Archive: October 2008

The Weekend Movie: "Inside The Bubble"

The presidential election is right around the corner, so we figured this week's offering courtesy of SnagFilms should focus on politics. "Inside The Bubble" is a flick by director Steve Rosenbaum (7 Days In September). He and his crew had broad access inside the 2004 presidential campaign of Sen. John...

By Dan Beyers | October 31, 2008; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Kevin Plank: Schmoozing With His Customers

Tom Heath's "Value Added" column moves to Mondays, but that isn't stopping him from sharing a little insight he picked up at lunch today: Kevin A. Plank, chairman and chief executive of Baltmore-based Under Armour, the sports apparel company, is hardly the sort who spends all his time in the...

By Tom Heath | October 31, 2008; 4:36 PM ET | Comments (0)

Lunch With Ken Burns

Tom Heath's "Value Added" column moves to Mondays. Until then, he wrote up the highlights of a recent trip to New England: One of the perks of this job -- maybe the best perk -- is that I get to meet interesting people. Last week, I joined half a dozen...

By Tom Heath | October 31, 2008; 2:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Morning Briefing: Maryland Business Activity Drops

More evidence that the economic downturn is hitting close to home emerged on Thursday. A survey of Maryland businesses in the month of October by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond found a steep decline in its index of general business activity. Those surveyed by the bank reported sharp declines...

By Alejandro Lazo | October 31, 2008; 8:34 AM ET | Comments (0)

CapitalSource to Drop REIT Status

CapitalSource of Chevy Chase will cease to be a real estate investment trust next year because managing its portfolio of mortgage-related investments would be "imprudent and perhaps impossible," the company said Thursday. CapitalSource said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that the decision by its board of...

By Alejandro Lazo | October 30, 2008; 6:50 PM ET | Comments (0)

Comstock Remains on Nasdaq, for Now

Comstock Homebuilding of Reston will continue to be traded on the Nasdaq Stock Market -- for now. Comstock said Thursday that it has received a notice from the exchange, granting the company a request for a continued listing. The company has until April 13 to keep its shares above a...

By Alejandro Lazo | October 30, 2008; 5:57 PM ET | Comments (0)

Steve Case Brings BrainScope To DC

Tom Heath's "Value Added" column is moving to Mondays, but here's a short bit of news he didn't want to hold back. Steve Case, former chairman of AOL and founder of Revolution, LLC, a holding company for his various startups, is upping his investment in BrainScope, which develops hand-held, non-invasive...

By Dan Beyers | October 30, 2008; 3:26 PM ET | Comments (0)

BearingPoint Trying to Renegotiate Debt

Troubles continue to mount for McLean's BearingPoint. The management and consulting firm said late on Wednesday that efforts to sell itself, or parts of its business, had gone nowhere and that it will now look to renegotiate the terms of some of its debt with lenders in order to comply...

By Alejandro Lazo | October 30, 2008; 11:55 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Fannie's Disappearing Capital

By Alejandro Lazo So it turns out that nearly half of the capital mortgage giant Fannie Mae was sitting on in the months before being taken over by the government is now worthless. That's the news this morning from staff writer Zachary A. Goldfarb. He reports that District-based Fannie has...

By Alejandro Lazo | October 30, 2008; 7:58 AM ET | Comments (0)

Earnings Up for Two REITs, ManTech

A round of earnings reported on Wednesday gives a brief snapshot of the health of the Washington area's economy in the midst of the financial crisis. There was relatively bright news for two local real estate companies, with First Potomac Realty Trust of Bethesda saying profit tripled and Federal Realty...

By Alejandro Lazo | October 29, 2008; 7:05 PM ET | Comments (0)

Legg Mason Posts Loss But Stock Rises

By Alejandro Lazo The investment firm Legg Mason posted a second-quarter loss on Wednesday as revenue dropped and the market meltdown lead to a massive charge related to shoring up its money market funds. The Baltimore-based asset manager reported a loss of $103.8 million, or 74 cents per share, in...

By Dan Beyers | October 29, 2008; 12:12 PM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Is The Takeover Working?

