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Business Briefs

For Tuesday, June 29, 2010

By Star-Advertiser Staff and News Services

POSTED:


Kona firm gets biofuel funding

A consortium led by Kona-based Cellana is one of three groups around the country to receive a total of $24 million in federal funding to tackle hurdles in the commercialization of algae-based biofuels.

The consortium led by Cellana will receive up to $9 million to study large-scale production of fuels and feed from microalgae grown in sea water, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

Tasks include integrating new algal harvesting technologies with pilot-scale cultivation test beds, and developing marine microalgae as animal feed for the aquaculture industry.

Developing cost-effective renewable transportation fuels is a key component of the Obama administration's strategy to cut greenhouse gas emissions and move the U.S. toward energy independence.

Maui Land rights offering at $3.85

Maui Land & Pineapple Co. said yesterday that the subscription price for its previously announced $40 million rights offering of common stock is $3.85.

Shareholders will receive one nontransferable subscription right for each share of common stock owned as of the close of business on July 7.

Analyst lifts Central Pacific rating

Analyst Joe Gladue of B. Riley & Co. raised his rating yesterday on Central Pacific Financial Corp.'s stock to "neutral" from "sell."

Gladue also boosted his target price at $2, double from his previous target price of $1 that he listed on May 3.

The shares of Central Pacific Bank's parent edged up 1 cent yesterday to $1.57.

Philly papers' reorganization OK'd

PHILADELPHIA » A federal judge cleared the way for Philadelphia's two major newspapers to emerge from bankruptcy protection, confirming a reorganization plan yesterday despite objections from employee pension officials.

Chief U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Stephen Raslavich said the plan is in the best interest of creditors and called it "a noteworthy achievement" in the bitter 17-month legal battle over the papers.

The decision ushers in the final stages of new ownership for The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News and their shared website philly.com. Philadelphia Media Network Inc. is poised to take over the outlets when the sale closes, likely sometime in August.

Americans spend more as wages rise

WASHINGTON » Americans spent a little more in May but not enough to speed along the economic recovery.

Consumer spending rose 0.2 percent last month after no change in April, the Commerce Department said yesterday.

Incomes rose for the sixth time in seven months, boosting household finances and potentially providing fuel for greater future spending. The increase came from spending on services—much of that likely the result of Americans using more electricity as the weather warmed up. Money spent on goods declined.

Incomes rose 0.4 percent. The savings rate, or the percentage of income that wasn't spent, bumped up to 4 percent.

ON THE MOVE

SSFM International has hired Glen Yasui as senior project manager. He was previously highways administrator at the state Department of Transportation Highways Division and worked with the Federal Highways Administration.

***

The YMCA of Honolulu has announced the retirement of Larry H. Bush, effective Dec. 31. He is president and chief executive officer and has been with the company for 40 years.

RevoluSun has hired Iolani Lewis as project developer. He previously owned and operated Io Enterprise, a boat-related services company on Oahu.

***

Mele Spencer was elected area director to the Zonta International, District 9 board, which covers Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Utah and a city on the Mexican border. Spencer will represent Hawaii's six Zonta Clubs for 2010-2012.

***

» The First Hawaiian Bank Foundation has awarded a $10,000 grant to YMCA of Kauai. The grant will be used to build a covered multipurpose pavilion for the YMCA's swimming pool complex.






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