Business Briefs
Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire


Hotels workers picket Sheraton properties

Members of Hawaii hotel workers' union Local 5 picketed the Sheraton Waikiki and Royal Hawaiian hotels yesterday on Kalakaua Avenue, and plan to picket Hilton Hawaiian Village next week.

The Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees union has been negotiating contracts with major hotels in Waikiki, and says that the sluggish pace of talks has angered its members. Last week, 500 union supporters showed up at pickets at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani hotel and the Sheraton Moana Surfrider, after the union canceled its contracts with Sheraton, Local 5 said.

Union members were also downtown yesterday handing out leaflets, such as one reading: "Today, Hawaii hotels have a new plantation system." The flier cites sweatshop work hours, the use of nonunion subcontractors and the fact that total paid working hours are down even though Hawaii hotel occupancy has improved.

The hotels have accused Local 5 leadership of using the pickets as bargaining tactics.

The union is scheduled to resume negotiating with Sheraton July 18, and with Hilton July 19.


Soft economy will limit employee pay raises

NEW YORK >> The uncertain economy and soft job market will cap pay increases this year for most workers, with employers parceling out raises of just under 4 percent.

Employers in two recent surveys said their salary budgets for the year are up 3.7 percent to 4.1 percent, depending on the type of workers, but that they anticipate slightly more generous increases in 2003.

The scrimping by employers marks the first time in nine years that companies have backed away from intended 4 percent increases, a figure that has become almost standard practice, according to one survey by the Conference Board, a New York-based research group.

But it also is a sign that, after more than a year of freezing pay or delaying increases, some employers are starting to ease up a little, reports Mercer Human Resource Consulting, author of the other survey.

Yahoo to report profit after string of losses

SUNNYVALE, Calif. >> Yahoo! Inc., the Internet search site with 98 million registered users, this afternoon will report its first quarterly profit under Chief Executive Officer Terry Semel after six straight losses.

Yahoo earned about 2 cents a share in the second quarter on sales of $215 million, according to analysts surveyed by IBES International Inc. That compares with a year-earlier loss of 9 cents a share on revenue of $182.2 million.

The challenge for Semel, who became CEO in May 2001 after serving as co-chief executive of the Warner Bros. film studio, is to increase fees for services such as job listings and to revive advertising sales in a sluggish economy, investors say.

Federated may close New Jersey stores

Cincinnati >> Federated Department Stores Inc., the owner the Macy's, said it may have to close stores in New Jersey because of the state's corporate-tax increase. Federated will have to pay an additional $5.7 million in taxes, according to the company. Federated told Gov.James McGreevey in a letter yesterday that it anticipates closing some stores because of the higher costs, she said.


Daiei to sell catering subsidiary Captaincook

KOBE >> Daiei Inc. announced Monday it will sell 95 percent of its catering subsidiary Captaincook Corp. to Sodexho Japan Co. for &YEN76 million, boosting optimism it is on track to sell assets to trim debt, an investor said.

The Kobe-based retailer secured a &YEN520 billion ($4.4 billion) debt-relief package from its main creditors earlier this year.


[Hawaii Inc.]

New Jobs

>> Lance Taketa has been named manager of sales and marketing at Hawaiian Natural Waters. He most recently was an intern with Laird Christianson Harris.


>> Debbie Parmley has been promoted to vice president of commercial real estate at the Waikoloa Beach Resort, which is owned by the Waikoloa Land Co. She will oversee the planning, development and operation of all commercial real estate activities.

She will also continue her work as general manager of King's Shops, a dining and entertainment complex in the Waikoloa. She joined Waikoloa in 1998 and has had several positions in resort and beach operations, asset management and retail property management.

>> Pacific LightNet Inc. has promoted Mark Uyehara to network control center supervisor and Mark Bagley to technical support manager. Uyehara is responsible for the design and monitoring of PLNI's network facilities and infrastructure. He has been in the telecommunications industry for 13 years, beginning with AT&T Hawaii in 1989. Bagley is responsible for managing and maintaining the efficiency of operations for PLNI's technical support center.

On the board

>> Randal S. Yoshida of Honolulu has been appointed a director of the board of Federal Home Loan Bank of Seattle. He is the founder and principal of Randal S. Yoshida and Associates, a law firm that represents multimiilion dollar pension funds and other corporate clients.

>> The American Business Women's Association Na Kilohana O Wahine Chapter has elected Chassidy Shinno president of its board for 2002-03. Shinno is student services specialist in employment and cooperative education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Other new officers are: Teresa Sakurada of Alan B. Richardson, CPA, LLC, vice president; Donna Miyashiro of Prada Hawaii Corp., secretary, and Beverly Pong of Beverly Pong Realtor LLC, treasurer.

Immediate Past President Lee Ann Matsuda will assist in the transition of the new board.

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