Stories for August 2013

Friday, August 30

Sempra Energy Moving to New 16-Story East Village Headquarters in 2015

Sempra Energy plans to move its downtown San Diego headquarters to a new 16-story building in East Village in 2015, relocating approximately 700 employees from the West Ash Street location that has been its home since 1968.

Fast Food Workers Walk Off Job in Demand for Higher Wages

Fast-food workers from some of the largest restaurant chains in San Diego walked off their jobs Aug. 29 as part of a nationwide strike spanning 35 cities, according to union organizers.

General Atomics ASI Drone Part of Yosemite Firefighting Efforts

State firefighting authorities are using an MQ-1 Predator, flown by the California National Guard, to monitor the 301-square-mile Rim Fire in Yosemite National Park and nearby national forest.

San Diego Economic Index Increases 0.7% in July

An index measuring San Diego’s economy increased 0.7 percent in July, the 19th time it’s gone up in the last 20 months.

$12.7M in Stem Cell Grants Given to Local Researchers

The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine recently met in La Jolla to award $40.6 million to 13 research groups throughout the state — including about $12.7 million to San Diego researchers.

Industrial Building Housing FedEx Sold for $14.1M

Colyear Development Corp. of El Monte has purchased an eastern San Diego warehouse building, occupied by a FedEx Corp. distribution center, for $14.1 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Second Phase 3 Trial for Nuerocrine Bioscience Drug Elagolix Launched

Chicago-based AbbVie Inc. has begun a second Phase 3 trial of San Diego-based Neurocrine Bioscience Inc.’s drug Elagolix that treats uterine fibroids and endometriosis.

Thursday, August 29

Local Housing Prices Increase 19% in 12 Months

San Diego housing prices rose nearly 3 percent in June, and increased 19 percent over 12 months, according to the most recent Standard & Poor’s / Case Shiller Home Price Indices.

Dempsey Construction Relocates Headquarters to Carlsbad

The recently combined general contractors Dempsey Construction Inc. and Legacy Building Services Inc. have relocated from San Diego to a new headquarters building in Carlsbad.

A Santee General Contractor Receives $9.1M Task Order

A&D GC Inc., a Santee-based general contractor and small business, received a $9.08 million task order for the Triton Maintenance Training Facility renovation at Naval Base Ventura County in Point Mugu.

Army Selects ViaSat Inc. for Communications Terminal

The U.S. Army has selected ViaSat Inc. to build defense communication electronics for use on AH-64E Apache helicopters.

Investment Partnership Buys National City Industrial Building for $3M

National City Partners Ltd. has acquired a 40,000-square-foot industrial building in National City for $3 million, according to brokerage services company Cassidy Turley San Diego, which represented the seller, International Paper.

Imprimis Acquires IP to Be Used in Cataract Treatments

San Diego-based Imprimis Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced it has acquired intellectual property from Randolph, N.J.-based Novel Drug Solutions Inc. and Sparta, N.J.-based Eye Care Northwest for its cataract treatment.

Arena’s Recent Successes Have Yet to Boost Stock

Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s stock continues to fall, despite having successfully completed an early stage trial for a new pulmonary arterial hypertension drug.

Wednesday, August 28

Google Names Carlsbad ‘Digital Capital’ of California

Google Inc. has named the city of Carlsbad as the “digital capital” of California in its annual eCity Awards program, analyzing the online strength of the small-business communities of all 50 states.

Health Care Costs Increase 7.8% for San Diego Employers

Health care costs have increased an average of 7.8 percent in San Diego over the past year, according to an employee benefits survey released recently by San Diego-based Intercare Insurance Solutions, a subsidiary of Chicago-based brokerage Hub International Ltd.

Orexigen May Resubmit Drug Application for Anti-Obesity Treatment

Orexigen Therapeutics Inc. may resubmit a new drug application for its anti-obesity pill, Contrave, to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as Orexigen finishes acquiring further required data, the company said.

Phil’s BBQ Opens Latest Location at San Diego Airport

Locally based Phil’s BBQ has opened its newest restaurant inside Terminal 2 at San Diego International Airport. Makes Inc.’s Fastest Growing List for 3rd Consecutive Year, a Sorrento Valley based online auto parts distributor, was named to the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies List for the third consecutive year.

Kyocera Releases High-End, Waterproof Smartphone

Kyocera Communications Inc., the San Diego-based unit of Japan-based Kyocera Corp., has released a new, high-end, waterproof smartphone through Verizon Wireless.

Former Ranking HP Exec Named to Harris Corp. Board of Directors

Harris Corp., the Florida-based defense and communications contractor, has named Vyomesh Joshi to its board of directors.

Tuesday, August 27

Downtown’s Columbia Square Office Tower Sells for $35 Million

The Emmes Group of Cos. of New York City has purchased the Columbia Square office tower in downtown San Diego for $35 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

$28.78 Million Escondido Medical Office Property Is Part of Portfolio Deal

An Escondido medical office building is part of a six-building portfolio purchased for $59.5 million by CNL Healthcare Properties Inc. of Orlando, Fla.

Crowdfunding Being Used to Manufacture Breast Self-Exam Devices

La Mesa-based Eclipse Breast Health Technologies Inc. has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise $650,000 to build a limited number of its novel breast self-exam devices.

BeyondTrust Names a New CEO

BeyondTrust, a San Diego-based IT security solutions vendor, announced the appointment of Kevin Hickey as chief executive officer.

General Atomics Gets Navy Contract Potentially Worth $12.5M

The U.S. Navy awarded San Diego-based General Atomics a contract for lithium-ion batteries and accessories that could be worth as much as $12.5 million.

El Pollo Loco Opens 25th San Diego County Eatery

Costa Mesa-based El Pollo Loco has opened its 25th Mexican-style chicken restaurant in San Diego County, at 3500 College Blvd. in Oceanside.

Local Firm Buys Industrial Buildings for $4.4 Million

Solana Beach-based investment company SR Commercial has purchased two local industrial properties for a total of $4.4 million from private investors, bringing its recent acquisition total to 14 properties valued at $60 million in the past 24 months.

Pechanga Resort & Casino Announces Multimillion-Dollar Remodeling Project

The Pechanga Development Corp. plans to remodel the hotel lobby, restaurants, rooftop nightclub and retail store at Pechanga Resort & Casino.

Monday, August 26

Commentary: In Response

The San Diego Business Journal’s recent story on the Scripps Proton Therapy Center (Aug. 19, “Treatment Plans”) left the door open for misperceptions about three key aspects of proton therapy. Scripps Health would like to clarify each of these points here.

Bank Employees Lend a Hand to Operation Homefront


Torrey Pines Bank employees and executives from Western Alliance Bancorporation, the bank’s holding company, gave back to the community by volunteering at Oceanside’s Operation Homefront Village.

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Executive Profile: Efrain Ibarra Jr.

Efrain Ibarra Jr. is the program manager and binational affairs liaison of the South County Economic Development Council, an organization that represents about 350 businesses.