For signs of just how difficult it is for the government to rescue the economy, one need look no further than Treasury's takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In the nearly two months since the government seized control of the mortgage finance giants, little progress has been made to...

By Dan Beyers | October 29, 2008; 8:12 AM ET | Comments (0)

CACI Profit Up 15 Percent

From the Associated Press CACI International of Arlington said its first-quarter profit rose 15 percent, to $21 million (69 cents a share) from $18.3 million (60 cents), as it secured more valuable contracts with the Defense Department, state and local governments, and federal civilian agencies. Revenue grew 18 percent, to...

By Terri Rupar | October 28, 2008; 5:30 PM ET | Comments (0)

Roundup: Gannett, ICO

From staff and wire reports *Gannett said it will cut another 10 percent from the workforce at its local newspapers by early December. The latest reductions, to come by early December, follow a 10 percent cut announced in August. Neither round affects USA Today. McLean-based Gannett isn't revealing a specific...

By Terri Rupar | October 28, 2008; 4:01 PM ET | Comments (0)

Value Added Is Moving

Looking for Tom Heath's take on local entrepreneurs and how they've made their money? We're going to have to ask you to be patient. The Value Added column is making a move to Mondays, starting next week. It will continue to appear most weeks in the Monday Washington Business section....

By Terri Rupar | October 28, 2008; 12:25 PM ET | Comments (0)

Profit Up, Forecast Down At Under Armour

From the Associated Press: Under Armour said Tuesday its third-quarter profit rose 28 percent, but the company lowered its full-year profit outlook in anticipation of a tough holiday shopping season that will affect the fourth quarter. "While the company has delivered strong results for the first nine months of the...

By Dan Beyers | October 28, 2008; 10:09 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Financial Crisis Hits Junk Mail...

...and apparently that's not a good thing for the U.S. Postal Service. In his Federal Diary column, Joe Davidson reports that U.S. postal officials expect the service to lose $2.3 billion in fiscal 2008. One reason: Fewer credit card companies and mortgage firms are sending out mailings. "A lot of...

By Dan Beyers | October 28, 2008; 9:18 AM ET | Comments (0)

Up and Down: Banks, Integral Systems, Coventry, Sunrise

The Post-Bloomberg index fell more than 7 percent last week, while the S&P 500 fell 6.8 percent. *Five banks made it onto our list of top weekly gainers last week: Annapolis Bancorp (ANNB), up 14 percent; Central Virginia Bankshares (CVBK), up 11 percent; Fauquier Bankshares (FBSS), up 9 percent; Alliance...

By Terri Rupar | October 27, 2008; 12:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Capital One, PNC, SunTrust Take Gov. Money

We are reposting this item from our EconomyWatch blog, The Ticker. By Binyamin Appelbaum Fifteen banks have added their names to the list of institutions accepting government investments. The companies include McLean-based Capital One, which said it will take $3.55 billion from the Treasury Department. The new banks join the...

By Dan Beyers | October 27, 2008; 11:52 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: A Walk Down Main

It's Monday, so we're taking a local angle on all the economic news. By Dominic Bracco II -- The Washington Post *A bonding company, a Greek restaurant, a bakery, a print shop and a law firm are among the companies lining Fairfax's Main Street. Some are already seeing lean times...

By Terri Rupar | October 27, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Weekend Movie: "The Great Bear"

We're in a bear market, right? So 'natch, we need a bear movie, courtesy of SnagFilms. SnagFilms is a startup backed by Washington Capitals majority owner Ted Leonisis and others; we wrote about the company here....

By Dan Beyers | October 24, 2008; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Gannett Third-Quarter Profit Down 32 Percent

From the Associated Press Gannett said its third-quarter profit fell 32 percent, to $158 million (69 cents a share) from $234 million ($1.01), as it saw less advertising revenue than last year as part of broader cutbacks in a worsening economy. Revenue at the nation's largest newspaper publisher fell 9...

By Terri Rupar | October 24, 2008; 10:25 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: A Parking Lot, for Now

*The corner of K Street and Connecticut Avenue is among downtown Washington's most prestigious, a crossroads District leaders believe is worthy of the glass, steel and stone tower that a developer envisions. But now, citing the economic downturn, a developer has sought the District's permission to turn one of the...

