Business Briefs


POSTED: Thursday, November 13, 2008


JetBlue pilots group files petition

NEW YORK » JetBlue Airways Corp. pilots filed a petition to create an independent union, which would be the first labor group at the carrier.

The JetBlue Pilots Association said in an e-mailed statement that it filed documents with the National Mediation Board to gain recognition as bargaining agent for the 2,000 workers. A union would provide career protection for JetBlue's pilots, said Michael Sorbie, a captain at the New York-based airline.

Yum! to cut hundreds of jobs

NEW YORK » Yum! Brands Inc., the owner of the Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and KFC chains, said it will eliminate “;several hundred”; positions as part of a plan to sell its U.S. restaurants to franchisees.

Yum will shift as many as 200 jobs to the company's restaurant brands and eliminate several hundred other positions across the country, Jonathan Blum, a spokesman for the Louisville, Ky.-based company, said yesterday.

Sales at Yum's KFC fell 4 percent in the third quarter, dragging down total U.S. sales growth of 3 percent.

Anheuser-Busch sale approved

SECAUCUS, N.J. » Shareholders of Anheuser-Busch Cos. approved the $52 billion sale of the business to Belgium-based InBev SA yesterday, a deal that is set to create the world's largest brewer.

The vote was the latest step necessary to form the company that will be known as Anheuser-Busch InBev and combine brands such as Bud Light and Budweiser with Stella Artois and Beck's. The deal, reached in July, is expected to close by the end of the year. It is subject to regulatory approval in the U.S., Britain and China.


HTA seeks firm to aid CEO search

The Hawaii Tourism Authority is seeking an executive search firm to help find another chief executive to head the agency.

Former HTA Chief Executive Rex Johnson resigned abruptly last month following allegations that he had used his state laptop to forward racist and sexist jokes and pornography to friends.

The selected firm would report directly to the HTA's Search Investigative Committee, which has been asked to select a permanent president and chief executive and negotiate a recommended compensation package.

The request for proposals is available at HTA's office located at the Hawaii Convention Center, 1801 Kalakaua Ave., first level, or through HTA's Web site at http://www.hawaiitourismauthority.org. Proposals must be received by HTA no later than 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Superferry adds holiday voyages

Hawaii Superferry has added voyages during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays to accommodate an expected increase in passengers wanting to travel between Maui and Oahu.

“;We anticipate that many people will want to take advantage of the long weekends over Thanksgiving and Christmas to visit friends and family, do some Christmas shopping, or just use the holidays to experience Hawaii Superferry for the first time,”; Superferry President and CEO Tom Fargo said in a statement.

The additional voyages will be on Nov. 26 and Dec. 30. Visit http://www.HawaiiSuperferry.com or call (877) 443-3779 from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.


DOWNGRADED: Hawaiian Telcom Communications Inc. was downgraded by Moody's Investors Service this week. The rating agency downgraded its corporate family rating to “;Caa3”; from “;Caa2”;


Awards / Certifications

» Commercial insurance agent Thomas M. Allen of Insurance Factors in Honolulu has been honored with the Certified Insurance Counselor designation, a program which is sponsored by the Society of Certified Counselors. Allen has 15 years of experience in Hawaii's advertising industry including 10 years at Starr Seigle Communications.