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The Trade Routes

TRANSPORT: Improving Cross-Border Routes Is Key Part of Increasing Commerce

A handful of infrastructure projects related to cross-border transportation are expected to improve congestion at the three San Diego-area ports of entry, officials hope.

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Real Estate Roundup

Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around San Diego County

The structural steel framing is complete for Phase 1 of the Shire campus, consisting of a three-story, 239,000-square-foot technical operations building on Summers Ridge Road in San Diego. When complete, the building will include manufacturing, warehousing, technical operations, amenities and administrative areas. Shire, the global specialty biopharmaceutical company, is expanding its capacity to meet future demands for its lead regenerative medicine product, Dermagraft, while offering additional space and infrastructure to manufacture additional products.

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Regional Report

News and notes from communities around San Diego County

This summer saw the opening of Iberico Spanish Bistro and Gin Club, a new restaurant on La Jolla’s Prospect Avenue. The upscale eatery is a project of Juan Carlos Gomez, who owns El Agave in Old Town San Diego. Iberico takes up 5,900 square feet and features private and outdoor dining. Menu selections include three types of calamari and 14 types of gin.

Gordon & Rees Hosts Students and Families at the Monarch School

The Business of Law

About 20 Gordon & Rees associates hosted “Family Night” at the Monarch School, a school dedicated to serving K-12 students impacted by homelessness, earlier this month. The lawyers and their families delivered, set up and served dinner at the school, which is a few blocks from the law firm’s downtown office. About 150 students and their parents attended.

Biotech and Beer: 2 of Life’s Great Pursuits (Life Technologies, That is)

Biotech/Health Care Column

Carlsbad-based Life Technologies Corp. just announced it has developed a test that quickly detects whether beer has spoiled. Unwelcome bacteria can impact the smell, taste and clarity of beer, and can be costly to brewers — or winemakers — that don’t catch a spoilt batch before bottling and distribution, said Nir Nimrodi, vice president and general manager of animal health and food safety at Life Technologies.

New Leader of Real Estate Center Sees Emerging Realities of Field

REAL ESTATE: Dawn Eisenberg Stresses Need for Students to Be Multitalented

As the new director of San Diego State University’s The Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate, Dawn Eisenberg’s top goals include bracing students for work in an industry where competition for jobs remains as tough as ever. And client expectations for those who do find work have been raised significantly.

New Kaiser Facility Part of Area’s Health Care Expansions

HEALTH: Systems Build For New Care Model and Increase in Patient Load

Kaiser Permanente has opened a new $32 million medical office building in Carmel Valley that it expects will serve more than 157,000 residents in North County — marking it the latest in a steady stream of ambitious health care construction projects in the region.

Trolley Expansion Creates a Multitude of Business Opportunities

TRANSPORTATION: Sandag Will Present Details Of Work Needed Sept. 11

Disadvantaged and small businesses will have a place in the large construction project to build a new San Diego Trolley route linking Old Town and University Towne Center.

Smartphone App from UC San Diego Monitors Treatment Regimens

HEALTH: System Provides Solution to Controlling the Spread of Infectious Disease

Area researchers have teamed up with the Verizon Foundation to develop a smartphone app designed to help tuberculosis patients stick to their treatment regimens.

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Sycuan Band Triples Acreage of Its Reservation

PROPERTY: Tribe Sees Opportunities for Housing and Preservation

The Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation expanded the acreage of its reservation east of El Cajon nearly threefold this month.

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New Airline Confident That It Will Be Certified

TRAVEL: Application Must Be Re-Submitted To FAA By Sept. 13

Despite facing another in a series of delays in its bid to obtain federal certification, California Pacific Airlines is standing by plans to offer regional commercial flights out of Carlsbad, perhaps in early 2014, the airline’s CEO says.

Business Forecast Aims to Bring Future into Focus

SDBJ Insider

Health care, technology and business consulting are the three fastest-growing industries in the region, according to a new business forecast launched by the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Silvergate Bank.

Views Are a Top Priority In Belmont Park Plans

PROPERTY: Coastal Commission Approves Plans

The California Coastal Commission has conditionally approved plans for a major renovation of the iconic Belmont Park in Mission Beach, whose history dates back to the 1920s.

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Maxwell Makes Energetic Recovery From Missteps

CLEAN-TECH: Investors Support Stock Again

Maxwell Technologies Inc. has been steadily recovering its value in the eyes of investors, partly by addressing accounting problems that sent its stock price tumbling in March, but perhaps more so by showing that it still makes products that have promising markets.

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Contractors May Be Put On Defense By New Rule

DEFENSE: Counterfeit Parts Concerns Drive Industry Change

The fallout from a Senate committee report about bogus electronic parts in the Defense Department supply chain will soon reach San Diego businesses, and it’s unclear whether they’ll be ready for it or what its impact will be.

Sequenom Cuts Expenses By Trimming Workforce

BIoTeCH: Reimbursement Issues Hurt Revenue Outlook

Sequenom Inc., a San Diego developer of genetic testing services, is laying off 75 employees — about 12 percent of its workforce — in hopes of trimming $10 million in annual expenses to offset lagging revenue, according to a regulatory filing.

Off to the Races

SPORT: A Successful Breeders’ Cup Bid Could Pay Big for the Region

The Breeders’ Cup World Championships, a 30-year-old horse racing event featuring a series of races over two days, could bring the largest crowds Del Mar’s landmark racetrack has ever seen while giving tourism in the area a boost during a typically slow part of the year.

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Filner Resigns; Business Community Had Been Calling for Change

Mayor Bob Filner said that he would resign Aug. 30 as part of a deal approved by the City Council in a 7-0 vote.

Qualcomm to Sell Omnitracs Inc. for $800M

Qualcomm Inc. agreed to sell wholly-owned subsidiary Omnitracs Inc. to Vista Equity Partners, an Austin, Texas, private equity group, for $800 million in cash, Qualcomm said.

SweetLabs’ Pokki Software to Be Included in Lenovo Products

Personal computer maker Lenovo will ship software from San Diego-based SweetLabs in its new products, SweetLabs said. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Oceanside Apartment Complex Sells for $7.49 Million

Koyl Real Estate Ventures of Placentia has purchased Hillside Gardens, a 58-unit apartment property in Oceanside, for $7.49 million, according to Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, which represented the buyer and seller.

Sophiris Closes Its IPO

La Jolla-based Sophiris Bio Inc. has closed its initial U.S. public offering. The company issued 13 million shares at $5 apiece for gross proceeds of $65 million.

Umami Sustainable Seafood Names New CEO

Umami Sustainable Seafood Inc., a San Diego operator of aquafarms in Mexico and Croatia, appointed Tim Fitzpatrick as its chief executive officer and a director on the company’s board.

The Business Calendar for Aug. 26.

Some of the business events happening for the week of Aug. 26.

Friday, August 23

New Auto Sales Are Up in County

Auto sales are up this year nearly 12 percent over 2012.