By Terri Rupar | October 24, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Roundup: PNC, Sallie Mae, WSB, CarMax

From staff and wire reports *PNC Bank plans to open 41 branches and 180 ATMs in Giant Food stores in the District, Maryland, Virginia and Delaware next year. The companies said more branches and ATMs will be added during their 10-year agreement. The agreement comes several months after Chevy Chase...

By Terri Rupar | October 23, 2008; 4:12 PM ET | Comments (0)

NII Profit Up, Shares Down

NII Holdings of Reston said today that third-quarter profit grew 12.5 percent, to $91.8 million (54 cents) from $81.6 million (46 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue grew 38. 4 percent, to $1.18 billion. The company, which provides mobile phone access in Latin America, said ended the...

By Terri Rupar | October 23, 2008; 2:17 PM ET | Comments (0)

Long & Foster Names New President

By Maryann Haggerty In the midst of the worst real estate market in years, Long & Foster Cos. has promoted David H. Stevens to president and chief operating officer. Stevens, 51, has a background in finance, not brokerage. Since 2006, when he joined the company, he has been president of...

By Terri Rupar | October 23, 2008; 12:38 PM ET | Comments (0)

Sandy Spring Bancorp, Eagle Bancorp Report Profit

Sandy Spring Bancorp of Olney said third-quarter profit fell 34 percent, to $5.4 million (33 cents) from $8.2 million (50 cents). Results include a pretax impairment charge of $2.3 millino related to a writedown in goodwill in Equipment Leasing Co., a subsidiary. Assets dropped 8 percent, to $3.2 billion. Loans...

By Terri Rupar | October 23, 2008; 11:27 AM ET | Comments (0)

FBR to Consider Strategic Alternatives

By Alejandro Lazo Friedman, Billings, Ramsey Group of Arlington said today that it would considering selling itself as losses continued to mount in the third quarter. Its core business of making mortgage investments has been hammered in the midst of the real estate downturn. The real estate investment firm, which...

By Terri Rupar | October 23, 2008; 11:11 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Employers Cutting Back

*Employers are moving to aggressively cut jobs and reduce costs in the face of the nation's economic crisis, preparing for what many fear will be a long and painful recession. "The customers I've spoken to are all living under a sense of fear," said Paul Villella, chief executive of HireStrategy,...

By Terri Rupar | October 23, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Radio One Shares At New Lows

By Anita Huslin Urban media company Radio One was warned that it was failing to meet Nasdaq listing requirements after its stock plummeted to all-time lows this week. Fund managers dropped shares of the Lanham company on Tuesday in response to its removal from the SmallCap 600 index by Standard...

By Terri Rupar | October 22, 2008; 6:16 PM ET | Comments (1)

IT, Shipbuilding Mean Profits For General Dynamics

Stephen Manning Associated Press Defense contractor General Dynamics said Wednesday that third quarter earnings were up 16 percent on higher sales in its shipbuilding unit and information technology business, topping Wall Street's earnings forecast. The Falls Church-based company earned $634 million, or $1.59 per share, for the quarter, up from...

By Dan Beyers | October 22, 2008; 9:31 AM ET | Comments (0)

FBR Capital Markets Posts Loss

Update from staff writer Alejandro Lazo Arlington-based FBR Capital Markets booked a $28.6 million loss in the third quarter, as its investment banking business plummeted in the midst of the financial crisis. It is the biggest loss yet for the company, which spun-off from its parent, the Friedman, Billings, Ramsey...

By Terri Rupar | October 22, 2008; 9:25 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Not-So-Small Businesses

*U.S. government agencies made at least $5 billion in mistakes in their recent reports of contracts awarded to small businesses, with many claiming credit for awards to companies that long ago outgrew the designation or never qualified in the first place, a Washington Post analysis shows. In the data, federal...

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

Roundup: Constellation, CSC, WorldSpace

From staff and wire reports *Constellation Energy Group of Baltimore said that its chief financial officer is stepping down and that it will promote the treasurer to replace him. The company said John R. Collins will take an advisory role in the company's merger with MidAmerican Energy Holdings. He will...

