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COVID-19 Updates: Test Numbers on Coronavirus

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The Business Journal is tracking company moves related to the coronavirus. This listing will continue to be updated as the situation changes.

Send items to hamanaka@ocbj.com

For more details on many of these reports, see individual story links and the Monday print edition of the Business Journal.

March 24, 3:00 PM

HEALTHCARE

Orange County Health Care Agency’s public health lab and commercial labs have tested 2,159 people and confirmed 152 cases of coronavirus, with no deaths reported.

Two-thirds of cases are in people aged 18 to 49.

The agency provides text updates in partnership with Pasadena-based Everbridge Nixle, an emergency notifications and community engagement company.

— Katie Murar

March 24, 11:00 AM

HEALTHCARE

Healthpeak Properties Inc. (NYSE: PEAK) expects slower construction and dispositions due to effects of the coronavirus. The healthcare REIT said liquidity at the end of the current quarter will be about $3.3 billion. A dozen patients at its facilities are sick or have died from the virus.

— A. Leigh Corbett

March 24, 10:35 AM

RESTAURANTS

The founders of Wahoo’s Fish Taco reiterated the company remains open for business, with take-out and delivery options through Door Dash and Grubhub. “The crisis remains fluid, so we will adapt accordingly as more information comes out,” the company said in a statement.

March 24, 10:00 AM

HOSPITALITY

Some 44 hotels have temporarily closed in Anaheim as a result of coronavirus’ effect on tourism. Close to 40 groups have also canceled or postponed their business with the city, about half of which was planned for the Anaheim Convention Center.

— Katie Murar


March 23, 4:00 PM

RESTAURANTS

BJ’s Restaurants Inc. on Monday said it will draw on its $250 million credit line, delay or cancel restaurant openings, trim expenses, and defer or suspend dividend payments, including one scheduled for tomorrow, March 24. The moves come to address the impact of the novel coronavirus on the company’s business.

BJ’s has 209 restaurants in 29 states and systemwide revenue of about $1 billion a year. It’s the third-largest restaurant chain based here after Taco Bell Corp. and Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc.

— Kari Hamanaka

March 23, 3:45 PM

TOURISM

Five hotels in Laguna Beach with a total of about 350 rooms have temporarily closed due to low occupancy levels and for safety precautions. The hotels expect to reopen in April or May.

— Katie Murar

March 23, 10:45 AM

APPAREL

Costa Mesa-based Vans Inc. parent VF Corp. (NYSE: VFC) will draw $1 billion on a credit line, idle its brick-and-mortar retail fleet, and withdraw fiscal 2020 guidance. VFC is based in Denver. Its brands include Timberland and Dickies.

— Kari Hamanaka

March 23, 9:00 AM

RESTAURANTS

Restaurant operators including Habit Burger Grill and El Torito are calling on consumers to participate in The Great American Takeout. The campaign is aimed at ramping take-out and delivery orders to support businesses affected by the novel coronavirus pandemic, with the kick-off March 24.

— Kari Hamanaka

March 21, 4:50 PM

APPAREL

Costa Mesa action sports apparel company Volcom LLC has had to furlough most of its staff, according to a report from industry trade Shop-Eat-Surf. Volcom, OC’s 10th largest apparel company, furloughed 75% of its U.S. team and all of its European staff, the report said. The company did not immediately respond to requests for comment from the Business Journal.

— Kari Hamanaka

March 20, 10:30 AM

HEALTHCARE/TECHNOLOGY

Irvine business accelerator Octane rescheduled two health- and tech-related forums, from spring and early summer to late summer and early fall, in response to the coronavirus and an executive order from California Gov. Gavin Newsom.

— A. Leigh Corbett

March 19, 10:30 PM

STATEWIDE

Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an executive stay-at-home order for Californians Thursday evening. Businesses such as gas stations, pharmacies, grocery and convenience stores, banks, laundromats or restaurants offering take out and delivery are exempt.

See related item here.

March 19, 2:00 PM

RETAIL

Brea Mall, Brea: Closed until March 29

MainPlace Mall, Santa Ana: Closure effective March 18, management monitoring situation.

Pacific Sunwear of California LLC: All stores closed through March 28.

Shops at Mission Viejo, Mission Viejo: Closed until March 29.

South Coast Plaza, Costa Mesa: Reopening March 31.

The Outlets at Orange, Orange: Closed until March 29.

Tilly’s Inc.: All 239 U.S. stores closed through at least March 27.

Outlets at San Clemente, San Clemente: Closed through March 31.