TaylorMade-addidas Golf Reports Q2 Sales of $454M

TaylorMade-addidas Golf, the Carlsbad based golf manufacturer, reported second quarter sales of $454 million, down 8 percent from the like quarter of last year, which the company blamed on unseasonably cool weather around the globe.

General Atomics ASI Awarded Army Contract Potentially Worth $30.5M

The U.S. Army awarded General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. a multiple-year contract that could be worth as much as $30.5 million.

Vical Announces Lay Offs of 47 Employees

San Diego-based biotech Vical Inc. will lay off 47 of its employees — about 39 percent of its workforce — after it ended development for its melanoma treatment, the company said.

Jersey Mike’s Opening 18th San Diego County Restaurant

New Jersey-based sandwich restaurant Jersey Mike’s Subs plans to open its 18th San Diego County location Aug. 28.

AMC Completes Multimillion-Dollar Upgrade of La Jolla Village Theater

AMC Theatres of Kansas City has completed a multimillion-dollar renovation of its AMC La Jolla 12 theater in San Diego’s La Jolla Village neighborhood.

EDF Renewable Announces Commercial Operation of Solar Plant

San Diego-based EDF Renewable Energy Inc. announced that its Catalina Solar Project, located in the Mojave Desert, has reached commercial operation.

Xifin Acquires PathCentral Inc.

Xifin Inc., a San Diego-based company that helps medical labs and physicians with their billing, has acquired Irvine-based PathCentral Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

Thursday, August 22

RedIT Receives $72M Investment in Common Stock

RedIT, a San Diego based IT services provider, said it obtained a $72 million investment in its common stock from two entities, Cartesian Capital Group and Digital Reality Trust.

County Construction Contracts Down 13 Percent from 2012

San Diego County contracts for future construction declined 13 percent from a year ago in the first seven months of 2013, according to data from McGraw Hill Construction.

Northrop Grumman Gets Navy Contract Modification Worth $27.6M

The U.S. Navy recently exercised an option on a contract with Northrop Grumman, giving the vendor more work on an experimental unmanned surveillance aircraft.

Life Technologies Stockholders Approve Merger

Carlsbad-based Life Technologies Corp. announced that its stockholders recently voted approval of the $13.6 billion merger with Waltham, Mass.-based Thermo Fisher Scientific.

Lakeside Industrial Building Sells for $7.4 Million

A Lakeside industrial building was bought for $7.4 million by construction products maker Oldcastle Prescast Inc. of Atlanta, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Supercomputer Center, SD Technology Launch IT Services Under Sherlock Brand

A local small business and the San Diego Supercomputer Center at University of California, San Diego are taking computer services to market using the Sherlock brand.

Wells Fargo to Lay Off 87 Locally From Mortgage Offices

Wells Fargo Bank, the San Francisco bank that is the country’s largest mortgage lender, said it’s cutting 87 employees mostly in two San Diego mortgage offices as part of a nationwide reduction in workforce caused by a slowing demand for mortgage refinancing.

Wednesday, August 21

Coastal Commission Grants Conditional Approval of Airport’s $316 Million Rental Car Center

The California Coastal Commission has granted conditional approval for a planned $316 million consolidated rental car center at San Diego International Airport.

Acutus Completes $28M Series B Financing Round

Acutus Medical Inc., a San Diego medical device company, has completed a $28 million Series B investment round.

Sequenom Is Laying Off 75 Workers

Sequenom Inc., a San Diego developer of genetic tests that diagnose fetal conditions, said it is laying off 75 employees — nearly 13 percent of its staff — as it attempts to collect revenue from Medicare, Medicaid and other insurers.

November Opening Planned for Imperial Beach Hotel, Restaurant

A November opening is planned for Pier South, a $34 million boutique hotel in Imperial Beach being built by San Diego-based Pacifica Cos., and its on-site full-service restaurant to be operated by locally headquartered Cohn Restaurant Group.

DermTech Raises $5.6M in Series B Funding

DermTech Inc., a La Jolla-based developer of skin cancer diagnostic technology, has raised $5.6 million in Series B funding.

Halbert Construction Selected to Compete for Navy Projects

El Cajon-based Halbert Construction Co. Inc. is among six small businesses selected to compete for U.S. Navy construction work on military bases in the northwest region of the United States.

Tuesday, August 20

Applied Proteomics Closes $28M Series C Financing Round

San Diego-based molecular-diagnostics company Applied Proteomics Inc. has closed a $28 million Series C financing round. With the investment, it will begin commercializing its diagnostic tools, the company said.

Startup Sparql City Raises Nearly $10M in Funding

Sparql City Inc. of San Diego received nearly $10 million in funding, it said in a recent securities filing.

Kratos Gets $10M Contract for Security System for a Mass Transit Authority

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. received a $10 million contract from an unnamed mass transit authority in the United States, the company said.

J&J Closes Aragon Pharmaceuticals Deal

Johnson & Johnson Inc. has closed on a $650 million acquisition of San Diego-based drugmaker Aragon Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Otay Mesa Industrial Land Sells for $3.6 Million

Kiernan Cos. of Coronado has purchased 10.1 acres of industrial land in Otay Mesa for $3.6 million.

BJ’s Sixth Local Restaurant to Open, in Mission Valley

Huntington Beach-based BJ’s Restaurants Inc. plans to open its sixth San Diego County location of BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse this fall, at Hazard Center in Mission Valley.

San Diego Private Bank Gets SBA Preferred Lender Status

San Diego Private Bank has been awarded Preferred Lender Program status by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the bank said.

Monday, August 19

Four Sorrento Mesa Office Buildings Part of $405 Million Prudential Purchase

Four Sorrento Mesa office buildings are among seven properties purchased by New Jersey-based Prudential Real Estate Investors, in a portfolio deal valued at $405 million.

UltraStar Partnership Will Develop Movie Theaters in China

Vista-based movie theater operator UltraStar Cinemas recently announced it has entered into a joint venture with China’s Letian Entertainment to develop and operate theaters in China.

San Diego Unemployment Rate Increased to 7.8% in July

San Diego County’s unemployment rate hit 7.8 percent in July, rising from a revised 7.4 percent in June, according to recent figures from the state Employment Development Department.

Sophiris Bio Stock Drops Nearly 17% Following IPO

Shares for La Jolla-based Sophiris Bio Inc. dropped nearly 17 percent after the drugmaker lowered the price of its initial public offering while increasing the number of shares it sold.

Callaway Makes Deals to Buy Back Some of Its Preferred Stock

Callaway Golf Co. reported recently that it struck private deals to issue 3.39 million shares of common stock in exchange for 233,843 shares of its outstanding 7.50 percent Series B Cumulative Perpetual Convertible Preferred Stock.

Sempra Orders 1.1 Million Solar Panels

San Diego-based Sempra Energy has ordered 1.1 million solar panels for its Nevada power plant from Changshou, China-based Trina Solar.