By Terri Rupar | October 21, 2008; 4:03 PM ET | Comments (0)

Value Added: Investing In A Downturn

Here's Tom Heath's latest column on Washington's business community: I met Dwight Bush a few years ago when he was part of a group that tried to buy the Washington Nationals from Major League Baseball. Bush, 51, is a well-known Washington corporate banker. He speaks softly and deliberately, like many...

By Dan Beyers | October 21, 2008; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (1)

NVR's Profits Slide On Housing Slowdown

By Alejandro Lazo Reston-based homebuilder NVR said its profit fell 60 percent in the third quarter as orders for new homes declined and fewer mortgage loans were made in the midst of the slumping housing market and ongoing financial crisis. The company said its net income for the third quarter...

By Dan Beyers | October 21, 2008; 10:02 AM ET | Comments (0)

Lockheed's Profits Rise, Boosted By IT

By Stephen Manning Associated Press Bethesda defense contractor Lockheed Martin said Tuesday that third-quarter earnings rose 2 percent as the company recorded strong sales in its information technology business, along with a one-time gain from the sale of a rocket launch business. Lockheed, which makes F-35 fighter jets, raised its...

By Dan Beyers | October 21, 2008; 9:56 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Affordable Trumps Luxury

Donatelli Development in recent years has constructed mostly luxury condominiums and apartments on sites overlooking Metro stations in Northwest Washington. But in what city officials say is a reflection of the changing dynamics of the real estate market, the District Monday chose Donatelli to build nearly 400 units of affordable...

By Dan Beyers | October 21, 2008; 8:40 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Download: A Visit To BarCamp

After a two-year-hiatus, The Download is back. The column will chronicle Washington's evolving tech scene and the people who make it tick. Kim Hart will write about Washington's tech scene every other Monday (today we offer a special bonus column!). Send tips to hartk@washpost.com. By Kim Hart About 120 self-described...

By Dan Beyers | October 20, 2008; 8:45 AM ET | Comments (1)

Early Briefing: The Legal Squeeze

Banks are not the only businesses tightening their belts. Washington area law firms are retooling due to a financial crisis that is bringing growing pressure from corporations and a drop in work in mergers and acquisitions, litigation and commercial real estate. At least one global firm with a D.C. office,...

By Dan Beyers | October 20, 2008; 8:31 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Weekend Movie: Obeying The Law

There's been a lot of talk recently about how we all have to live within our means, spend only what we save, get off the credit bus. So that got us thinking: What if everyone did what they are supposed to? Are there unintended consequences? Here's some food for thought,...

By Dan Beyers | October 17, 2008; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: The Econ 101 Reality Check

Edmund Addae-Konadu, a second-year MBA student at Howard, speaks out during Lynne Kelly's economics class. Classes have been transformed into discussions on the current economic crisis. (By Sarah L. Voisin -- The Washington Post) According to her syllabus, the topic of the day in Professor Lynne Kelly's graduate microeconomics...

By Dan Beyers | October 17, 2008; 7:26 AM ET | Comments (0)

Capital One Posts Third-Quarter Profit

From staff and wire reports Capital One posted a third-quarter profit of $374.1 million ($1 a share), compared with a loss of $81.6 million (21 cents) in the comparable period a year earlier on expenses tied to closing its subprime mortgage unit. The McLean credit card issuer and bank said...

By Terri Rupar | October 16, 2008; 4:19 PM ET | Comments (0)

Roundup: Hughes, Media General

From staff and wire reports *Hughes Communications will use cash instead of debt to finance a new satellite that moves data 10 times faster than its existing service, CEO Pradman Kaul said. "We currently have enough cash and enough from our projected cash flow to more than pay for the...

By Terri Rupar | October 16, 2008; 3:54 PM ET | Comments (0)

Profit Drops at Danaher, Orbital Sciences

From wire reports Danaher of the District said third-quarter profit dropped 23 percent, to $371.9 million ($1.11 a share) from $483.7 million ($1.03) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue for the diversified manufacturer that makes bar code readers, medical products, and Sears' Craftsman tools was up 17 percent,...

