A&B plans to focus
more on real estate
than on Matson

Alexander & Baldwin Inc. said in a filing yesterday with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it is planning to shift more emphasis to its real estate business over the next four years.

The parent of Matson Navigation Co. said the company's real estate assets will increase to about 50 percent by the end of 2008 from its current level of about 40 percent. A&B said the change will occur because about 60 percent of capital spending is planned for real-estate related acquisitions, development of new and current projects and maintenance of income- producing properties.

Matson's asset distribution will be reduced to about 40 percent from 50 percent, the company said, with food products to remain less than 10 percent, as it is now.

Outside of real estate, A&B said the remainder of its capital spending will be on Matson for Guam service, increased Hawaii service efficiency and business growth. Capital spending for the food products business is expected to be modest, the company said.

A&B also said it is targeting long-term earnings growth of approximately 10 percent to 12 percent for the overall company, although the growth will be uneven. The company said it is aiming for long-term earnings growth of 13 percent to 15 percent in its real estate business.

The company noted that the entrance of Pasha into the Hawaii market next year will have a disruptive effect on Matson. Pasha plans to introduce into the Hawaii market a vessel capable of carrying 3,000 automobiles with biweekly service.

Matson has an 80 percent share of the Hawaii-mainland auto carriage market, which is approximately 180,000 vehicles a year.



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