Los Angeles Business Journal

Safety, Scenery Come to Fore in Golf Ball Fight

CONDOS: Tower builder, country club divided over super-high fence.

CONDOS: Neighboring project tees off on country club’s proposal for a super-high fence.

Third Time the Charm for Ex-Robinsons-May Site?

Towers developer is the latest to try and scale the former Robinsons-May site.

L.A. Unemployment Rate Drops, More Jobs in County

L.A.’s jobless rate dipped below 9 percent in January for the first time in nearly six years, according to state figures released Friday.

Golf-Ball Blocker Fence Too High?

A 166-foot-high fence to keep errant golf balls from flying off a golf course is at the center of a spat between the famed Los Angeles Country Club and developers looking to build two luxury condo towers on the old Robinsons-May site next door in Beverly Hills.

L.A. Council Passes E-Cig Restrictions

The Los Angeles City Council voted on Tuesday to ban smoking of electronic cigarettes at all public buildings and restaurants, as well as at parks, playgrounds, beaches, libraries and public schools in the city.

Grid Maintenance Blackouts Turn Off Customers

ENERGY: Businesses push SCE for better planning and off-peak-hour scheduling.

ENERGY: Business owners see red over blackouts for Southern California Edison’s grid maintenance.

Concert Producer Still Sees Sound Stage at Closed Site

MUSIC: Nederlander’s plan for Santa Monica venue now faces competition.

ENTERTAINMENT: Competition for revival of Santa Monica Civic Auditorium rocks plans of concert promoter Nerderlander.

L.A. Council Orders Fracking Moratorium Ordinance

The Los Angeles City Council on Friday voted overwhelmingly to ban fracking at oil and gas wells in the city until it could be shown the activity would not harm the environment or public health. The vote makes Los Angeles the largest city in the nation to impose a moratorium on the controversial drilling practice.

Forecast: Growth to Gain Steam in L.A. County

L.A. County can expect to add more than 150,000 jobs over the next two years, according to an upbeat local forecast released today.

Mayor to Take Run at Speeding Permit Process

DEVELOPMENT: Business groups approve but want to see more from Garcetti.

DEVELOPMENT – Eric Garcetti is the latest L.A. mayor trying to build momentum behind streamlining the permit process.

Making It Work for Chief Execs

Conference to rely on networking to connect with CEOs.

NON-PROFIT – Young Presidents Organization plans to take charge of its executive conference with networking events.

Blackstone Foundation Makes Entrepreneurship Grants

The Blackstone Charitable Foundation on Friday announced it was making a $3.5 million grant to three local universities to set up an entrepreneur support program.

Forecast: Modest L.A. Job Growth This Year and Next

L.A. County will continue to add jobs, but at a frustratingly slow pace, according to a forecast the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. released today.

Mayor Takes Steps to Cut Permit Red Tape

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Tuesday ordered the city’s planning and building and safety departments to consolidate key functions and take other steps to cut red tape for developers.

Group to Spur Job Creation in Innovation Industries

Leaders from L.A.’s tech, venture capital and entrepreneur communities and the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. on Tuesday announced they will join forces to promote the region as an innovation center and spur job creation.

The River and the Money Manager

Last summer, Bryan Brown took 100 days off work and did what he says no human has ever done before: paddled the entirety of the Colorado River watershed by himself in a kayak.

Chef May Add Reality To Her Plate

Loretta Jones looks to serve up own show on Food Network.

DINING: Chef Loretta Jones pursues her own show on the Food Network after getting a taste of reality TV.

Refocused Shoemaker Shoos Away Investor Doubt

FOOTWEAR: Skechers’ stock climbs after new lines send income soaring.

FOOTWEAR: Shoemaker Skechers gets a leg up on Wall Street with its renewed focus on affordable products.

Occidental Leaving Westwood for Houston

After nearly a century here, Westwood oil giant Occidental Petroleum Corp. is moving its headquarters to Houston.

Oil Chief Exec May Field Longer Term of Service

ENERGY: Analysts see Stephen Chazen staying in Oxy job beyond this year.

ENERGY: Occidental CEO Stephen Chazen may be looking to pump up the length of his term atop the gas and oil giant.

Winemaker Takes Off With Airline

Le Grand Courtage gets big lift from Virgin America deal.

Le Grand Courtage was on board early with the idea of getting its bottles on Virgin America flights.

Long Beach Hikes Wages for Airport, Convention Center Workers

The Long Beach City Council has approved an ordinance to raise the pay of airport and Convention Center workers to $13.26 an hour.

Sinking Hooks Into ‘Shark’

Former contestant tips hopefuls on how not to tank on pitch program.

TV: Cow Wow Cereal Milk’s Chris Pouy offers tips on how to pour it on with “Shark Tank’s” investors.

Website Puts Money On Lottery

Membership system lets Lottogopher sell tickets online at cost.

Internet: Lottogopher bets that people will be willing to pay membership fees to buy lottery tickets online.

Restaurateur Raises Glass to Sinatra Select

Alessandro Uzielli has been a fan of La Dolce Vita for years. In fact, he dines at the Italian restaurant in Beverly Hills three or four days a week.

