Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Tuesday, December 21, 1999

Report: Hawaii leads U.S. in sales growth

Hawaii continued to lead the nation through the past weekend in retail sales growth for the holiday season, according to a count of purchases paid for by check. For the 24 days from the day after Thanksgiving through Sunday, such purchases in Hawaii were up 6.4 percent compared with sales in the same stores through the equivalent period of last year, according to TeleCheck Services Inc. TeleCheck, a nationwide check-approval business, says check purchases account for about one-third of all retail spending. Hawaii's year-over-year improvement in holiday check spending is the best of any state and ahead of the national average of 5.8 percent, TeleCheck reported yesterday.

Road Runner service enlists Akamai Tech

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Akamai Technologies Inc., whose software speeds the delivery of World Wide Web pages, said it has started an alliance with Road Runner, which provides Internet access through cable-television lines, to make Road Runner's service faster.

Cambridge-based Akamai didn't disclose financial terms. Road Runner is a joint venture of Time Warner Inc., MediaOne Group Inc., Microsoft Corp., Compaq Computer Corp. and Advance/Newhouse. The service is offered in Hawaii through Oceanic Cable. Road Runner's more than 420,000 customers are expected to be able to view Web pages faster and more reliably using Akamai's network of 1,700 servers.

Three sports legends team up for

CHICAGO -- Three legendary sports figures -- Michael Jordan, John Elway and Wayne Gretzky -- are teaming up to dispense advice and peddle sports and outdoor equipment on the Internet. The three retired sports stars announced the formation of today. The Web site will be based in Chicago and will launch in January. Elway, last year's Super Bowl MVP for the Denver Broncos, will serve as chairman. Jordan, the recently retired basketball superstar, and Gretzky, the retired National Hockey League scoring champion, are investors.

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