Business briefs


POSTED: Saturday, October 10, 2009

Royal Hawaiian showroom gains temporary loan in bankruptcy court

The show will go on at the fourth level of Royal Hawaiian Center, after a U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge granted a temporary loan for operators of the showroom.

Royal Hawaiian Showroom LLC, producers of the failed “;Waikiki Nei”; show, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization earlier this week.

Judge Robert Faris allowed the producers yesterday to take an interim loan from Japan Sports Management, which is a partner of the corporation, to pay its employees and its rent to landlord Kamehameha Schools for another 15 days.

Faris said he considered the case “;precarious,”; even with the loan, and that the chances of success were far from assured. A hearing on further motions is scheduled for Oct. 26.

The showroom is now home to a new production called “;Heartbeat Hawaii,”; which plays six nights a week, while the Level 4 Nightclub & Ultra Lounge remains open.

Honolulu pharmaceuticals company wins research grant for liver disease

Honolulu-based Cardax Pharmaceuticals Inc. has received a Small Business Innovation Research grant of nearly $1.25 million from the National Institutes of Health toward development of treatment for inflammatory liver disease.

Perhaps 10 million or more Americans suffer from diseases including hepatitis or liver ailments caused by drinking too much alcohol or ingesting too much cholesterol, said David Watumull, president and chief executive officer of Cardax.

The company will use the funds for work on the drug the FDA requires before it can be used in human clinical trials.

Justice Department investigates firm's market share for biotech crops

ST. LOUIS » Monsanto Co. says the Justice Department is investigating whether it violated antitrust rules in trying to expand its dominance of the market for genetically engineered crops.

The department's investigation of Monsanto is part of a previously announced inquiry into consolidation in the seed industry. It focuses on the company's licensing agreements with seed companies.

St. Louis-based Monsanto is the world's biggest seed company, and its patented genes are inserted into a majority of U.S. corn and soybean crops. Critics say Monsanto has used its market clout to squeeze competitors.

A Justice Department spokeswoman declined to confirm or deny the investigation earlier this week.

Airport to begin $37M project

The first phase of the planned $37 million international corridor at Honolulu Airport will open Wednesday.

The $3.2 million first phase of the corridor, on the third level of the Ewa Concourse, will eliminate the need for most international travelers to take a Wikiwiki bus to customs, said state Tourism Liaison Marsha Weinert. “;About 80 percent of our international travelers arrive via the Ewa Concourse,”; she said.

The entire project is slated for completion in December 2010 and is funded mostly by the federal government.

On the move

» Aloha United Way has hired Jerelenn Medeiros as an administrative assistant for the community building department. She has 12 years of administrative and customer service experience.

» Legal Aid Society of Hawaii has rehired Patricia “;Patty”; Eads as deputy director. She has more than 30 years of legal experience and was previously in Texas where she practiced workers' compensation law. She also headed Legal Aid's family law unit and was an administrative hearings officer for the state Department of Human Services.