banking firm that operates San Diego-based First Allied Securities, said it acquired Greenbook Financial Services Inc. of San Diego.

SAIC Acquires

Science Applications International Corp. announced July 11 that it had acquired, a Silicon Valley software company. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

North County House Prices Buck Trend

The median price for all homes in North County , single-family detached and single-family attached , rose from $565,000 in May to $570,000 in June.

Sales Abroad Boost WD-40's Earnings

Third-quarter revenues at WD-40 Co. increased 12.1 percent over the same period last year.

Purchase Called 'First Step' for Iomega

Iomega Corp. said July 11 that it plans to buy San Diego-based managed services provider CSCI Inc. for $11.5 million.

Monday, July 10

County Raises Red Flag on Filing Fee

A Sacramento-based company is soliciting San Diego business owners, offering to file fictitious business name statements for significantly more money than necessary, the county clerk announced July 10.

Reynolds-Mason Gets a Financial Lift

Seattle-based Alliance Equity Inc. announced July 10 that it had completed an investment in Reynolds-Mason Industries, a manufacturing company in the Miramar Road area with revenue of $2 million.

Week in Review

Top Businesss News: June 30 - July 6, 2006

Key Indicators Point to Economic Slowdown Nationally

Nikhil P. Varaiya, chairman of the Department of Finance at San Diego State University, sees factors that point to "a considerable slowing" in the second half of 2006.

Higher Energy, Housing Prices Thrown in the Mix for Transition Year

To Scott Anderson, senior economist at Wells Fargo & Co., the Federal Reserve has just taken away the punch bowl from a crowd of thirsty partygoers.

Corporate Aid Needed to Ease Cross-Border Health Crisis

San Diego companies should support charities that tackle the health care crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, or the health problems could soon be their own, according to a recent report by an international public charity.

Profitable Projects Roll Along Past Midyear Point

A lot can happen to an economy over the course of six months. And the area's business community doesn't claim to have a crystal ball. But they do have a few ideas about the events that may befall the area in the second half of 2006.

Health Coverage for All Americans? It Could Happen

A local doctor has been instrumental in drawing national attention to a proposal that would require people at certain income levels to purchase health insurance.

Local Hotel Sales Market Continues to Run Hot

Hotels sold year-to-date in San Diego County.

At 15, Pat & Oscar's Gets the Fat Out, Opening New Units

Restaurant chain Pat & Oscar's turns 15 next month and like other adolescents, the homegrown chain is in the middle of rapid change , change that includes a new, healthier, trans fat-free menu plus talk of franchising.

High Demand for Specialty Services in Accounting, Finance

Multiple factors have led to increased hiring in accounting and finance during recent years.

Offering Workers Retirement Plans Can Be SIMPLE

Question: How do I go about offering retirement benefits to my employees?

Postelection Saga South of Border Bumping Local Stories Off Front Page

Postelection Saga South of Border Bumping Local Stories Off Front Page

Signs of an Economic Slowdown Appear on San Diego's Horizon

Local financial expert Bill Holland weighs in on the various factors and issues that dictate the midyear economic outlook.

Construction Journal

Contract Awards and Construction Milestones.

Stagnant Home Prices One-Two Punch to the County Economy

San Diego academics mull the effect of higher interest rates, rising inflation, plus a slowdown in consumer spending sparked by slumping real estate markets and the costly price of gas.

Service Supersedes Self for Local Rotarian Duo

Two local Rotarians, Jim Vernetti, member of the Rotary Club of Coronado, and Tom Vecchione, member of the San Diego Downtown Rotary Club, were presented with the Service Above Self award, the highest honor for individual Rotarians.

Voter Initiatives Could Impact Business Well Into Future

This November's statewide ballot is shaping up to be one of the most crucial in years for business interests.

Reader Opposes Property Self-Assessment for Cleaner, Safer Beaches

I don't often get written responses about my tourism columns, but a resident of Pacific Beach, Jonathan West, recently e-mailed a critique of one that ran in the May 29 edition, "Biz Group Wants to Make Pacific Beach Clean and Safe."

Small Business Spotlight: The Dance Experience

In the case of Rosemary Ward, a day without dance is a day wasted.

Executive Profile , Dottie Ledesma

When people meet Dottie Ledesma, they're surprised to learn that she is the president and chief executive officer of her general contracting company. "It's a strange thing, they almost talk down to me at first, maybe not intentionally but in the way that


For July 3, 2006.

Bank on It: Firms Should Team Up With Bankers

Every day while talking to potential clients, I am asked to describe how banks can help a business like yours.

Embassy Suites Latest in String Of Hotel Sales

The Embassy Suites San Diego has been sold for $118 million, or $350,148 per room, marking the ninth major hotel sale in the county so far in 2006 and the highest price tag of the lot.

State's Work Force Has New Health Care Options

Several factors surrounding the issue of health care have ignited a market climate of innovation and experimentation.

