Business Briefs
Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Sunday, July 8, 2001



>> Robert E. Sides has been named general manager at the Outrigger Napili Shores resort condominium. Sides was previously employed as general manager at the Kahana Villa Resort on Maui.

>> Gavina Hufano has been named controller at Castle and Cooke Resorts LLC. She will be responsible for all resort and non-resort accounting functions and financial reporting for The Lodge at Koele and The Manele Bay Hotel.

>> Todd Wells has been named kitchen manager at Ruth's Chris Steak House. He will work at the company's Restaurant Row location. Wells was employed at Ryan's Grill in Ward Centre before joining Ruth's Chris.

>> Mariette Ching has been named staffing manager at Accountemps. She has 11 years of experience in human resources and sales.

>> Elarka Yuen and Regina Hodges have been named real estate agents at Ko Olina Resort and Marina's Coconut Plantation. The two will oversee new home sales for the company. Yuen and Hodges have a combined total of more than 35 years of real estate sales experience.


>> Starr Seigle Communications recently announced the following promotions and new hires: Tom Allen, Colleen Shidaki and Carol Kramer have been promoted at Starr Seigle Advertising. Allen, who has been with the company since 1993, was named account executive. Shidaki was also named an account executive. Kramer was named print production manager. She had previously served as advertising manager at Roberts Resorts Hawaii and Castle Hotels and Resorts.

At StarrTech, Dawn Astley and Joseph Mastowski have been named senior account executive and interactive media developer, respectively. Astley has been with the company since 1999. Mastowski has a background in Web and multimedia development.

At StarrPR Public Relations, Sukil Suh and Ronnette Earle have been named account executives. Suh previously worked at the Blood Bank of Hawaii. Earle served as director of business development at Staffing Solutions before joining StarrPR.


>> Erlinda Rosario, Victor Lim and Paul Tengan have been honored by the McDonald's Corp. Rosario was awarded the second annual McDonald's West Division corporate "Partners in Paradise" award, given to the operator with the highest sales increase from the previous year. Lim and Tengan were selected to participate in the Salt Lake City 2002 Olympic Torch Relay. The two will fly to the mainland and represent the Hawaii region during the relay, scheduled to begin in December.



Genki Sushi, the Japan-based restaurant chain that owns three popular outlets on Oahu and is now bent on taking a taste for unagi and wasabi to the U.S. mainland. The company, known for its conveyor belt serving techniques, says it will open seven new restaurants on the West Coast, its first U.S. operations outside Hawaii. Who knows, people may soon be lining up outside Green Bay for tekka maki.

The Hawaii economy for the rest of the year, according to a new state forecast. The state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism forecasts the state economy will grow at a 2.7 percent annual rate for 2001, higher than the anemic growth on the U.S. mainland or in Japan. However, the forecast also seems to take a rosy view of visitor arrivals and the strength of the Japanese economy.

Health insurer University Health Alliance, which will be run by the state for at least the next 30 days. While that may not seem like good news for the financially troubled nonprofit, when you consider the alternative is to be shut down, a chance at improving the company so it may fly alone in the future sounds like good, well, insurance.


Honolulu-based Cheap Tickets, which has seen its stock plunge since it gave an earnings warning last week. The stock has cascaded from the $16 range in the latter part of June to close at $12 Friday, at the same time competitors Travelocity and Orbitz seem to be garnering favorable press.

Hotel and Resort developers, who do not seem to be among the favorites in a recent survey of Hawaii residents and tourists by the Sustainable Tourism and Environment Program at the University of Hawaii Travel Industry Management school. What residents and tourists want most, the survey says, is protection of natural coastlines and the environment of the islands. What they want least are more golf courses, luxury resorts and shopping center, the survey said.

The International Longshore & Warehouse Union, which lost a ruling before a state judge this past week. Circuit Judge Karen Blondin ruled that that the $7 million or so the Hawaiian Waikiki Beach Hotel accumulated while it was in court receivership cannot be used to pay union claims to severance and vacation. That leaves the union to try to get money from Otaka Inc., which lost the hotel after filing bankruptcy.

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