Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire



Hawaiian Airline minority owners get SEC backing

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a motion in federal Bankruptcy Court yesterday supporting the formation of a Hawaiian Airlines minority equity committee.

The SEC argues that the shares of parent company Hawaiian Holdings Inc. have value and that minority shareholders' interests will not be represented in the airline's reorganization.

It was an unexpected show of support considering no other party involved in the case had supported the committee proposed by minority investors Lonestar Partners LP, Triage Capital Management LP and Norman Caris of Caris & Co.

In another development, federal Bankruptcy Judge Robert Faris approved a motion yesterday from Hawaiian Airlines and Boeing Capital Corp. for a ninth extension to continue discussions on restructuring their aircraft lease agreements. The new extension expires May 31. The previous extension expired yesterday.

Without the extension, Boeing Capital would have had the right to repossess its planes under federal bankruptcy law.

Hawaiian, which has 25 planes, is trying to renegotiate leases with Boeing on three 767s and the 11 717s that comprise Hawaiian's interisland fleet.

Nextel opens first shop in Lihue

Nextel Partners Inc., based in Washington, has opened its first retail store in Lihue, at the Kukui Grove Center. The expansion to Kauai is part of the wireless communications company's plan to open 37 new stores in 2004.

"Strong demand for Nextel's differentiated product is really driving the opening of our first local retail store in Lihue," said Jon Gelman, area general manager.

The 533 square-foot shop offers Nextel phones with various services including long-range walkie-talkie, digital cellular, text and numeric messaging. Hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.


[Hawaii Inc.]



>> Bowen Hunsaker Hirai, Certified Public Accountants, A Professional Corporation has added certified public accountant Craig K. Hirai as a shareholder, director and officer. He will focus on federal and state taxation, mergers and acquisitions, business structuring, tax-exempt organizations, litigation services, forensic accounting and business valuation.

>> Laura McIntyre has joined Helber Hastert & Fee, Planners Inc. as a land use and environmental planner. She previously worked as an intern for the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism; spent three years as strategic planner in the State Tourism Office of New South Wales, Australia; and worked four years as a project manager for Manidis Roberts Consultants of Sydney, Australia.

>> Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties has hired Michelle Sasaoka as its Waikiki office manager. She will manage personnel, marketing coordination and daily operations of the office. She was previously an AT&T Wireless information technology operations manager.

>> Castle & Cooke Homes Hawaii has hired Jessie Gaines as quality assurance officer and Allan Mason as construction superintendent. Gaines previously worked on Castle & Cooke projects in Mililani Mauka, Royal Kunia and Renaissance as a Coastal Construction carpenter. Mason's most recent employer was Nan Inc., where he was a superintendent.


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