Lee Buys Retail Properties Group

Lee & Associates, a major commercial brokerage company nationwide, has acquired Retail Properties Group Inc., based in La Jolla.

Community Bancorp CEO Distributed the Pink Slips Last Month

The ink is barely dry on the purchase agreement and the proxy hasn't been mailed yet, but decisions on who will stay and who will go when First Community Bancorp buys Escondido-based Community Bancorp have been made.

We're No. 1 in Lab, R & D; Jobs, Manufacturing, Says Tech Study

A new report on California's tech industry underscores the region's strength in R & D;, as well as electronics manufacturing.

Avanir Pursuing Partners After Receiving $2M Anthrax Grant

Now that the federal government has granted Avanir Pharmaceuticals Inc. $2 million to continue developing a drug to treat anthrax poisoning, the San Diego firm is looking for partners.

San Diego People

Key Hires And Promotions; Executive Spotlight: Cynthia Deigert Tanner

Chula Vista Center Gets Cookin' With a New Seminar

The monthly list of upcoming seminars and workshops being offered through Southwestern College is out, complete with a brand-new class offering that promises to "spice up your recipe for success."

Emerging Tech, Life Science Sectors Alive and Well in San Diego

Duane Roth, chief executive officer of Connect, on the state of the technology and life science business sectors.

Kimco to Buy Pan Pacific

New York-based Kimco Realty Corp. is buying Vista-based Pan Pacific Retail Properties Inc., the companies announced July 10.

Temecula's Lot Prices Prompting Boom in Gentleman Farmers

Not all the folks involved in the land rush to Temecula are San Diego suburbanites hungry for cheaper housing prices. Some expatriates are moving to buy a ranch for their horses and storage space for their vehicles, among other reasons.

Dodge Engineers a Serious Compact Car for 2007

The answer is the 2007 Dodge Caliber. The question is when and how would Chrysler Corp.'s Dodge division get serious about the entry-level, compact car segment.

Secretary of State Lists 13 Measures That Qualify for Nov. 7 Ballot; More Could Be Added

Secretary of State Bruce McPherson announced 13 measures that have qualified for the Nov. 7 ballot. The Legislature may add more when it returns from summer vacation next month.

Convention Center Bookings Grow

The San Diego Convention Center Corp. said it booked 88 future conventions and more than a million hotel room nights during its just-ended fiscal year.

Economy Hits Speed Bumps as It Begins Uphill Climb

For once they agree , for the most part. Chapman University's historically more bullish economic forecasts on California's economy and UC Los Angeles's more bearish estimates are converging.

Gateway Project Will Provide 'Front Porch' to The Pacific

Gateway Project Will Provide 'Front Porch' to The Pacific

Regulators in Holding Pattern for Unique Bank Deal

The announced sale of Silvergate Capital Corp. to a Pasadena credit union still isn't completed after more than six months following its announcement, leading to speculation that the deal may not pass muster with regulators

Friday, July 7

Local Average Gas Price Hits $3.26

San Diego gasoline prices rose 7.4 cents during the week to an average of $3.26 a gallon July 7, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California.

Airport Rolls Out New Web Site

The San Diego County Regional Airport Authority has launched a newly designed Web site at its address. MJE Marketing Services Inc. of San Diego designed the site.

Hospital Employees Plan Protest

The Service Employees International Union, which is engaged in labor negotiations at Rady Children's Hospital and Health Center, plans to picket the San Diego facility July 19.

City Ranks 256th in Affordability

College grads seeking their first jobs might want to consider moving east to places such as Knoxville, Tenn., or Kokomo, Ind., rather than focusing on San Diego or Los Angeles, based on the results of a recent cost of living survey.

Thursday, July 6

Indus Gets GovWorks Deal

San Diego-based Indus Technology Inc. announced a deal worth more than $15 million July 6.

Argon Acquires Research Center

San Diego Research Center Inc., a locally based defense systems integration firm, was officially acquired July 3 by Argon ST, a Virginia defense firm, for $41 million in cash.

Coke Invests With LM, Again

LM Capital Group LLC, a San Diego-based fixed income investment advisory firm, said it received an additional $11 million from Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc., raising the total the firm manages for Coke to about $105 million.

ViaSat Order Nears $40M

Carlsbad-based ViaSat Inc. won a delivery order from the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, or Spawar, valued at around $39.5 million for defense-use communications terminals.

Wednesday, July 5

Fish Names Managing Principal

John C. Phillips has been named the managing principal of Fish & Richardson's San Diego office.

Power Plant Application in State's Hands

New Jersey-based LS Power on June 30 filed an application with the California Energy Commission to build a new power plant in Chula Vista.

InfoSonics, MicroIslet Join Index

Stocks in two San Diego companies , InfoSonics Corp. and MicroIslet Inc. , have been placed on the Russell Microcap Index.

