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Business briefs

For Wednesday, February 23, 2011

By Star-Advertiser Staff and News Services

POSTED:


Business plan battle set

Three Hawaii companies will pitch their ideas at a competition today. The winner gets an expenses-paid networking week in Silicon Valley. The "Road to IPO" event begins at 1 p.m. at Laniakea Fuller Hall at the YWCA at 1040 Richards St. in downtown Honolulu. Admission is $30. For more information, contact Karl Fooks at the Hawaii Strategic Development Corp. at 587-3830.

Tradewinds NCO Club to reopen

Hickam Air Force Base's Tradewinds NCO Club, which had been vacant for about 15 years before renovations began in 2008, will reopen this week as the newly named Ka Makani Community Center. An opening ceremony will be held at 4:30 p.m. Friday.

The original club, built in 1941, was a gathering place for noncommissioned officers and their spouses and offered a dining room, library, lounge, bar and card room. The renovated building will now be used as a community center for families living on Hickam where they will have access to a variety of activities and programs. The facility will include a library and media center, fitness facility and meeting and party rooms.

Hickam Communities LLC, a Lend Lease community, completed the renovation as part of one of the largest historic homes renovation projects in the nation. The $820 million development includes the construction of 1,208 new homes, renovation of 428 historic homes and the building of leasing, property and maintenance management offices and community recreational facilities.

More than 2,400 Airmen and their families will reside in Hickam Communities when the renovation is completed in 2013.

Macy's warns of price increases

NEW YORK » A tight hold on expenses helped Macy's Inc. increase its fourth-quarter net income by 50 percent, but the department store operator said yesterday that it will raise some prices to contend with rising costs. The Cincinnati company's price increases do not come as much of a surprise, though. Many clothing sellers, including Abercrombie & Fitch and Brooks Brothers, either already have increased spring prices or said they will increase prices soon.

Macy's, which operates the Bloomingdale's and Macy's chains and their websites, remains upbeat on its prospects for the year, forecasting 2011 earnings in a range that includes analysts' average estimate.

For the fourth quarter, Macy's earned $667 million, or $1.55 a share, compared with net income of $445 million, or $1.05 a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 5 percent to $8.269 billion.

Home Depot earnings jump 72%

NEW YORK » Customers spending more on higher-priced items like refrigerators and windows helped Home Depot's fourth-quarter net income rise 72 percent.

The largest U.S. home-improvement retailer raised its earnings guidance and dividend but kept its outlook relatively modest as it reported its financial results yesterday.

Net income rose to $587 million, or 36 cents a share, from $342 million, or 20 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose 4 percent to $15.13 billion.

Barnes & Noble earnings falls

NEW YORK » Bookseller Barnes & Noble's third-quarter revenue rose, but its net income fell 25 percent as it continued to invest in its online operations and Nook e-readers, the company said yesterday.

The largest U.S. traditional book store chain also said it was suspending its quarterly dividend, and it doesn't plan to forecast its fourth-quarter or full-year earnings due to the effect of last week's bankruptcy filing by its chief rival, Borders Group Inc.

Borders is closing 200 stores, about one-third of its total. Barnes & Noble CEO William Lynch said his company might be interested in "a minority" of the 200 locations. Suspending the company's dividend will give it $60 million in cash and more flexibility to expand, Lynch said.

The company said its quarterly net income fell to $60.6 million, or $1 per share, from $80.4 million, or $1.38 per share. Revenue rose 7 percent to $2.33 billion.

On the Move

Dianne Ward, who has been in the nonprofit industry for more than 15 years, has been named president of Junior Achievement, Hawaii Inc. She will be responsible for building partnerships and collaborating with business, education and civic leaders to provide motivation and hands-on learning for youths. Ward previously served as executive director of the Hawaii Arthritis Foundation.

***

Big Island Country Club has promoted:
» Herman Manalili to director of golf.
» James Medeiros to golf shop manager.

***

Prudential Locations has hired Kevin Miyama as career coach. He will oversee agent development, sales training, and sales performance planning and management for agents. He was previously with Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties for eight years, and also served as director of purchasing for Star Markets, sales manager for Hawaiian Grocery Stores and regional vice president for De Jarnett Sales.

***

The Atherton Family Foundation has awarded The Maui Farm with a $5,000 matching grant for its Spring Challenge March. The farm provides family-centered programs that teach self-sufficient living, including programs for homeless families and older youths. The Atherton Family Foundation is one of the largest endowed grant-making private resources devoted to the support of charities in Hawaii.






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