Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Friday, March 19, 2004




Krystal Lucado and her twin sons Christian and Ethan, 4, were among the first customers when the new Kapolei Home Depot store opened at 6 a.m. yesterday. By early afternoon, the store had seen 3,000 customers, according to a spokeswoman. Lucado, an interior designer, was browsing the paint section for her new home when Kalani Esteron, head of the Home Depot paint department, gave some stickers to her sons. The store is Home Depot's third on Oahu, joining stores in Pearl City and Iwilei.



>> Gregg Enright has joined the OHANA Keauhou Beach Resort as general manager. He was most recently general manager at the resort condominium Outrigger at Lae Nani on Kauai.

>> Grand Wailea Resort Hotel & Spa has appointed Cecilia Hercik to Spa Grande spa sales and operations director and Nobuyuki Atsumi to chef de cuisine of its Japanese restaurant Kincha. Hercik was previously spa director at Neill Corporation in Hammond, La. Atsumi previously worked at Hilton Waikoloa on the Big Island as chef de cuisine of the hotel's Japanese restaurant Imari.

>> Melissa Anderson has been hired by Helber Hastert & Fee as a senior planner. She previously worked as a policy analyst for Hawaii Land Use Research Foundation and has served as a professional planner for local governments in Hawaii and Utah.


>> Alyson Kau has been chosen as the Queen's Medical Center 2003 Employee of the Year. She was selected from 12 other candidates who were Employee of the Month throughout 2003. Kau is a social worker and substance abuse counselor at Queen's Kaheiheimalie Building Day Treatment Services.

>> Realtor Carol Ginoza of Zen Properties Inc. has earned the Council of Real Estate Brokerage Managers certified real estate brokerage manager designation.


HFM buys Morrad Foodservice of Maui

HFM FoodService will acquire Morrad Foodservice of Maui, effective April 17, for an undisclosed price.

Morrad will maintain its name and be an independent operating division of HFM, while HFM will assume overall business management of its new division.

"We're very excited to welcome Morrad to the HFM family," said Barry O'Connell, HFM president. "Their outstanding team is delivering value and quality to Maui and Big Island customers."

Morrad President Donald Zwade called the acquisition a "win-win situation."

"It provides the capital and overall structure to make Morrad's vision a reality."

In a statement, the companies said the deal will provide improved supply chain and logistical management, as well as access to increased selection of products.

Defense contractor seeks workers

NovaSol, a Honolulu-based high-tech defense contractor, is seeking to hire 11 software engineers and scientists to work on a $12.3 million project for the Naval Research Lab.

The project will produce a networked system to gather and process data from various reconnaissance sensors for the Navy. It involves both hardware and software for collecting and analyzing electro-optical data.

NovaSol, an employee-owned firm since 1988, said it already has about a dozen people dedicated to the project but needs to expand. The company has 80 employees.

For more information, call 441-3646.

Construction opportunities knock

The Waianae Weed and Seed committee is heading an effort to connect the unemployed on the Leeward coast with a chance at thousands of projected construction jobs.

Planned military housing projects foretell a building boom. "We think it would be a tragedy if all of these new jobs were lost to imported labor when we have so many people in desperate need of work on the Waianae coast and throughout the state of Hawaii," said Rep. Maile Shimabukuro (D, Waianae), a committee member.

The committee is staging a construction jobs orientation event from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center. Presentations will be in the dining pavilion at 86-260 Farrington Highway.

Representatives from the construction industry and Leeward Community College, Waianae, will discuss the jobs that will be available as well as what job-seekers must do to enter the field. Attendees may enter their names into an LCC database that will be used for follow-up sessions, job training and placement.

Goodwill receives $40,000 grant

Goodwill Industries of Hawaii has received a $40,000 grant from the McInerny Foundation to buy an automated point of sale system.

It will be used to support the agency's donation and retail division, which generates more than one-third of Goodwill's annual revenues.

The POS system will enable Goodwill to streamline operations and enable staff to spend more time supporting job training, work experience and other services for people with disabilities and other barriers to employment. Goodwill's employment programs and services receive more than 90 percent of each dollar raised through its donations and retail sales.


U.S. hits China with WTO case

WASHINGTON >> The United States filed the first case against China at the World Trade Organization yesterday, contending that Beijing imposes unfair taxes on imported semiconductors.

With China and its trade policies dominating much of the economic debate during this presidential election year, the move was seen as a way for the administration to counter accusations from Democrats that it is not doing enough to protect American workers.

Heartburn medication big seller for P&G

CINCINNATI >> Six months after it hit store shelves with a huge marketing blitz, Procter & Gamble Co.'s Prilosec over-the-counter heartburn medication is one of the company's star performers in sales.

Some think the purple-boxed product, displayed prominently in drug stores, supermarkets and mass-market retailers, could exceed P&G's first-year target of $200 million to $400 million in sales. "I would be surprised if they do not," said William Steele, a Banc of America Securities analyst. "You can't go into a store in the United States without seeing a display of Prilosec ... It's certainly highlighted the strength of Procter's market capabilities."

P&G, in announcing a stock split last week, identified Prilosec OTC as one of its top performers.

Indictments sought in Parmalat's collapse

MILAN, Italy >> Prosecutors here sought indictments of 29 people and three major institutions yesterday for their role in the multibillion-dollar collapse of the Italian dairy company Parmalat.

More indictments are likely to be requested in the coming months, according to people close to the investigation.

The case, which exploded three months ago, is being investigated by Italian authorities in four cities and could lead to more than 50 people and seven banks being charged with fraud, market manipulation, false accounting and money laundering, the prosecutors have said.

The three institutions that prosecutors asked be indicted for market manipulation are Bank of America, Deloitte & Touche and Grant Thornton's former Italian unit, which is now called Italaudit.


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