RESTAURANTS

For a comprehensive listing of take-out options, please visit the OC Restaurant Association‘s site, here.

Andrei’s, Irvine: Offering curbside take out and delivery on a la carte lunch and dinner menus, family meal packages.

More Information: andreisrestaurant.com

Dough & Arrow, Costa Mesa: Offering takeout cookies and coffee, in addition to third-party delivery.

More Information: doughandarrow.co

Bootleggers Brewery, Fullerton/Costa Mesa/Redlands: Open noon to 8 p.m. for beer to go. Online shop set up for beer orders, delivery.

More Information: bootleggers.beer/

Burnt Crumbs, Huntington Beach/Irvine: Curbside takeout and third-party delivery, with brunch being offered for delivery for the first time. Sister concept Burntzilla has also switched to takeout only, with family meal kits for up to four for $40.

More Information: burntcrumbs.com/burnzilla.com

GameCraft Brewing, Laguna Hills: Delivery and takeout on craft beers in 32-ounce cans, plus menu of pub classics and fusion fare.

To Order: gamecraftbrewing.com

The Habit Burger Grill: Operating for in-store takeout, delivery and drive-thru at select locations.

More Information: habitburger.com

Lazy Dog: Offering takeout and delivery in California. Chain’s restaurants are offering Friends + Family meals for five starting at $25. Lazy Dog Pantry pack, for $40, includes milk, eggs, butter, chicken and toilet paper.

More Information: lazydogrestaurants.com

Luna Rossa, Tustin: Italian restaurant now selling flash-frozen pasta kits.

To Order: (714) 259-0861

Marché Moderne, Newport Beach: Offering takeout for the first time, with an expanded menu and curbside takeout from 12 to 8 p.m. daily. The menu will change daily. OC delivery is $10, with 24-hour advance notice on all orders. Pick-up orders 30% off through March 22.

To Order: (714) 259-0861

Roba Noodle, Tustin: Free delivery within three miles of Union Market location. Sauces for cooking can also be purchases.

To Order: robanoodle.com

The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar, Tustin: Curbside pick-up at Tustin, La Jolla locations. Select meat cuts will also be available to cook at home.

To Order: (714) 258-7600



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Mexico: More social spending, no big business bailout

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MEXICO CITY — Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Sunday there will be no huge economic stimulus program as the country faces the threat of coronavirus-induced crisis almost certainly unlike any it has seen in the past century.

Instead, the administration will expand his signature social programs, continue to prop up the heavily indebted state-owned oil company, deepen the government’s austerity campaign and do everything possible to avoid taking on more debt.

“There is a lesson that we have learned well and that we don’t forget,” López Obrador said to an empty and echoing National Palace patio. “An economic model that only benefits minorities does not yield general well-being, but on the contrary engenders public misery and violence.”

The economic reactivation plan remains consistent with his administration’s priority of helping Mexico’s most vulnerable through greater public spending on social welfare, keeping people employed and cutting costs in the sprawling government, he said.

As an example, he said the top level of government bureaucrats — from undersecretaries on up to him — will have their salaries reduced and give up their annual year-end bonuses.

López Obrador quoted U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who he described as that country’s best president “We have always known that heedless self interest was bad morals, we now know that it is bad economics.”

Before the speech Sunday, the primary association of Mexican industries, Concamin, warned in a statement that the pandemic could cause Mexico’s worst recession in a century. It called for “support to businesses to avoid the temporary closure of hundreds of thousands of them.”

Thus far, López Obrador has mostly talked about protecting the country’s poorest and placed special emphasis on those working in the informal half of Mexico’s economy. The industrial chamber made multiple references to the government’s support being widely inclusive.

López Obrador has praised billionaire Carlos Slim for his commitment to not laying off any workers during the crisis and urged other business owners to follow his example. The president has said that only workers in essential businesses should still be going to work and that those who stay at home should continue to be paid.

But he tried to appear open while not making any promises. Last week he received several of the country’s top businessmen and on Saturday he tweeted a photograph of a video call he had with BlackRock Chairman and CEO Larry Fink, during which they exchanged “opinions about the coronavirus and the deterioration of the global economy.”

Even before the pandemic, Mexico’s economy had already been in recession. Then last week, Mexico’s Treasury predicted the country’s economy will contract as much as 3.9% in 2020 because of the pandemic, and private analysts are making even direr predictions.

The Bank of America predicted Thursday that Mexico’s GDP could contract 8% this year. That would be a bigger downturn than during the 2009 global recession, complicated in Mexico by the H1N1 pandemic, when GDP decreased 6.5%. It would also be worse than the December 1994 peso crisis, following which the country’s GDP fell 6.2% in 1995.

