Other items: CEO of MulvannyG2 Architecture steps aside to become chairman; Biotech to create 3 subsidiaries; New president, CEO is named for Pacific Edge Software ...

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Nasdaq has threatened to delist Hollywood Entertainment stock after the company, which is embroiled in a takeover battle, failed to hold a 2004 shareholder meeting, the video-rental company said yesterday.

Nasdaq planned to delist Hollywood Entertainment’s shares at the opening of business next Wednesday but will postpone action until after the company appeals the case to a Nasdaq panel, the company said in a statement.

Hollywood, which owns the Hollywood Video rental chain, said it skipped its annual shareholder meeting in 2004 because it had planned a special shareholder meeting to approve a bid for the company by buyout firm Leonard Green & Partners.

The special meeting was delayed, and ultimately never took place, after other suitors, including Blockbuster and Movie Gallery, made unsolicited offers for Hollywood Video, a company spokesman said.


CEO steps aside to become chairman

Jerry Lee stepped down Jan. 1 as chief executive of MulvannyG2 Architecture in Bellevue. He took the newly created role of chairman and was replaced by three senior partners: Mitch Smith, now chief executive, Ron Maddox and Ming Zhang.

Lee, 55, joined Mulvanny Architects in 1975 as its fourth employee; the firm later merged with G2 Architecture. It now has more than 340 employees with regional offices in Portland; Irvine, Calif.; Washington, D.C.; and Shanghai, China.

Light Sciences

Biotech to create 3 subsidiaries

Light Sciences, a private biotech company in Snoqualmie, said yesterday it is spinning off three independent subsidiary companies that will focus on treating cancer, eye diseases and cardiovascular diseases.

The subsidiaries will use Light Sciences’ technology, which uses light-emitting diodes or light technologies to activate drugs in specific body tissues. The parent company will pursue other uses of the technology, said Chief Executive Albert Luderer. The new companies are called Light Sciences Oncology, Visient Therapeutics and Vascular Reconditioning.

Luderer said the spinoffs were created to allow venture capitalists to invest in a specific therapeutic category. The 50-employee company, which has been funded by angel investors since its founding in 1995, will now seek significant venture financing, he said.

Pacific Edge Software

New president, CEO is named

Bellevue-based Pacific Edge Software said yesterday it has appointed Mark Lazar as president and chief executive, effective immediately. Lazar replaces Rob Dickerson, who will remain on the board of directors.

Lazar started his career as a consultant at Bain & Co. and has held executive roles at several companies, most recently at San Mateo, Calif.-based networking software developer RouteScience Technologies, which was acquired last month by communications equipment and software maker Avaya. Pacific Edge specializes in portfolio-management software.


Grocery workers in N. Calif. OK pact

The union representing grocery workers at Northern California stores run by Albertsons, Safeway and Kroger-owned Ralph’s approved a new contract.

The union and supermarket companies reached a tentative agreement last month that averted a strike. About 83 percent of union members voted in favor of the deal, Jack Loveall, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers union 588, said yesterday in a pre-recorded message on the union’s main telephone number.

Federal Reserve

Consumers cut back on borrowing in Nov.

WASHINGTON — Keeping a watchful eye on their debt, consumers cut back on their borrowing in November by the largest amount on record, the Federal Reserve reported yesterday.

Consumer credit dropped by $8.7 billion in November from the previous month, marking the largest over-the-month decrease since the Fed began keeping records in 1943. The cutback represented a 5 percent decline at a seasonally adjusted annual rate.

The last time consumers trimmed their borrowing was in November 2003.

Economists, surprised by the magnitude of the cutback, cited a number of possible reasons for the more cautious approach to borrowing.

Consumers put off stocking up on holiday merchandise — which normally shows up on credit-card bills — waiting instead for deeper discounts, economists said.


18 former directors settle investor lawsuit

Eighteen ex-Enron directors agreed to a $168 million settlement of an investor lawsuit related to the 2001 collapse of the company, the lead plaintiff in the suit said. Ten will pay $13 million of their own money.

The balance of the settlement not paid by the board members will be paid out of directors and officers’ insurance policies, according to the Regents of the University of California, who were appointed to lead the class-action suit.

The agreement is the second settlement involving personal payouts by directors yesterday. Earlier, WorldCom investors announced a settlement requiring an $18 million director payout in their lawsuit against that company’s directors.

Compiled from Bloomberg News and The Associated Press