Monday, July 3

Farm Bureau Weighs in on Immigration

With federal lawmakers preparing for a hearing in San Diego on July 5, the San Diego County Farm Bureau has issued a call on the House of Representatives for comprehensive immigration reform.

Gen-Probe's Building 2 Completed

Westcore Properties LLC, a San Diego-based real estate investment company, has opened an office in Lausanne, Switzerland. Marc Brutten, company founder and chairman, will head the new division, which will look for retail, industrial and office properties

New Credit Union Trade President Says ABA Campaign Bankrupt

Bill Cheney, the new president and CEO of the California/Nevada Credit Union League, says banks intend to put credit unions out of business.

National City Chamber, South County Council Pound the Pavement

Patience may be a virtue but sometimes a take-charge attitude is the way to go. Just ask the South County Economic Development Council.

The Numbers, Not Numerology, Driving 373 Corp.'s Success

Nightclub owner James Brennan swears he's not into numerology. But there's certainly an interesting coincidence of numbers between his company name and its ventures.

Week in Review

Top Business News: June 23 - 29, 2006

Children to Run Amok Again in Museum When It Opens in 2007

The San Diego Children's Museum/Museo de los Ninos is no typical museum.

2007 Lexus Hybrid Turning Drivers' Dreams Into Reality

2007 Lexus Hybrid Turning Drivers' Dreams Into Reality

Take 2: Nassco Works on Second Navy Supply Ship in Its Class

General Dynamics Nassco launched the second of the Navy's T-AKE-class supply ships, the USNS Sacagawea, June 24.

S.D. Foundation Feeds Funds to Foster Education

S.D. Foundation Feeds Funds to Foster Education

Market Undervaluing Bad Debt Collector Encore Capital, Says Board

Encore Capital Group, which buys credit card debt with the aim of collecting some of the money owed, thinks the market isn't giving it enough credit. It has retained two high-powered investment banks as financial advisers for a possible sale or privatizin

Custom-Made Curriculum Available for Local Execs

Local business executives have more options if they want to further their education, now that a well-known private university is offering classes in San Diego County.

Construction Journal

Contract Awards and Construction Milestones

Children's Museum to Tower Above Predecessors

Come late August or early September, 26 semi-trucks will haul parts of a colossal crane to San Diego from Long Beach , key to the long-awaited resurrection of the San Diego Children's Museum/ Museo de los Ni & #324;os.

Nurses Union Supports 'Clean Money' to Finance Campaigns

The California Nurses Association is attempting to quell corporate political influence with a measure on the ballot in November.

Local Storefront Demand, Rates to Be No. 1 in Nation, Predicts Index

The nation's largest real estate investment brokerage firm believes San Diego County's retail market has the potential to be the country's top performer in the coming year.

W Sunstone's Third Hotel Purchase in City This Year

A San Clemente-based real estate investment trust, one of the largest owners of San Diego hotels, just added to its portfolio of local properties with the acquisition of the posh W Hotel San Diego.

Encouraging News for Alvarado Hospital's Future

Encouraging News for Alvarado Hospital's Future

New Lindbergh Flights Go West, and East

The San Diego County Regional Airport Authority has announced additional nonstop flights to Honolulu, Maui and New York City.

Small-Cap Firms Paying the Price For Tough New Compliance Regs

Despite predictions that auditing fees would drop after an initial spike created by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, small-cap companies still face exorbitant compliance fees.

Net Income

When Dan Biggs first heard of the Internet in the early 1990s, he and other local marketing executives were leery, believing it a fad that would never factor in their business goals. But by 1997, Biggs had committed his entire Chula Vista-based firm to We

Executive Profile , Alex Thao

Alex Thao said his father set him up in the restaurant business to teach him a lesson after he dropped out of UC Berkeley during his freshman year at age 18.

Progress Report

Sales and Leases

Qualcomm Challenged in South Korea

Texas Instruments and Broadcom have filed a complaint with South Korea's fair trade organization against Qualcomm Inc., accusing the company of hindering the penetration of their products into the South Korean market.

Companies Compelled to Keep Continuous Cash Flow

Question: Cash flow always seems to pose a problem for me, what am I doing wrong?

Small Business Spotlight: Digitaria Interactive Inc.

Daniel Khabie, chief executive officer, Digitaria Interactive Inc.

San Diego People

Key Hires and Promotions; Executive Spotlight: Marco Hernandez

Site Unseen? Firms May Need to Get More Creative

Marketing and Web design experts say there aren't many classes designed to address how businesses can better use their Web sites to boost business, so companies must be creative. As a result, "They often look to see what their competitors are doing," said

Shares Plummet After Anadys Halts Clinical Trial

Industry members say biotech companies rely on scientific ethics, along with a system of checks and balances to report dubious human clinical trial data. In essence, old-fashioned honesty is necessary to keep the integrity of the industry.