Brazilian Steakhouse Fogo de Chao Debuts Aug. 29 in Gaslamp Quarter

Fogo de Chao, a Dallas-based chain of Southern Brazilian-style steakhouses, plans an Aug. 29 opening for its newest restaurant in the Gaslamp Quarter.

The Business Events Calendar

Here is a list of some of the business events happening around the county this week.

Condo Developers Bet Cautiously on Downtown

PROPERTY: Inventory Tight, But Financing Favors Apartments

Developers such as Bosa Development Corp. are proceeding with plans to build new high-rise residential condominiums in downtown San Diego, while mindful that the market for them may not bounce back to its heights of the early 2000s.

North County Is Hot Spot for New Retail Projects

PROPERTY: Locations Are Desirable; Some of The Areas Underserved

North County is leading a rebound in retail construction as that sector of the local market slowly awakens from a years-long slumber brought on by the Great Recession and its aftermath.

For This Specialty E-Commerce Site, It All Begins With Service

RETAIL: Military, First Responders Guided To Discounts on GovX

A La Jolla-based e-commerce company has put a new and apparently lucrative twist on the concept of providing discounts to military personnel — a longstanding tradition for many businesses.

Stone Brewing Ranks 2nd in National Poll

SDBJ Insider

Hoist one for San Diego’s craft brewing industry. Escondido’s Stone Brewing Co. ranks No. 2 on a list of the top 15 craft beer makers in the U.S., according to a tabulation of 11,500 voters asked to choose from a select field of 72 brewers by a USA Today poll.

Treatment Plans

MEDICINE: Scripps Sees Partnerships as Key To Its New Proton Therapy

Scripps Health is talking with the University of California, San Diego and other health systems to recruit physicians and their patients for cancer treatment as it prepares to open its $225 million Proton Therapy Center in the fall.

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Kratos Spots Opening in Drone Space

AEROSPACE: It Sees Need for Fast, Stealthy Aircraft

Eric DeMarco admits he was holding something back in spring 2012 when he announced that his company, Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc., was buying Composite Engineering Inc., a Sacramento aerospace business.

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Ships Get Firepower And Staying Power

DEFENSE: BAE Makes Various Upgrades on Navy Ships

San Diego-based U.S. Navy ships are getting the latest version of the Aegis combat system, as well as other upgrades, with the help of BAE Systems.

An Olympic Effort Can Bring Gains to Region

SPORT: Try for 2024 Games Bid Seen as Catalyst for Change

Competing to be the city offered in a U.S. Olympic Committee bid to host the 2024 Summer Olympic Games could be a boon to San Diego, regardless of whether such efforts succeed in bringing the international event here.

The San Diego Foundation Awards $2.1M in Scholarships


The San Diego Foundation awarded more than $2.1 million in scholarships to 800 recipients. “We are committed to ensuring a quality education is within reach of every San Diegan, and we are grateful for the generous donors and volunteers who share that conviction to make it happen,” said Bob Kelly, president and CEO of The San Diego Foundation.

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Executive Profile: Robin Gomez

Robin Gomez is administrator for Alvarado Hospital Medical Center. She oversees the strategic direction, operations and physician relations, as well as maintaining overall leadership responsibility for the hospital. She has more than 20 years of health care experience in management positions in Southern California.

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Sharp Healthcare Achieves First Year Success as Pioneer ACO

HEALTH: Of Original ‘Pioneer 32’ ACOs, 23 Remain in Program

Sharp HealthCare is keen on moving forward with its Medicare Pioneer accountable care organization after breaking even in its first year. Sharp’s intentions are notable since nearly a third of the 32 Pioneer ACOs have recently dropped out of the government’s ambitious cost- cutting program for health care.

Health Care on Hold

INSURANCE: A Delay In Employer Mandate Is Welcome News to Some

The service industry is the main beneficiary of the recent announcement by the Obama administration that businesses will no longer face steep government fines if they don’t provide health insurance in 2014.

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Vical Changes Course After Melanoma Drug Fails in Clinical Trials

Biotechnology Column

San Diego-based Vical Inc.’s recent stock plummet is testament to how critical late-stage trials are for any drugmaker — and how costly a failure in the clinic can be. Shares plunged 57 percent after the company announced its melanoma treatment did not work.

San Diego’s Metro Industrial Market Ranks 17th in the Nation

Real Estate Column

The San Diego region ranks No. 17 on this year’s list of the nation’s best performing metro industrial markets, put out annually by Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc.

Qualcomm Puts Some Muscle Behind Fitbit’s Wearable Devices

Technology Column

Qualcomm Ventures is one of several entities that have put money behind a company that makes wearable, wireless devices that track activity, sleep and general fitness.

Failing Bank’s TARP Take Highlights Regulatory Breakdown

Finance Column

Bank regulators are not infallible. For proof that more than a few of them were asleep during the years leading to the Great Recession, check out the Inspector General’s audit on the failure of Pacific Coast National Bank, based in San Clemente and with a branch in Encinitas.

New Planning Director Sees Active Role for Himself and City

GOVERNMENT: Goal Is to Streamline, Guide Smart-Growth Projects

Former Ventura Mayor Bill Fulton was recently hired as the city of San Diego’s planning director, but the seeds of a career in urban planning were sown early in life.

The UPS Store Begins to Shape Plan to Profit From 3-D Printing

RETAIL: Local Store Is First to Test Offering Of Manufacturing Service

You can make a lot of things with a three-dimensional printer, but a retail business model wouldn’t seem to be one of them — or would it?

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Jack Thinks Inside the Box for Its New CEO

DINING: Company Veteran Leonard Comma Groomed For Top Role

In its commercials, San Diego-based Jack in the Box Inc. often comes off edgy, unpredictable and unconventional, which suits its target demographic, young men who are 18-34 years old, just fine.

Friday, August 16

Fate Therapeutics Plans $69M IPO

Fate Therapeutics Inc., a company developing stem cell transplants for blood cancer patients, recently proposed a $69 million initial public offering with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Navy Awards Two San Diego Companies Multimillion-Dollar Contracts for Radio Work

The U.S. Navy awarded two San Diego-based businesses — Koam Engineering Systems Inc. and Tactical Engineering & Analysis Inc. — multimillion-dollar contracts to test radios and other electronics.

Jack in the Box Expands Franchising with Restaurant Sales

San Diego-based fast food chain Jack in the Box Inc. said it has sold 27 of its restaurants around the country, and plans to refranchise an additional 29 by the close of the fiscal year.

Content Management Company Seismic Receives $4.5M in VC Funding

Encinitas-based technology company Seismic received $4.5 million in venture capital, the company said.

NuVasive Gets New London Office to Work on Expanding European Market Share

San Diego-based NuVasive Inc., a maker of surgical products for the spine, is expanding and relocating its office in the United Kingdom.

General Atomics ASI Tests Drone as Electronic Warfare Platform

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. disclosed recently that it was testing its Predator B unmanned aircraft as an electronic warfare platform.

