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Daily Business Report — July 8, 2010

San Diego Office Mark Stabilizing

The San Diego office market shows signs of stabilizing as the unemployment rate decreases, vacancy rates drop and leasing activitiy improves, according to a report by CB Richard Ellis. Professional and business services added 300 new jobs in May, a 0.2 percent increase from April. Both gross activity and net absorption through mid-year 2010 have increased as tenants take advantage of low rents in class A and B space.

San Diego retail vacancy saw an increase to 7 percent in the second quarter of this year compared to an adjusted rate of 6.3 percent last quarter and 5.1 percent  this time last year. San Diego posted negative absorption for the quarter with 358,000 square feet.

San Diego industrial market absorption was positive for the first time since the third quarter 2008 with 241,709 square feet being absorbed. First quarter net absorption totaled negative 889,620 square feet.

Median Business Asking Prices Fall in 2nd Quarter

The current media asking price of businesses for sale in San Diego is $189,000, according to a second quarter report by BizBuySell.com. That’s below the median of $195,000 established in the second quarter of 2009. According to BizBuySell.com, businesses in San Diego during the second quarter of this year had a median revenue of $360,000, down from $384,000 at the same time last year. The median cash flow — money that comes out of a business over the course of a year — is $85,000, versus median cash flows of $85,000 last year.

Persons interested in buying a local business can view the San Diego area business-for-sale listings at http://www.bizbuysell.com/california/san-diego-businesses-for-sale/. (Business owners who are interested in selling a business can list their business at http://www.bizbuysell.com/sell/ .)

Mutual of Omaha Bank Names 3 to San Diego Positions

Darren Riley

Jeff Barnett

Nahid Aminzai

Mutual of Omaha Bank has made three appointments in its mortgage lending, commercial banking and private banking operations in Southern California — all working out of the San Diego office.

Darren Riley was appointed California manager of mortgage sales. He has more than 20 years of experience in the industry, previously serving as vice president and national sales manager for Sound Mortgage in Seattle. Prior to that, he served as vice president and area sales manager for Bank of America and Countrywide Bank in San Diego, as well as assistant vice president and branch manager for Wells Fargo Bank.

Jeff Barnett was appointed vice president and relationship manager in San Diego, based at 3580 Carmel Mountain Road. Barnett has nearly 20 years of business experience, most recently serving as vice president and relationship manager for Union Bank of California in San Diego. He also served in the U.S. Marine Corps for six years. Barnett earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting from Arizona State University in Tempe.

Nahid Aminzai joined Mutual of Omaha Bank as a private banker. She has been in the industry for more than 22 years and most recenly served as vice president and private client manager for Pacific Western Bank in Rancho Santa Fe. She also has held management positions at Ironstone Bank, City National Bank, Home Savings, Bank of America and Wells Fargo, all in the San Diego area. Aminzai earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration from National University in La Jolla.

Veteran Brokers Join Jones Lang LaSalle

Tony Russell

Richard Gonor

Veteran commercial real estate veterans Tony C. Russell and Richard J. Gonor have joined Jones Lang LaSalle’s San Diego office as executive vice presidents. Russell will specialize in owner representation, portfolio review and market analysis of Class A and B office properties. Gonor will specialize in owner representation, portfolio review and market analysis. Both men were previously with Cassidy Turley/BRE Commercial. Their previous office property experience includes completion of more than 3,000 lease transactions totaling 9 million square feet and valued at $1.5 billion.

Russell was an office leasing and sales specialist at Cassidy Turley. He received the 2008 National Top Broker Award from Real Estate Forum. Russell is president of the San Diego chapter of the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors.

Gonor, an 18-year veteran of the industry, was an office leasing and sales specialist at Cassidy Turley. He received the 2005 “Circle of Excellence” National Top Producers Award, CoStar Power Brokers Top 20 Office Brokers Award from 2004 to 2009 and was named by Real Estate Southern California Magazine as a 2008 “40 Under 40” recipient.

Solera Holdings Replaces CFO and Sets Move to Texas

Solera Holdings Inc., which provides software to the auto insurance claims processing industry, has appointed Renato Giger to the post of chief financial officer to replace Dudley Mendenhall, who was let go, and announced that it is moving its corporate headquarters from San Diego to Dallas-Fort Worth. The company said Mendenhall’s separation from Solera was not prompted by any regulatory issues nor is it related to Solera’s financial statements or other reporting requirements. He will continue to work through Aug. 15 as part of a planned transition. “We made this change to better align our executive management team with the Solera mission to reach $1billion in revenue,” said Tony Aquila, founder, chairman and CEO.

Giger was previously the global corporate controller of Solera and chief financial officer of EMEA. He has been with Solera since its acquisition of the claims services group from Automated Data Processing Inc. in 2006 and worked with the predecessor companies for 13 years.

“The relocation of our corporate headquarters to the Dallas-Fort Worth area gives us a broader recruitment pool and better labor arbitrage, cost efficiencies and improved mobility and access to our markets,”said Aquila.

The relocation includes the Solera senior executive team ofAquila; John Giamatteo, chief operating officer; Giger; Abilio Gonzalez, senior vice president corporate global human resources; Jason Brady, general counsel and corporate secretary; and Kamal Hamid, vice president of investor relations.

Bridgepoint Names VP of Institutional Effectiveness, Accreditation

Bridgepoint Education Inc. has appointed  J. Joseph Hoey IV as the company’s vice president of institutional effectiveness and accreditation.

Hoey will be responsible for assisting both Ashford University and University of the Rockies in overall institutional effectiveness and accreditation initiatives. Hoey previously was the vice president of institutional effectiveness at Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Ga. He has more than 20 years of experience and has held similar positions in assessment, evaluation, policy and survey research at Georgia Tech and North Carolina State University.

Parking Structure and Police Station to be Built at Miramar College

A ceremonial groundbreaking for a new parking structure and police station at San Diego Miramar College will be held at 9:30 a.m. on July 14 at the construction site off Hillery Drive, near Westview, in San Diego. The buildings are being financed by Propositions S and N. The police station is on track to obtain a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum Certification by the United States Green Building Council – the highest possible certification.  This will be the first Platinum-certified project for an educational institution in San Diego County.

Appearing at the ceremony will be Charles Hogquist, SDCCD police chief; Rich Grosch, president of the board of trustees; Constance Carroll, chancellor of the San Diego Community College District; Richard Burkhart, construction manager for the district; and Michael Bulander, senior designer for Harley Ellis Devereaux Architects.

The $17.8 million project provides a new three-story parking structure with 815 parking spaces and new headquarters for college police.  The police station will include a reception area, a conference room, office areas and a secure suspect processing area.

Rear Adm. Ronne Froman Joins Monarch School Project

Ronne Froman

Rear Adm. Ronne Froman (USN ret.) is joining the Monarch School project as interim vice president of development. Froman previously served on Monarch’s board. She has been chief operating officer for the city of San Diego, CEO of Red Cross of San Diego and Imperial Counties, chief of business at San Diego Unified School District, vice president for energy at General Atomics in San Diego and as the “Navy Mayor” of San Diego.

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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We Want Your Opinions on San Diego’s Big Issues In the coming months, Probosky Research (one of California’s leading opinion research firms) will continue its partnership with SD METRO to survey San Diego residents about topics of interest to our readers. We’d like to throw open the door for suggestions for topics. What do you want to know? What do you think you know, but aren’t sure? What are you certain you know, but want to prove it beyond doubt? Ideally, we’d like to see questions that have to do with public policy.

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