Archive for the ‘recession’ Category

Sad sign of the times – SDNB has left the building

Saw a sad thing as I was rolling down Kettner Boulevard this morning – they’re taking the San Diego National Bank sign off its headquarters building.

San Diego National Bank was known for the Wyland mural of whales on the side of its main building and its “whale” logo. Its parent company, FBOP Inc., failed in October, making SDNB the largest local bank to fail during the recent financial crisis.

Let’s hope whoever occupies the building next will be a marine-mammal-loving organization inclined to keep and maintain this landmark mural.

Qualcomm CEO cuts his pay 25%

Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs replaced Irwin Jacobs as company chairman  March 3 and also told shareholders he’d be taking a 25 percent reduction in salary for fiscal 2009.

Qualcomm President Steve Altman is taking the reduction too. The Fortune 500 San Diego company’s senior execs say it’s their way of showing solidarity with the rest of the employees who were asked to take a wage freeze.

The Associated Press reports that Paul Jacobs made $18.6 million last year. His base salary was about $1 million. And the company  reported net income of $341 million in its first fiscal quarter, so it’s doing relatively well despite the economy. So very good news for San Diego.

While the company is not expanding, it is planning “significant” R&D spending.

If you work at Qualcomm, what do you think?

San Diego Historical Society cutting loose Marston House, Villa Montezuma

Villa Montezuma - photo courtesy of San Diego Historical Society

Villa Montezuma - photo courtesy of San Diego Historical Society

The San Diego Historical Society recently announced it can no longer maintain two historic properties, the Marston House and Villa Montezuma.

The Marston House, built in 1906 by city father George Marston, was closed to the public last Sunday, February 15. It’s especially ironic that the SDHS will no longer be maintaining it, as Marston helped found the society 81 years ago. The property is located at the edge of Balboa Park on Seventh Avenue.

Villa Montezuma, a Queen Anne gem built in 1887, has been closed for repairs since 2006. It’s located on K Street in Sherman Heights.

Both properties will be handed back to the city of San Diego. Given our city’s current financial state, it’s probable that another entity would be needed to raise funds, maintain the properties and reopen them to the public.

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Midway gets Defriended by NYSE on Facebook, Fatality Appears Imminent

Gamasutra broke the news this morning that Midway was delisted by the New York Stock Exchange as the company continues it’s decent into the blackness of bankruptcy.  This is a pretty serious blow to local Midway Home Entertainment, the console games division located here in San Diego and the related Midway Customer Service division located nearby.

This comes as no surprise to those of us in the industry who have been following Midway’s steady slide for the last several years, but this is looking increasingly final.  Personally, I’ve been pulling for the old gal, as I have fond memories of classic titles like NBA Jam, Mortal Kombat, and nearly everything they did back when they were called TradeWest back in the day.

Kotaku has a nice write up of the lengthy list of barbarians at the gate here.

@morrisato

Fitness on the Cheap Tuesdays

Image Courtesy of CrashMattBs flickr photo stream under a Creative Commons license. Check out his entire Hello San Diego set for more great photos around town.

The Embarcadero Marina Fitness Course @ Sunrise. Image Courtesy of CrashMattB's flickr photo stream under a Creative Commons license. Check out his entire "Hello San Diego" set.

Now is the time of year when most of us start thinking about the summer months (which in San Diego is most of the year).  Unfortunately this year, now is also the time that many of us are letting our gym memberships go due to tough times and prudent frugality.  Who’s got disposable income for the fitness center right now?  Fortunately for San Diegans, the city has got you covered.  For the next couple of weeks I’m going to reveal all the good local free fitness spots I know of around the downtown and surrounding areas.

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San Diego’s Astroglide Enjoying Economic Slide

I had the chance to chat with the inventor of Astroglide this morning at the San Diego North Economic Development Council’s monthly meeting. Yes, the famous personal lubricant is made right here in Vista and greases the proverbial skids of our local economy. The formulation was discovered by Dan Wray back in 1979–I think it was for some kind of aerospace application since he was a NASA chemist. Seriously. Hence the ‘Astro.’ Somehow–and we’ll skip over this part of the narrative–its value as a personal lubricant was discovered.

Well, it turns out, after chatting to him this a.m., that sex is recession-proof. Probably not news to Metblog readers. And with more people staying home, Astroglide sales are climaxing swelling — gosh, can’t find the right word — anyhow, sales are good.

And this product is global. Astroglide has distributors from Saudi Arabia to Iceland. Wow. So, despite these tough economic times, doesn’t it just make you warm all over to know that Astroglide is one of our region’s red-hot exports. And if that isn’t enough to make you feel really, really good, then how about the fact that Astroglide is non-toxic and water based. Oh yeah….Someone cue the Barry White.

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