By Terri Rupar | October 16, 2008; 11:03 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Cuts at Sirius XM, and in Budgets

*Sirius XM Radio laid off at least 50 workers, including on- and off-air talent at channels with formats ranging from oldies to modern rock, according to employees and a source with direct knowledge of the cutbacks. The satellite radio company's New York offices did not return phone calls or e-mails...

By Terri Rupar | October 16, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

CapitalSource Delays Unit's IPO

By Thomas Heath CapitalSource, the Chevy Chase-based commercial lender, said yesterday that it has temporarily delayed the initial public offering of its wholly owned health-care real estate investment trust due to "market volatility." CapitalSource in August said it would offer 14 million shares in CapitalSource Healthcare REIT, priced at $18...

By Terri Rupar | October 15, 2008; 5:33 PM ET | Comments (0)

Roundup: Constellation, Chevy Chase, CarMax, Carlyle

From staff and wire reports *French energy company Electricite de France said it is dropping its bid for Constellation Energy Group because of the global credit crisis. EdF said it still hopes to develop four new nuclear reactors in the United States and is studying other options. The boards of...

By Terri Rupar | October 15, 2008; 3:35 PM ET | Comments (0)

DiamondRock Profit, FFO Fall

DiamondRock Hospitality of Bethesda said third-quarter profit fell 23 percent, to $12.2 million (13 cents a share), and funds from operations fell 8.7 percent, to $30.5 million (33 cents). Revenue dropped 3.1 percent, to $161.4 million in the period ended Sept. 5. Same-store revenue per available room fell 3 percent...

By Terri Rupar | October 15, 2008; 10:26 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Construction's Outreach

*In 1984, when Kyle Brown started at Miller & Long Concrete Construction, most workers were black. But by the mid-1990s, they had been replaced by Latinos. And Brown, 48, vividly recalls his initial loneliness as "the outsider." Now, he has been sent on a mission to alter the trend. Officials...

By Terri Rupar | October 15, 2008; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Value Added: Advising The Debt Collectors

Here's Tom Heath's latest column on Washington's business community: I got to know Marvin Kaulkin smoking an occasional cigar together at Bethesda Tobacco, a popular spot in lower Montgomery County. Bethesda Tobacco tends to draw more than its share of businessmen and entrepreneurs from the Washington scene, and so it's...

By Dan Beyers | October 14, 2008; 7:00 PM ET | Comments (7)

Learning Tree Off the Market

From the Associated Press Learning Tree International of Reston said it has taken itself off the market because of the financial crisis that has made it difficult for potential buyers to get credit. Learning Tree, which provides training materials and courses for information technology, said in a statement that "current...

By Terri Rupar | October 14, 2008; 5:37 PM ET | Comments (0)

Roundup: Sirius XM, Washington REIT, Fan & Fred

From staff and wire reports *Sirius XM Radio chief executive Mel Karmazin said he is confident the company can refinance debt coming due next year and reiterated forecasts for cost savings and earnings. "We're certainly engaged in discussions with the people who hold our debt," Karmazin said at Dow Jones...

By Terri Rupar | October 14, 2008; 4:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Get A Physical, Get $75

Debbie and Larry Ward of Jefferson, Md., each get $75 from Debbie's company when they go for their annual physicals. Arlington County police officer Darrin Cassedy received a two-night hotel stay in Florida and an MP3 player from his employer for losing weight and exercising. Sandy Colaccino of Silver Spring...

By Dan Beyers | October 14, 2008; 7:35 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Will Defense Escape The Downturn?

Many defense contractors are not so sure. Staff writer Dana Hedgpeth dropped in on a trade show sponsored by the Association of the United States Army and heard lots of concerns that spending could slow as the nation strains under a global economic crisis and as presidential contenders talk about...

By Dan Beyers | October 13, 2008; 8:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Download: The NASA Field Trip

After a two-year-hiatus, The Download is back. The column will chronicle Washington's evolving tech scene and the people who make it tick. Kim Hart will write about Washington's tech scene every other Monday. Send tips to hartk@washpost.com. By Kim Hart HAMPTON, VA. From the outside, the model lunar habitat at...