Thursday, August 15

InfoSonics Reports Sales of $8.3M in Q2

InfoSonics Corp., the San Diego distributor of cellphones mainly in Central and South America, reported net sales of $8.3 million for the second quarter, up 3 percent from the like quarter of 2012.

Kratos to Supply Satellite Control System to Telkom Indonesia

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. said recently that one of its business units received a contract from Indonesia’s biggest telecommunications companies. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Local Translation Service Receives Contract for Work on Iraq Documents

A San Diego-based translation service has taken on a unique assignment: translating documents related to the Iraqi government’s 1988 chemical weapons attack on Halabja, a town in the country’s northern, Kurdish region.

Oceanside Apartment Property Sold for $6.15 Million

Sjn Properties LLC of La Jolla has purchased Hillside Gardens, a 44-unit apartment building in Oceanside, for $6.15 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Kaiser Opens New Medical Office Building in Carmel Valley

Kaiser Permanente has opened a new medical office building in Carmel Valley that it expects will serve more than 157,000 residents in La Jolla, Carmel Valley and other parts of the North County.

Arcturus Therapeutics Acquires Patent Portfolio from Marina Biotech

San Diego-based Arcturus Therapeutics Inc., a biotech startup founded earlier this year, has acquired about 30 patents from Cambridge, Mass.-based Marina Biotech Inc. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Chamber and Bank Partner for New Monthly Business Report

The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Silvergate Bank launched a new monthly report called the San Diego County Business Forecast to give insight into future local business trends.

San Marcos Mobile Home Park Sells for $5.5 Million

El Dorado Park, a mobile home park in San Marcos, has been purchased for $5.5 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Wednesday, August 14

Cubic Corp. Receives $54.5M Service Contract From LA Metro

Cubic Corp. said that it received a $54.5 million contract to service its mass transit fare collection equipment in the Los Angeles area.

GenMark Announces $60M Secondary Offering of Common Stock

Carlsbad-based GenMark Diagnostics Inc. has announced a $60 million secondary offering of its common stock.

San Ysidro Retail Center Sells for $43.5 Million

TKG Management Inc. of Columbia, Mo., has purchased San Ysidro Village, an 11-building shopping center in San Ysidro, for $43.5 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Sophiris Announces Share Consolidation in Preparation for U.S. IPO

La Jolla-based Sophiris Bio Inc., on track to complete a $65 million initial public offering on the Nasdaq later this week, announced a 52-1 consolidation of its common shares traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Vista Retail Center Part of $332 Million Deal

The Vista Village retail center in Vista is among seven properties being acquired in a $332 million deal by DDR Corp. and an affiliate of Blackstone Real Estate Partners VII LP.

Kyriba Raises $18.2M in Series B Financing

Kyriba, a San Diego firm that makes cash management software, said it completed an $18.2 million Series B investment round led by new investor Daher Capital.

SkillStorm Plans to Re-enter Government Consulting Space

SkillStorm is getting back into the government services arena after a three-year absence, according to Brian Noerr, area vice president for sales and operations.

Tuesday, August 13

Online Series Tells San Diego’s Story of Entrepreneurship

San Diego’s entrepreneurial landscape is being featured as a model for other communities as part of an online series by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a private, nonpartisan foundation that promotes entrepreneurship.

Encore Captial’s Collections Increase 16% for Q2

Encore Capital Group, the San Diego collector of charged-off credit card debt, reported second quarter gross collections of $278.4 million, up 16 percent from the same period of last year.

Vical Shares Plummet as Key Drug Fails Trial

Shares for San Diego-based Vical Inc. plunged 57 percent after the drugmaker announced its melanoma treatment failed in clinical trials.

General Atomics ASI Receives Contract Worth Up to $26.2M for Extending Range of Reaper

The U.S. Air Force awarded General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. a contract worth tens of millions of dollars to extend the range of its Reaper remotely piloted aircraft.

Torrey Pines Investment to Commit Up to $20M to a Cleveland Biotech Accelerator

Torrey Pines Investment has committed up to $20 million to Cleveland-based biotech accelerator BioMotiv LLC to help fund early stage life sciences companies.

El Cajon Apartments Sold for $4 Million

Ballantyne Villas LLC of Tustin has purchased the 40-unit Gold Coast Apartments in El Cajon for $4 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Biocom Calls for Mayor Filner’s Resignation

Biocom, the trade association of San Diego’s life sciences industry, became the latest group to call for Mayor Bob Filner to resign.

Monday, August 12

Local Resale Home Sales up 5% in July

Resale home sales in San Diego County in July increased 5 percent over the June numbers, while the median housing price stayed flat, according to the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors.

CareFusion Earnings Increase 14% for Q4

San Diego-based medical equipment maker CareFusion Corp.’s fourth quarter earnings rose 14 percent.

Carmel Mountain Ranch Industrial Building Sells for $9.2 Million

A Carmel Mountain Ranch industrial building has been sold for approximately $9.2 million, for eventual use by Millennium Laboratories.

Mad Catz Posts Nearly $2.1M Loss for Q1

Mad Catz Interactive Inc., a San Diego-based provider of interactive gaming, posted a nearly $2.1 million loss during its fiscal 2014 first quarter, which ended June 30.

Defense Department to Buy Up to $6.6M in Medicine From Cadence Pharmaceuticals

The U.S. Department of Defense said it will buy up to $6.6 million worth of acetaminophen injections from San Diego-based Cadence Pharmaceuticals Inc.

There’s a Line to Get In Gaslamp Properties

PROPERTY: Tight Retail Market Drawing Investors

Commercial broker Danny Fitzgerald’s firm has fielded more than a dozen offers for the space being vacated by the popular Croce’s restaurant in the heart of the Gaslamp Quarter. A new tenant could be announced in mid-September by the property’s landlord, the Keating Hotel. Many of those queries are from major national and global restaurant industry players.

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SDBJ Names Managing Editor

The San Diego Business Journal has named a new managing editor. Tony Quesada joined the SDBJ Aug. 5 from the Austin (Texas) Business Journal, where he was the managing editor for five years.

Incubator to Tailor Wearable Devices for Medicine

HEALTH: Qualcomm, Palomar Health Support The Software Research

A new medical technology incubator formed by executives from Palomar Health and Qualcomm Life Inc. aims to help software companies develop health care applications for wearable devices such as smart watches, implants and Google Glass.

Port to Vote on Hiring Consultant for Master Plan

PORT: Blueprint for Next 50 Years Would Begin to Take Shape

The San Diego Unified Port District’s board of commissioners is scheduled to vote Aug. 13 on hiring a consultant to begin crafting a 50-year master plan.

Farming Acreage Increases in The County

SDBJ Insider

Agriculture, already an important activity in the region, has been growing, so to speak. The county’s crop values increased 4 percent to $1.75 billion, according to the annual agricultural report released by the county Farm Bureau and the county’s agriculture commissioner.

