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Daily Business Report — June 8, 2010

ViaSat Inc. to Acquire Encryption Products Company

Carlsbad-based ViaSat Inc., which produces satellite and other wireless communication and security systems, is acquiring Stonewood Group Limited, a United Kingdom company that designs and manufactures encryption products and services. Terms of the transaction include an initial purchase price of $20 million payable in cash and stock. Stonewood products are used to encrypt data on computer hard drives so that a lost or stolen laptop does not result in the compromise of classified information or the loss of intellectual property. “We believe that Stonewood products and technologies will enhance our security offerings, and we expect Stonewood to constitute a key part of our overall security strategy going forward,” said Jerry Goodwin, ViaSat vice president.

“The integration of cryptographic and engineering resources in the combined company is expected to rapidly accelerate the development of new encryption products whilst continuing to push the boundaries of the present security landscape,” said Chris McIntosh, Stonewood CEO.

Firefighting Helicopter Destined For San Diego

A custom-built helicopter nicknamed “The Sunbird” is expected to arrive by late August as the newest firefighting resource for San Diego County. The Sunbird, which was built for San Diego Gas & Electric, can drop about 2,500 gallons of water and retardant on a fire and then refill in as little as 45 seconds, according to county Supervisor Ron Roberts, who joined with Councilman Kevin Faulconer and SDG&E President Michael Niggli in announcing the helicopter.

SDG&E and the county are each putting $150,000 into an account that will pay for putting the helicopter into service fighting fires anywere in the county. Dispatching will be handled by the city of San Diego.

“The amazing helicopter announced today is a perfect insurance policy, the big guy you bring in to keep a fire from getting out of control while supporting your firefighters on the ground,” said Roberts. “Fire officials will be able to react confidently in
 sending the Helitanker into action without having to first check whether an individual city or fire district can afford the service.”

SDG&E will use the helicopter initially to replace wooden utility poles in the backcountry with steel poles. If the Sunrise Power Line project is approved, the helicopter would be used in its construction.

Senomyx Inc. Names Chief Scientific Officer

Donald S. Karanewsky has been named senior vice president and chief scientific officer for Senomyx Inc., a company that uses taste receptor technologies to develop flavor ingredients for the food, beverage and ingredient supply industries. Karenewsky has been service as senior vice president, discovery, since joining the company in 2007. Karanewsky received his Ph.D. and master’s degrees in chemistry from Harvard University and holds a bachelor’s degree from Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey. He has directed research teams and played senior management roles at a number of biotechnology institutions including Idun Pharmaceuticals, Ligand Pharmaceuticals and The Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation. He held principal positions at Glaxo Inc, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and the Squibb Institute for Medical Research.

Roppongi Names New Executive Sushi Chef

Warren Almeda has been named the new executive sushi chef at Roppongi Restaurant & Sushi Bar. Almeda formerly was the executive sushi chef at Roy’s Restaurant. Prior to that, his experience had extended to the Japanese and South East Asian Social House in Las Vegas, Roy’s Restaurant in both Las Vegas and Woodland Hills  and as a line cook at the W Hotel in Westwood.

Tenants Renew Leases at Palomar Heights Plaza

Zoovy Inc., SCS Flooring Systems and Robert Half International Inc. have signed lease renewals for offices in the Palomar Heights Plaza on Owens Avenue in Carlsbad. Zoovy signed a 24-month lease for 7,833 square feet at 5868 Owens Ave,, adding 4,486 square feet and more than doubling its previous occupancy of 3,347 square feet. SCS Flooring signed a 36-month lease renewal for 3,585 square feet at 5876 Owens Ave. Robert Half International signed a 60-month lease renewal for 3,270 square feet at 5868 Owens Ave. Zoovy was represented in its negotiations by Craig Knox of Irving Hughes. SCS Flooring represented itself. Robert Half was represented by Jeff Birnbaum and Dan Yeilding of CB Richard Ellis. The lessor, Pacific Office Management Inc., represented itself in all three transactions.

KPBS Plans 50th Anniversary Gala

San Diego public broadcasting station KPBS will honor its 50-year anniversary on Oct. 9 with a gala — “KPBS Celebrates the Sixties” — at The Lodge at Torrey Pines. The theme is in honor of the year the station was founded. Longtime KPBS donors Donald and Darlene Shiley will serve as honorary chairs for the event, hosted by master of ceremonies Ken Kramer.  Caroline Nierenberg, who previously served as gala chair for the Jewel Ball and the Burnham Institute, is this year’s gala chair. “The art, music and fashion of the ’60s are still a part of the fabric of our country,” said Nierenberg. Costumed greeters, retro décor, and a tribute to the legendary Supremes by NRG are among the special effects planned.

Scripps Sponsors Online Essay Contest

Adults who are patients of Scripps-affiliated doctors are invited to pen inspirational sports injury comeback stories in an online essay contest sponsored by Scripps, the health care provider of the San Diego Padres. The three winning essays will be published in a September 2010 edition of the San Diego Padres’ official playbill, “Blueprint,” which is distributed free to fans at regular season home games. Winners also will receive a $100 gift card for dinner in the Gaslamp Quarter. The contest can be found at scripps.org/padres. The contest runs until July 30.  Essays should be between 300 and 500 word and should describe the entrant’s own sports injury and successful comeback and why it was particularly meaningful, along with the name of the entrant’s Scripps-affiliated doctor.

SCORE San Diego Small Business Workshops

June 10 – Import/Export – 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Point Loma Nazarene University in Mission Valley (4007 Camino del Rio South, San Diego 92108; pre-paid registration $69, $79 at the door).

June 11 – Hiring and Managing Employees – 9 a.m. to noon at SCORE Entrepreneur Center (550 West C St., #550, San Diego 92101; pre-paid registration $49, $59 at the door).

June 12 – QuickBooks Basic – 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Point Loma Nazarene University in Mission Valley (4007 Camino del Rio South, San Diego 92108; pre-paid registration $69, $79 at the door).

• June 14 – Managing Grants and Contracts for Nonprofits – 9 to 11:30 a.m. at the San Diego Foundation – Liberty Station (2508 Historic Decatur Road, #200, San Diego 92106; pre-paid registration $39, $49 at the door).

June 15 – Internet Marketing 302: Develop a Winning E-mail Marketing Success Strategy – 9 a.m. to noon at Point Loma Nazarene University in Mission Valley (4007 Camino del Rio South, San Diego 92108; pre-paid registration $49, $59 at the door).

The Daily Business Report is produced by REP Publishing Inc., publisher of San Diego Metropolitan Magazine, the North Park News, Kensington News and the West Coast Craftsman. (619) 906-4104.

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