Early Briefing: Brokering Power
It's Monday, which means the Business section focuses on what's local.
*Fred Malek, chairman of Thayer Capital Partners, might not be warm and fuzzy, but he has a knack for winning trust. He worked for President Richard Nixon and on the campaign of George H.W. Bush. And now he's back in politics, working as co-chairman of Sen. John McCain's campaign finance committee. It's a less strategic role that he's taken before, but one that fits him because of his connections to people with money.
At Thayer, he's an adviser, a listening post, an emissary of deals.
*Steven Pearlstein takes the politicians of Prince George's County to task, saying they have put obstacle after obstacle in the way of the development of National Harbor. Pearlstein writes, "For some of the county's political leaders, however, it's not enough that National Harbor will give county residents the amenities they have long desired. Nor is it apparently sufficient that National Harbor will generate thousands of permanent jobs and nearly $50 million in additional tax revenue for the county each year, as well as $80 million annually for the state of Maryland. For them, National Harbor has become an opportunity to demand contracts, jobs, and equity stakes for friends and constituents, along with the deference and respect from wealthy developers they believe is their due."
*2099 Pennsylvania Ave. NW sold for $172.5 million, or a record $867 a square foot, last week to an Irish investor. D.C. commercial real estate is getting attention from foreign investors, attracted by less competition from U.S. firms, the stability of the market and the weakness of the dollar.
*Last week, a judge dismissed the last of a lawsuit against Ashburn-based Telos by activist investor Costa Brava Partnership, the latest episode in a drawn-out showdown between the defense contractor and hedge fund. At the heart of the dispute was Telos's stock structure.
*AT&T has opened a store in Chinatown that lets people use its phones and its network to text, download or play games. "Experience" stores have become popular in recent years, especially since Apple found success with putting its best-selling gadgets on display.
*Raul Fernandez, James Kimsey and Daniel A. D'Aniello were among the business people and politicians who went to Pope Benedict XVI's Mass at Nationals Parks last week.
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