Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Monday, December 20, 1999

Kurisu & Fergus buys Black Development

A Hawaii commercial real estate investment partnership, Kurisu & Fergus, has purchased Black Development Corp., gaining ownership of several major properties, including a 270,000-square-foot JC Penney warehouse on Oahu, business properties on Kauai, and other business and professional centers on the Big Island and in Washington State. The purchase price was not disclosed. Black Development Corp. had been held in trust by Pacific Century Trust. Kurisu & Fergus holdings include the Pearl City Shopping Center, Lahaina Inn and the 1000 Bishop St. building.

Aquasearch asks for FDA approval

Aquasearch Inc., one of two Hawaii producers of food and health products made from microalgae, said today it has asked the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to allow marketing of its astaxanthin-rich diet supplement, called the AstaFactor. Aquasearch, based in Kailua-Kona, based its application on the fact that it has conducted not only toxicity studies in rats but has conducted human safety trials as well. Astaxanthin, also produced by Kona rival Cyanotech Corp., is marketed as an antioxidant, potentially helpful to a number of human ailments.

Red Hat posts loss; will split stock

DURHAM, N.C. -- Red Hat Inc., a developer of the free Linux computer operating system that competes with Microsoft Corp.'s Windows, posted a fiscal third-quarter loss and said it will split its shares 2 for 1.

Red Hat lost $3.6 million, or 5 cents a share in the quarter ended Nov. 30, compared with net income of $103,937, or break-even, a year earlier. Revenue rose 63 percent to $5.43 million from $3.32 million.

Red Hat shares have surged more than 19-fold since it first sold shares to the public in August on optimism that Linux may challenge the dominance of Windows. Expenses climbed almost fourfold to $7.3 million. The company has signed agreements with computer makers such as Dell Computer Corp. to include its version of Linux on computers.

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