Los Angeles Business Journal


Elon Musk No Stranger to Online Trolls

Elon Musk has been the target of numerous online critics that decry the business practices of his companies, such as Tesla and SpaceX, according to Bloomberg. However, questions are being raised about whether his business rivals could be behind some of the attacks.

Stocks Fall

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 12 points in early Wednesday trading to 19,036. The S&P 500 fell 7 points to 2,196. The Nasdaq fell 28 points to 5,358. The LABJ stock index dropped 1 point to 225.

Silicon Beach Report Nov. 22: Hyperloop One Planning Self-Driving Vehicles

Hyperloop One planning self-driving vehicles, SpaceX selected for NASA’s earth survey mission, and Riot negotiating $90M deal to stream League of Legends.

Participant Media’s TakePart to Shut Down Website Operations

Jeff Skoll’s Participant Media is shuttering its digital division, TakePart. The social impact-focused news website that launched in 2008 and also functioned as a marketing arm for Participant’s film division will no longer operate after the end of this year, according to a source at the company.

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Fast-Fashion Firm Stretched Too Thin

APPAREL: Nasty Gal’s quick rise, growth end in bankruptcy.

The clock appears to have struck midnight for the Cinderella of tech. The nickname was given to Sophia Amoruso, the young founder of clothing retailer and manufacturer Nasty Gal in a 2013 New York Times article for her ability to seemingly turn cast-off vintage clothes into hundreds of millions of dollars – within six years of its founding the company’s sales hit a reported $100 million. This month, however, the magic ran out, as the company filed for bankruptcy protection, saying it didn’t have enough money to pay employees at the end of November.

Stocks Rise Again

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 67 points in Tuesday trading to 19,024. The S&P 500 rose 5 points to 2,203. The Nasdaq rose 17 points to 5,386. The LABJ stock index stayed steady at 226.

NBCUniversal Doubles Investment in Buzzfeed

NBCUniversal is making another $200 million investment in Buzzfeed after investing $200 million in the company last year, Variety reports. The companies plan to extend their advertising-sales relationship and collaborate with NBCU’s Content Studio to make short-form digital video content for advertisers and “create new digital consumer experiences.”

Six Injured During Test Drive at L.A. Auto Show

Six people were injured on Monday when a 2017 Fiat 500e on a test drive at the Los Angeles Auto show struck a cement planter, sending debris flying, near the DTLA Convention Center, the Daily News reports. Eight people were evaluated for non-life-threatening injuries and six were taken to the hospital, including the man who was driving the car.

Snapchat Pop-Up Shops Attract Hundreds

Hundreds of people lined up for hours on Monday in New York for a chance to buy Snapchat Spectacles from a “Snapbot” vending machine in a pop-up store off Fifth Avenue, The New York Times reports. Venice-based Snapchat has kept the locations of its pop-up stores secret, and the shops have shown up around the Los Angeles area, Tulsa Okla,, and even at the Grand Canyon. The sunglasses record 10-second videos that are wirelessly sent to the user’s Snapchat app and retail for $130.

Tesla Completes SolarCity Acquisition

Tesla Motors Inc. officially closed on a deal Monday morning to buy SolarCity Corp. in an all-stock deal valuing the company at $2 billion, the Los Angeles Times reports. Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk wants to sell the company’s solar panels through Tesla’s stores so customers can buy them to power their homes and charge their Tesla electric vehicles The company’s first joint project - solar roof tiles that look like traditional tiles - are expected to be on the market by summer.

Stocks Rise

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 39 points in early Tuesday trading to 18,996. The S&P 500 rose 4 points to 2,202. The Nasdaq rose 16 points to 5,385. The LABJ stock index stayed steady at 226.

Silicon Beach Report Nov. 11: Snap Inc. Opens Spectacles Store in NYC

Snap Inc. opens Spectacles store in New York City, across the street from Apple store, NBC Universal plows $200 million more into Buzzfeed, and virtual reality video distribution platform Vrideo shuts down.

Live Nation’s Kayne West Tour Canceled

Live Nation announced on Monday that it was canceling the remaining 21 shows in rapper Kanye West’s “Saint Pablo Tour.” The cancellation came without explanation in a two-sentence press release, which also said that ticket purchasers would receive a full refund. A spokeswoman for Live Nation declined to comment. Though the “Saint Pablo Tour” cancellation was headline grabbing, it’s not likely to have much of an impact on Live Nation’s revenue. The concert series was already partially completed and represents a small portion of the 26,000 events the company manages each year.

Lincoln and Rockwood Buy El Segundo Office for $120 Million

Lincoln Property Co. and Rockwood Capital are diving into the South Bay office market with their purchase last week of a 355,000-square-foot office campus in El Segundo. The property - comprised of three office buildings and two retail properties - sold for $120 million, or roughly $338 a square foot, according to a source familiar with the deal. DivcoWest, the seller, declined to comment. Lincoln plans to spend millions on a year-long renovation, part of a plan to attract technology, media, and entertainment companies to fill the office space that is currently half empty, said Rob Kane, Lincoln’s senior vice president.

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Doing Business in L.A. Grew Tougher This Year

COMMERCE: Survey sees costs jumping even higher in 2016 with new taxes.

It might not be what local business owners want to hear, but the cost of doing business in Los Angeles has gone up yet again and will likely jump even more next year, according to a survey to be released this week. The annual Kosmont-Rose Institute Cost of Doing Business Survey has classified 46 of the 74 Los Angeles County cities surveyed as either “high cost” or “very high cost” in terms of tax and fee rates for businesses in 2016. That’s up from 45 last year and 44 the year before that, representing a steadily increasing trend. Even worse, eight area cities – including Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, and Culver City – rank among the 20 most expensive cities in which to do business in the Western United States. That’s also up one from last year.

Stocks Continue to Rise

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 89 points in Monday trading to 18,957. The S&P 500 rose 16 points to 2,198. The Nasdaq rose 47 points to 5,369. The LABJ stock index stayed steady at 226.

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Hyperloop One Settles Employee Lawsuit

Hyperloop One has settled a breach of fiduciary lawsuit brought by Brogan BamBrogan, its former chief technology officer and co-founder, and three other employees, the Business Journal reports. In a complaint filed July in Los Angeles Superior Court, BamBrogan claimed he was fire after he was critical of Hyperloop One Board Chairman Shervin Pishevar’s management of the company, whose behavior he claimed was tantamount to a breach of fiduciary duty. Terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

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Oracle Buys Santa Monica Offices for $368 Million

Software giant Oracle Corp. has purchased a Santa Monica office building for $368 million, according to a source familiar with the deal, the Business Journal reports. At roughly $1,165 a square foot, the transaction is one of the priciest ever per square foot for a large office complex in the market. The sellers were Invesco Ltd., based in Atlanta, and Worthe Real Estate Group, based in Santa Monica, the source said.

Japanese Firm Takes Controlling Stake in L.A. Food Importer

One of L.A.’s oldest and most prominent importers of Japanese foods and restaurant supplies is being acquired by a $1.3 billion Japanese company, the Business Journal reports. Takara Holdings Inc., based in Kyoto, Japan, said it would pay $8.16 million for an additional 10.3 percent stake in downtown’s Mutual Trading Co. Inc. Takara already owns a 40.7 percent stake in Mutual Trading.

‘Fantastic Beasts’ Wins at the BO

Warner Bros. and J.K. Rowling’s new Harry Potter-related film “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” sold $75 million in North American tickets over the weekend, and $143.3 million in partial release overseas, The New York Times reports. STX’s “The Edge of Seventeen” took in $4.8 million, and Open Road’s “Bleed for This” made $2.4 million.