Business briefs


POSTED: Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Office vacancies spur rent drops

The Honolulu office market vacancy rate was 10.3 percent in the third quarter, a 0.2 percentage point increase from the second quarter, according to a CB Richard Ellis MarketView report.

Typically, above 10 percent is considered the tipping point at which the momentum shifts to a tenants' market.

As landlords struggle to attract new tenants and retain current ones, they are softening on their asking price for rental rates.

Gross average asking rents in Honolulu's central business district are down 10 cents a square foot to $2.89 from the same quarter last year.


Anekona bankruptcy filing dismissed

Big Island developer Brian Anderson's bankruptcy filing for Anekona LLC for the Coconut Grove Marketplace on the Big Island has been dismissed in federal court.

U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert Faris granted a motion to dismiss the case earlier this week. Anderson filed for voluntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June. But attorneys for the Office of the U.S. Trustee alleged that the bankruptcy was filed to delay foreclosure proceedings and that unsecured creditors were unlikely to receive any payments in the case.

The center, at 75-5815 Alii Drive in Kona, is 20 percent vacant, with some tenants paying only a portion of their rent, according to the court filing.

Florida-based LNR Partners filed a foreclosure suit in March against Anekona for defaulting on a $17.2 million loan for the marketplace, an oceanfront retail center with boutiques, shops, restaurants and a beach volleyball court.


Hawaiian Air tops in on-time flights

Hawaiian Airlines was the most punctual carrier in August of the top 19 U.S. airlines, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Hawaiian's on-time performance — measured by the percentage of flights that arrived within 15 minutes of their scheduled time — was 94.7 percent for the month, well above second-best airline Alaska at 85.8 percent.

Transportation officials said yesterday that 79.7 percent of flights arrived on time in August, an improvement from 78.4 percent in August 2008 and 77.6 percent in July.


Chamber clarifies stance with Apple

U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue, in a letter to Apple Inc.'s Steve Jobs, said the company misunderstood the chamber's position on climate change when it quit the organization.

The chamber isn't opposed to federal laws that would reduce greenhouse gases, Donohue said yesterday in the letter, according to Bloomberg News. What the group opposes is having the Environmental Protection Agency “;apply existing environmental statutes that were not created to regulate greenhouse gas emissions,”; he said.

Apple resigned from the chamber Monday, saying it was at odds with the organization over the issue. “;Apple supports regulating greenhouse gas emissions,”; said Catherine Novelli, the company's vice president of worldwide government affairs.



;  Hunt Development Group has hired Matthew Hunt as development manager. He had been a clinical consultant with National Renewable Energy Laboratory as well as a development associate with Flintridge Partners.

Projection, Lights and Staging News has awarded Eggshell Lighting Co. with a Hometown Hero award for the Southwestern region of the United States, including Hawaii. As a regional winner, Eggshell Lighting Co. is a finalist in PLSN's national Parnelli Award competition for Best Regional Lighting Company of the Year. The ceremony takes place Nov. 20 in Orlando, Fla.

Honolulu Country Club has selected Ho'ala Landscape and Maintenance to provide housekeeping and custodial services for its 177-acre property.