Funding Will Facilitate Trials, Hiring at aTyr

BIOTECH: Drugmaker Focused On Rare Autoimmune Diseases

San Diego drugmaker aTyr Pharma Inc. will spend its $59 million in recent financing to hire more researchers, expand the company’s patent portfolio and bring a novel class of protein-based therapies to clinical trial. The company, which targets rare autoimmune diseases that have no approved treatments, also plans to expand its pipeline of drugs.

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Leap’s Execs May See Severance Top $50M

TELECOM: AT&T Deal to Trigger Payouts to 7 Officers

The seven top executives of Leap Wireless International Inc. would receive more than $50 million in severance and stock payments once the sale of the company to AT&T Inc. is completed, according to the agreement covering the transaction.

Business Group Calls For Mayor to Resign

GOVERNMENT: Leaders Say Scandal Damaging City

A San Diego business group is formally asking embattled San Diego Mayor Bob Filner to resign.

In Good Company

WORKFORCE: Best Places to Work Earn Employees’ Admiration

John Rooney believes the workplace must be more than a place where people merely show up every morning.

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Wine Classic Raises Glasses and Funds in Support of USD

Kudos/Giving Column

The University of San Diego raised more than $50,000 at the 5th Annual Wine Classic. The funds raised will benefit the Alumni Endowed Scholarship Fund, which supports USD students. More than 750 people attended the event, which featured USD-affiliated wineries, gourmet food stations, live music and a silent auction.

Real Estate Roundup

Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around San Diego County

Cushman & Wakefield announced the sale of 1081 Poinsettia Ave. in Vista for $5,562,500. Joe McDermott of Cushman & Wakefield represented the buyer, B Group Holdings LLC. The seller, Symphony Asset Pool XIV LLC, was represented by Henry Zahner and Jon Busse of Colliers International.

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Executive Profile: Keri Robinson

Keri Robinson is the general manager of The Westin San Diego Gaslamp Quarter and the area managing director for Starwood Hotels & Resorts in Southern California. Robinson is directly responsible for the Westin hotel and provides operational support to the Starwood managed hotels in San Diego and Orange County. She has been with Starwood/ITT Sheraton for 27 years and held various corporate and property level leadership roles in Southern California and the state of Washington.

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Meeting and Exceeding Expectations

MEETINGS: Local Business Gathering Sites Give Guests an Experience

For groups that are looking for places to meet that are beyond the confines of conference rooms and banquet halls, San Diego County is a prime destination.

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Group Gives Thanks, Praise to Attorneys for Pro Bono Work

The Business of Law Column

The San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program is putting on its annual Justice for All Celebration Sept. 19. It’s a fun event, and you should be there.

Silvergate Bank’s Recession-era Lending Strategy Results in Growth

Finance Column

The clouds that once darkened one local bank appear to be burning off to reveal their silver lining. About five years ago as the recession was unfolding, the prospects for Silvergate Bank looked rather dim.

Life Science Real Estate Leasing Stable, Moderate Growth Ahead

Real Estate Column

The general pull-back in San Diego County’s office market “flight to quality” that dominated the climate from 2010 through mid-2012 has not held true for life science real estate.

Roth’s Death Is Big Loss for Entrepreneurial Community

Biotechnology Column

With the death of Duane Roth, CEO of Connect, the San Diego technology community has lost a passionate advocate, astute businessman, a mentor and a friend, those who knew him said.

Film Commission Victim of Tourism Authority Budget Woes

FILM: Local Industry Seeks to Reinvent Self; No Permit Process in Place

Film production experts say the demise of the San Diego Film Commission, amid budget cutting by the region’s tourism authority, marks an opportunity to remake the infrastructure of an industry that generates more than $15 million annually for the local economy.

Happy Owl’s Cash Registers Help Merchants Make the Sale

RETAIL: iPad-enabled Transactions Made Easier With Firm’s Tools, Services

A small iPad accessory company wants to carve a niche for itself by piggybacking on the growing mobile credit and debit card processing market.

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Indian Gaming Revenue Increases in California-N. Nevada Region

GAMING: 2012 Data for 64 Casinos in Region Puts Total at $7 B

Casino gaming revenue on American Indian reservations in California and northern Nevada grew 1.4 percent to $7.0 billion in 2012, according to recently released federal data.

New System Signals a Change in Crosswalk Technology Setup

TECH: McCain Inc.’s Redesign Creates Safer Paths for Pedestrians

The city of Chula Vista recently turned to a Vista-based company for a new solution to an old problem: how to make a crosswalk near an elementary school safer.

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Friday, August 9

Chase Cutting 730 Positions in Rancho Bernardo, About 15,000 Companywide

Chase Bank notified 730 employees at its Rancho Bernardo mortgage servicing office that it’s cutting all positions there as part of a companywide restructuring that will eliminate about 15,000 jobs.

Jack in the Box CEO Linda Lang Retiring; Company Names New CEO

Linda Lang, chairman and chief executive officer at San Diego based Jack in the Box, is retiring from the job at the end of this year, the company said.

U.S. Olympic Committee Group Expected to Assess San Diego as Potential Bidder for 2024 Games

A group from the U.S. Olympic Committee is expected to visit San Diego in September or October to assess the region as a potential site for the 2024 Olympic Games, said the chairman of a local exploratory committee formed to make a bid on the event.

Economist Nevin Heads New Research Division at Xpera

Solana Beach-based Xpera Group, which provides construction and related real estate consulting services, has launched a new economic and market research division, led by locally based real estate economist Alan Nevin.

Kratos to Enter Unmanned Combat Aerial Systems Business

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc. will be getting into the unmanned combat aerial systems business, the company said.

DexCom Stock Rises on 2nd Quarter Earnings Report

Shares for DexCom Inc., a San Diego maker of blood glucose monitors, shot up 21 percent after the company posted its second quarter earnings.

Novatel Reports Net Loss of $7.9M for Quarter

Wireless communication hardware maker Novatel Wireless recently reported a net loss of $7.9 million on revenue of $91.1 million in the quarter ended June 30.

Pulse Electronics Reports Net Loss of $5.2M for Q2

Pulse Electronics Corp., a San Diego-based maker of electronic components, reported a second-quarter net loss of $5.2million on sales of $88.3 million.

Thursday, August 8

Sempra Reports Net Income of $245M in Q2

Sempra Energy reported second quarter net income of $245 million, compared with $62 million for the like quarter of 2012.

BioMed Posts 2nd Quarter Increases in Revenue, Net Income

San Diego-based BioMed Realty Trust Inc., which invests in life-sciences real estate, reported gains in revenue and net income for its second quarter ending June 30.

Santarus Stock Rises on Q2 Earnings Report

Shares for San Diego specialty drugmaker Santarus Inc. rose 10 percent after it posted better-than-expected second quarter earnings that improved its financial outlook for the year.

Sorrento Mesa Office Building Sold for $4.3 Million

Vista View Plaza, a multi-tenant office building in Sorrento Mesa, has been purchased for $4.3 million.

