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POSTED: Saturday, April 11, 2009

Hertz completes Advantage buyout

Hertz Global Holdings Inc. has completed its acquisition of Advantage Rent A Car for about $33 million.

In Hawaii, Hertz operates 37 car rental locations on all four major islands, according to General Manager Aaron Medina. With the acquisition, Hertz will now operate two Advantage car-rental operations near airports in Honolulu and Kahului.

Hertz acquired the rights to the Advantage brand name (including trademarks, copyrights, etc.), Web site, and other assets. It will operate 20 Advantage locations nationwide.

Isle optical data firm forms alliance

MakaLani LLC of Hawaii is partnering with RapidEye AG of Brandenburg, Germany to be the U.S. distributor of RapidEye satellite-based optical data and services.

The agreement allows the companies to jointly create a comprehensive offering to a broad marketplace that includes the Department of Defense, Homeland Security and the intelligence community.

The RapidEye satellite system allows for cost-effective and comprehensive satellite-based optical data service.

MakaLani, LLC is a subsidiary of Honolulu Marine LLC, a Hawaiian owned and operated business.

Down to Earth switching bags

Down to Earth Natural Foods said it will switch to biodegradable plastic bags on Earth Day, April 22, at no cost to its customers.

The bags are produced by Aiea-based Island Plastic Bags Inc. and distributed by Honolulu-based Triple F.

“;We made this decision after a careful, yearlong review of alternatives,”; says Mark Fergusson, Down to Earth chief executive. “;Our goal was to strike a balance with keeping costs down and the need to improve practices that contribute to a cleaner and safer environment.”;

The bags will break down with or without the presence of light or oxygen, says Down to Earth, and biodegrade completely some time between nine months and five years. They also can be recycled along with regular plastic bags.

State orders halt of Ponzi scam

The state Securities Enforcement Branch is investigating a multistate Ponzi scheme, which may total more than $2.2 million in fraudulent investments.

Hawaii Commissioner of Securities Tung Chan has issued a preliminary order to cease and desist and notice of right to hearing against Stuart William Jones, Payton Jones Lowe and WeCorp Inc.

Chan also is seeking permanent injunctions against the parties for future violations, rescission, restitution and civil penalties of $1 million.

The order alleges that since last August, the parties have offered and sold unregistered securities in the form of investment contracts to Hawaii and mainland investors.

The parties also are alleged to have violated the state's securities registration and antifraud provisions.

Anyone who has been solicited or has done business with Jones, Lowe and/or WeCorp is urged to contact the state Securities Enforcement Branch on Oahu at 586-02740 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Water park offers kamaaina deal

Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park is offering a kamaaina special of 50 percent off the adult ticket price in celebration of its 10th anniversary.

Regular admission for adults is $39.99 plus tax, $29.99 for children ages 3 to 11, and $16.99 for seniors 60 and over.

With the kamaaina special, Hawaii adults and children can get a one-day admission for $19.99 through May 10. The park's 10th anniversary is on May 23.

Pacific Guardian dropping fees

Pacific Guardian Center of Honolulu's common area maintenance fees are set to come down about 10 percent beginning May 1.

Jamie Brown, president of Hawaii Commercial Real Estate, which leases the property, said many of the savings resulted from energy-efficiency programs as well as recent decreases in electricity costs.

Sanders Piano to sell Yamahas

Sanders Piano, which owns the Piano Outlet at Pearl Highlands Center, is now Hawaii's only authorized Yamaha retailer, the company said yesterday.

Piano Outlet will offer the full range of Yamaha keyboards—from console uprights to the 9-foot CFIIIS hand-crafted concert grand in addition to digital keyboards.

Sanders Piano, a family owned company, has been in Honolulu since 1954, and is now offering hard-to-find sheet music in its new Vivo Music department.

There are more than 1,000 total students enrolled in Sanders Piano and Piano Outlet.