Archive: March 16, 2008 - March 22, 2008

Saturday Briefing: Balancing Act

Fruehwirth is one of several consultants in the area who work one-on-one with clients who seek a balance between the demands of career and parenting. (Photo: Sarah L. Voisin -- The Washington Post) *What does Suzanne Cole call the "best money I ever spent"? The $500 she paid Christine...

By Terri Rupar | March 22, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Microsoft Buys DC Start-up

By Mike Musgrove Microsoft announced today that it has acquired a D.C.-area computer science professor's start-up company, Komoku Inc., which develops a product protecting computers against malicious software attacks. Komoku was founded in 2004 by William Arbaugh, a computer scientist at the University of Maryland. The firm develops a type...

By Mike Shepard | March 21, 2008; 6:39 PM ET | Comments (0)

Hesse makes a personal pitch for Sprint

Two updates on Washington's big but crestfallen and departed technology and telecom companies today: Dan Hesse, having taken a series of actions to bolster Sprint, is leading a new advertisement to promote the company's Simply Everything plan, an unlimited calling/data/other features plan that costs $99.99 per month. Hard to...

By Zachary Goldfarb | March 21, 2008; 11:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

Early Briefing: Take Me Out to the Ballgame

Sandra and Tony Brewer cheer for Georgia, where their son, Troy Brewer, is a freshman guard. (Photo: Kevin Clark -- The Washington Post) *That's my kind of ballgame, anyway: college basketball. Troy Brewer of Georgia got to play, and his father, an executive of Sodexho in Gaithersburg, was there...

By Terri Rupar | March 21, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

FBR Capital Markets Buys Bay-Area Banking Firm

FBR Capital Markets said today it has acquired East Peak Advisors, a California investment bank that serves companies in the information technology and telecommunications sectors. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The purchase will boost FBR Capital Markets expansion into banking for technology companies, the Arlington investment bank...

By Mike Shepard | March 20, 2008; 4:39 PM ET | Comments (0)

Business as Usual? Or Madness?

Make sure your bracket is done: There are just 15 minutes until tipoff of the 2008 NCAA men's basketball tournament. What happens at Washington area workplaces during the madness? Does everyone stop working? Does your employer send out memos asking you not to watch games on the TV or your...

By Terri Rupar | March 20, 2008; 12:05 PM ET | Comments (1)

Early Briefing: Lower Bar for Fannie, Freddie

*As expected, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac received permission to decrease the amount of capital they have to hold as a reserve against losses, a step that could help the troubled mortgage market. The two federally chartered finance companies could increase their investment in mortgages by a combined $200 billion,...

By Terri Rupar | March 20, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

SAIC Agrees to Acquire Md. Consulting Firm

Science Applications International Corporation has agreed to buy SM Consulting, a Linthicum provider of foreign language and information technology services to government and private sector clients. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Founded in 1996 by president and chief executive Sheila Courtney Heinze, SMC has grown steadily into...

By Mike Shepard | March 19, 2008; 6:40 PM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: A New Day at Sunrise

*Sunrise Senior Living chief executive Paul J. Klaassen is stepping down as chairman, one of several governance changes announced yesterday, two years after the company disclosed accounting irregularities and came under fire for management practices. Sunrise also said Klaassen agreed to pay back his bonuses from 2003 to 2005. He...

By Terri Rupar | March 19, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Value Added: Making Money From Fast Food

Here's Tom Heath's latest column on Washington's successful business people: I can't get enough of the fast food business, so I recently phoned Bob Phillips, president of California Tortilla Group, one of the fastest growing chains in the Washington region. Cal-Tort, as the employees and regulars fondly refer to it,...

By Dan Beyers | March 18, 2008; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (11)

Early Briefing: Relaxing The Leash On Fannie, Freddie

* Federal officials are discussing a possible deal with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that would relax government imposed requirements on the amount of capital they must hold. The change is intended to allow the government-sponsored companies to increase their purchases of mortgages and mortgage-backed securities and pick up slack...

By Dan Beyers | March 18, 2008; 8:11 AM ET | Comments (1)

Up and Down: Capital One, Freddie Mac and MuniMae

Middleburg Financial (MBRG) was one of last week's biggest gainers, up 21 percent for the week to close at $24.32. Most of the increase came Thursday (there was no price change Tuesday or Wednesday), a day before the Northern Virginia company reported its fourth-quarter earnings. For the year ended...

By Terri Rupar | March 17, 2008; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Local Bankruptcies Up Sharply

On Mondays we turn the Business section over to local news. Here's a sampling of what you'll find in today's Washington Business: *The housing downturn and credit crunch have prompted a spike in business bankruptcies filed by Washington area firms. See story. The Amsterdam Falafelshop in Adams Morgan, owned by...

By Mike Shepard | March 17, 2008; 5:59 AM ET | Comments (0)

 
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