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BUSINESS
December 5, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
AT&T is making a move next week to attract customers who use smartphones that are not under a wireless service contract. The carrierĀ  announced Thursday that starting Dec. 8, customers with off-contract smartphones can choose a "no annual service contract" option that will lower the price of their monthly Mobile Share Value service plan by $15. Users can get the option if they are paying for their device through the AT&T Next early-upgrade plan,...
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BUSINESS
March 29, 2011 | Michael Hiltzik
Here's how to make a $455-million consumer class-action settlement disappear. First, require the aggrieved customers to sign and mail in a claim form comprising 10 pages of legal Esperanto before receiving any money. Make sure the customers know they're signing "under penalty of perjury. " Second, let the company keep any money that isn't paid out. At least, that's how the huge settlement reached in a case involving Farmers Insurance Group works out, in the opinion of Santa Monica-based Consumer Watchdog.
BUSINESS
January 24, 2011 | By Karen E. Klein
Dear Karen: How do I get customers for my new security business? Answer: Attracting early clients is tough for any business without a track record, particularly one in the security industry. You must persuade customers to trust your integrity and your ability to deliver on the contract you sign with them. Look for early customers within your business and social circles, where people already know and presumably trust you. Offer discounts to your first customers and ask them to write testimonials for you and send referrals your way. "Target your marketing to customers that you feel would have the greatest interest in your new approach based upon the research you should have done before launching your business," said Robert M. Donnelly, an entrepreneurship professor at St. Peter's College in New Jersey.
BUSINESS
March 11, 2012 | Michael Hiltzik
It's sad indeed when a respectable business organization gets so puffed up by its own reputation that it decides there's no downside to treating its customers like chumps. Here's the latest example of such corporate arrogance in action: the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Advance ticket sales for Angels soared after the team announced its 10-year, $250-million contract with slugging superstar Albert Pujols in December. That's the good news. The bad news is that over the last week, they've squandered considerable fan goodwill through an execrable display of contempt for their paying customers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 25, 2000
Power was knocked out Monday afternoon to 4,200 residential and commercial customers in Oxnard, according to Southern California Edison officials. The cause of the outage was still unknown late Monday, but company spokesman Rudy Gonzales said power had been restored to all customers by 7:15 p.m. The affected area was south of Gonzales Road, north of Wooley Road, west of Oxnard Boulevard and east of Victoria Avenue. The power first failed about 3:12 p.m.
BUSINESS
March 24, 1986
Quotron Systems Chairman Milton E. Mohr said several customers and joint-venture partners, including AT&T, have voiced concerns about Citicorp gaining access to their confidential business plans if the banking firm acquires Quotron. Mohr said, however, that he doesn't know if any customers will withdraw their business if Citicorp's $680-million bid succeeds.
BUSINESS
December 3, 2000
I cannot believe what Adelphia Cable has recently forced upon us: digital TV ["Adelphia Sending L.A. Cable Customers a Digital Warning," Nov. 17]. My neighbors and I are in an uproar over the fact that we were not given any choice as to whether or not we want to keep the cable we have, or have a box installed, get 200 channels (150 too many) free for a month, then call and tell them whether to keep our original channels or not. The caveat is, if you don't call within the month, you'll automatically be charged $74.50 per month, so be on the alert in December.
NEWS
July 12, 1992 | SOPHIA WYATT, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES; Sophia Wyatt is a British journalist based in Santa Monica and a longtime customer of Henshey's
Stores come and go. So what is so special about Henshey's? A survey of people on both sides of the counter provides some answers. "Henshey's is such a nice place to work--comfortable," said Marianne Booth, who started in gift-wrapping 26 years ago and has since graduated to accounts payable. "In other stores you are lucky if you can find a salesperson, but here there's a special camaraderie with everyone--staff and customers.
BUSINESS
March 16, 2010 | David Lazarus
Lawmakers and consumer advocates have heaped accolades on Bank of America for its announcement that it will stop hitting customers with $35 overdraft fees any time they don't have enough cash to cover a debit-card purchase. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), who has spearheaded efforts in Congress to crack down on abusive bank practices, was typical of those showering BofA with love. She declared, "Let me now praise Bank of America!" It's understandable that folks who regularly criticize banks would want to hand out milk and cookies when they see something beneficial for consumers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 9, 1993
Cable companies are notorious for making promises to win particular franchises and then not fulfilling their contractual obligations ("Market Competition Will Keep Rates Down for Consumers," Commentary by Mark P. Petracca, April 25). The exclusivity of their agreements with the city encourages the cable companies to increase the rates due to the lack of city intervention once the franchises are procured. Even though the franchise agreements expire, only a small minority of cities exercise the option to change cable companies.
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