ImageWare Receives $2.2M Contract From Veterans Department

ImageWare Systems Inc. said it received a $2.2 million contract from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The San Diego company will expand biometric identity management services for the federal agency.

Assay Depot Launches Research Exchange With National Cancer Institute

Solana Beach-based Assay Depot Inc. has launched an online medical research exchange with the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Cancer Research.

Wednesday, August 7

Adamis Is Buying Inhaler Technology from 3M

San Diego-based Adamis Pharmaceuticals Corp. announced it will buy 3M Co.’s asthma inhaler technology for an undisclosed sum.

Bridgepoint Reports 2nd Quarter Earnings

Bridgepoint Education, the San Diego provider of college courses mainly through online channels, reported second quarter net income of $10.4 million compared with $43.3 million for the like quarter of 2012. Revenue was $197.6 million, compared with $256.3 million in the second quarter of 2012.

Jack in the Box Uses 6-Second Videos to Sell on Social Media

Jack in the Box Inc. recently introduced an advertising campaign in an unconventional format: 6-second videos from New York-based Vine Labs Inc.

Freedom Meditech Raises $7M in Series B Financing

Freedom Meditech Inc., a San Diego-based maker of devices that detect disease in the eye, has received $7 million in Series B financing to help advance its launch of a new eye scanner, the company announced.

RF Industries Sells a Division to Raveon

RF Industries, the San Diego maker of cable assemblies and radio frequency connectors, said it sold its RF Neulink division to Raveon Technologies Corp. for an undisclosed price.

Wingstop Opens 7th Local Restaurant, Plans More

Texas-based Wingstop Restaurants Inc. recently opened its seventh location in San Diego County. The newest, the third in the city of San Diego, is at 1901 El Cajon Blvd.

Jimbo’s to Conduct Hiring Fair at Newest Location

Locally based natural-foods grocer Jimbo’s… Naturally has scheduled a hiring fair at Westfield Horton Plaza in downtown San Diego, where its fifth store location will open in September.

Tuesday, August 6

Connect CEO Duane J. Roth Dies From Injuries Suffered in Biking Accident

Connect CEO Duane J. Roth died Aug. 3 from a brain injury he sustained during a July 21 biking accident near Lake Cuyamaca.

Cubic Corp. Reports Net Income of $18.4M for Q3

Cubic Corp., the San Diego defense contractor and provider of automated fare collection systems, reported fiscal 2013 third quarter net income of $18.4 million, compared with net income of $26.7 million for the like quarter of 2012.

ViaSat Awarded Navy Contract Worth $21.7M

The U.S. Navy awarded Carlsbad-based ViaSat Inc. a $21.7 million delivery order for communications electronics.

Excel Reports Revenue, Income Gains in Second Quarter

Excel Trust Inc. posted gains in revenue and funds from operations in its second quarter ending June 30.

Local REIT Sees Second Quarter Revenue Increase

San Diego-based Retail Opportunity Investments Corp., also known as ROIC, reported gains in revenue and funds from operations in its second quarter ending June 30.

Voxox Partnership to Provide Telecom Services in Africa

San Diego-based Voxox said that it is on a team that will provide telecom services in Africa — specifically the West Coast countries of Gambia, Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Monday, August 5

Organovo Announces $40.5M Common Stock Offering

San Diego-based Organovo Holdings Inc. has announced a $40.5 million public offering of its common stock. The company said the offering of 9 million shares will be priced at $4.50 per share. Net proceeds are expected to be about $37.7 million, Organovo said.

Tri-City Healthcare Buys 2 Buildings Housing Some of Its Facilities for $47M

Tri-City Healthcare District, which operates Tri-City Medical Center in Oceanside, said it has purchased both the 58,000-square-foot building, occupied by Tri-City Wellness Center, and the adjacent 25,000-square-foot Medical Office Building for $47 million.

Air Force Awards General Atomics ASI $39.5M Contract

The U.S. Air Force recently awarded General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. a $39.5 million contract for modifications to its Reaper unmanned aircraft and ground control stations.

Business Leadership Alliance Calls for Mayor Filner’s Resignation

The San Diego Business Leadership Alliance, a group made up of 44 business organizations, approved a motion calling on Mayor Bob Filner to resign.

Nassco to Receive $13.1M for Work on USS Peleliu

General Dynamics Nassco will receive slightly more than $13 million for work on the amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu, the Pentagon announced recently.

ServiceNow Reports Net Loss of $21.4M for Q2

ServiceNow, the San Diego-based provider of information technology services via the cloud, reported second quarter net loss of $21.4 million, compared with a net loss of $8.7 million for the like quarter of 2012.

Safe Manufacturer Buys Vista Building for $5.56M

B Group Holdings LLC, doing business as Brown Safe Manufacturing, has purchased a Vista industrial property for approximately $5.56 million.

Business Events Calendar

Business events in and around San Diego County for the week of Aug. 5- Aug.11.

Project Designs Get the Ball Rolling Again on Ballpark Village

PROPERTY: 1ST Phase Calls for 634 Residences Along With Retail Space

Heightened demand for downtown apartments has revived plans for Ballpark Village, a mixed-use East Village development that was approved by city planners in 2005 but stalled by the recession.

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Smart Growth Is Part of Plan for La Mesa

PROPERTY: Mixed-Use Project Seen as Catalyst

Developers are in early planning stages for Park Station, a proposed $200 million mixed-use project that would bring more than 400 multifamily residential units, retail and related commercial elements to downtown La Mesa over the next five to 10 years.

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Telemedicine Industry Leaders Gather at SDBJ’s Panel Discussion

HEALTH: Nascent Industry Is Seen As an Important Addition to Patient Care

Telemedicine may still be in its infancy, but it’s growing up fast. It could soon become a widespread reality among hospitals, businesses and the nation’s patient core, according to a panel that spoke at the San Diego Business Journal’s recent panel discussion, “2013 Technology Transforming Business: Telemedicine.”

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Proposed Bank Merger Could Result in ‘Formidable Company’

Finance Column

PacWest Bancorp, parent of Pacific Western Bank, which operates 18 branches in the county, caused a bit of buzz recently when it announced a $2.3 billion merger with CapitalSource Inc., an industrial loan company based in Los Angeles.

VC Backing Is aTyr’s Ticket to Clinical Trials for Its Proteins

News keeps rolling in about the biotechs bringing in the big bucks. This just in: San Diego’s aTyr Pharma Inc. has secured $59 million in funding — $49 million from venture sources and $10 million in debt financing. Investors in the equity financing include Alta Partners, Cardinal Partners, Domain Associates and Polaris Partners.

Peregrine Semiconductor Reports Q2 Results; Revenue Up 20 Percent

FINANCE: Shares Rise On News, Analysts Recommend a Buy

Peregrine Semiconductor Corp., the San Diego maker of high performance chips contained in a host of wireless devices and delivery systems, continued its fast growth curve in the second quarter with $52.4 million in revenue, up 20 percent from the like quarter of last year.

