Bars and Nightclubs are both highly regulated and highly profitable. Because of alcohol sales and their high potential for assorted vice crimes, state and local governments monitor bars and nightclubs carefully. In some cities such as Philadelphia, a bar or nightclub may need up to 12 licenses and permits. Navigating the maze of applications and processes required to start such a business can be daunting.
Santa Monica is known as much for its social and civic programs as for its beautiful beaches. Accordingly, the city expects businesses to pay their dues through license and permit fees. Santa Monica statutes allow the city to not only fine non-compliant businesses, but to also criminally prosecute business owners – even after they pay delinquent fees. The city requires licenses for a broad variety of business types and in many cases, county and state licenses are required in addition to Santa Monica permits. Santa Monica houses the headquarters and regional offices for a number of major companies -- particularly in the entertainment and technology sectors. These include Universal Music Group, Lions Gate Films, the RAND Corporation, Beachbody, Macerich, COR Capital LLC, Entravision Communications, Demand Media, Docstoc Inc. Anworth Mortgage, Business.com, The Playtone Company, Activision, ET Whitehall, Fatburger, Microsoft, Yahoo!, MTV and Edmunds.com.