By Dan Beyers | October 13, 2008; 1:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

The Weekend Movie: "The American Ruling Class"

On Thursday we wrote that the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression is claiming another casualty: American-style capitalism. Today, courtesy of SnagFilms, we take a satirical look at the folks who presided over that system. SnagFilms is a startup backed by Washington Capitals majority owner Ted Leonsis and others;...

By Dan Beyers | October 10, 2008; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

GeoEye's Eye On .... Kutztown

GeoEye, the Dulles provider of satellite and aerial imagery, has been boasting that its latest eye in the sky is "the world's highest resolution and most accurate commercial imaging satellite." Now it offers proof, with the first image it said it collected from GeoEye-1 since the bird was launched...

By Dan Beyers | October 10, 2008; 3:00 PM ET | Comments (11)

Vital Signs: Examining Our Health Data

Vital Signs is our blog-in-a-blog on the Washington area's biotech and health care scene. By Kendra Marr Ever wonder who sorts through all the data that powers your all-knowing health insurance company? Samuel A. McKinney did. McKinney was surprised to find a concerned letter from Blue Cross Blue Shield in...

By Dan Beyers | October 10, 2008; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Vital Signs: The Weekly Roundup

Here's your weekly dose of Washington area biotech and health care news, by biotech reporter Kendra Marr: *CEL-SCI Corp. of Vienna opened its $22 million manufacturing facility on Oct. 8. The new facility, located in Elkridge, will make the company's lead drug Multikine, which harnesses the body's immune system to...

By Dan Beyers | October 10, 2008; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Were They Or Weren't They?

Staff writer Zachary A. Goldfarb reports on the interesting contortions federal regulators went through to describe the capital condition of mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac just before they were taken over by the government. Here's his full story; you decide if there aren't some contradictions here: By...

By Dan Beyers | October 10, 2008; 8:51 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Turning Up The Heat

Stuart and Nancy Thompson thought they were getting a deal on a big home priced at $370,000. But it was never built, and they are paying $700 a month for a $100,000 loan. (By Lois Raimondo -- The Washington Post) They promised to deliver brick-front colonials in a sparkling...

By Dan Beyers | October 10, 2008; 8:36 AM ET | Comments (0)

La Plaza: At The Corner of Madison Ave. & K St.

Welcome to Alejandro Lazo's weekly blog-within-a-blog on the region's Latino business community. By Alejandro Lazo Among Georgetown's boutique retail shops, architectural firms and upscale restaurants reside the offices of ElevaciĆ³n, a Hispanic advertising shop that has straddled the worlds of business, politics and policy since 2002. Founders Jim H. Learned,...

By Dan Beyers | October 9, 2008; 1:15 PM ET | Comments (1)

Early Briefing: The Latest Campaign Punching Bags

That would be Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Staff writer Zachary A. Goldfarb tries to sort out fact from fiction in the recent campaign statements about the mortgage finance giants by Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) and his Democratic rival Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.). Neither candidate seemed all...

By Dan Beyers | October 9, 2008; 8:19 AM ET | Comments (0)

First The Markets, Then The Restaurants?

Our Food section today writes about the state of the local restaurant industry, which is worried about the current downturn. Here's its report: At Jaleo and other restaurants, sales were slow during the presidential debate but have remained otherwise stable. (By Susan Biddle -- The Washington Post) September historically is...

By Dan Beyers | October 8, 2008; 9:00 AM ET | Comments (1)

Early Briefing: Va. Power Line Approved

State regulators approved Dominion Virginia Power's proposal Wednesday to build a 65-mile transmission line through rural Northern Virginia, saying that the project is critical to delivering electricity to the power-hungry region and avoiding widespread blackouts. The three-judge Virginia State Corporation Commission, whose members are selected by the General Assembly to...

By Dan Beyers | October 8, 2008; 6:23 AM ET | Comments (0)

Value Added: Federal Capital's $230 Million Fund

Here's Tom Heath's latest column on Washington's business community: Talk about sailing against the prevailing winds! Esko Korhonen and his partners at Federal Capital Partners recently raised $230 million in a real estate private equity fund that will invest in Washington region office, retail and residential properties. Esko I. Korhonen,...