A close economic partner of the United States, Mexico will expect to receive some benefit from the huge $2 trillion stimulus package approved there.

On Sunday, López Obrador continued to strike an optimistic tone.

“This crisis is passing, transitory,” he said of the pandemic. “Soon normality will return. We will overcome the coronavirus. We will reactivate the economy and Mexico will continue standing showing the world its glory and its greatness.”

Mexico has reported 79 deaths related to the virus and nearly 2,000 confirmed infections.

For most people, the coronavirus results in mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. But it can cause more several illness, including pneumonia and death, for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems.

The new coronavirus has caused a global pandemic that has sickened at least 1.2 million, killed more than 69,000 worldwide, crippled economies and forced restrictions on the movement of millions of people in an effort to stop the virus from spreading and overwhelming health care systems.

Christopher Sherman, The Associated Press



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Coronavirus: Calgary business collects 3,500 pounds of pet food, donations in 4 hours – Calgary

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Calgarians are well-known for their community spirit, and despite the novel coronavirus crisis, that spirit was extended to include pets Saturday.

More than 3,500 pounds of pet food and donations were collected during a pet food drive on April 4 and delivered to the Calgary Food Bank.

“Being an essential business, we’ve been very fortunate,” Malmberg said.

“This crisis hasn’t affected us as much as a lot of companies, a lot of people. So we just wanted to do something.”


READ MORE:
What is an essential service? After groceries, it depends where you live in Canada

After hearing of a shortage of pet food donations at the Calgary Food Bank, Malmberg posted on social media April 1 that his store would be able to collect pet food and donations April 4.

Story continues below advertisement

“A lot of people, when they think of the [Calgary] Food Bank they’re thinking about food. But so many of the clients have dogs and cats and small animals,” he said.

Malmberg invited people to stop by the parking lot of his Lake Bonavista store on Saturday between noon and 4 p.m. Volunteers accepted donations from the backs of vehicles, and within the first couple of hours, Malmberg could tell the initiative was a huge success.

Malmberg said providing pet food for clients of the Calgary Food Bank might just be enough to ensure people are not forced to make difficult decisions.

“If [people] don’t have the food to feed their animals, they’re either going to have to surrender them or abandon them,” he said.

The four-hour food drive was such a success that Malmberg said he had to call on volunteers to bring more trucks to help deliver the donations to the food bank.

[ Sign up for our Health IQ newsletter for the latest coronavirus updates ]

“I just want to thank the entire city. The response has been overwhelming,” Malmberg said.

For more information on the Calgary Food Bank click here.


© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.





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Cath Kidston to call in administrators amid coronavirus lockdown | Business

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Cath Kidston is preparing to call in administrators, putting more than 900 jobs at risk, as the vintage-inspired chain battles for survival during the coronavirus lockdown.

The business, which has 60 stores in the UK and a further 180 overseas, has filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators, a legal process which protects the business from creditors for 10 working days, as it considers potential rescue options. The group employs 941 people in the UK, 820 of whom were furloughed on 22 March under the government scheme.

Advisory firm Alvarez & Marsal (A&M) was appointed last month to help Cath Kidston seek a buyer as the British brand, which opened its first store in 1993, struggled to make a profit for its Hong Kong-based owner Baring Private Equity Asia.

Cath Kidston Group has been in difficulties for some time, recording a pretax loss of £42.3m in the year to the end of March 2018 when sales rose just 1.2% and it closed small retail businesses in France and Spain.

Coronavirus lockdowns in the UK and elsewhere have only added to the difficulties and it is understood that even if a buyer is found, the rescue is likely to involve a pre-pack administration.

A Cath Kidston spokesperson said: “The notice of intention forms part of the process by which Cath Kidston is continuing to work with A&M to explore all options for the company in the current climate.”

The group is one of many retailers battling for survival in the UK after the Covid-19 pandemic forced the closure of most stores.

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Debenhams is also preparing to call in administrators after the struggling department store was forced to close all its outlets under the lockdown while Sir Phillip Green’s Arcadia Group, the owner of Topshop and Miss Selfridge, is expected to permanently close hundreds of stores as it suffers from competition from the likes of Asos, Boohoo and Primark.

The lockdown has added to existing pressures on retailers from the consumer switch to online shopping and rising costs from business rates coupled with the fall in the value of the pound since the 2016 Brexit vote.


Fashion brands have been hit particularly hard as young people switch from spending on outfits to alternatives such as digital subscriptions and mobile phones while competition from online businesses remains intense.

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