Hotels Seek Say On Worker Pay

Politics: Minimum-wage increase seemed like done deal.

Politics: Hotel owners launch lobby effort to head off measure to nearly double the minimum wage for their workers.

L.A. Unemployment Down, But Few New Jobs

L.A. County’s unemployment rate fell to 9.2 percent in December, its lowest point in more than five years, according to state figures released Friday.

Special Delivery

Trip to fertility clinic gives birth to new business for attorney.

Law: Attorney Evie Jeang looks to deliver for Chinese couples seeking U.S. surrogates to carry their babies.

Driver’s Seat

Victoria Rusnak worked as an environmental attorney and even ran for office before taking the wheel of her father’s car dealership group.

Interview: Former environmental attorney and Assembly hopeful Victoria Rusnak now steers her father’s auto dealership group.

Revived Real Estate Sector Could Spur Buying Binge

Engineering: Psomas says BonTerra deal marks return to ‘growth mode.’

Engineering: Psomas homes back in on acquisitions as the real estate market picks up.

Getting a Handle on E-Cig Style

Ophis looks to draw in customers with pricey leather-clad dispenser.

Smoking – Ophis helps e-cig users get a grip on style with its leather-wrapped dispensers

Geragos Attorney Named to Superior Court

Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday appointed local class action attorney Shelley Kaufman as a judge on the Los Angeles County Superior Court to fill a vacancy created by a retiring judge.

Drug Company’s Stock Gets Rough Prognosis

Biotech: ImmunoCellular shares fall after missing goal of extending patients’ lives.

Biotech – ImmunoCellular Therapeutics comes up short on Wall Street after company’s drug misses longevity goal

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In The Pink

Special Report Year In Review: Biotech sector booms; markets bloom

It was the year of the biotech bonanza in Los Angeles. Of this year’s top five share-price gainers on the LABJ Stock Index, three were from that sector, led by Westwood’s Puma Biotechnology Inc.

L.A. Jobless Rate Falls to 9.5 Percent

L.A. County’s unemployment rate dropped to 9.5 percent in November, its lowest point in five years, according to state figures released Friday. The county also created 33,000 payroll jobs, many of those in seasonal retail hires.

State Drops Tax Deposit Requirement

Local startups have just been handed a bit of holiday cheer: the state will no longer require security deposits for new businesses in most cases and will refund about $300 million in deposits it’s now holding.

Eight Over Eighty Aaron Eshman and Alfred Stern

Eight Over 80 Special Reoprt

Might Oxy Ditch L.A. HQ to Hang Its Hat in Houston?

Is Occidental Petroleum Corp., L.A.’s second largest public company, planning to move its corporate headquarters to Houston? There are signs it could do so.

Eight Over 80: Eli Broad

SPECIAL REPORT: Eight Over 80

L.A. business leader Eli Broad turned 80 this year, but the milestone birthday hasn’t slowed him down: He still puts in 60 hours a week.

L.A. Employers Plan to Increase Hiring

One in five Los Angeles area employers plan to hire more workers during the first quarter, the best showing in several years, according to a survey released today from Manpower Inc.

Cities Crack Down on E-Cigarettes

City councils in both Los Angeles and Long Beach have voted to restrict sales and use of electronic cigarettes.

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Note for Note

INTERVIEW: Manatt Phelps’ George Kieffer has made time for civic affairs and music while working at the law firm for four decades.

Power broker and Manatt Phelps & Phillips Partner George Kieffer makes sure to spend some of his playtime at the piano.

Oaktree Sees Bad Loans as Good Way Into China

Investment: Firm forms joint venture with distressed asset manager.

INVESTMENT: Oaktree makes good on its plan to enter China by forming joint venture to acquire bad loans.

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Solar Customers Left Out in Cold

ENERGY: Panels off as installers fight DWP over lease language.

Energy: Some solar panel customers have been left in the cold as installation companies and the L.A. DWP wrangle over lease language.

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Cities Sticking Noses in Irwindale’s Chili Odor Case

FOOD: Officials put out welcome mat for relocation of Huy Fong’s facility.

Food: Cities outside California smell an opportunity as Irwindale residents complain about odor from Huy Fong’s chili plant.

Lancaster and La Mirada Named County's Most Business-Friendly Cities

Lancaster and La Mirada were named the most business-friendly cities in Los Angeles County by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp.

More Trouble

Chemicals: Oxy faces new

Chemicals: Occidental Petroleum faces new health claims from Love Canal in New York state, 20 years after the company settled lawsuits over the site.

Garcetti Names Deputy for Economic Development

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Thursday named Kelli Bernard as deputy mayor for economic development.

Aquifer Operator Sinks Money Into Train

Water: Attraction could help Cadiz avoid review of pipeline.

Water: Cadiz plans railroad tie-in that could help the aquifer owner avoid full review of a pipeline project.

Shares of Insurer Prove Too Risky for Wall Street

Insurance: Mercury stock tumbles on weak quarter, rate restrictions.

Insurance: Mercury shares fall as judge puts the brakes on rate hikes