By Dan Beyers | October 7, 2008; 6:30 PM ET | Comments (5)

Early Briefing: Who Gets Wachovia?

Wachovia, Wells Fargo and Citigroup have suspended their courtroom squabbles until noon today to try to negotiate a settlement of Wachovia's future -- a future that will determine the shape of Washington's largest bank. The sides agreed to the truce under pressure from the Federal Reserve, which is eager for...

By Dan Beyers | October 7, 2008; 6:56 AM ET | Comments (6)

Early Briefing: Assembling A New Mortgage Team

Staff writer Zachary Goldfarb takes a look at the changes underway inside mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac today, and reports on the haste in which the government installed new leadership: New Fannie Mae CEO Herbert M. Allison Jr., left, and his counterpart at Freddie Mac, David Moffett,...

By Dan Beyers | October 6, 2008; 8:43 AM ET | Comments (2)

The Weekend Movie: "What Would Jesus Buy?"

Before you go crazy spending that $700 billion bailout, here's a little food for thought courtesy of the folks at SnagFilms. SnagFilms is a startup backed by Washington Capitals majority owner Ted Leonsis and others; we wrote about the company here. Here's a synopsis from SnagFilms Web site: WHAT WOULD...

By Dan Beyers | October 3, 2008; 5:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Vital Signs: G'Bye HealthExtras, Hello Catalyst

Vital Signs is our new blog-in-a-blog on the Washington area's biotech and health care scene. By Kendra Marr After more than a decade in business, HealthExtras decided that it was time to change its name. No, there isn't a merger. This isn't some attempt to cover up a scandal. And...

By Dan Beyers | October 3, 2008; 12:50 PM ET | Comments (0)

Vital Signs: The Weekly Roundup

Here's your weekly dose of biotech and health care news in the Washington region, by Washington Post biotech reporter Kendra Marr: * MedImmune of Gaithersburg licensed its "reverse genetics" intellectual property to The Research Foundation for Microbial Diseases of Osaka University in Japan. This method generates viruses, like influenza, from...

By Dan Beyers | October 3, 2008; 12:35 PM ET | Comments (1)

Revolution Health To Merge With NY Firm

A privately held online health information company has bought former AOL chairman Steve Case's Revolution Health in a deal the NY Times said was worth $300 million. The acquirer, Waterfront Media, runs the Everyday Health Network of sites. Together with Revolution Health, the combined company should generate enough online traffic...

By Dan Beyers | October 3, 2008; 8:55 AM ET | Comments (0)

Early Briefing: Md.'s Hoyer Holds His Nose

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, en route to a leadership meeting, is unhappy about additions to the plan, but is urging colleagues to vote for it. (By Melina Mara -- The Washington Post) Metro Staff writer John Wagner checks in with House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.)...

By Dan Beyers | October 3, 2008; 8:45 AM ET | Comments (3)

Early Briefing: The FDA And Its PR Problem

Staff writer Robert O'Harrow takes a look today at how the FDA handled a contract award to a local PR contract. Here's the start of his piece: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had an image problem. For months last year the agency had been pummeled by Congress for poor...

By Dan Beyers | October 2, 2008; 9:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Olsson's No More

An "organized wake" was planned in Dupont. (2000 Photo By Lucian Perkins -- The Washington Post) Local book and music purveyor Olsson's shut its doors after 36 years on Tuesday. On its Web site, the company said it has petitioned federal bankruptcy courts to change its bankruptcy status so...

By Dan Beyers | October 1, 2008; 8:55 AM ET | Comments (1)

Early Briefing: Who Speaks For Fannie, Freddie?

Who speaks for Fannie Mae and Freddie Max now? Their government overseer, apparently. The mortgage finance giants have dismantled their powerful lobbying corps, removing two dozen people who made up one of Washington's most formidable advocacy teams. The departures came after the government announced that all lobbying by the companies...

By Dan Beyers | October 1, 2008; 8:35 AM ET | Comments (0)

 
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