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Business Briefs

For Wednesday, July 7, 2010

By Star-Advertiser staff

POSTED:


Sam's to offer biz loans

NEW YORK » Walmart's Sam's Club chain is teaming up with a lender to offer loans of up to $25,000 to its small-business members. The program is one of several moves it has made to offer banklike financial services to customers, in part to help them spend. It also comes as the retailer tries to improve profitability at its warehouse-club chain.

Maui realty sales up but prices mixed

Maui home and condominium sales rose by double-digit percentages in June, but median prices were mixed as the market continued to form a base.

Home sales gained 18.5 percent to 77 units sold from 65 a year ago, while the median price edged up 0.8 percent to $499,000 from $495,000. Condo sales nearly doubled to 105 units sold from 55, but the median price dropped 8.3 percent to $430,000 from $469,000, according to data released yesterday by the Realtors Association of Maui Inc.

"The market is starting to turn, indicated by the recent increase in unit sales," said Terry Tolman, Realtors Association of Maui chief staff executive.

HMC bankruptcy emergence delayed

Hawaii Medical Center, its creditors and physicians group have reached an agreement with St. Francis Healthcare System of Hawaii to extend the deadline to emerge from bankruptcy to Friday.

HMC was scheduled to emerge from bankruptcy last Thursday.

The parties involved—including debtors, the exit lender and St. Francis—needed more time complete the paperwork necessary for the reorganization.

Hawaii Medical Center has converted to a nonprofit organization, which relieves the hospitals of up to $6 million in taxes paid annually. The reorganization plan would allow HMC to repay debt owed to unsecured creditors over the next 12 years.

Former owner CHA Hawaii no longer has a stake in the hospitals located in the Ewa Beach and Liliha areas. Instead, the hospitals will be run by a nine-member board of directors.

Kai Medical monitor gets FDA's OK

Honolulu-based Kai Medical said it has received approval from the Food and Drug Administration to market an updated version of its wireless respiratory rate monitor.

The FDA approved Kai Medical's Noncontact Respiratory Spot Rate Check 200, an integrated version of its predecessor, the Kai Spot 100, the company said.

"Receiving FDA clearance for our second wireless, noncontact respiratory rate monitoring product extends our position in the market and allows us to integrate our produce with a wider range of partners," said Dustin Shindo, Kai Medical's chief executive officer.

The device allows health care professionals to "measure a subject's respiration with greater ease and with increased regularity," according to the company.

Kai Medical plans to enter commercial production of the Kai Spot 200 this year.

On the Move

Akinaka & Associates has hired Ken C. Kawahara as vice president of business development. He was previously a deputy director of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources Commission on Water Resource Management.

***

The Hawaiian Eye Center has hired Rachelle Tavares as the new patient services representative. She was previously a customer service representative at a local financial institution.

W.H. Shipman has named Loren Mochida as director of agricultural operations. He was previously general manager at Tropical Hawaiian Products and worked for Amfac Tropical Products, Puna Sugar Co. and Kekaha Sugar Co.

***

The U.S. Small Business Administration has appointed Elizabeth Echols as regional administrator in Region IX. Her experience includes serving as director of the Northern California Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council, co-leader of the agency review process for National Telecommunications and Information Administration and director of policy for Google, and she worked on Internet and telecommunications issues at the White House and Department of Commerce.






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