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Qualcomm Collaboration to Tackle Wireless Capacity Crunch

TECH: It Takes Stake In Alcatel-Lucent to Work On Small Cell Use

Qualcomm Inc. has taken a small stake in the French-based communications gear provider Alcatel-Lucent, and has embarked on a joint research and development project.

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Robotics Firm Finds a Field Of Opportunity in Agriculture

TECH: Robots Being Designed to Tend, Harvest Crops

The grapevines outside Vision Robotics Corp. are long gone. They’re nothing more than deadwood. Still, their lifeless forms serve a purpose.

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Lindbergh Field’s Green Build Is Far From Plain

AIRPORT: August 13 Brings New Touches, Tastes and Conveniences

Lindbergh Field’s Terminal 2’s Green Build, the $1 billion makeover and expansion being unveiled publicly Aug. 13, features a much easier access and exiting roadway, touches of brilliant innovation, mesmerizing artwork, and a whole lot more food choices.

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Tourism Authority Budget Logjam Forces Layoffs

TOURISM: Despite Increased Airline Passenger Traffic, Hotel Stays Lag

Local tourism promotion leaders will be spending the rest of 2013 dealing with a downsized budget and staff, as the San Diego region seeks to answer rising competition from other destinations amid slowing growth in its own hotel performance metrics.

Domain, Rusano Put Big Money Behind ReVision

SDBJ Insider

In partnership with RusanoMedInvest, a Russian government agency focused on commercializing nanotechnology, local VC firm Domain Associates has participated in a $55 million investment in OC-based private biotech concern ReVision Optics.

San Diego Takes a Bow In Sale of 2 Biotechs

PHARMA: Cubist Buys Trius, Optimer for Work on Antibiotics

Targeting a growing worldwide need for powerful new antibiotics, Lexington, Mass.-based Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc. has acquired two biotechs with San Diego connections in a deal that could be worth up to $1.62 billion.

C.W. Driver Acquires Good & Roberts Inc.

BUILDERS: Number and Scope of Projects Can Increase

C.W. Driver, already among the local region’s largest general contractors, has acquired Vista-based construction firm Good & Roberts Inc., as it seeks to broaden its presence in the burgeoning technology and life-sciences markets.

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STARTUP: LifeProof and ecoATM Acquisitions Profitable for Investors

Neither ecoATM nor LifeProof, two San Diego startup businesses that were recently acquired, were looking to sell, but when a deal was proposed, they jumped at it.

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Upgraded Network Shows Need for Speed

TECH: 100 Gigabit Capability To Change Way We Do Business

Hollywood has a storage problem. American Internet Services has a solution. Movies involve large amounts of data. San Diego-based AIS serves the entertainment industry by moving very large data sets that Burbank production houses generate, and storing them in places such as San Diego or Arizona.

Real Estate Roundup

Projects, developments and other activity in cities in and around San Diego County

T-Squared Professional Engineers Inc. of Vista provided the mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineering design for the Transitional Living Center at the Margaret A. Cargill Door of Hope Campus for the Salvation Army.

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Nonprofit Profile: Jeffrey Essakow

Twenty years ago this October, Jeffrey Essakow worked with Bob Babbitt and Rick Kozlowski to put on a fundraising event at La Jolla Cove — the first San Diego Triathlon Challenge. From that initial effort, the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) was born. Now, more than $47 million has been raised and 8,200 physically challenged athletes around the world have been funded.

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Regional Report

News and notes from communities around San Diego County

Stone Brewing Co. said it plans to distribute its line of ales in Alabama beginning Aug. 27, with the help of Birmingham-based International Wines & Craft Beer. Alabama will be the 40th state to get the company’s products.

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Reverse Merger Helps Ocera Therapeutics to Move Forward

BIOTECH: A Private Placement Also Adds $20M to Firm’s Funding

Stock prices initially fluctuated for San Diego’s Ocera Therapeutics Inc. ever since its unusual reverse merger with Research Triangle Park, N.C.-based Tranzyme Pharma Inc. The combined company is public and began trading on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol OCRX on July 16.

Friday, August 2

PKL Services Inc. Receives $16.3M Navy Contract

Poway-based PKL Services Inc. received a $16.3 million contract modification from the U.S. Navy for work on U.S. Marine Corps helicopters.

Life Technologies Opens New DNA Forensics Lab in India

Carlsbad-based Life Technologies Corp. announced it has opened a new DNA forensics laboratory in Gurgaon, India. The lab will provide DNA profiling services aimed, in particular, to help the police force identify criminals or dead bodies, the company said.

San Diego County Credit Union Reports Net Income of $22.8M for Q2

San Diego County Credit Union, the area’s largest credit union with $6.2 billion in total assets, reported second quarter net income of $22.8 million.

Trovagene Inc. Closes Registered Direct Offering of $15M in Common Stock

San Diego molecular diagnostics company Trovagene Inc. has closed a registered direct offering of $15 million in common stock at a price of $7 per share. The shares were sold directly to one of the company’s unnamed institutional investors.

Silvergate Bank Reports Net Income of $1.37M for Q2

Silvergate Bank, based in University City and with five offices, reported second quarter net income of $1.37 million, down from last year’s second quarter when it had $1.46 million in net income.

American Assets Trust Reports 10 Percent Income Rise for Q2

American Assets Trust Inc. saw same-location operating income rise 10 percent from a year ago in its second quarter ending June 30, with overall funds from operations rising 23 percent.

Leap Wireless International Reports Net Loss of $163M for Q2

Leap Wireless International Inc., which agreed to be acquired by AT&T last month for $15 per share or $1.2 billion, reported second quarter net loss of $163 million, compared with a net loss of $41.6 million for the like period of 2012.

County Construction Contracts Drop 17 Percent in First Half

San Diego County’s contracts for future construction in the first half of 2013 declined 17 percent from the same period of 2012, according to newly released data from McGraw Hill Construction. Projects totaled just over $1.6 billion in the January-to-June period.

Thursday, August 1

Kabe Exploration Rejects Tender Offer

The board of directors of San Diego-based Kabe Exploration rejected a tender offer to purchase the company which was made earlier this month by International Equity Partners Oil & Gas.

UPS Store to Offer 3-D Printing

The UPS Store said recently that it will offer 3-D printing services at its outlets, beginning with San Diego store locations. The UPS Store plans to use the Stratasys uPrint SE Plus model.

Training Organization Buys Kearny Mesa Building for $8.15M

An industrial building at 7650 Convoy Court in Kearny Mesa has been purchased by the Los Angeles-based Apprentice & Journeymen Training Trust Fund, for $8.15 million.

Trius Shares Rise on Acquisition News

Stock shot up 20 percent for San Diego’s Trius Therapeutics Inc. after it announced it was acquired by Lexington, Mass.-based Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc.

SD Sports Innovators Accepting Applications for Free Mentoring Program

SD Sports Innovators, a business accelerator for the active sports industry, is accepting applications for Springboard 2.0, a free mentoring program.